One of the gifts of modern Internet technology is it has given millions of people the opportunity to work from home. The only problem is, what starts out for many as a dream come true may turn into a nightmare when they are unprepared to adapt to the change. Whether you are going freelance, starting an online business, or have been given the flexibility to work from home, consider these four helpful tips for making a smooth transition without the need for new heavy equipment or heavy lifting.
Define Your Workspace
When you picture yourself working from home, are you out by the pool all day with a laptop and a tall glass of iced tea? For most that scenario just isn’t going to work, so go ahead and set up a real home office complete with computer tables, filing cabinets, and a comfortable chair. Whenever possible, choose a room that’s secluded from the busiest parts of the house, has good lighting, and is quiet.
Be Your Own Boss
One thing most people seem to love about working from home is not having some overbearing supervisor looking over their shoulder. The proof of worker production has always been in the pudding, so in order to ensure you stay focused and continue to do quality work, you have to be self-motivated. Schedule planning sessions for outlining your daily and weekly objectives, giving yourself the structure you need to stay on target sans the slave-driving boss.
Manage Your Time
Every person is different, but most are more productive when they have clearly defined working hours. Having the flexibility to work anytime you want may seem at first appealing, but causes problems when the lines between your career and home life become blurred. Design a firm schedule for yourself, working during the hours that are most productive and convenient. When the whistle blows, shut down the computer, shut off the lights, and close the door behind you.
Have an Escape Clause
If you asked commuting workers what their favorite time of day is, the lunch hour would surely rank high. Even though you are working from home, you need to step outside at least a couple times a day to recharge your battery and get your fill of fresh air. Look for opportunities to meet with colleagues for lunch from time to time and have face-to-face meetings with clients to add the positive aspect of socialization commonly missed when working from home.
Working from home comes with so many positives, from the decrease in time spent commuting to increased flexibility with scheduling. By having a professional home office, managing an organized schedule, and keeping your personal life separate from your work hours, you can have your cake and eat it too.