Staying productive is one of the most challenging parts of working from home. When we’re at home, there are so many other tasks that we could be doing, making it difficult to establish motivation and discipline to remain productive with our work. Here are five tips that can help you stay on top of your to-do lists and increase your productivity:
Find a digital planning platform that works for you.
It can be so easy to lose track of all the things that our jobs entail, such as emails, spreadsheets, documents, to-do lists and more. Wondering where you left off with something is not the most productive way to spend your time, so it may be helpful to find a digital planning platform to centralize all of your tasks and files. Trello, Monday.com and Asana are just a few examples. These platforms allow you to plan projects and track progress in one centralized location. Using a platform like this will help minimize the chaos and increase your productivity.
Schedule your breaks.
We often avoid taking breaks when we get into a groove at work. Before you know it, you’ll start feeling like you’re going to crash. To prevent this, schedule small breaks throughout your day. It could be a quick 5-minute break after every 30 minutes of working, or maybe a 10-minute break after an hour of working. Either way, it’s important to establish breaks in your schedule that work for you. If you find this hard, you can even set reminders to take breaks. The reminder will pop up on your phone or computer which will make it impossible to forget!
Go for a walk, take your dog outside for a bit or do a couple of laps around the block. Movement is crucial – sitting for prolonged periods of time is not good for us both physically and mentally. Getting some movement incorporated into your day will increase circulation to the brain, which is crucial to having a productive workday.
I hate to break it to you, but multitasking usually doesn’t work very well. We think of multitasking as doing two things at once, but in reality, our brains don’t actually have that ability. When we are supposedly multitasking, our brains are actually just moving between two (or more) things rapidly, meaning multitasking doesn’t actually save you any time. If anything, it slows you down, because it takes time for your brain to switch back and forth between tasks. Committing to one task at a time is a much better way to get things done in a timely and effective manner.
Schedule time to check your emails.
I don’t know about you, but my inbox is a huge distraction for me. When I hear a new email come in, I feel like I have to check it right away. However, 99% of the time, it’s not urgent and doesn’t require immediate attention. In order to minimize this distraction, you can schedule designated times to check your email. Depending on how much you rely on email, it might be more often or less often. Maybe it’s the first 10 minutes of every hour, or maybe it’s twice a day. Whatever the case, you can set a reminder on your phone or computer so that you don’t forget. And when it’s not that designated time, close your inbox to avoid the distraction!