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Productive Routine While Working From Home
Working from home seems to be the dream come true for many employees, and indeed it is. Because if you consider all the benefits, remote working is a luxury.
First of all, you don’t waste time commuting, which can be quite stressful especially if you live in a crowded city where the traffic is an absolute nightmare. Second, you have a flexible schedule what makes you more in control of your time, work and day. And third, you can create a personalized work station that fits perfectly your preferences. Not to mention that you can forget about your workwear wardrobe… unless you want to be stylish even in your own house. That’s your choice, I’m not here to judge anyone. But if you ask me I prefer to work in comfy clothes.
So if you consider all these advantages of remote working, it really does seem like the dream come true.
However, if you want to make the most of working from home you need to structure your workday for maximum productivity. Otherwise, the urge to procrastinate would be too strong to resist. That is why today I’m sharing with you my 7-step working form home routine that will help you to boost your productivity levels, dramatically improve your creativity and increase your life satisfaction. So let’s dive in!
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- The Ultimate Guide to Make and Save Money at Home (eBook) by Kylie Travers
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- It’s My Time: The Time Management Planner That Helps You Budget and Save! (Printable) by Kris McPeak
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- Towards Personal Productivity: Approaches and Tools For Enhanced Personal Productivity (eBook) by Takis Athanassiou
The #1 personal productivity strategy guide – a comprehensive resource that will help you to focus on the important things and do what’s matters most to you.
1. Get Organized: Plan Your Work In Advance
An effective schedule means getting things done. So if you want to achieve your goals and priorities within a specified time you first need to plan out your agenda. Otherwise, instead of managing your time effectively and focusing on what’s really matters, you will be wasting the most productive hours of your day. Knowing exactly what you want to accomplish in the time you have available will motivate you to do a good job.
That’s why I highly recommend you to plan, organize and schedule your work the night before so that your working hours can be as productive as possible. In other words, make planning a habit, or focus ritual, as I like to call it, to set yourself up for success the night before your workday even begins. And to help you with that, here are my tips on effective planning:
- Reflect on yesterday and use yesterday’s experience to build a better today
- Identify what went well and what you will do differently next time
- Set your goals and intentions for the upcoming workday
- Set your MITs for the upcoming workday
- Create a prioritized to-do list (remember to batch similar tasks together!)
- Schedule things that you need to get done (I use Google Calendar and Classic Daily Planner)
- Schedule “me time” for yourself to create a healthy balance between your professional and personal life
- Avoid overplanning and overscheduling to feel empowered instead of overwhelmed
2. Stay Positive: Perform Morning Rituals
There is a lot of temptation when working from home to stay up all night and sleep in the day. However, from the medical point of view, that’s really neither healthy nor effective. Not to mention that sleeping during the day will most probably destroy your social life which will also negatively affect your mental health and wellbeing. Why risk so much?
Scientific research conducted at Harvard University has shown that going to bed at a reasonable hour and waking up early makes you more productive, proactive and positive about life. So if you count yourself among night owls it’s time to train yourself to become an early bird. Trust me, you will not regret this!
If you are a night owl, waking up early may seem impossible to you. But, with a little bit of patience, commitment and effort you can turn yourself into a morning person. Furthermore, if you adopt the right strategy you can make this transition a pleasant, fun and exciting experience. All you have to do is to create positive morning rituals that will motivate you to get up early and start your day on a super positive note.
It can be anything from making a delicious cup of coffee to going for a morning run. But it has to be something that inspires you, motivates you and makes you feel good about yourself. So if the first thing you do when you wake up is reading the news with terrible and depressing headlines you should probably avoid that unless you want to feel depressed, anxious and just awful throughout the day. Instead, develop a positive morning ritual that will help you set the tone for a positive and ultra-productive day.
My Morning Rituals
- Listen to an uplifting song (currently it’s “Remember” by Ikson)
- Doing a 5-minute meditation
- Enjoying bullet coffee on my balcony
- Cultivating a 5-minute self-reflection journal
- Revising my prioritized to-do list
- Playing with my cat
My Morning Rituals
3. Be Productive: Set The Right Priorities
Productivity is not only about time management but also about attention and effectiveness. Because if you want to accomplish more in less time you need to identify what produces the most results of all the work you do and focus on those activities. And what better way to do that if not by using the Pareto Principle? This theory, also known as the rule 80/20 developed by the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto states that 20% of your actions or the activities produce 80% of the outcomes.
That means that if you manage to identify that 20% correctly you will spend more time doing the right things and as a consequence, you will see better results sooner compared to your current working approach. If you want to know how does the Pareto Principle apply to time management, John Rapton explains this perfectly in his post that you can read here.
- Find your most productive hours (“peak hours”) – measure your productivity during various hours of the day to find out when you are the most productive
- Set your MITs and schedule them for your most productive hours when your mind is fresh and your motivation is at its highest
- Identify your top priorities using The Eisenhower Box
- Ensure that you are prioritizing your tasks
- Focus on what’s really important and related tasks that are completely unnecessary
Best Tool And Apps For Time-Blocking
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Set Your Priorities Using The Eisenhower Box
Are you constantly running put of time desperately trying to finish your never-ending to-do list? Do you feel completely overwhelmed by a tremendous amount of tasks to do? Well, the 34th president of the United States – Dwight D. Eisenhower has a solution for you and it’s called the Eisenhower Matrix.
I am sure you’ve already heard about this time management strategy but have you ever tried it? If not, it’s time to give it a shot. But what is it all about? Well, the Eisenhower Matrix, also known as Urgent-Important Matrix is a simple decision-making tool that will help you prioritize tasks and manage time effectively. The Eisenhower Matrix consists of four quadrants;
- DO – urgent and important tasks that need to be done immediately (ex. finishing a client project, paying bills)
- DECIDE – important but not urgent tasks that aren’t your top priorities but you should schedule them to ensure that progress is being made (ex. strategic planning, personal development, new opportunities)
- DELEGATE – urgent but not important tasks that need to be done but they can be done by someone else (ex. responding to some emails, meal prep)
- DELATE – not urgent and not important tasks that don’t add value to your life (time-wasters, distractions, unnecessary decisions, non-critical choices)
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4. Create Balance: Take Strategic Breaks
There is a huge misconception that taking regular breaks during your workday will ruin your workflow and ability to focus on prolonged tasks. In reality, it’s the opposite. Several studies have shown that taking work breaks can not only drastically increase productivity levels but also significantly improve your mental wellbeing. Not to mention that our ability to focus is a limited mental resource which means that, every once in a while, we need to reboot our brains and restore our mental energy if we want to be productive and efficient.
Scheduling breaks into your workday may be a hard thing to do especially if you are an ambitious overthinking perfectionist – kind of person. However, what you need to realize is that to live a productive, healthy and happy life you need to draw a clear line between work and relaxation. Trust me, a quick 10-minute break during your workday can relax your body, reboot your brain and refresh your focus. Not to mention that you can use this precious time to treat yourself with a delicious cup of coffee without burning your tongue.
Taking short active and positive breaks during your workday will drastically improve your productivity levels, restore your mental clarity and increase your life satisfaction. But don’t take my word for it. Try it for yourself!
Work Breaks Ideas To Boost Your Productivity Levels:
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5. Be Effective: Set Boundaries
Ultra – productive and highly effective people know that real progress is made through absolute focus. That’s why they don’t mix business with pleasure. They don’t check their email every 5 minutes or answer personal calls during working hours not only because it completely ruins their workflow but also because it’s completely unprofessional.
There is a fine line between personal life and professional life and every successful entrepreneur knows the difference. So if you want to be ultra-productive and highly efficient you need to learn to keep your personal life out of your office especially if you work from home.
Resisting the temptation to mix personal and business life is most easily accomplished through:
- Establishing clear boundaries in your professional life
- Planning against distractions
- Getting your priorities straight
- Mastering single-tasking
- Having a clutter-free workspace
- Turning off social media notifications
- Putting your phone on airplane mode during your working hours
- Improving assertive communication
6. Be Efficient: Work Smarter Not Harder
There are many different apps, tools and methods out there that you can use to get organized and make your productivity skyrocket. However, it’s important to remember that just because some method is extremely popular and loved by many it does not mean that it will fit your expectations and personal preference.
That’s why I highly recommend you to try different time management apps, tools and methods to get organized and boost your productivity levels and choose the ones that will make you feel empowered instead of overwhelmed. You want to work smarter not harder, right!?
Use technology to your advantage and don’t let it overwhelm or distract you.
Below you will find apps, tools and methods I personally use to get organized with my life. You can try them out and choose the ones that will help you balance your workload for maximum productivity.
Best Productivity Apps Of 2020
- Trello – project management app here
- Any.do – get seriously organized here
- Todoist – task management software here
- FocusList iOS / Android – productivity app that helps you get more DEEP work done
- Y Productive here
- TickTick: ToDo List Planner, Reminder & Calendar (Android / iOS)
- Hours – Time Tracking App Online here
- Toggl – Free Time Tracking Software here
- RescueTime: Fully Automated Time Tracking Software here
- Google Drive (My Absolutely Favourite!)
- Google Calendar
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7. Stay Healthy: Master Work-Life Balance
Last but definitely not least, working from home undeniably offers many advantages compared to working from the office. First of all, you don’t waste time commuting, which can be quite stressful especially if you live in a crowded city where the traffic is an absolute nightmare. Second, you have a flexible schedule what makes you more in control of your time, work and day. And third, we can create a work environment that stimulates your creative and productive thinking. Not to mention that you can wear comfortable clothes like a T-shirt and sweatpants. And who doesn’t love that?! I do!
So as you can see, working from home can be a dream come true for most people but to be able to fully benefit from it, you need to create a solid work-life balance. Otherwise, either you will be working tirelessly day and night until you reach the point of extreme exhaustion or quite the opposite, you will be procrastinating.
That is why creating and maintain a solid work-life balance is the key to success in life. Because as much as being seriously productive and highly efficient is our ultimate goal we also want to be able to enjoy our lives as well, right?
So, if you want to create a healthy work-from-home routine you need to master your work-life balance as well. And to help you with that I’ve created free printable “Work-Life Balance” Workbook that you can grab here!
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Best Posts About Achieving Goals:
- Maximize Your Productivity: 6-Step Method To Get More Things Done In Less Time. HERE
- Perfect Morning Routine to Reduce Stress & Anxiety HERE
- The Ultimate Guide For Setting & Reaching Your Goals HERE
- 6 Self-Improvement Habits To Adopt in 2020 HERE
- Get into the Habit of Being Seriously Organized in 2020. HERE
- 8 Simple Steps to Set Yourself Up for a Successful 2020 HERE
- Powerful and smart ways to manage your time efficiently and effectively HERE
- 5 steps to success in achieving your goals HERE
- The ultimate way to overcome procrastination and become a highly productive person HERE
- The science of motivation HERE
- 10 powerful habits to boost your confidence HERE
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