Working from home is every office worker’s dream, right? But how do you stay on track and not get caught up in those endless procrastination loops? When you don’t have to go into the office, it’s easy to get distracted by all the comforts and demands of home life. Whether it’s a sudden urge to do housework or the immediate need for snacks, before you know it, you’ve frittered away a couple of hours and not got any paid work done.
So how can you take back control and avoid procrastination when you’re working at home?
1. Make an Office Space
Part of your procrastination problem is that your home is a relaxation space. When you’re in an office, everything is geared towards work and getting the job done. Home is about chillaxing, housework, familial responsibilities. You need to carve out some space that is just for your work. A separate home office is a perfect solution, but having a proper desk setup also works. Set yourself up with a water bottle and a bowl of fruit for healthy snacking and to stop those regular trips to the kitchen!
2. Learn to Prioritize
Be professional in organizing your time. Use a planner or a diary for deadlines and allot time in your day for particular tasks. If you’re a morning person, get your demanding or thought-heavy tasks done in the first half of the day. Conversely, night owls can choose to work late or use morning time to sort emails or do admin. Make a daily task list and check things off as you achieve them. That last achievement will feel like a slam-dunk!
3. Stay Motivated
Research has shown that lack of motivation is a crucial driver of procrastination. If your motivation is low, there’s little reason to get on with your work.
If you find it hard to stay focused on your work, consider using rewards to boost your motivation. It can be as simple as choosing to do a work task before you check social media or have a movie night to celebrate hitting a milestone. If you’re struggling, try reframing each piece of work as money in your pocket.
4. Use Apps
Technology can be your friend in defeating procrastination. You can choose from several apps that will freeze distracting social media while you work. You can also choose to have a separate browser that is only used for work. Time tracking apps will help you see what you’re achieving, and as they generate reports, it will also help when it comes time for billing clients.