One question that we get quite a bit is, "How do you manage to work from home?! I would get NOTHING done!" And it's true--there's a lot of...distractions...that makes us susceptible to procrastination. However, after years of discipline, we've been able to create our own schedule that allows us to take full advantage of our WFH status. In fact, when we do get called into the office, it's actually more difficult for us to be as productive. This is probably because our cubicle-land is pretty social, and it feels like there's always a birthday every other day. We often find ourselves scrambling at the end of the day, and relieved at night when we have some peace and quiet in our hotel room to finally get work done.
Some WFH tips that have worked for us when balancing the work and home life:
• Set a daily schedule. This will help co-workers know when to expect you online...and when to expect you offline.
• If you don't have a separate home office, try to clear up any evidence of "work" at the end of the day. Stow your laptop and papers away. This allows you to clear your head of work-related stress and focus on unwinding. (In our case, a beer or a glass of wine with some music also helps in this category.) If you live with your significant other, this can be very beneficial to your relationship--in most cases.
• Try to get outside at least once during the day. This could be in the morning, during lunch, or after dinner. Being cooped up in the house can be very, very rough. We usually take the dogs for a walk, or at the very least, hang out in the backyard and water the plants.
• One problem that we run into with family and friends is the idea that since we're "at home," it means that we're also available for hanging out during the workday. Define your boundaries, and don't be afraid to lay down the law.
• Attempt to change out of your pajamas before dinner time. We know it's hard. We've been there. But trust us when we say this: even though you may not work around other people, showering and wearing non-elastic / non-drawstring waistbands will ultimately benefit you.
Got your own WFH tips? Share it with us in the comments...
[ Photo from Fabio's Flickr ]