10 Tips for Working from Home to Maximize Efficiency and Reduce Stress
The reality of working from home has become the new normal for many people. This shift from traditional office working has brought a variety of challenges and opportunities. To enjoy the benefits and manage the negatives, here are 10 tips for working from home to maximize efficiency and reduce stress:
1. Create a Dedicated Space for Office Work
Creating a dedicated workspace can help you establish a routine based on your normal working hours. This also gives you a distraction-free environment where you can focus on work-related tasks. If this is not possible, designate some kind of non-distracting area to work from and make sure everyone in the house knows it’s a workspace and not be disturbed or tempted.
2. Make a Work Schedule and Stick to it
We all know that working from home can make it challenging to maintain a routine and stick to a schedule. A productive day begins by setting a realistic schedule and sticking to it. Designate specific blocks of time, when you will work, break, eat and exercise, and make sure you stick to it.
3. Establish Boundaries with Other Housemates
If you’re working from home with children, family or housemates, it’s important to set boundaries for productivity. Set hours for when you need to work, give instruction to other members of the house, and if needed, use visual signals like closed door to indicate that you need to concentrate.
4. Take Regular Breaks
One of the benefits of working from home is that you can take regular breaks without feeling guilty. Working for hours without taking a break can lead to low productivity. Therefore, it’s important to take stretch breaks now and then to help you stay energized, focused, and productive.
5. Incorporate Physical Activity into Your Workday
When working from home, a lot of times we forget the importance of physical activity. When you don’t have to commute to work every day, incorporate some physical activity into your daily routine. This can be as simple as taking a 10-minute walk to stretch your legs and get some fresh air.
6. Minimize Distractions
Staying away from distractions is key to having a productive day working from home. Social media, news, emails, and text messages can all be distractions from work. For example, you can turn off notifications from email, social media, and messaging apps so you’re not distracted.
7. Stay Connected with Colleagues and Friends
Working from home does not mean that you have to completely disconnect from the world. You can still stay connected with colleagues and friends using video calling platforms like Zoom or Skype. Use these platforms to have virtual coffee breaks and discuss non-work related topics to stay socially connected.
8. Make Time for Self-Care
Just like in an office, you should make time for self-care when working from home. This can be anything from reading a book, taking a bath, or even just taking a power nap to recharge. It’s important to give yourself time to disconnect and refresh during the day.
9. Use the Right Tools for Maximum Productivity
Often times when working from home, we are juggling different tasks at once and using the wrong tools can be counter-productive. To streamline your workflow and maximize efficiency, research and try out different tools that make your life easier. For example, you can use cloud-based file storage services or task management apps to better organize your workflow.
10. Prepare Yourself For Difficult Days
No matter how much we plan and organize our days, there are always times when things don’t go as planned. When this happens, it’s important to remember to be patient and kind to yourself. Make sure you have a plan to regain motivation when things don’t work out. This can be as simple as making a list of things that make you happy.
These are 10 tips for working from home to maximize efficiency and reduce stress. As with any new practice, developing an appropriate routine takes time and discipline. Following the tips above can help you stay focused, productive, and happy.