In the UK alone 1.5 million people (TUC) choose to work from their own home rather than the office. It’s not surprising, given the speedy and flexible nature of mobile devices that allow employees to work from pretty much anywhere in the world.
Of course, working from home can have its downsides and can present considerable distractions. Pets, family members, television, smart phones and even household tasks can be incredibly distracting, and when you experience a mid-afternoon slump it’s much easier to feel lazy and unproductive when you’re in the comfort of your own home.
If this sounds all too familiar, here’s our handy guide for boosting productivity and banishing the distractions when working from home.
- Make a positive start
This may sounds obvious, but it’s so important to put yourself in the right frame of mind when you start your day. Even though you won’t be leaving the house, it’s essential that you don’t deviate from your normal working routine, which means getting up, showered, dressed and eating breakfast as if you were heading out to the office.
- Create a productive space
As tempting as it may be, working from your bed is an absolute no-no. To be as productive as possible you should create a separate space that serves as your home office. This may be a spare bedroom, a converted attic or even your kitchen table. It’s important that you define and own whichever space you’re choosing to work in, and that it provides you with all of the space and quiet that you need.
- Stay hydrated
Hydration is crucial to remaining productive. Allow yourself a few minutes throughout the day for tea and coffee breaks and make sure your home office has plenty of bottles of water accessible.
- Keep warm
Throughout the long winter months, heating your entire house while you work from home can feel unnecessary. Make sure your home office is suitably heated and keep your energy costs down by using a portable source of heat, such as a heat pod, a heated cushion or a heated throw.
- Make a plan
Avoid distractions by mapping out your day and firmly sticking to what you need to do. Structuring your day will help increase productivity and making a list of to-dos either first thing in the morning or the previous evening will keep you focused.
- Put the smart phone away
Banishing your smart phone completely may be a difficult task, so at the very least try and restrict your app use throughout the day. It can be tempting to keep checking your phone, but up to an hour each day can be lost simply by browsing social of shopping sites.