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Are you looking for working from home tips for success?
When we dream of working from home it seems like it would be easy. I know that this is how I felt when I wanted to work from home.
The truth is that when you actually start working from home (especially if you have kids) it can be much different than you imagined.
Some of it is amazing like freedom, sick days, making your own scheduled, no commute and not having to get dressed up or do your hair.
Once you start working from home you will also discover the not so fun things. You will understand that there are HARD things about working from home.
That is why I am going to be sharing my best working from home tips for success.
Working From Home Tips for Success
The hardest part about working from home is getting everything done for your work and for your family.
I spend 5 years working from home full time running an Etsy shop where I sold wall decals.
To get all my orders done it too about 40+ hours per week. I did this while I took care of both my young children.
When I learned how to sell on Etsy successfully and actually started working full time from home I never knew how hard it could be to work at home.
I learned alot about the ups and downs of working from home and I want to share them with you to help you stay productive and sane.
1. Make a schedule
I put this one in the number one spot for a reason. You need to make a schedule. It might take a few days or weeks to get your schedule figured out, and thats ok.
Just make start getting one together. Everyone that works from home will have a different schedule.
So what worked for me might be very different than what works for you.
You will want to make sure that you get up and get your work day started at the same time each day.
Just because you are at home doesn’t mean that you should sleep in or clean house instead of starting work.
When you are at home you will see all the things that need done in your house and feel tempted to just get them done first and then start work.
Don’t do this. It will just will push your working time back and then you will not have time to get all your work done.
Which will cause you to feel stressed and overwhelmed.
Have your working days, times, break times, and ending times scheduled.
This will help you to keep your work and home life separated making it easier for you to be productive in both.
Find a spot in your home that will be your work spot. When you are working you will be much more productive if you are at this spot.
2. Pick a dedicated work area
You will mentally train your mind and body that when you are at your work spot it is “work time” this will help you to stay focused and get more done.
I had made the mistake of sometimes trying to send emails or do work tasks from my bedroom or my couch and it makes it harder to focus and stay productive.
Everyone else in your house hold will also learn that when you are at your “work spot” that you are working and not to bother you.
It will take some time, and you will still get bothered, it will just be much less.
3. Lessen distractions
If there is one thing that you won’t be able to get rid of when you are working from home, it will be distractions.
As time goes on you will get used to the distractions, and you will adjust. If you have kids at home you are going to have a-lot of distractions.
They are going to need things, want things, and be noisy. If your kids are like mine they will be running around the house, being really loud, and watching tv (on the loudest setting).
It makes it hard to focus on your work and you don’t want to take out your frustrations on your kids so you need to plan for these distractions and do your best to minimize them.
I would suggest setting some rules with your kids. For example, when mom is working you can play loud, you just need to be in your room or outside.
If you have help at home you can also schedule “work” time hours when your husband will be responsible for taking care of the kids during set hours.
My kids are a bit older now so they don’t need as much care as when they were younger, but they are still loud.
When I am working I use noise canceling headphones. They have been one of the greatest things that I have found to keep me focused and less distracted.
Seriously, you can thank me later! Here are the exact ones that I use. This will help you to stay focused and cut back on noise distractions.
Other suggestions include silencing your phone, not getting on social media, make sure you are actually doing work during your “work time”.
There have been hours of time that I lost productivity by responding to texts, answering phone calls, or just scrolling my facebook.
Make sure that you save these things for the end of your day, after your “work hours”, or for your break times during the day.
4. Be picky with your time
This is another one of my favorite working from home tips for success.
When you are working from home sometimes people will think that you have extra time.
They might expect that you help them out with things or get upset if you can’t make it to something.
This is another one of my favorite working from home tips for success. When you are working from home sometimes people will think that you have extra time.
They can expect that you help them out with things or get upset if you can’t make it to something.
When you transition to working from home people just don’t understand that just because you are “at home” doesn’t mean you are not working.
Don’t feel obligated to say yes to everything. To keep yourself productive and sane you will need to learn that its ok to say no, and that you can’t do something because you are working.
Many times they will still not understand and might get upset, but that is ok. Eventually people in your life will start to understand.
5. Set expectations
Be clear about your expectations with everyone in your life. Let everyone know what your work hours are.
Make them understand that you are working from home and are not available during certain hours.
This will help others to understand what your schedule looks like.
Eventually everyone will learn when you are “off work” just like a traditional job and it will get easier.
If you don’t set these expectations and let close family and friends know your plan then you will just get stressed, be unproductive and frustrated.
Make it easier on everyone by communicating this right from the start.
6. Break your day into blocks
I love this one! I would have certain blocks of times where I would focus on certain things that needed to get done.
For example, I would have a block of time for returning emails 8-9 am then a block of time for making stickers 9-1 pm then a block for packing 1-2, a block for post office 2-3, ect.
Keeping your schedule blocked makes it so that you can keep focused on what needs to get done a certain time.
This will make you more productive. The more focused you can stay on a task the quicker and better you will get it done.
How can you block some of your tasks? Blocking helps to eliminate the jumping back and forth between tasks.
You will be able to get more done in less time. Who doesn’t love that!
7. Find tools and apps to make it easier
There are some great time management tools that might help. Like I said above I really would recommend noise canceling headphones, but here are some other suggestions to stay productive.
There are also apps that will help you to schedule your time and keep you on task. I also loved having my laptop since it was mobile.
Coffee! If you are a coffee lover like me then you will want to have lots to keep you going. My day always started with a early morning trip to get my blended mocha with extra shots 🙂
My Macbook pro was a lifesaver when working from home. If you are serious about working from home you will want to invest in a laptop.
You could also use a smart phone for this I am personally just more productive when it comes to work on an actual computer.
Sometimes there would be times where my kids were sick, or something that prevented me from being in my office.
I would just bring my laptop with me and still be able to get some easy tasks done at the same time as caring for my other responsibilities.
8. Ask for help when you need it
You will want to learn to ask for help. If you just try and take care of everything all on your own it can lead to you getting burned out and upset.
I have been there! It is ok to ask for help when you need it. Don’t feel bad, you might have deadlines or things that unexpectedly come up that need your attention.
Just ask for a little help so that you can focus in on your work and get things done.
9. Take time for yourself
When you are overwhelmed with things to do the first thing that you might want to get rid of is your self-care time.
When you are going to work outside the home it’s easier to schedule time for yourself while you are off work.
When you are working from home, you can be tempted to use this extra time to for other things like work stuff.
This will lead to burn out and overall lessen your productivity.
Remember to take time for the things that make you feel relaxed and rejuvenated.
10. Stick to your schedule
Back to my number one working from home success tip.
It’s important that you make a schedule, but it’s even more important that you stick to your schedule.
It can be temping to just take the day off, or stop working early.
You don’t have a boss looking over you, or a timecard to punch, so it makes it easy to make excuses not to work.
Try not to let yourself do this. It will just cause your work to get piled up and then create even more work on the weekends or evenings. You don’t want to always be playing catch up.
Sticking to your schedule will ensure you have time off work to focus on all your household stuff and other things in your life that need to get done.
Sticking to the schedule is very important.
11. Stay grateful
While working from home can be stressful and sometimes overwhelming, if you have that opportunity then you should consider yourself lucky.
I know that I am grateful for the time I have been able to spend working from home.
Working from home allowed me to not have to send my kids to daycare, attend field trips, pick my kids up from school everyday, and flexible schedule.
I think that if we can stop in the middle of the craziness of working from home and just remind ourselves how lucky we are then it just makes it so much easier.
The stress just seems to fade away just a bit.
So make sure you take each day to really be grateful for the opportunity and look for things during your day that you can appreciate about your time working from home.
I hope that all these work at home tips for success help you to understand more about what challenges you might face when working from home and how to overcome them.
Just remember to schedule your time, set expectations, and be thankful and everything will work out.
It might seem really hard at first, but as time goes on it will get easier. I promise 🙂
Thank you so much for reading and I hope that your time working from home is the most productive that it can be.
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