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work from home productivity tips

Best Work from Home Productivity Tips

You can use these work from home productivity tips to be successful whether you work from home just temporarily or whether you work from home all the time!

Are you a parent who wants to be able to work from home so that you don’t have to send your children to daycare? Or are you an introvert who prefers to work from home rather than in a corporate office? Or do you have an entrepreneurial spirit that calls you to work for yourself, and you work from home so that you can control your own income, schedule, and destiny?

In this post I am going to answer the question, How can you improve productivity when working from home? Fortunately, there are many quick and simple fixes that you can do right away, starting today, that cost no money at all!

Whatever your reason for working from home, you can find helpful tips for success! Read this article to find simple steps for how to be productive working from home!

 

Tip: Save the image above to Pinterest so that you can easily refer to this article on work from home productivity tips later!

How Can I Work from Home Effectively?

To be able to work from home effectively, I think a big part of your success lies in your mind-set.

The tips in this article will help you to work effectively from home and be as productive as possible, 

But in order for these tips to work, you do have to start first with your mind-set. You have to decide that you can work well from home.

You have to be willing to make the changes that you might need to in order to be successful. You may need to develop new habits and get rid of old, bad ones. You will want to try new things and experiment to find out what works best for you in your unique circumstances.

Whether you are working from home because you want to (like me; love it!) or because you have to, I believe that deciding that you will be successful and then committing to do what you need to to be successful is more than half the battle. 

 

Is Working from Home More Productive? 

I think that the question of is working from home more productive is one that each person has to answer for herself or himself. I 100% believe that working from home can be more productive. For me, I am even more productive at home than I am in the office.

But each person is different and the situation of each person is different. If you are disciplined (or if you are willing to become disciplined), than working from home can work out great, and you can be more productive working from home than working in the office.

For one thing, you will not have the distraction of all of your other coworkers. You will not have all of the water cooler chit chat that often goes on in the office.

You will probably not have as many meetings working from home as you do in the office (even when options like Zoom or Microsoft Teams are readily available).

And with fewer meetings, you can time block more effectively, as well. By designating specific time to get done the main tasks that you need to, you are prioritizing and making sure that you get done the most essential things.

Read on to find the list of my best work from home productivity tips!

The Best Work from Home Productivity Tips

These 13 tips will help you to stay focused and productive while you work from home (or anywhere :)).

1. Make a conscious, dedicated effort to give your best to your job.

Decide that you are going to work while you’re at work (even when that’s figurative, while you’re working from home).

 

 

2. Minimize distractions.

Try to have as few distractions as possible. For example, use headphones with white noise (waves from YouTube work great!) or noise canceling headphones when you really need to focus, if that’s a feasible option for you.

3. Prioritize tasks.

Do your most important tasks or those that require the most focus while children are napping or keeping themselves entertained playing. If your schedule allows for the flexibility, you may even want to get up early in the morning and do your most important tasks before the kids get up or do them after the kids go to bed at night, if you can. 

 

4. Do the most important things first.

Related to the item just above, try to always get the most important things done first. And try to get those most important things done without them being a casualty of getting the most urgent things done.

In other words, if the most urgent things are not the most important things, try to spend less time on them so that you can focus on the most important things as much as possible.

Realize that there will likely be many days where you simply cannot get done all that you need to or would like to. So you have to not only prioritze your time, but you have to be OK with not getting everything done on your to-do list.

Each day, create a prioritized to-do list, with the tasks listed from most important to less important. You can do this by simply putting a number 1 by the most important task in the list, a 2 by the second most important task, and so on; you don’t have to create a whole new list unless you want to. (If you do want to, scratch paper is great for this. :))

Then start your day by tackling the most important thing. Then move on to the next, and then the next.

At the end of the day, for whatever you did not get done, decide if it really still needs to get done. If it does, move it to a new to-do list for tomorrow.

 

5. Know what your major goals are.

Another important work from home productivity tip to make the most of the time you have is to know what it is you really want to accomplish. Like the Cheshire cat says in Alice in Wonderland, if you don’t know where you want to go, it doesn’t really matter which direction you head in.

Similarly, if you don’t know what you really need to accomplish most in your work or what you really want to do in your life, then it doesn’t really matter that much what you spend your time doing, in the grand scheme of things.

So always keep your big, overarching goals in mind as you plan your work and your life.

6. Consider using productivity apps like [email protected], Focus Booster, or Rescue Time.

These apps are great for helping you to know where your time is being spent so you can improve your overall productivity or to help you stay on task to get your work done.

 

In addition, apps like Google Keep, Evernote, and MyLifeOrganized are great apps to help you make sure you can easily manage and conquer your to-do list.
 

7. Make sure you are comfortable.

Find ways to be comfortable while working at home. That might mean trying different rooms in your house, different furniture, different lighting, and so on that you have available to you at home.

If you are uncomfortable and don’t have any furniture that is ergonomical, consider looking into purchasing some economical ergonomic office furniture. You might be able to find some secondhand furniture that works well, for example.

8. Take short breaks or give yourself little rewards.

If it helps you to stay focused and be able to work better or for longer stretches of time, work short breaks into your schedule where you stretch, get up and take a short little walk, check social media, or do other nonwork activities.

If rewards will motivate you, you might allow yourself a little midmorning or midafternoon snack after you complete one part of a project or a particular task, for example.

9. Set up a routine and find easy ways to keep the kiddos entertained.

If you are working from home with young kiddos underfoot, then this one is huge!

You have probably heard that kids thrive on routine, so when working from home, set up a routine for all of you who are home. If you can keep the same kinds of activities happening at roughly the same time of the day each day, that will help your children to both know what to expect and to feel more secure in their environment.

Part of that routine is finding simple and fun ways to keep the kiddos entertained when needed.

As I mentioned above, it is a great idea to get your most important work done while the kiddos are sleeping, if you can.

 

But there are also lots of things (so many things!) you can do to keep the kiddos entertained while you work when they are awake!

 

Are there toys your kiddos haven’t played with for a while? Bring them out, and they’ll feel like new again! (I love this one!)

Bring out the large mixing spoons and spatulas and your pots and pans, and let your young kiddos beat away on these fun makeshift musical instruments!

You might also buy inexpensive toys, coloring books, and other books at the dollar store to spark their interest.

Puzzles, wooden blocks, and Lego and MegaBlock building-type blocks are another great option.

If you have a whiteboard or chalkboard, let the kiddos doodle away for hours of fun!

Also let the kids play outside while you work outside, if you can. Then there are even more viable options, like letting them blow bubbles, play with play dough or molding clay, draw with chalk art on the back patio, paint with water colors, swing, play in the sandbox or dig in the dirt, and more!

If all else fails, if you are in a dire situation where you are up against a rigid tight deadline or have another extenuating circumstance, a little extra TV or time watching kids movies won’t kill them. 🙂 I used to watch quite a bit of TV as a kid after school, and now i rarely watch TV at all. I definitely don’t think that I was damaged for life.

So even if your kiddos watch a little more TV than you would like right now, that does not mean they are destined to be couch potatoes later in life. 🙂

10. Take advantage of quiet time.

 I have heard this tip from other bloggers, and you can bet that when I am able to work from home all of the time, I am going take advantage of this!

With quiet time, once your children are a little bit older, so probably around the age of 4, you have a set amount of time, say two or three hours in the afternoon, where your children have to stay in their room or a playroom, or another area that you designate (it could even be in the same room with you, if that works), and they have to keep themselves enterained. They can play, read, color, draw, or even sleep, but they are on their own to entertain themselves for that set amount of time.

Like with any new routine, this may be a bit of a struggle at first, but as you are consistent, it will become easier!

 11. Plan and prepare for your next day of work.

Each day, take just a few minutes to plan and prepare for the next day. This is potentially one of the most powerful items on this list.

Before you end your work for the day in the afternoon or evening, take just a few minutes to make a list of the most important things that you need to get done the next day.

This will ensure that you can hit the ground running tomorrow morning right when you begin to work, and you will not have to exert the mental effort to try and remember what you were doing the day before. 

12. Do prep work the night before to save yourself from a hectic morning.

Similarly, in the late evening when your energy and perhaps your brainpower are perhaps at their lowest and you don’t want to do tasks that tax your brain too much, you can still do simple things to prepare for the next day.

Accomplishing simple but important to-dos the night before can really help set you up for a productive and successful start to your next day, such as choosing what you will wear the next day (and also preparing your workout clothes, if you are wanting to exercise sometime during the day) and preparing your make-at-home lunch (<< find more than 20 ideas for inexpensive lunches in this awesome article!).

Pro tip: Learn how taking a few minutes each day and preparing an inexpensive lunch to eat at home (rather than buying lunch) can turn you into a millionaire. Really!

13. Get up earlier.

I know I mentioned this earlier as part of getting the most important tasks done first, but it is so important that I think it merits its own place in the list, as well.

Getting up earlier is perhaps my very best work from home productivity tip. If you want (or need!) a few hours of uninterrupted, quiet, super productive time, get up earlier, before everyone else in the house.

How many times have you wished that you had an extra hour or two in your day? Well, by waking up earlier, you will!

If you feel like you do not have enough time in the day or you just want or need to get more done, then make a commitment to yourself to get up earlier every. single. day (except Sundays, if you take that day off; I don’t work on Sundays and instead dedicate that time to church and family and taking the day off from the pressing demands of the rest of the week, and I recommend that you do, too :)).

I know it can be hard to get up earlier. I know it means you may feel tired in the morning after you get up. But one of the best ways to create more time in your day (it works like magic!) really is to have the self-discipline to get up earlier. If you normally get up at 6 or 7, for example, get up at 3 or 4 or 5.

Believe me, I know that that might sound kind of crazy! Before I started blogging, I definitely thought that getting up at 5 was plenty early enough! And I rarely got up that early. Once I ditched my hour and a half long commute each way (oh, happy, happy day!), I generally got up between 6 and 7 (and 6 only during the summer months, when I would get up earlier to go running outside).

But once I got really serious about blogging to make money and learned about the early morning—or sometimes late night, or both (that’s now me!)—habits of many pro bloggers, I gave up my blissful sleep to have a few extra hours in the morning to myself, where the house is quiet and there are no distractions.

And if you really want to get more done, no matter what it is you have or want to do, then getting up a couple of hours earlier each day is one of the very best ways that you can do it.

 

And here is another awesome benefit of getting up early:

If you are having a hard time making ends meet and could use some extra income (and who couldn’t?!), getting up earlier is also an excellent way to have time available to spend on an awesome side hustle (learn about 19 awesome side hustles you can do from home!) to make more money!

I have been doing freelance writing and editing since before I graduated from college, and doing a side hustle it is a great way to increase your income. You  can also learn the simple steps to start a side hustle here.

Are you interested in making some extra money from home? Have you thought about starting a money-making blog from home? Blogging has changed my life, and I really do believe that blogging is the best job ever!

Curious and ready to learn more? You can learn about many of the amazing benefits of blogging here!

 

Conclusion

There are so many things you can do to increase your productivity; I have really probably just scratched the surface here. But these simple productivity tips for working from home really can help you to have a more successful (and therefore enjoyable and less stressful) day.

As with so many things in life, the key to managing your time well is to have a solid plan. And with that plan, you really can (and will!) accomplish amazing things every day. And over the years, you will be astounded at what you have been able to achieve.

 

What are your best work from home productivity tips? Are there any of these items that you have already been doing for years? If so, what have been the results? What have you been able to achieve? I would love to hear about your successes (or your challenges)! Leave a comment below and let me know!

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