Working from home is no joke! It definitely has its perks, like increased flexibility, an independent work environment, and all the snacks you have at home at your immediate disposal. But, it’s not for everyone. It requires a whole lot of self-discipline, organization, and determination.
I have been testing the waters of working from home since last summer and it has been a very enlightening experience. As a recent college grad, I found this year to be helpful in learning more about what kind of worker I am. When left to my own devices, I now know that I can manage my time, get work done, and pay my bills. When I do return to an office job, I will be a more confident worker and will better understand how I function as a professional.
I want to share my working from home tips with you all, but specifically with those of you who are workaholics and perfectionists. At the beginning of my experience, I worked incessantly (almost obsessively) and on singular tasks for too long. Workaholic and perfectionist are definitely good traits to have, but only when they are controlled!
To my home workers with similar traits, I feel you. We take pride in our work and don’t mind putting in the extra hours to create something amazing. But in order to keep our sanity and remain productive, we have to set some strict guidelines for ourselves. So whether you’re a remote worker, part-time WFHer, or self-employed, here are some of my tips and tricks from the past year I put together just for you!
My current job allows me to completely set my own hours. That may sound freeing but it’s actually quite daunting! I have to fit in enough hours every week to make enough money to pay my bills and squeeze in my Glamorously You duties. The only way I can deal with this independence is by remaining extremely organized.
Every week, I create a very detailed daily schedule for myself and strictly stick to it. This allows me to get everything done that I have to during the day and it also prevents me from multitasking! As a workaholic, I often think of something that has to get done and can’t help myself from starting it right when I’m in the middle of something else.
By having a time blocked schedule, I can rearrange my day according to whatever new ideas I get. And if I can’t find room for it, that task goes into my planner to be fit into another day. My whole schedule is essentially a puzzle that can get switched around pretty easily, but the main idea of time blocking is that I give myself enough time to actually complete each thing, no matter where it falls in my day.
CREATE MONTHLY PROJECTS
This is a newer strategy of mine that I have been loving! As a blogger, there are always tons of things I want to tackle – better SEO practices, improving my Pinterest game, updating articles, etc. Months ago, I would find myself constantly starting new projects never to finish them or not know which one to prioritize over another.
That’s when I decided to set monthly projects for myself. Every month, I choose 2-3 major things I would like to work on and only focus on them (outside of my everyday blog work). I set time for myself throughout the week to work on these projects and aim to complete them by the end of the month.
If you’re a blogger or business owner, this is a great strategy to take on. There are always new methods to try out or things you would like to update, and attempting to tackle everything at once will just cause disorganization and confusion.
SET SPECIFIC WORKING HOURS
Even though working from home allows you more flexibility, that’s not an excuse to work at all hours of the day! Early on in my WFH experience, I made the mistake of not setting any specific hours. I would work through lunch every day and late into the evenings, leaving myself exhausted and ultimately, less productive.
Consider the flexibility you have as a cherry on top, not the sundae itself. Utilize it when you have doctor’s appointments, family visits, or unexpected emergencies, but generally, pretend that you have set working hours even though you don’t. As a workaholic and perfectionist, understand that tomorrow is another day and no good work is going to be accomplished if you’re exhausted.
TAKE ACTUAL BREAKS
Speaking of being exhausted, take actual breaks! Not just 15 minutes to wolf down a sandwich. As uncomfortable as it was for me, I had to begin scheduling in a lunch hour for myself every day. In the beginning, all I could think about was all the work I could be getting done in that hour, but I got used to it after awhile. I found that I could remain just as productive by taking that break.
On my lunch hour, I close my laptop, eat lunch on my patio, read a few pages of a book, and take my dog for a quick walk. It’s a nice refresher in the middle of the day and I get my daily dose of Vitamin D too!
Working from home can be very difficult since you are solely relying on yourself to be productive and reach your goals. There’s a lot of trust and confidence you have to have in yourself to take on such a task! So take a moment every day to give yourself a pat on the back. You are accomplishing something that not everyone can do. I hope these tips will help you amp up your WFH game and bring your career to new heights!
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