Working from home comes with its own challenges, however, the benefits can vastly outweigh any of these hesitations.
If you’ve discovered you work your best outside of an office environment, here are some practices to ensure you are at your most productive and happy self.
The remote workers routine – sounds like an oxymoron, right?
But the best way to stay happy and productive while working from home is to maintain a regular work routine.
Related Article: Remote vs. In-Office Workers: Which Employee Is Actually Better?
Designate a Home Office
Before starting your job, designate a home office or a workspace. By keeping a separate workspace, you are able to psychologically associate that area for work while the rest of your house can be associated with comfort or relaxation.
Bonus tip: your office could be tax deductible! The IRS lists two basic requirements on their website to determine if you qualify.
- Regular and exclusive use -- you may qualify for a tax deduction only if your home office is a part of your regular work schedule and used exclusively for conducting business.
- Principal place of your business -- in addition, you may qualify for a tax deduction if you can show that your home is your principal place of business. Deductions are based off of the percentage of your home that you utilize for business.
Get Dressed, Take a Shower
Act like you're going into work. Just because you aren't leaving your house, does not mean you need to look like you just rolled out of bed.
In order to work most efficiently think of your home office as an office environment. After designating your workspace, your next step to make this distinction is to look the part.
Go on a Walk
Get out of the house! Just as you would leave the office for a lunch break, take a mental health break. A walking break can help boost creativity and help you focus on your work. Being outside has a positive reaction on both your brain and your body, so try to schedule at least 30 minutes of walking outside.
Related Article: Working from Home? 6 Free Tools That Boost Your Productivity
Set a Schedule
This goes back to getting dressed and taking a shower. Although working straight out of bed and in your pajamas can be tempting, try to maintain a similar schedule as if you were working in an office. Having an inconsistent schedule can make it more difficult for your body to adjust to a regular working structure.
One of the benefits of working from home is being able to work when you are at your most productive. As long as you've worked this flex schedule out with your work, you can reap the rewards of working at night if you are a night owl. However, try to keep your schedule consistent in order to stay productive.
Staying consistent with your schedule can make you more effective and improve your mood throughout the week.
A useful tool for tracking your time and discovering where you spend the most time on the Internet is Rescue Time. If you're easily distracted, this tool can help you understand your personal habits and get you to be your most productive.
For the workaholic, this can be a valuable tool to help you keep your work time from bleeding into your personal time. Remind yourself to stop working at a certain point and retreat to your home as a place to relax.
Stay Out of the Kitchen
Unless you want to be reunited with your Freshman 15 days, do your best to stay out of the kitchen. It is tempting to wander into your pantry and snack throughout the day, but try to avoid this habit.
In addition, stock your fridge with healthy treats instead. This way if you find yourself grazing, you can munch on some fruits and veggies instead of junk food.
If you find yourself resenting your home office, don't be afraid to leave your home. Find a local coffee shop or check out your local library.
When I worked remotely, I looked up reviews for the best places to work in San Diego. These descriptions included the atmosphere, quality of food and drink and probably most importantly, the speed of their WiFi.
Related Article: Work-Life Balance: Ways Your Real Life Impacts Business
Write down everything you have to be thankful for about working from home. Continue to write down anything positive as you think of them as a reminder to why you decided to work remotely to begin with.
This can be a great resource for those days you are experiencing a bad case of cabin fever.
Working from home is a great option that is increasing in popularity – with telecommuting at an all-time high of 37 percent. This can be reassuring to know that other people have experienced the same issues as you, and even better, have found solutions.