Working from home can be fantastic yet it isn’t without its drawbacks. Indeed, one of the greatest drawbacks is that whilst working from home can be much more convenient, it can make you less focused.
See, the temptation to watch YouTube, Netflix or check up on the land of social media is far too tempting and in addition to this, when faced with the prospect of getting down to work on a sunny day, most dad’s would lack the willpower to resist a family picnic by the river. Then, there’s the distraction of children watching TV in the background, which whilst providing entertainment so that your kids aren’t disturbing you – the background noise can be distracting.
In summary, there can be a productivity cost when working from home in terms of focus, particularly if you struggle with discipline or concentration.
It’s therefore essential to set up a good space to work in; meaning a space that will allow you to feel comfortable and relaxed yet focused and productive. You’ll want to create a distraction free environment that allows you to focus, and is ideally, differentiated or perhaps even removed from your actual home.
This space should be yours, and yours alone; meaning that when the door is closed you won’t be disturbed. It should essentially feel like an annexe to your home rather than part of it, as this way, you’ll feel less distracted and more in “work mode”.
Here are three tips to help you focus when working from home:
- SET UP THE SPACE
You’ll want to create a distraction free environment that allows you to focus on work without distraction, therefore decluttering the space that will become your office will ensure a minimalist environment that assists concentration.
You’re going to need a desk, as even if you are working from a laptop you’ll probably want to spread out in order to arrange your thoughts and focus on work. Similarly, this is your home office and should be tailored to your unique needs – for example, if you are left handed then it’s important to find the best left handed mouse rather than struggle with a conventional mouse.
Also, what you sit in is extremely important, as this chair is likely to get extensive use, perhaps upwards of eight hours a day. For this reason you’ll want a chair with plenty of padding and decent ergonomic support.
The most important thing in terms of having a routine, is that it provides structure and keeps you focused – that’s what a lot of people that work from home lack. They lack the structure and routine of the daily commute, the set lunch hour, and home time. It can help to set yourself a lunch hour between a set time each day and even get dressed for work, as if you were going to the office, as this can put you in a more focused emotional state.
In summary, you want to create a space that allows you to focus. See, it’s all too tempting for your attention to drift anywhere other than on work; particularly when working from home, and therefore you might need to parent yourself and set up your own version of ‘parental controls’ that keep you focused; there’s a brilliant app called Freedom that offers this type of filtering functionality.
This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.