7 Best Practices for Homeowners Who Are Working From Home

Whether you’ve gone into business for yourself or convinced your boss to let you telecommute, you’ve joined the 37% of Americans who work from home at least some of the time!  Here are 7 tips to help you stay efficient and motivated even if you’d rather be watching midday TV!
1.     Set regular and consistent hours. Working from home also means you’re always at work. Stick to your schedule! Separating work time from personal time is key to preventing burnout. A home office can help you keep work “at work.”
2.     Communicate.You can work when you’re most productive, whether that’s 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. or 9 p.m. to 5 a.m., but make sure you know when you need to be available. Also make sure your supervisor, colleagues, clients and customers know when they can reach you.
3.     Get out of your pajamas. Your ducky PJs are great, but they’re not work clothes. You don’t have to sit at home in a three-piece suit, but it’s important that your brain gets out of relaxation mode and into work mode so that you’re focused, motivated, and energized.
4.     Break up the day. Plan your workflow and make sure you get up from your desk. Get some fresh air, eat a snack, and try to have a face-to-face conversation with someone. This will help you refresh, reset, and get ready to attack the next set of tasks.
5.     Set boundaries. Let your family and friends know they shouldn’t interrupt you when you’re working. One of the best things about working from home is the flexibility, but constant distractions–be it from Dave in Accounting or your adorable toddler–will break your concentration and make it harder to stay focused.
6.     Exercise!You’re not wasting time commuting anymore, so go to the gym, head out for a run, or take a walk in the brisk morning air. Exercise boosts productivity and improves your energy levels. Plus, working from home can be lonely, so getting out and about can help improve your mood.

7.     Discipline yourself. Avoiding Twitter and Facebook is hard enough when you’re in an office. Now that you’re home, and you’ve got the TV to provide extra temptation, those little distractions can seem harmless, but studies says it can take as much as 30 minutes to regain your focus. Shut down unnecessary programs, turn off instant notifications and leave the TV alone. Focus on the task at hand you’ll be more productive and produce better work.

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