You should always want to improve productivity in the work place. However, this can be tricky if you work from a home office. Working from home can cause your personal life to overlap with your work life, so it is easy to become distracted. If you work from a home office and you would like to improve your productivity, try these 5 simple tips.
1. Establish a Work Space
Nothing will improve your productivity faster than creating a proper work space. Why waste time rifling through stacks of documents on your bed or kitchen table, when you can go to work in your home office? Depending on the size of your work space, you can set up a full size desk, a corner desk unit or a mobile laptop cart. Keep frequently used items close to you, and store less frequently used items in a drawer or filing cabinet. You can also create a memo station where you can keep important notes and phone messages. Keep your daily planner or calendar there as well. Tailor your work space to suit your needs, but no matter what, claim the space as yours.
2. Eliminate Distractions
Something as simple as removing the television from your home office will greatly improve productivity. Common distractions like the television, personal email, instant messaging (not work related), and other loud noises, break your concentration and hinder your productivity. If your home office is in the corner of your family room and you cannot avoid loud noises, then purchase a set of noise cancelling headphones. You can also eliminate distractions by establishing work hours in which children, pets and even spouses are not allowed to disturb you.
3. Separate Work Space from Family Space
It is important to keep your work and family areas separate, as your space and lifestyle will allow. Keep your work items and documents out of the family room, out of the kitchen and definitely off of your bed. When you go to bed you should think about sleep and relaxation, not about the stack of paperwork that still needs to be completed. Also, keep your children's toys out of your work area. If you are a stay-at-home mom with young children, it may be necessary to keep a few of your children's toys in your work space, but keep them neat and organized in a designated play zone or toy bin.
4. Conquer Procrastination
The notion of leaving a task to complete on another day is a thorn in the side of productivity. Putting off your work duties will only create a to-do list that is miles long. You can conquer procrastination by working in short bursts, breaking lengthy projects down into shorter tasks and giving yourself small rewards for completing assignments. If you learn to conquer procrastination, you will not only be more productive, but also have more time to spend with your family.
5. Reduce Stress
Clearing your mind by reducing stress is one of the best ways to improve productivity. If your mind is constantly focused on matters other than work, then how can you be as efficient as you need to be? You can reduce stress by taking a few moments to meditate, maintaining a clean and organized home office, and scheduling breaks for yourself throughout the day.
If you improve your productivity, you will improve the quality of your work and life. To improve productivity you should establish a work space, eliminate distractions, separate your work space from your family space, conquer procrastination, and reduce stress.
Bonus Tip: Use Time Tracking Apps
It can be challenging to draw the line between office and personal time when you’re working from home. To keep yourself in check, we recommend using a time tracking app. There are plenty of tools online that you can download for free, and most of them come with smart alerts and notifications. The app will tell you if you’ve been working overtime. So, you know when to call it a day and take a rest. When you’ve got plenty of time to recharge, you can begin a new day with enough motivation to be productive.