4 Productivity Tips for First-Time Remote Workers
APR 12, 2017 16:10 PM
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4 Productivity Tips for First-Time Remote Workers

Larry Alton

Working remotely can seem like a dream setup, particularly if you fall on the introverted side of the personality spectrum. But the biggest challenge that comes with remote working is distractions. If you don’t have a plan for combatting distractions, your productivity will quickly wane.

Give These 4 Productivity Tips a Try

You may not realize it, but your home is filled with distractions. We’re not just talking about the TV, Netflix or video games, either. Virtually anything in your home could be considered a distraction. This includes laundry, pets, dirty dishes, grass that needs to be mowed, bathrooms that need cleaning, the newspaper that’s waiting to be read, etc. While these aren’t bad things on their own, they can kill productivity when you’re trying to get work done.

In order to stand any chance of combatting these distractions, you must have a plan. As the saying goes, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Keeping that in mind, here are some tips that will help.

1.     Create an Hourly Schedule

It’s easy to say you’ll roll out of bed and start working in the morning, but as soon as distractions come calling, you’ll find yourself doing something else. The best piece of advice is to create an hourly schedule the night before. This gives you something to follow and hold yourself accountable.

2.     Find a Comfortable Workspace

You’ve probably heard that you need to treat every day working from home just like you would treat a day at the office. The common suggestion is that you should wake up every morning, shower, put on professional dress, and sit down at your desk. Well, we’re here to tell you that this is bogus. One of the main perks of working remotely is the fact that you get to enjoy the comforts of home.

If you’re most comfortable in an office setting, design a little home office and get your work done there. But if you’re more comfortable in a relaxed setting, feel free to do something else. For example, some people like to work from their bed. There’s nothing wrong with this, but do note that you’ll need a firm mattress that provides ample support for your back – otherwise, you’ll end up in pain.

3.     Take Frequent Breaks

Breaks are not the enemy. In terms of productivity, breaks are actually a necessity. While you may feel as if you’re wasting valuable time, you’re really recharging your mind. This will make you more productive when you return to your work.

There are a variety of strategies for taking breaks. Some people like to work for an hour and then take a 15-minute break. Others like to work for two hours and take one hour off. Then there are those who complete a work task followed by a personal task. It’s all up to you, but make sure you aren’t forgetting to take breaks.

4.     Set Boundaries and Rules

The final suggestion is to set some boundaries and rules. As soon as friends and family members know you’re working from home, they’re bound to drop by or ask you to lunch. Clearly set boundaries ahead of time and let them know that you’re unavailable during the workday.

Set Yourself Up for Success

Working from home comes with a number of benefits. You don’t have to put on a uniform, fight the rush hour commute to work, or deal with annoyances like packing a lunch. But you have to be thinking about how you can set yourself up for success as a remote worker. If you don’t, you’ll find that you’re actually far less productive than you are in the office.

The productivity-boosting tips referenced in this article should help you stay on track. 

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