NOTE: Here is a video version of this post if you prefer.
Working from home sounds like a great way to work, and it is. I’ve been working like this for a while now, and I’ve put together a few tips that you might find useful if you are just starting to work from home yourself. Following the below guidelines has kept me productive… and sane.
1. Physically Network With People
When working in an office, it is easy to build good working relations and meet new people. This is not so easy when working from home, however, far from impossible. I find networking events great places to build meaningful, and long-lasting business relations. Have a look online to see if there are any local business networking groups near you. It’s also a good idea to get yourself to some industry related conferences when you can. These not only offer great networking opportunities but also usually give you an excuse to travel somewhere you may have otherwise not visited.
2. Digitally Network With People
Following on from the point above, digitally networking with other professionals is also a great idea. Using applications such as Slack, Skype or Google Hangouts, masks it really easy to attend online networking events and conferences. This is a great way to network all from the comfort of your own home.
3. Be Part Of An Accountability Group
Being part of an accountability group is a great way of motivating yourself to complete your goals. An accountability group is a team of people who share their short-term goals with each other. Sharing your goals with other people makes you accountable, and can help push you to achieve them.
4. Get Out Of The House
If you have the opportunity, try to work somewhere different once a week. I often work at a local coffee shop or library because I find the change of scenery refreshing. You could also rent a shared workspace for one day a week if you would prefer to be in an office like environment.
5. Have a Defined Work Area
For me, I have found that having a defined working area is essential. If I both work and relax at my desk, I never seem to be able to switch off from work mode. Having an area for work, and an area for relaxing gives me the separation I need.
6. Track Your Time
I find tracking my time gives me a good indication of how much work I have done. When working from home, it’s important to stay productive, but it’s also important to not overwork yourself. Tracking your time gives you a good indication of when you need to turn the computer off and call it a night.
7. Set Daily Goals
Setting yourself realistic, daily goals is a good way of staying productive. Setting these goals gives you something to work towards on a daily basis. Try to always set realistic goals, as the whole idea of daily goals, is that the day does not finish until the goals are completed.
8. Don’t Burn Out
Burnout is real, and can happen when you push yourself too hard. Its important to try and prevent burnout before it happens, because it can be really difficult to recover from. If you’re feeling tired, lacking motivation or enthusiasm, take a break. If you need to take a day off work, it will be worth it to avoid burnout. Do something you enjoy, relax and recharge your batteries.
9. Productivity Apps Can Help
Staying productive while working from home can sometimes be difficult, but there are a few apps that can help. RescueTime is a great app, that monitors the activity on your computer to make you more productive. With detailed reports, email summaries, daily goals and productivity scores, RescueTime is a great productivity tool.
10/ Make Some Time For Fun
If you are self-employed and working from home, it can be easy to overdo a number of hours you put in. Remember, it’s important every now and then to just take a step back and enjoy life, and enjoy the benefits and extra freedom that working from home can give you.
Working From Home Is Great But Takes Discipline
With no boss leaning over your shoulder, and nobody cracking the whip, it’s important to stay self-motivated when working from home. This is not always easy, and does take some effort, but following these simple guidelines should help you stay productive. I hope you have found this article useful, and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask in the comments. Do you have anything to add to this list that you think I have missed off? Again, let me know in the comments as I would love to hear your ideas.