How to stay motivated when working from home

Last year saw a record 80 new companies starting up in the UK every hour. A study from StartUp Britain, a national enterprise campaign backed by the government, has revealed how 342,927 new businesses were registered with Companies House between January and June 2016, a figure that looks set to beat that of 2015, when a record 608,110 companies were registered in 12 months.

And working from home is also booming across the UK – of those registered companies, almost half (40%) are believed to be run from home.

And then there are all those office workers who spend a couple of days a week working remotely, the chance to get away from the daily commute and tepid office coffee proving to be a massive boost to morale.

However, while working from home is seen as the perfect antidote to the nine-to-five grind, if working from home is the norm then getting motivated to get things done can be a big problem…what, with the lure of daytime telly and all that housework that needs doing.

So, if you’re a home worker suffering from a severe lack of self-discipline, here are some top tips to keep motivated…

Get dressed for work

This may sound like an arbitrary thing, but even a simple like getting dressed for work – as opposed to lounging around in your comfy clothes – can be enough to get you in the right frame of mind.

This doesn’t necessarily mean putting on a suit – though if that works for you then go with it – but getting out of the clothes you’d normally relax in and into some more business-like casual clothes might just help put get more focussed for a full day’s work.

Set a work schedule

If you follow the first step, then the second step should come a whole lot easier – while the idea of falling out of bed straight on to your laptop is great, working in this way and without a structured routine can really impair your productivity.

So set a daily schedule and stick to it. This means getting up and starting work at a set time, taking breaks as you would in work, and conducting business meetings and conference calls in work time, all of which will help you stay focussed on your job.

Make a better start to your day

One of the major benefits of working from home is you can cut out the daily commute, meaning your mornings should be far more relaxed – but instead of spending an extra hour in bed, why not make the most of the extra time by getting up early, having a healthy breakfast and getting some exercise in?

Not only does this come with the obvious health benefits, it’ll give you more energy and help you stay more focussed on your work. You really should give it a try, it might even improve that magical work/life balance.

And speaking of work/life balance, if you’re a parent, you could use the extra time to make better use of the morning with the kids before the madness of the school run.

Don’t get distracted

The internet has revolutionised the way we work, but it also provides an infinite amount of distractions that can severely impair productivity – so try to steer clear of personal emails, social media (except for business use), newspapers and magazine sites.

Oh, and shopping sites, these are not only time-wasters but have the added bonus of sapping your funds!

If you have trouble in the self-discipline department then consider apps such as StayFocused, a Google Chrome browser add-on that limits the amount of time you can spend on your favourite sites. If Firefox is your browser of choice then try LeechBlock, while Safari users should give MindfulBrowsing a try.

Do you have any more top tips to stay motivated when working from home? Share your thoughts with our work from home community.

Image from Pablo by Buffer.

Updated Friday, April 14, 2017


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