We’re very fortunate to have 2 businesses that allow us to work from home (or WFH as it was known in diaries at my previous job!). It can however be extremely easy to fall into a routine where you’re either working ALL the hours or you shy away from doing any work at all and before you know it, it’s 4pm and you’ve done nothing productive!
Here’s a few things I’ve learnt…
Set the alarm & have a routine
It would be so luxurious to not have the alarm set each morning, get up when you feel like it and just have total lazy starts each day.
In order to have a truly productive day, we always have the alarm set for 7am and have a ‘morning routine’ so to speak. Alarm goes, one of us gets up to let the dogs in the garden whilst the other showers. We have breakfast and aim to be at our desks by 8.30am.
We also try to finish at a reasonable time as well although John works better late in the day whereas I try and get as much done before lunch
I feel it’s really important to have an area that’s your work zone rather than allowing work to creep into your ‘every day’ space. Again, it would be all too easy to grab the laptop and snuggle back into bed!
We’re fortunate to have a room that we’ve turned into an office. It means that at the end of the day or week, the door can be closed and work is finished – just as if you would if you left the office.
Even if you don’t have space to create an office environment, try working from the dining table and at the end of your work period, clear everything away allowing the table or room to be used for its true purpose that evening.
Take time out
If you go to work in an office, you don’t sit there from the second you get in until the second you leave – you get up to make coffee, you might see a friend in the corridor and have a quick catch up. If you’re lucky you’ll find half an hour to grab some lunch.
Why wouldn’t it be the same at home? We stop for lunch every day for at least half an hour. This past week week we’ve been having lunch outside in the sunshine.
It’s important to try to get outside if your at home all day (and equally as important if you’re in an office!) We take the dogs out for a walk every day – weather permitting…we’re lucky, our dogs really dislike the rain and refuse to go out!
It’s good to get some fresh air, get away from the screens and just relax for a period of time. It allows us to discuss anything that’s been bothering us work wise and get a different perspective on these issues.
It can be all to easy to stay home – in my first couple of months I was finding that I wasn’t actually seeing anyone other than my husband and some weeks may not leave the house for 2-3 days other than for dog walks. This started to drive me crazy!!! I now try and see a friend once a week for lunch or coffee and I get myself to a spin class or gym session. You could always take your laptop to the local coffee shop for a couple of hours.
Of course, there are those additional benefits of being at home
- Getting the laundry done and out on the line in the middle of the day
- Popping to the supermarket mid week and not at the weekend
- Going to the gym in the quieter periods – I’ve been known to be only person in the gym some days
- Ability to take a random midweek days off if the weather is good (even if that does mean doing a few hours work at the weekend to catch up)
The downfalls are however…
- everything becomes a distraction…
- suddenly ALL the housework seems so very important
- I’ll just watch one episode of OINTB, Blacklist, KWUTK, Googlebox, Suits, etc etc
- the dogs NEED to have the ball thrown at least 100 times
- online shopping…
- the need to catch up on fellow bloggers / vloggers offerings from the week
- researching / writing blogs when it’s not your actual job
- you end up taking in deliveries for most of the street as the DPD, Parcelforce, Yodal drivers begin to learn that you’re home most days…which then makes you wonder what everyone orders
What’s your biggest distraction if you WFH?!
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