Have you started your own business? Have you been sent to work from home during the pandemic? For some, it’s a dream come true. For others, it could be a difficult transition.
Today we are going to discuss 7 mistakes to avoid that can cause your work to suffer. This should keep you from falling into the pit of unproductivity. Let’s get started!
Not Treating it Like a Job – If you are getting paid, it’s a job. You need to take it seriously. Don’t take advantage of the situation. If you were working in an office, you wouldn’t stop midday to go and get brunch with your friends for three hours. You’d be there all day. You would get your 2 breaks and lunch. You need to work during a certain set of hours. Just because you CAN leave your house and come back later, it doesn’t mean you should. Sure you can always come back and finish it, but that’s a terrible habit to get into. I mean having your night free is way better than finishing up your work at night. Doing this will extend your workday. Your productivity will be less since you are going to be tired. Not to mention your work may get sloppy. Treat your business like a job. Set work hours and follow through with them.
All Work No Play – Because you are working from home doesn’t mean you have to sit there and stare at your email inbox. You can take breaks. You can take a lunch break. Taking breaks boosts your productivity. So if your eyes are getting tired, get up and walk around. If you have a manager, you might want to set up a schedule in case they are curious about not being able to get a hold of you.
Not Setting Boundaries – Working and living in the same place can make things challenging. You could be working and see that your dishes need to be washed. You may have a ton of laundry you are eyeing. You may have a roommate or spouse that may be home and can distract you from your duties. You need to set boundaries. Have an area you can work from where you won’t be disturbed. Make sure it’s set aside from anything you may get distracted from. A good idea to prevent you from cleaning or doing chores is set a certain time to do chores. You can do them before or after work. I don’t know about you, but when I start cleaning I get sucked in time-wise. Before you know it, 2 hours have passed. So keep these things separate from your work time.
Child Care – I know some of us have kids. Kids can be a distraction. I know in times like this it can be hard. They are all up in your hair wanting snacks, arguing, and wanting to play outside. I know it’s hard, but without school what can you do? See if you can have friends who may be offering daycare services to help out. Ask your parents or other family members for help. The other side of this is when we are not on quarantine, there are public daycare and school. We all love our children, but work is work. You need to be able to focus and not worry about your house burning down.
Not Investing in Yourself – I was talking about this earlier about creating a home office. You are working from home so you need to be comfortable. Your company will more than likely provide the basics. Comfort is a huge part of work. Invest in yourself. If you have the opportunity to continue working from home, invest in some comforts. Get a better chair than one from your kitchen. Some companies actually will reimburse you for these. Don’t be afraid to ask. If not, remember it is an investment for you. The more comfortable you are the more productive you will be.
Not Having a Routine – Don’t let the working from home mess up your routine. Everyone has a morning routine. You may not realize it, but you do. It can be from the order you clean yourself in the shower. Do you stop at a gas station every morning for coffee? You do these things unconsciously. Keep your routine regular. Do everything as you would normally do it. Go get your coffee at the same store. I mean you can also brew it at home. Keep it during the same time frame you would if you were driving to work. Keeping your routine as close to as it was when you were driving to work is very helpful. You can still have that same feeling and experience. It will help you still keep the same routine and let it feel like you are still going into work.
Don’t Be Radio Silent – This is important. You may be doing work by yourself. You need to keep in contact with your managers and team. Keep them updated on how your projects are coming along. You may be using Zoom and having meetings. If not, there are a couple of ways to do this. We use Slack. It’s like a chat room but it’s an app. The other way is to make a group text chat. I know they can be irritating especially when you are not working, but it’s effective.
There you go. Avoiding those 7 steps will make your work life easier. I hope this helps you. ‘Till next time!