Anyone that works primarily from home knows how hard it can be to stay focused. This is especially true when you are a parent and you have to worry about a thousand things at once. While there are tons of advantages that come with not having to go into an office every day, there are also plenty of drawbacks. An undefined work schedule and the tendency to be easily distracted only being a couple of them.
Sometimes working from home is super boring and other times there are about a million things that draw your attention from important tasks you’re supposed to be completing. Having trouble keeping your focus? Try following these simple but effective tips.
1. Have A Designated Working Space
When you work from home, it can be very tempting to work from your bed or from the comfort of your couch but you MUST resist the temptations. Everyone isn’t able to have an entire home office to call their own, but that’s totally ok! Even if you have a desk in the corner of your living room or have to use the kitchen table, you should have a designated work space in your home. Someplace that allows you to be comfortable but not too comfortable, a place with plenty of light that definitely doesn’t face the television! You’ll be surprised at how much easier it is to stay focused once you have a space that promotes productivity.
2. Stay Away From Social Media
Yes, this means all of your favorite sites and blogs as well! You definitely can’t stay focused if you’re switching over to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram every five minutes. There are studies that show that social media in the workplace may actually boost productivity over time, but it can also be a serious detriment to your focus. If you find it a little too hard to keep your focus on your work and away from the internet, you can use applications and programs like Cold Turkey that will block you from visiting specific sites for specific amounts of time.
3. Give Yourself A Schedule
I know, I know. One of the biggest benefits of working for yourself is that you don’t have to follow a schedule if you don’t want to. Unfortunately, if you have a hard time maintaining your focus, your lack of schedule can do more harm that good. As rigid as it may sound, setting a strict schedule for your workday is definitely a good idea. Of course, if you have kiddos running around the house during the day, you’ll have to be a little more lax and open, but you should still try to stick to your schedule as much as possible.
4. Listen To Some Music
Playing some great tunes are a great way to stay focused while working. While blasting heavy metal may not be the best course of action, there are tons of ready-made playlists out there that are specifically crafted to help people focus. You can also put together a playlist of your own favorite songs. This will help keep your brain active and you focus on your work.
5. Set Daily Work Goals
A lack of real direction can be a huge proponent for lack of focus. If you don’t really know what you need to be doing, it can be hard to get anything done. Each day, you should determine what exactly what your working goals are. Putting them on paper or on a computerized list makes it much easier to track your progress throughout the day and stay focused on all the things you need to accomplish.
6. Don’t Forget To Take Breaks
Unless you’re Superman, there is almost no way you’re going to be able to get through more than an hour or so of work without needing at least a short break. It might seem a little counterproductive, but frequent breaks actually help you more than you think. While you definitely shouldn’t follow up every hour of work with a 30 minute break, getting up to stretch, grab a snack, or get some fresh air will refresh you and have you ready to get back to work.