There was a time when the most a company did for its employees was have a fitness room standing by, aside from the typical break room. Workspaces were workspaces, according to each industry and its respective niche.
Nowadays, new tech companies have recreational spaces set up where employees are encouraged to have all kinds of fun, not just on breaks, but perhaps to blow some steam off or to celebrate a sale.
While that type of work environment may seem ideal, it is still controlled. Employees are expected to perform and to do it well. Self-employed individuals know that they are in charge of their own productivity. It may seem like a great idea to work from home, but there are all kinds of temptations and distractions.
That being said, with a little discipline and the proper workspace setup, you can be quite efficient when working from home.
You already get to skip the commute. You get to avoid the road rage, the public distractions, the food stops, and all the people. You are your own boss, and you get to mingle with the public when you’re ready to enjoy time off. So how do you set up your own work space to the point that you are productive without any hitches?
Noise & Distractions
Save for soundproofing your walls, there are always going to be some distractions. In fact, some parents find that working from home enables them to multitask to the point that an outside job never sounds like a plan again. That being said, and depending on your situation, to better maximize productivity, you can set up a workspace that is only for work.
When you sit down to work, it’s time to work. This should be a space free of television and free of the normal distractions of any living environment. You are at work. While watching TV and working might sound like a plan, it actually works against you. You’re not going to get as much done, and you’re going to feel lethargic.
As a career ghostwriter who works from home, I can tell you that there are still times when I enjoy the benefit of multitasking. Yet I devote a portion of my day to work so that I get enough done. You’re going to need that space set aside in your home for work. You’re going to call it your home office, and you’re going to set it up to where you make yourself comfortable, without getting too comfy, if you know what I mean.
Home Office Setup
You’ve already got a designated space, and you’re going to work on setting it up to be a place where you actually want to work. First of all, what motivates you? Music motivates me, and so I like to have inspirational music playing while I’m writing. Maybe music motivates you, too.
The point is you have to be honest with yourself and only put in place elements that actually motivate you. For example, the entire premise of getting comfortable but not too comfortable could be explained by the purchase of an ergonomic chair that facilitated afternoon naps vs diligent work. Yes, I have run into that problem before as well.
You do need a comfortable chair, however, and a standing desk from Desk View wouldn’t be a bad idea either. You’re going to want to get up and move around once in a while. Perhaps you take a phone call as part of your business day, and you get up to talk. Standing up and walking around not only wakes you, but it gives you a kind of confidence and business-like authority that is empowering.
You need to think in terms of efficiency as you set up your workspace. You need a place for that coffee cup, too. In all seriousness, something else you might want to consider is having a few live plants in your office. Plants give off oxygen, and you need that in any home environment. Plants also beautify a space and encourage productivity.
Do you have a view? That would be helpful, too. Yet you don’t want to get distracted by the view, consistently taking breaks to stare out the window. You want to be motivated to work.
Keep the screens to a minimum, too. I use my phone to research while I type on my tablet. Yet if you’re not using your phone for work, you might want to leave it in a desk drawer or turned over and on vibrate. Don’t allow yourself to get distracted by your phone and its apps, and you know that’s a problem for everyone.
Follow A Set Schedule?
It’s a good idea not to keep food in your home office either. You can always go to get something on a break. Wait, say what? Do you need to have scheduled breaks? To be truthful, yes, you do. I still have not been able to master this part, and I don’t think people that work from home are supposed to get it down perfectly. Smile because that is one of the advantages of working from home.
Yet you do need to follow a consistent schedule as best you can. There are many times when I take an hour or two here and there to do something in the middle of the day and resume work later on at night. I especially like to burn the midnight oil on occasion as a writer when everything is quiet. Your schedule and your workspace are going to be unique to you and what motivates you to work from home and get everything done.
You see, the key here is to get everything done, you have to work hard. To continue to enjoy the benefits of working from home, you are going to have to think of what needs to be in place to make that happen. Some suggestions are meant for everyone, while others are leading you to find what works for you. Regardless, the work has to get done, and you’re the boss.