According to Flex Jobs, 3.9 million Americans are working remotely. Working from home certainly has its benefits: You can spend more time with your family, relax when you are sick and avoid all those stressed out vibes that plague the office whenever a deadline is approaching. The problem is productivity- how do you get things done when you don’t work in an office environment? As a digital nomad myself, I’ve got a few tips I’d like to share with you on that front.
Create an ‘office’ environment
It doesn’t matter why you are working from home; whether it’s because of the kids, the need to balance multiple jobs at once or simply because it’s easier, the point remains the same. You need to create an office environment’. This means finding a room or a corner in a room and setting up all your work things.
It’s not hard to transform your room into a respectable home office. Clear your desk of family items like toys, magazines, or anything else that has nothing to do with business. Get a couple of shelves for all your binders and a few good lamps to ensure that you always have enough lights. And most importantly, switch your chair to an actual office chair, one that is ergonomic and supports your back and limbs properly as you work.
If you like plants, get a small desk plant too.
Now, take a step back and take a good look; that’s where you are going to come to work and only work. It sounds like a lot of effort but it’ll keep you focused and increase your productivity.
Cut out the distractions
By distractions we mean everything and anything from kids to your electronic devices. It’s easy to get sidetracked when you aren’t working in the office and convince yourself that ‘one more minute’ won’t hurt anyone. The problem is that one-minute turns into an hour and you lose a lot of valuable work time.
So, when you sit down to work at your desk, try to limit the number of interactions that you have with your family and put your phone away. Don’t allow yourself to put an episode of your favorite series on. Instead play some low, calming music in the background. According to a peer review published by the University of Chicago, ambient sounds can help to increase your creativity.
To stop yourself from being tempted by all those distractions, take regular scheduled breaks. This will help to increase your productivity when you are working.
Having a fully stocked kitchen so close to your office is just temptation waiting to happen. You’ll want to snack constantly, have a chocolate with every cup of tea, and maybe a packet of crisps on top of that. Our advice is that you reign that temptation in and find ways to ensure that you maintain a healthy diet.
If you aren’t sure how, here are a few tips you can follow:
- Keep a bowl of nuts and dates on your desk. They are full of nutrients that’ll help to improve your health. Also, munching on them will reduce your desire to grab a packet of biscuits between meals.
- Have a nutritious breakfast. According to Sciencedirect, a well-balanced breakfast is the most important meal of the day, as it increases cognitive performance. By eating a big breakfast that’s packed full of healthy nutrients, it will keep you full and stop your stomach from grumbling four hours before lunch.
- Plan and pre-prep meals. The desire to snack is also brought on by a complete and utter lack of interest in cooking. This is usually because you are too tired or too distracted to go into the kitchen and cook up a healthy meal. So, try to plan and prep your meals over the weekend. This will cut the time it takes to put food together and allow you to eat healthier, faster!
Try to sit back and think about all that ways that you can eat healthy and avoid snacking. It’s very important!
Keep those spirits up!
Don’t let yourself wallow in depression. It will hinder your productivity. This was proven in a study by the University of Warwick, which showed how employees productivity increased by 12% when they were happy!
To keep those spirits up, go out and work from time to time. As social creatures, humans are not meant to live a solitary life. Grab your laptop and head for the coffee shop, beach, or even a co-working space that has become so popular these days for entrepreneurs and small business owners.
It’s easy to let life drag you down. Be strong, spend time with friends and family, watch a comedy show, go for a run and remember to take short breaks between work. You don’t want to spend 24 hours a day, every day of the week on the laptop filling in papers for work. That is simply recipe for becoming down.
In the end being productive is linked to organization. You need to find things that help you to focus on your work, without undermining your health and happiness.