5 Tips for Staying Productive While Working from Home

Working remotely definitely has its benefits. But for many, it also means lower productivity, especially if you are new to this setting. Here are five tips to help you stay constructive and prolific as you work from home.

Separate work from home. 

Do it physically – and mentally. Organize your working room or corner and follow the routine: take a shower, make coffee, get dressed. Try to structure your day as you would in the office. If possible, get a separate laptop (many employers require it anyway). Close the door of your room or separate yourself from the rest of your home in some way. Create an after-work routine, too — even something as simple as turning off your timer and putting on relaxing music. When you’re finished for the day, keep your devices out of sight. 

Prepare beforehand.

Try to solidify your to-do list the day before and track your time (there are great apps that can help with that) to figure out when you are most productive. Save the hardest tasks for your productivity peaks and regularly check to see if you’re sticking to the schedule. Make your workspace tidy and cozy, personalizing it as you like to create that ideal working ambiance. 

Start the day properly: have a good breakfast and maybe do some exercise or meditation. It's also a good idea to meal prep in advance, as you would for the office. Since you won’t be making trips to the water cooler, put a glass of water nearby to stay hydrated.

Set boundaries.

Set regular hours, if possible, around your natural schedule. Make sure those around you respect your space during working hours. While you’re working, mute your phone. Set ‘Do Not Disturb’ hours in Slack to minimize distractions by incoming chat messages when you’re focused on doing something else. Set defined times for breaks and be sure to get away from the desk. Stop when your workday is over and don't go back to work when you're finished. If a great idea pops into your head, write it down — but work on it the next day. In other words, don't allow work to consume your life.

Get some motivation.

Set mini-deadlines and give yourself the pleasure of crossing your tasks from a list. Try to get started as soon as possible in the morning and don't stop working, even if you don't feel productive. Discipline yourself to do some work every day, no matter what.

And, finally, take care of yourself.

Use your breaks for some physical activity. Get outside as much as possible. Try to compensate for the lack of communication with people. Remember that your positive attitude is probably the most important factor in staying productive – and sane. Don't be too hard on yourself. After all, it takes serious effort to do any full-time job from home. And don't forget to take advantage of the situation. Working remotely comes with unique perks. Enjoy them!