Due to current events, many people are now working from home. While many of us have dreamed of the idea of working from home, now that it’s a reality, we realize the many challenges of this lifestyle. That is why this week we are going to be talking about 5 important practices to make you more productive at home.
1. The most important practice to maintain is building a routine and sticking to it. Going to sleep and getting up at the same time every day is one of the best things you can do for yourself. When you wake up, resist the urge to stay in your pajamas. Wear what you would wear to work even, it will help prime your brain for when you start working. Building a solid routine allows you to get into work mode much more easily.
2. As you go through your day, try to make a win out of everything you do: making your bed right after you get up, changing out of your pajamas quickly, etc. Connect these wins into a winning streak. The second important practice is to make a winning streak. Start small and build as you go through your day. This helps you build momentum. Later in the day, this makes it easier for you to make the right decision and stay in the right mind space. Feeling productive will make you want to stay productive while feeling lazy makes it hard to get things done.
3. Another important practice is to exercise. Although it may seem hard to exercise indoors, you can get a great workout with no equipment. Jumping jacks, pushups, core exercises and other calisthenics can get your blood flowing and build muscle from the comfort of your home. Additionally, a half hour of cardio walking, running or jogging can go a long way. The Harvard Business Review found that when workers went to the gym, they reported “managing their time more effectively, being more productive, and having smoother interactions with their colleagues.” You can read their full article about exercise and productivity here (https://hbr.org/2014/10/regular-exercise-is-part-of-your-job). It is clear the exercise can do wonders for your productivity.
4. Our fourth important practice is to create a to-do list. There are countless ways you can do this from writing a list with pen and paper, to a notes app or an app specifically for task management. Choose what works best for you and stick to it. Try to keep all tasks in one place so nothing slips through the cracks. Create a new list every morning and at the end of the day review your progress. You can move unfinished tasks to the next day and start to plan for the future. This allows you to evaluate how much you accomplished and compare that day to day. You can also use checklists to set larger goals for the week and review them every Sunday. This allows you to evaluate your week in a more detailed way.
5. The last four practices give you energy, help you track your progress and keep you productive throughout the week. While it is important to focus on your work while staying at home, it is also important to allow your breaks to truly be breaks. That’s why our fifth and final practice is to disconnect. Although it might be tempting because your work is so close, allow yourself to disconnect at the end of the day. Stop what has been deemed “Work Creep” because it wants to ‘creep’ into other parts of your life. Once you finish the workday, close your computer, turn off your notifications and choose a relaxing activity to take your mind off work.
I hope these 5 practices make your time indoors more productive and enjoyable. Stay safe!
Kathleen Richards, is the owner of PM Made Easy and The Property Management Coach. With her 13 years as a broker/owner of a property management company she speaks from experience. Kathleen authored, Property Management A-Z and teaches regularly at community colleges and conferences on property management topics. She is active in her field and holds professional designations as Master Property Manager (MPM®) and Residential Management Professional (RMP®) and her company held the coveted, Certified Residential Management Company (CRMC®) designation from NARPM®. She is currently a National Instructor for NARPM® and is honored to be sharing best practices with other NARPM® professionals. Kathleen has served at the local and state level on the boards for NARPM® (National Association of Residential Property Managers)