How to Make the Most Working From Home
Updated: Oct 4
Working from home is becoming much more common. On the surface, it sounds ideal. You can work in your robe while you talk to your dog. You might even have your favorite movie on in the background. Your boss can’t even track your internet time!
But working from home has its disadvantages, too. It’s not as easy to get things done from home as you might think. You can also go a little remotely crazy if you’re not careful!
Use these strategies to make working from home more productive and enjoyable:
Stick to a schedule
If your company is flexible on your hours, make your own schedule and stick to it. Some things you can include in your own schedule might be:
Get up at the same time each day and sit down ready for work at the same time as well.
Stick to your normal grooming routine.
Plan your lunchtime, and consider meal prepping the night or week before.
Dress in a way that works for you
Some people can take care of business just fine in their pajamas. Others might need to dress in their normal work clothes in order to get things done at a high level.
This can include other people in your home. Kids, spouse, friends, neighbors, other family members, and pets can all be a distraction. Make sure they’re aware of your schedule and boundaries that need to be enforced.
Each household is unique. Set rules that work for you and don’t be shy about ensuring that everyone is respecting them.
Use video conferencing tools (like Zoom or Discord) or actually head to the office occasionally if appropriate. Ask your boss about hybrid schedules. Avoid only relying on the phone and emails for communication. It’s beneficial to see your coworkers, boss, employees, and clients or customers regularly if at all possible.
Take a break
Get out of the house
It helps both your mental and physical health to step away for fresh air, even just for 5 minutes. You could run to the store, take a walk, or do anything else that takes you out of your home for a bit.
Communication can be less effective when you don’t have face-to-face contact. That means you’ll likely need to communicate more to make up for the lower quality of communication. Communicate as much as necessary to ensure that everyone knows what they need to know.
Have a dedicated workspace
It can be tempting to spread out on the kitchen island. But are your papers going to stay where you put them? Can you have a decent phone conversation here? Are there too many distractions?
Get some exercise
You might not think that you get a lot of exercise in the office, but you probably get more steps in than you do working at home.
In the office, you most likely have to walk further to the bathroom. You have to walk from the parking lot to your office. You might go out for lunch regularly. You have to walk to your boss’s office or take files to another department. The coffee pot might be at the other end of the hallway.
At home, consider a stand-up desk, moving around, and stay aware of your mental and physical health.
Enjoy your time working from home but understand the potential drawbacks. It can be more challenging to get things done, and it’s easier to waste time if you’re not cautious. Working from home often comes with more distractions. It can also be psychologically more challenging if you’re alone all day and need to practice self-management.
Take a look at your job responsibilities, home life, and your own idiosyncrasies. Develop a process that works for you.