In your on-the-go life, the office is anywhere you are. From your favorite local coffee shop to the kitchen table, a workspace is a mouse click away – in fact, you see potential to build, create, and inspire at just about every turn. But is it truly possible to work from anywhere? How can you most effectively optimize these promising spaces for a productive session? What does it take to flip your mental switch from “work” to “play,” and back?
In today’s work culture, you can’t scroll through LinkedIn without reading an analysis of professional burnout or seeing a blog post about work-life balance. It’s no secret: the fine line between work and play is in the spotlight now more than ever. And if you’re working from home, you’re testing that line more than anyone. It’s time to figure out a strategy.
Don’t Skip “Getting Ready”
Just because you’re not going into the office doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prepare like you are. Working from home is often advertised with the promise that you’ll be able to “wear pajamas all day.” But if you ask me, this should be taken as more of a warning than a selling point. I’m a firm believer that our mindset is crucial in all things. And getting into the right one is especially key when working from home.
That being said, wearing pajamas is a surefire way to put you in a pajama-state-of-mind: laid back, carefree, and nowhere near ready to get down to business. If you rolled out of bed and headed straight to the office, would you be able to focus on the tasks at hand? Probably not…so don’t volunteer yourself for the same challenge at home! Of course, I’m not saying to pull out your best blazer and squeeze into a pair of heels. Simply getting dressed, washing your face, and having breakfast will be enough to make the mental transition from a lazy morning to work.
Choose Your Location Wisely
Be mindful of where you set up camp. While the TV may be tempting and your bed inviting, they are dangerous distractions that must be considered when you’re deciding where to work. Get to know the setting you’re most productive in, and do your best to facilitate that in your home workspace.
Unlike in an office environment, you’ll be left mostly to your own will power and self-discipline when working from home. It will be important to set goals for yourself and adhere to them as if your boss were sitting ten feet away. This may take some trial and error and plenty of practice – welcome the challenges as they come and learn from them.
Don’t Skip “Going Home”
Now that you’ve completed a day’s work, it’s important to unwind and make the switch from “work” to “home.” So when ending your day, make the same considerations you did when you “got ready” to start it. At an office job, this mental switch comes with a much clearer cue: once the clock strikes five, you physically leave the workspace until the next day. At home, it’s not that simple. Get back into the home-state-of-mind by putting everything away and starting a task completely separate from work: have a snack, call a friend, or start dinner.
What are your tried and true tips for working from home? Don’t forget to share them in the comments below!
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