Working remotely or working from home is …
And the roller coaster keeps going between positives and negatives.
I love working from our home office, in client’s offices, at coffee shops, in the car (except when I get car sick), and from the airport when I am traveling. But I also have to be VERY INTENTIONAL about it. I have to set myself up for success because there are days when I am tired, unmotivated, and easily distracted.
I was fortunate to learn from some great entrepreneurs in the first couple months of my business. They shared how to be successful from home. I want to share these with you because they apply to every professional but especially for the student, side hustle entrepreneur, remote employee, etc.
These sound like super simple tips but this is what I do and it works!
1. Create a Space for Work ONLY
You do not need a full room in your home or a rented office. You need a space that is free from the distractions of your life. When I started my business I had a small desk, chair and a corner of a small guest room in our barn apartment! But it was my “office” and I respected it as such. Work was the only thing I did in the space.
Now I have a full home office with a large desk that welcomes my team when they are in town.
It took time to graduate to a more legitimate space but that did not mean my work was less important before.
Your space is as productive as you make it. You need to define it and then respect it.
2. Make Sure Everyone Else Honors That Space
Next, you need to make sure everyone in your home or business respects and honors that space as well. They don’t use that space without asking you. When you are in that space, you are working.
There are exceptions to this especially when you have children but it is YOUR responsibility to define the workspace and communicate it to them. Those who are closest to you want you to be successful. They want to support you. Respecting your work space is an easy way for them support you.
3. Wake Up and “Go to Work”
If you are procrastinator or get easily distracted by life, you need this tip!
If you want to be successful and taken seriously, take your work day seriously.
1. Wake up at a reasonable time in the morning: The time will vary for each person. I get up with my husband and make sure I am working or preparing to work before he leaves for work. I have learned that I can get a lot done before 8am and serve my clients better. For those of you with children or other 8 am-5 pm jobs, wake up early and work before the responsibilities of the day starts.
2. Get Dressed: This one helps me so much! If I will get up, get dressed (even if it is comfortable clothes), I am more productive.
3. “Go to Work”! Go into your designated work space and begin working. No social media or texting in your work space in the morning. Do those things in the kitchen when you are drinking coffee. Sometimes I won’t let myself check emails until I have finished one task.
Whatever you do, don’t start your day distracted. Start it focused.
4. Set Time Limits
I write a to do list for each day. I write the items I HAVE to get done at the top.
And the days that I schedule time chucks to each task, I am even more focused and productive. I have to be honest, I don’t always do it. But when I do, I see huge results.
I will close my email and tell myself, “finish this resume in the next 30 minutes” or “work on this client’s branding items until 2pm”. Then I don’t check emails, social media, or texts until I finish that task.
5. Mix It Up
We have been re-designing my home office. But even though it is prettier and better than before, I still need a change of scenery sometimes. When I need to brainstorm or work creatively, I will go to a coffee shop. If you are struggling to be productive one day – move yourself. Don’t waste time by distractions.
Set yourself up for success, give yourself a time limit for a specific task, and then give yourself a reward once you do it. Sometimes my reward is going to Target, searching for something fun online, getting a special coffee or dessert or calling a friend.
Try out these 5 tips and message me on Instagram (@eloisedesignco) and tell me if they made a difference. Start respecting your business and work like you want others to respect it.
Success doesn’t come first.
Work comes first.
So work like the success you want.