It’s official – you now work from home. You need a work routine!! I am here for you. I will give you tips to help get you as organized as possible in your home space and getting your work running like clockwork!
The Challenge to Having a Work Routine
I think this picture just about sums up some of the challenges to working from home. I know myself that I have had my lovely sweet kitten jumping all over the blog posts I’m trying to write.
Other issues to working from home might be noise levels of neighbors or people doing road maintenance right outside our window.
Kids! How many of you are working from home with kids in the background? We’ve seen all those lovely viral videos of toddlers making their presence known at important zoom meetings.
The washing machine just finished…the dish washer needs loading…your parcel is getting delivered!
The list goes on and on. So let’s get down to business and start focusing on some much needed help!
The Tips for a Work Routine
- Try to work in a designated space each time you work. This means that everyone in the house can get used to the fact that when you are at this space it’s work time – it’s to be respected. The more something happens, the more we get used to it. So, if you have a particular seat you go to, and then become quite and focused, people around you will know that’s what happens when you are in this spot.
- Create a routine for kids and pets. For your work routine to be successful, the distractions need to be minimized. So why not try to create a routine for your distractions. Try to get sleep, play and food time set up so that all have a routine. I give myself work breaks which are then used for crazy kitten play time. After this he knows it’s treats and grooming and sleeping time. The toys get put away.
- Manage notifications. We probably all know this one, but if you allow bings and rings to keep going off all day long, we become less focused. We are on alert for distractions. Have you become victim to grabbing your phone 20 times an hour? It’s ok, but if we notice it is affecting our focus and our work why not try to set some focus time. Technology these days makes it possible for us to set all sorts of settings on our devices, so maybe you can have a play around to find something that works better for you.
- Set limits to the amount of time your work. So many have just morphed their work with their non-work life. They sit down in the evening – ‘Oh, I just forgot to order that thing for next week, I’ll just go do it now.’ Sound familiar? Where I am in Ireland, people are doing more voluntary overtime than ever before. Because – they work from home and haven’t yet for that work routine nailed. Maybe as a suggestion, try a time tracker, actually track how much time your work and then ask yourself ’are you happy with that amount of working time?’
- Take breaks regularly. Most companies recognize the need for their employees to take breaks, in fact, in some places it’s a legal requirement for companies to provide. The reason is – They are good for us!! We do better when we take a short break. If we work physically – rest but maybe read to stimulate the brain, if we work mentally – take a walk or run to move the body.
- Use flexi time to your advantage. If you are in charge of your own work hours or if you are allowed flexible hours from your boss, be smart with it. Work at the time that best suits you. If you are a morning person and your kids are not, work at that time before they are up and about. Maybe you are a night owl and love the evening time to get in front of your computer. Great! Really plan your time based on your best situation.
- Don’t have lots of unnecessary meetings. PLEASE! Maybe you are not in charge of organizing meetings but don’t be afraid to go to your boss and let them know that you are getting scheduled meetings that take up your time and are a hinderance to you getting your work done. Plan together what an appropriate amount of meetings are, and what is considered necessary or what could be just said in an email.
- Make a plan for admin. Nearly every job comes with admin, planning your next work project, paying bills, answering questions. These should be planned for as part of a job. Don’t fill up all your work schedule with work, just to find yourself doing the admin in the evening, unless this is something you truly want to do.
- Create a nice environment for your work routine. Get your desk or area nicely set up. Have inspiring things around you. Myself and my husband have a ’3 o’clock choc’ routine. A little 3 o’clock treat of a couple of squares of dark chocolate.
- Plan your work effectively. Think about your work tasks and see if you can group some together. Can certain things be done while you wait for other things? Think about having a variety – some things which might be mundane and boring followed by some creative brain storming stuff.
In conclusion, it is possible to have a smooth running work routine even when working from home.
I hope some of the tips in this article help, of course, please let me know if you have any others. I always love learning from all of you.
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