Some suggestions for being productive and working from your home
I’ve had a home office for 24 years, way before it was a popular option, or a current forced option. In the last 17 years I have had my own business and during those years, I have built a successful business, raised 4 kids, and I’m still married to the same man who supported my leap to a home office all those years ago! Since, I consider myself an expert on working from home, here are some tips that have helped me and my family:
- Have a schedule – for you and your family – start the schedule to wake up at the same time, eat and have school and work at home the same as when life was normal. During the work hours of the days never be tempted to do laundry, house work etc. Keep to your schedule like you would at the office. Do those items at night like you would normally or get the kids involved in the schedule and assign chores and projects.
- Have a dedicated space: This can be tough if you live in a small apartment but it’s very difficult to remain focused if your work is spread across the bedroom, living room etc. I am lucky in that we were able to convert our garage into a professional office space but you can make it easy on yourself by just having one work space. Even if this is temporary and you can make a corner of a room and carve out a dedicated space. Even if you have to set up chairs to block out that space. Mentally having a place that you go to makes you more productive and focused.
- Have a hard stop: With your kids home right now, you may find yourself being pulled in one direction and then another by various child distractions. Get them on your schedule and help them to understand there are set times of the day that all of you are working. But have a hard stop for a time when you are done working. You might say to your kids that we all have work/school to do but I will be done at 3pm and then we can play. If your kids are really young and have difficulty with this concept and you need to take time to spend with the kids then take the break and go back to work after the kids are in bed. But again, have a hard stop or your mental health could be affected. It’s a lot to juggle.
- Schedule some facetime/zoom or whatever app you use to stay connected to people. We are so lucky now to have a number of ways to stay connected. It really helps with the feeling of isolation.
- Have fun: We are all in this situation together. I have enjoyed reading the different articles on Linkedin or Facebook – keep writing them – we all need each other.
Working from home can be wonderful for your flexibility, for family life if you establish good habits. During times like this we are forced to rediscover what is important, family, friends, relationships. If you have had a rough day remember….tomorrow is a new day – begin again!