Remaining positive, energetic and motivated can be a challenge in any career, but when you work from home, it can be particularly elusive. In the same way that working out can be more motivating when we have a companion by our side, clocking in hours in an office can make aspects like accountability, meeting deadlines and setting new goals, easier. Still, it is important to remember why you decided to work from home in the first place – whether your reason was cutting costs, enjoying greater flexibility, or starting a new business – chances are, the last thing on your mind… was working less. How can your ambition, dedication, and commitment to achieving ever greater things?
A Schedule Involving More than Just Work
It is important to stick to a daily routine, which can be flexible in terms of exact times, but which should always comprise a set number of hours. Try to do things in the same order – for instance, you may take care of email correspondence first, prepare goods or provide services to your clients, then concentrate on marketing or increasing brand awareness.
If your work varies greatly from day to day, or follows a particular sales/production schedule, make a daily list, ticking off the items you accomplish. Secondly, within your schedule, allow yourself a ‘treat’ for a certain amount of work accomplished – it could be watching a favorite show for half an hour, enjoying a lunch break and short nap, or sitting out in the garden catching some Vitamin D-rich rays of sun.
The third pillar of your daily agenda should include exercise. Numerous studies indicate the dangers of a sedentary lifestyle (which increases the chance of heart disease, obesity and diabetes), but they also indicate that exercise can also improve our mental health, by helping prevent stress, anxiety, and depression.
Making the Most of Spare Time
What do you do with spare hours when you finish goals early? If you have completed all the tasks in your schedule, it definitely isn’t an excuse to have the day off. The Internet provides opportunities to make money from home by taking surveys. You may make just a few dollars to begin with, but as you get faster and more efficient, the effort will be worth it, especially when your business is in a low season. You can also look at freelance work opportunities which are compatible with your home job – it may be in writing, virtual assistance, or even teaching!
Cutting Out Temptation
Surveys show that the average online user spends up to two hours on social media a day; between Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter, we can easily waste a great deal of time. There are specific apps that either block social media sites or limit Internet usage to certain times, including SelfControl, Freedom, Anti-Social, and Cold Turkey (to name just a few!).
Staying motivated can be difficult when we only have ourselves to lean on. However, the skills we need to succeed are in fact very similar to those of any entrepreneur: sticking to a schedule, rewarding ourselves for goal achievement, limiting our social media and Internet usage, making money in our free time from other sources, and boosting our energy levels through exercise. Working from home and an office have much more in common than we may have realized.