With the exception of 6 dreadful months, I’ve been working from home for over 25 years now. So I was blessed in that the COVID-19 lockdown didn’t hit me as hard as most. Talking to friends who aren’t used to working from home reminded me of how hard it can be for some.
After obtaining a master’s degree in English Philology, a love for words and a passion for books inspired Mira to become a content writer. Since DIY projects and remodeling endeavors have always been her favorite pastime, she decided to combine the two and start a site dedicated to home improvement. In a way, decorating a room is the same as writing a compelling article. Finding a piece of furniture or decor that completes the look is just like looking for the right word that fits the context perfectly and sparks interest.
How to Stay Motivated When Working from Home
Working from home became a dream come true for many when the pandemic took over. While business owners weren’t that keen on sending people home, their employees found themselves in a new, liberating situation—only to realize that they lacked the motivation to work.
Your mind can easily be conditioned to make you react or behave in a specific way depending on your surroundings. When you’re at the office, you’re alert and in a working state of mind. But when things change, and you can spend the whole day in your pajamas, that’s when the other conditioning happens. You become lazy and sleepy and experience a lack of motivation.
Statistics say that you can lose up to 27 minutes daily on distractions, but regular breaks can help you remain more productive. Luckily, taking breaks isn’t the only way to stay motivated while working from home.
Make a Home Office
Making a home office doesn’t require a separate room in your house, but what helps is making the room you work in look like an office. Set up all the tools and tech you need in your work corner. Consider arranging your desk like you did while you were at work. Keep your desk clean, select the right color for your walls, and provide good lighting. Don’t forget to find a comfortable chair that fits your desk.
Above all, never work in your bedroom. It can make you sleepy and unproductive.
Dress for Success
We mentioned pajamas and conditioning. Now take those off and dress up as if you’re going to work. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should wear a full-on suit every day, but try to get out of the cozy clothes and put on something more socially acceptable, such as regular jeans and a shirt. Clothes like these will put you in a better mindset. Bonus point: you’ll be ready for a surprise Zoom call.
Take Time for Yourself
All work and no play makes you unmotivated to continue. So make sure you take time to appreciate yourself first. It might seem strange at first, but scheduling your day will help you achieve this. That way, you’ll know exactly what obligations you’ll tackle at a specific time, and you won’t finish late, leaving you enough time for yourself.
To achieve this, set aside a few minutes in the morning to organize and plan what to do that day. Then break the tasks into smaller, more achievable ones. As you go, you’ll be able to mark those done, which will boost your motivation.
Have you heard of the Pomodoro Technique? Pomodoro is a very effective way of improving your work habits and will boost your productivity. Set your alarm to ring 25 minutes out. Choose a task and focus on it until the alarm goes off. If you recall that something else needs to be done, write it on a piece of paper. When you hear the alarm, mark the task as done (if it’s done in 25 minutes—if not, set a new alert) and take a short break. After every four Pomodoros, you can take a longer break for 30 minutes and relax.
If this isn’t enough, here are more ways to become and remain motivated while working from home:
- Keep a stress diary to know how you’re coping
- Set boundaries to clarify your availability
- Find a support network of friends
- Eat healthy to keep your focus up
- Put headphones on, even if you aren’t listening to music, especially if you’re sharing your space with others
- Notify people around you that you’re working
Working from home is an excellent way to stay safe during the pandemic, but it can be troublesome for those who aren’t used to it. By setting up your office corner and cleaning up the distractions, you, too, can maintain your motivation and productivity while working from home. Most importantly, you’ll preserve your health and the health of your family!