Feel like you can’t be productive working from home? When was the last time you even felt productive? Do you avoid making a “to do” list because there’s too much to do? Or feel like giving up because you can’t fit everything into each day? I’ve been there, done that, and experienced all the emotions that come with it.
This post contains affiliate links, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. However, I appreciate all the support from my amazing followers.
Many moms survive sleep deprived and aching for a little time of their own. But there is never enough time to get everything done. We need time to clean, do laundry, plan meals, shop, cook, help children with school work, change diapers, and on and on the endless list of ‘need to do’s” goes. When work or a business added to list, it seems impossible to maintain. But there is hope: a way to get some of that precious time and have time to work productively at your work at home job or home-based business.
Here are 12 ways to be more productive working from home:
1. Choose the right time.
Pick a time to work when you can be most productive. Nearly everyone has times of the day when they are most effective and times when they tend to drag. It’s smart to schedule the most critical tasks for your most effective time of the day. It helps to choose a time when your children are occupied, napping or cared for by another.
2. Toss it.
Let go of tasks that aren’t “Have to do’s”. Choose the priorities in your life and put those first. Learn to say no when people want you to volunteer and you know you don’t have time for it. If you are working several at-home jobs or businesses, pick those you like the most and have the best earning potential; toss the others. Read Ruth’s Book 31 Days To A Clutter Free Life: One Month to Clear Your Home, Mind & Schedule can help you on how to declutter your life of unnecessary distractions in your life.
3. Get the bad stuff out of the way.
Complete unpleasant tasks first. That way you get them done and can more onto the things you like. Otherwise those unpleasant ones may never get done.
4. Set goals for each day.
Make a to-do list for each day, spread household chores out into smaller pieces. You’ll get more done this way and stay on target with your priorities. Having weekly, monthly and yearly goals are great to have, also. They help you see the big picture.
5. Eliminate all communication.
While you’re working, turn off the phone / cell phone, and don’t check your email. Hang a sign that says, “Do not disturb,” if necessary. You don’t have to do this for all your tasks, but at least do it during the more difficult items. Let your loved ones know that even though you’re home this is your “at work” time. Being more productive working from home means letting family and friends know you there are times you won’t be able to answer they calls or texts.
6. Batch similar tasks together.
Do all your emailing at one time. Make all your phone calls at another. Open your snail mail during a set block of time. For a home-based business, schedule all your marketing at the same time. When you bounce between different kinds of tasks you decrease your efficiency.
7. Set a timer.
Even if a task might take hours, starting will seem easier if you simply give yourself 30 minutes to get as much done as you can. A time limit seems to help many people concentrate and work better, too. This works great when you want to use your time better by limiting your computer time or only have 15 minutes in the day to clean house.
8. Set targets.
For example, if you have to make cold-calls for your sales job, tell yourself that you’re not getting up for any reason until you’ve made at least 100 calls. Regardless of what happens, refuse to stop until you hit your target.
9. Use the Pareto Principle.
This principle states that 20% of the actions you could take will provide you with 80% of the benefits. So focus on the tasks that will accomplish the most. Unfortunately, these are frequently the tasks that are not enjoyable. You might be surprised how little you really have to do if you focus on the critical 20%.
10. Delegate some of your work.
Is there anyone else who can help you? The people around you are resources. When appropriate, use their time and talents wisely to get things done more quickly. They say time is money. By giving someone some of the mundane tasks you have more time to focus on your work or business and increase your income. So hire a maid, a sitter to come in the afternoon while you work, or a virtual assistant to help you with marketing your business. To be productive working from home we sometimes need help and there’s nothing to feel quilty about asking.
11. Set a deadline.
Having a specific endpoint will really help to focus your time and energy. Goals are nothing without a deadline in place. Deadlines drive you to where you want to be.
12. Increase your speed.
Create routines you can follow daily. Group tasks as mentioned earlier. Improve your skills with practice and study. As you become more confident with each of these, your speed will increase giving you more time in your day.
Need a bit more advice? Take a look at these posts and video!