How To Be Productive If You Work From Home

How To Be Productive If You Work From Home

How To Be Productive If You Work From Home


by Crystal Nerpel
Cloud Nine Organizing

When you step into your home office, are you being as productive as you could be, or do you find yourself getting sidetracked and distracted? Even if you feel like you’re an organized person, you can still use these five tips to help you become even more productive and efficient while working from home.


  • Establish office hours.
    Beginning and finishing your workday at reasonable hours encourages productivity. Starting work at the same time each morning helps you get into a habitual, productive mindset. If possible, schedule personal appointments around your business hours. Conversely, it’s very important to know when to stop working. Working long hours can be counterproductive because it causes fatigue and impacts family life. Try setting the alarm for yourself to act like your five o’clock whistle.
  • Get dressed for work.
    Make it a habit of getting ready for work. Wake up, make your bed, get dressed, have breakfast, grab a cup of coffee, tell the family good-bye and head to your office. The act of “getting ready for work” creates a mental association with being productive and can help you stay on schedule. Pajamas are great, but they don’t always encourage productivity.
  • Avoid multi-tasking.
    Many people believe that doing multiple tasks at a time will increase productivity. I don’t find this to be the case. You may get things done more quickly, but dividing your focus among multiple tasks can lead to sloppy work and costly mistakes. Focus on finishing one task at a time. You’ll be more efficient and happier with the result.
  • Make sure your office is free of distractions.
    You may need to close your office door and post your office hours to remind family members that you are working. It’s also a great idea to disengage from social media during office hours. Another big distraction is clutter. File all important documents, have a special place for current projects and throw away trash.
  • Have a smart filing system.
    Everyone’s idea of a good filing system is different. Asking a professional organizer for advice on a filing system is a great idea, but it has to make sense for you because you are the one that will use it. The keyword here is “use.” You have to use your system once you have it in place. Immediately file important documents, so they are handy when you need them. I highly recommend keeping work and personal files separate.
  • Declutter your office every day.
    Yes, every day. You work from home, so there won’t be any custodians coming to clean up or empty the trash can after you leave the office. Before you leave your office, take a few minutes to declutter and straighten up. Make sure current projects are organized and ready for you to address tomorrow morning.

Set yourself up for success by working in a decluttered office and using productive systems that make sense to you and your work style.

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