I’m going to be honest and say I’m not the most punctual person in the world. Case in point: I’m writing this post at 1 AM on a Tuesday and my deadline is Wednesday PM. Just keeping it real. While I typically work well with deadlines, life happens (a tornado blew through my hometown last week and cut out the power for a few days…). With that being said, I’m a realist when it comes to productivity. After running my own business for 6 years, I’ve learned a thing or two on how to be productive when working from home. Today I’m sharing 5 tips that helped me become more productive, create better content and become an all-around happier person. Enjoy!
1. Work with your internal clock
I’m not a morning person. Period. When I say I’m not a morning person, I mean I’m literally unconscious before 9 AM. I always thought if I forced myself, I could become a morning person. After 28 years, I can 100% confirm I am not a morning person and never will be. One of the luxuries of working from home is scheduling your own hours. It’s important to work during the hours of the day you’re most alert and therefore productive. If I started work at 10 AM, I wouldn’t be able to focus or stay on track with work. Getting to know your prime work hours takes a bit of trial and error, but ultimately you’ll discover what hours you work best. Working during this timeframe will allow you to get more work done in a shorter amount of time. Make sure to stick to those hours on a consistent basis so your body can adapt to a schedule.
2. Get dressed and ready for the day
Myself and a bunch of girlfriends who all work from home agree – one essential factor in productivity is getting dressed and ready for a day at the office. Most days it can be tempting to stay in your pajamas and hide away in bed while working. However, I find if I get dressed, put makeup on and do my hair, I can get into work mode easier. There’s something about looking the part that helps drive productivity. I feel more awake and motivated to take on the day! Plus, when last-minute time-sensitive errands arise, I am ready to head out the door on a moments notice. Girl, gone!
3. Create an office space
If you work from home, it’s important to have a designated office space. Whether it’s a full-on office with french doors or a desk set up in a nook, make sure it’s present. Here’s why: working from your bed and/or sofa can be tempting. Like, realllllyyyy tempting. Don’t do it. Why? You’ll most likely fall asleep. Also, having proper posture while working increases productivity. You can find various affordable desk and working chair options online. Plus, it’s fun to decorate your space with a few personalized touches! Bonus hack: you can use this space as a tax write-off! Talk to your accountant for more information.
4. Stay Hydrated
My mom always crammed into my head the need to stay hydrated every day. I have a nice little collection of water bottles in my room and car at all times. To prevent dehydration, you need to drink 8 glasses of water a day aka half a gallon. That’s a lot of water! Not only does it keep your body healthy it also keeps your mind sharp. If I’m having trouble concentrating on work, it’s almost always due to lack of water intake. I’ve been trying to reduce the number of plastic water bottles I go through by using my newest Contigo Couture Stainless Steel Water Bottle. My dad actually got me hooked on Contigo bottles a few years ago. He always has tons of them around the house as they keep his coffee hot. Once I discovered Contigo launched a new line of cute on-trend prints, I grabbed some for myself. These bottles have a THERMALOCK (TM) stainless steel vacuum insulation which keeps drinks cold for 24 hours and drinks hot for 10 hours! The lid is leak-proof and removes with a quick twist for easy cleaning! I’ve got my eyes on this adorable “But First, Coffee” bottle next! I picked up my bottles from Target (check the end caps at your local store from now until November 3rd for a gorgeous display)!
5. Set aside non-working hours
I could easily work 14+ hours a day. In the blogging world, work is never done. There’s always more to work on. I found myself working 7-day weeks for months on end my first year of blogging. No days off. I would work into the wee hours of the morning. I became addicted! With my social life dwindling and near burnout, I had to set boundaries to create a work/life balance. Rather than setting hours to work each day, I’d set aside non-working hours. What exactly does this mean? I’d pencil in coffee with friends. Girls’ nights out. Day trips with the family. Doctor appointments. Hair and nail appointments. Then, I’d schedule my work hours around that. That way, I ensured I had a certain number of hours per week dedicated to myself. Making yourself a priority and taking adequate time away from work will boost your productivity levels like you won’t believe. Your mind will be refreshed, inspired and motivated to work.
6. Reward yourself
Back in university, I’d bribe myself with cookie dough if I studied a certain amount of hours for an exam. Sure, getting a good grade motivated me – but cookie dough?! Give me that textbook. I’m not saying you should bribe yourself with cookie dough, but let’s just say I maintained an A average all throughout post-secondary school. Now that I’m older (and wiser), I like to reward myself with healthier options: a pedicure, massage, trip to the mall, etc. If you’re lacking motivation some weeks (it happens to the best of us), set a goal and decide on a reward when you meet that goal. The Monday grind suddenly becomes a little easier when you picture yourself on Friday getting a pedicure with a grande iced coffee in hand. Am I right?
More Blogging Resources:
This post has been sponsored by Contigo ™. All thoughts and opinions are my own.