Whether you decide to work from home because the flexibility appeals to you, you have kids at home to care for, or you want the freedom of working for yourself, getting the work-at-home schedule under control can take time. Thankfully, there are a few strategies that can help you get moving in the right direction.
- Schedule Your Day
One of the great things about working from home is having the flexibility in your daily schedule to take care of life’s unexpected events, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a work schedule. Plan to begin and end your work schedule at the same time each day, and keep your schedule similar throughout the day to make the most of your time. For example, you could make sales calls in the morning, manage your website right after lunch, and do any odd tasks at the end of the day.
- Schedule Important Tasks First
Getting the most important tasks out of the way first thing in the morning makes it less likely that something will come up and cause delays. If you deal with deadlines, be sure to finish projects with the nearest deadlines first. Not following this strategy can lead to scrambling at the last minute to finish projects, making your work quality suffer.
- To-Do Lists
These handy lists can help you keep on track throughout the day. Try taking a few minutes each morning to write down specific things you need to get done that day. You don’t need anything fancy, a simple notebook will work just fine. Making a list will save you time between tasks, because you won’t need to decide what you still need to do each time you finish something. It can also help you stay focused if you know what you want to get done.
- Create a Workspace
While it might be tempting to pull out your laptop on the couch or at the park to get your work done, creating your own workspace is a better idea. Working in the same spot every day will help reduce distractions and make it easier to organize your work area. Working at the dining table, a desk, or even on your bed is fine, as long as you have enough space around you to get organized for the day ahead.
- Take Time for Breaks
Taking a break might sound counterintuitive if you are trying to stay on a schedule, but taking small breaks throughout the day can actually make you more productive. Working continuously for long periods of time can drain you and slow you down while taking a short break can rejuvenate you. Avoid taking long breaks or getting involved in other projects, though, which can make you more reluctant to get back to work. Try making a cup of coffee, grabbing a snack, or going for a short walk to get some fresh air.
Finding your ideal work-at-home schedule will take some time, but taking a few minutes each day to prepare can help you accomplish more than if you don’t. Schedules, to-do lists, and a designated work area can all help you get the most out of your day.