Working from home is the dream experience of many professionals today. Instead of putting in the typical 9-5, the work-from-home professional can set their own hours, schedule vacations when they want, and earn their full potential. The one problem that creeps up with working from home, however, is time management. Because work is always around, work begins to feel like an obligation or an expectation. You end up spending more time working and less time enjoying the home environment!
If you’re struggling with time management, here are 4 proven methods to make better use of your time from other work-from-home professionals who have been there as well.
#1. Keep up with a regular schedule. Even though you can set your own hours, it pays to set a regular working schedule. This allows people to know when they can reach you and it will keep you motivated. Sure – emergencies can let you be a little more flexible. With regular hours, however, you can set a good rhythm that will keep you productive.
#2. Have very clear boundaries. When you’re working at home, the boundaries between home and work can blend into some very gray areas. It can feel like you’re always at work… and then you’ve got no escape from that stress. When you’re done with work, shut it down. When you are working, keep it professional.
#3. Make sure you’re taking breaks at defined times. Sometimes it feels like you should just keep working to make sure that you’ve got free time at the end of the day. The only problem is that there will always be some more work waiting for you after you get the next task done. Take a break, let your mind have some rest, and then get back at it. A good rule of thumb is to take a 10-minute break for every 50 minutes of work that you put in.
#4. Always celebrate. When you’re at home on your own consistently, it can feel like you don’t every really win. The busy days make you skip the laundry; forget about the dishes, and all of the other stuff going on. Instead of negative self-talk for not getting to all of the other chores, celebrate the small victories. Acknowledge how much work you’ve already done instead of having a negative fixation on what needs to get done. Your to-do list can wait another 30 minutes before you start doing the household chores.
Most importantly, you need to take care of yourself. Don’t get into the habit of not showering or taking care of your personal hygiene just because no one else is around. How you treat yourself is how you’ll treat others. By feeling good, you’re work will be incredible, and that’s the most important tip of all!