However accommodating it may sound to use a portion of your home while working, no matter whether self-employed or an employee, home office requires productive time management.
With recent advances in technology as the internet, e-mail, voice mail, intranets etc people nowadays rarely go to their office anymore. That of course, has many advantages as you are free to manage yourself as you please, you can work in your pajamas if you wish and nobody is there to scold you for that or supervise your workflow. In many countries you can even write off a small portion of your home office expenses on your taxes. Still, that in mind, home office time management takes a big amount of self-discipline and self-motivation. Here are some tips to make sure you remain on your target.
1. Create your own working environment at home.
Choose your corner and set your desk ready for your online work. Sitting on a chair has proven to be more efficient than laying in bed. Get ready and set yourself a time limit, close the door when you start and don’t open it until you’re done. This may sound harsh to yourself at first, but once you get it going, you will no longer feel obligated to seclude yourself.
Get dressed as you would work.
Maybe not so forma, but a little bit of acting as if you are in the office is quite motivating. Knowing you have clothes that serve its professional purpose will most probably make you feel more responsible and efficient. Chose something comfortable but avoid your pajamas.
Use natural light.
If you are situated in the darkest corner against the wall in the room, your mood most probably will show its effect in your work. Having the light of the daily sun will not only boost your energy, but also let you enjoy looking at it from time to time.
Hide the things that distract your attention.
Working in front of a TV on, with books and magazines on your desk ready to be read and the facebook application that constantly reminds you of other people’s activities, you will barely do any work. Don’t forget that messy desk means cluttered mind.
Keep necessary files in arm’s reach.
If you have to get up each time you need a document, those precious seconds every day calculated on an annual level may be surprisingly lost hours.
Organize your files.
The amount of information intake daily is what is as our grandparents for a lifetime. Take time to label your paper files, according to subject relevance or alphabetical order. You don’t want your working files to end up as your cat’s dinner. If you are working on the computer, create a separate file for your working documents, make a separate user account with your own password and make sure the folders on your computer reflect the same structure as your hardcopy files.
Eat in the kitchen, not on your computer.
Feel the lunch break, try to not eat alone and socialize during your break. Every human being has the need for interaction, which increases one’s self-esteem, which then results in more original work production. Still, set a time limit for that too, do not distract your mind too much.
A little bit of physical exercise from time to time keeps you blood flowing, reduces stress and helps you keep concentrated.
Following your own principles and adhering to time management, working from home and the style attached to it is going to add up to your qualities. Determination, liability, organization, self-motivation etc help you reflect on your job and realize the true reason why you are meant for that job and why you should benefit to it. In addition, surprisingly enough, it has proven to make you more ready to take on stress and inconsistencies of everyday life.