Staying Focused While Working From Home

by WorkFromHome on May 16, 2011

Working from home can be a lot of fun. After all, your commute is only as long as it takes you to roll out of bed and stroll over to your laptop, you can attend conference calls in your pyjamas and no one is looking at a watch to see if you are back from lunch on time. With all these great benefits though, one of the drawbacks is staying focused with all the distractions that come from being at home. Try these tips to finish your work on time so you can enjoy time with your family without worrying about getting your job done.

How you stay focused while working from home will depend on what kind of home based business you run or what type of job you are working at from home. If you are working remotely for an employer, then you may already be subject to certain constraints that will help to keep you focused. These can include being online at certain times so you are available to your manager and the rest of the team and having to attend conference calls. If you own your own home based business, however, you will have to remain very focused in order to make that business a success.

If you are working from home in order to spend time with your children while they are young, then it may be best for you to plan your work schedule around their schedule. If they are at school in the morning and afternoon, then plan to do the bulk of your work during those hours. You can do the rest of your work at night after they go to bed, but you should not leave all of your day’s work until then, as it is not healthy to stay up until the wee hours of the morning working and then be up early the next day to take your children to school. By working when your children are in school or in bed, you can leave yourself free to enjoy the time that you can spend with them when they are home, which was the whole point of working from home in the first place.

Even if you do not have young children at home to help to dictate your working schedule each day, you should still try to set out a working schedule each week so that you can accomplish everything that you need to by the time that the weekend comes. Start by looking at what you have promised to clients in the coming months and weeks, and then consider what you should accomplish this week to meet those deliverables.

Come up with a loose outline of how you will be spending your time over the course of the week, in order to meet both those interim targets as well as to meet any other obligations. When trying to schedule your time for the week, do not forget any other plans or appointments that you may have. You can only accomplish what you need to as a home based employee or business owner if you are realistic about how much time you have to do so.

While working at home, you should still treat your work seriously. This does not mean that you need to give up wearing comfortable clothing while working or that you need to invest in a fully outfitted office if you do not have the space for one or if you truly do not need one. You should, however, designate a space in your home that is for your work only. It could be just a table or desk, but it should be off limits to the rest of the members of your household, so that you can comfortably sit down to work for as long or as short a time as you have available and feel comfortable leaving your work “as is” until you return, without worrying about anyone else accidentally discarding or deleting it.

If your work requires you to focus, such as freelance writing, data entry, analysis, bookkeeping or website design, then make it easy for you to focus on your work by turning off the television and ushering your children out of the room. Doing the bulk of the work while the kids are at school is a great idea if your children require your attention when they are home. If your work is more manual, such as baking, sewing or repairs, then go ahead and enjoy your favourite soap operas or comedies as long as they do not interfere with the quality of your work. If you find yourself not moving because you are so engrossed in the show, though, then turn off the television and try listening to the radio instead.

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