Due to Coronavirus many people find themselves working at home for the first time in their lives. When I was working as a freelance photographer in Miami I had my home studio. I would shoot there and do all of my work at home. That’s when I had to make some serious changes and practice self discipline until it became a habit. I was so obsessed with being successful that I had the drive to do it. The most difficult part for me was always waking up at the scheduled time and getting going. Then once I did get going I found it really hard to stop.
If it’s something that you’re not used to it can be very challenging. You can get easily distracted by the things in your apartment, doing the dishes, the laundry, sweeping the floor, rearranging the furniture. The list goes on, finding anything you can do that isn’t work. Procrastination at it’s finest.
Set Work Hours
I find it’s easier to be productive working at home when you have clear work hours. This isn’t too hard if you need to report to your boss, if you have a morning meeting, or you’re expected to write an e-mail of the tasks you’ve accomplished at the end of the day as an update. However, as a freelancer this can be tougher but it’s a skill that needs to be developed. I find having a structured routine helps to separate work and life. I know when I can work on projects, and try to fit it into the time frame, and I know when to clock out and to attend to the rest of my life.
Designated Work Space
Having a clear cut schedule gives you more balance when your home is your work space. The physical space is a big one! Having a separate room or work area (even if it’s just a desk in a designated corner of your small city apartment) where you can be dedicated to your work is a must. When you have an organized space that is functional and is reserved for work only it helps to be less distracted. Working in your room or the same place that you sleep is the worst idea because then work life balance gets all mucked up. If you’re laying down while you’re on your laptop it’s likely that you’ll be a lot less focused too.
Don’t overwork. When you’re working from home a lot of people have the tendency to never clock out. If you take necessary breaks during the morning and afternoon (a walk around the block or taking the dog out) and then really clock out (i.e. say no computer or phone time after 6 p.m.) you’ll be a lot more productive during designated work hours!
Deadlines don’t seem as real when no one is pushing you towards them but yourself. When it’s your own company they’re even more important! I try to start with the top priorities or the smaller tasks that can easily be knocked off the list. Then I attend to the bigger tasks. Batching is a great way to streamline time. If you need more tips for working from home check out the “Industry Tips” section of the blog where there are many more posts to assist you in blogging, freelancing, and time management!
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