Let’s get one thing clear. There’s absolutely NO way to get you to do your work from home, or anyplace on Earth if you’re 100% unwilling. You’ll have to find yourself a bit of motivation first to allow the following tips to work.
Usually, money is a pretty strong (albeit not the ultimate) motivator. You’re probably getting paid for the work you’re doing, right? If not, you’re planning to monetize it, don’t you? Obviously, the list of strong motivators doesn’t end here, but you get a general idea.
Now, down to the specifics.
1. Organize your Workday – You Still have to Wake Up Early!
(Optional, if you don’t have a family)
Unless, of course, your work drive and motivation are so strong that nothing can diminish your productivity. Even if you’re single, living alone, with no one to distract you from work, a steady routine is a good thing. Besides, we all know that most of our productive work (with very few exceptions) happens in the morning.
For workers with families, integrating work into their everyday routine is crucial. Most of the beginning freelancers and remote workers find themselves in the situations when their spouses, kids, and roommates consider them available for whatever activities they have in mind. In this kind of situation, moving work to the first half of the day usually works best.
2. Organize your Workspace
That’s a “must”. Very few of us can work from the bed as productively as from a work desk. Clearly, you can reach out for a laptop and get done with that minor task in under half an hour without getting up. Try pulling that trick with something that requires creativity, focus and a full workday of brain-picking.
3. Get Yourself Some Deadlines
If you can’t organize them for yourself, find someone to arrange them for you. Apply for the tasks with strict deadlines, if you’re freelancing for platforms like Ultius. For remote workers with full-time jobs, there’s always an option to negotiate some kind of daily or weekly progress monitoring with a supervisor. C’mon, problems with deadlines are to be faced and solved, not to be avoided at any cost. Your productivity, at home or anywhere else, will skyrocket from a bit of time-management.
4. If you can’t Follow Deadlines to Save your Life, Outsource
There’s a popular stereotype that only employers can outsource. All the employees have to get work done with hands. Well, think for yourself, is there a piece of work you’d rather pay for than do yourself? How much would outsourcing cost? How much time would that save you? What would you use that extra time for? Developing a habit of outsourcing – along with calculating the outsourcing efficiency – is a huge step toward enhancing personal efficiency, self-management and ensuring continuity of work in any circumstances (which, clearly, includes working from home).
5. Create Short-term and Long-term “to-do” Lists
When you’re working from home, your sense of urgency does a funny trick – it fades away slightly. The comfort of familiar environment and absence of external pressure fool our brain into thinking the things are stable and slow-paced, even if your inbox holds ten unread messages with bold “URGENT” in their title line.
Create a new “to-do” list every month – and move all unfinished tasks to your new “to-do”. It’s one of the ways to keep track of things. This method works best when combined with #3. Get yourself some deadlines. On the one hand, it helps you stay focused on your Big Goal, without allowing it fade away in the soothing comfort of your bedroom. On the other hand, a monthly “to-do” is flexible enough to adjust it to changing work situations.
Important tip: keep your “to-do” list someplace visible.
Don’t forget: All these tips only work when you’re motivated, albeit very slightly. As a conscious adult, there’s no way in the world to force you to do something you’re totally reluctant to do. So, best tip of all could be – find the thing that lights you up from the inside, stick to it – and working from home won’t be a bit harder than working from the hippest and most high-tech office.