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10 Ways to Make Working From Home More Productive (and Free Up More Time for Yourself)

Spend money where it counts most

Invest in a good computer, a good phone, and the most comfortable and ergonomically correct chair you can find. 

Working from home means you spend a lot of time sitting. When you're uncomfortable, it's hard to stay focused and productive. See these things as investments, not expenses.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

10 Ways to Make Working From Home More Productive (and Free Up More Time for Yourself)

10 Ways to Make Working From Home More Productive (and Free Up More Time for Yourself)

https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/10-ways-to-make-working-from-home-more-productive-and-free-up-more-time-for-yourself.html

inc.com

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Key Ideas

Share your agenda

Don't assume people will automatically respect the fact that while you're working from home, you're still working.

Be proactive, share your schedule and explain when you'll be working. Describe how you work best: Whether that's "interrupt me at will" (probably not) or "only interrupt me if it's truly an emergency" (more likely). 

Split your work day into chunks

Instead of thinking an 8-, 6-, or 10-hour workday, split your day into four or five 90-minute windows. 

That way, you will have on average 4 tasks you will get done a lot more efficiently. Take breaks between tasks to recharge.

Embracing a routine

Take advantage of the fact a structure is not imposed on you when working from home and choose a routine that makes you as productive as you can be

Otherwise, you'll fritter away much of your day bouncing from task to task and mistaking things that seem urgent for things that are truly important. 

Nighttime routines

Prepare for that first thing you are going to do in the morning, that sets the tone for the day, the night before.

Make a list. Make a few notes. Review information. Prime yourself to hit the ground at an all-out sprint the next day. A body in super-fast motion tends to stay in super-fast motion.

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Find the to-do list app that work for you

The best one for you depends entirely on your working style and personal preferences.

You can use a physical notebook around everywhere you go, but it's easier to use a to-do list app or tool that syncs across all your devices. That way, you can access your to-do items whenever and wherever you need to, whether you're at your desk, in a meeting, or on a business trip.

Prepare in advance

Write out your to-do list the day before:

  • You'll free your time to dive right into your to-do list in the morning - one of the most productive times of day.
  • It can help you spot obstacles ahead of time and prepare accordingly.
  • Knowing what you have going on well in advance could help you relax and sleep better the night before.

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Single Task

Switching between tasks can have damaging costs to our work and productivity.

Develop the habit of single-tasking by forcing your brain to concentrate on one task and one task only. Put your phone away, close all the browser windows and apps that you don’t need. Immerse yourself in this task. Only move to the next one when you’re done.

Brian Tracy
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Time management is not a peripheral activity or skill. It is the core skill upon which everything else in life depends.” 

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Remote working vs working in an office

While there are many benefits to working from home, we need to be aware of a few things.

  • Remote workers may be working on average 3.13 more hours at home than at work. Over time, it can become detrimental to your mental health and your productivity.
  • You're eating and exercise habits may become worse while you're working from home. Fifty percent of respondents to the Bluejeans survey say they have not been able to exercise regularly.
  • Distractions can cut your productivity. The most commonly reported distractions that remote workers face are taking care of kids (27.6 percent), scrolling through social media (26.5 percent), checking on the news (26.1 percent), and getting distracted by streaming services (9.7 percent).
Healthy changes to make

The rapid shift to remote working has proven many jobs are capable of being done at home. There are some changes that we need to make if this is going to continue.

  • Separate your home and work responsibilities. Between checking the news and taking care of your children, you may feel pressure to work more.
  • Take regular breaks from work, even just for 10 minutes. It is easy to feel that you're always "being on" - which is how burnout happens. Periodically "signing off" allows you to recharge.
  • A solution may be fewer days per week at home. A 4-day workweek can improve worker's productivity by up to 40 percent.