From better work-life balance to avoiding traffic, working from home has a number of benefits. The only downside is the distractions, especially if you don’t have a proper working environment. A family member watching the television in the next room, for instance, can affect your ability to focus and accomplish cognitively demanding tasks.
The good news is you don’t have to let domestic disturbances hurt your productivity. With the right set-up and a few tips on handling unnecessary distractions, you can make work from home a profitable and successful endeavour.
Invest in a Separate Home Office
An ideal home office is the one that is efficiently detached from your house. This minimises distractions and lets you concentrate on the task at hand. Granny flats or backyard cabins make a great working space, as you can customise them depending on the type of work you have. It can be an artist’s studio or you can treat it like your second home with a small kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom.
Explain to Family What You’re Doing
When you’re working from home, explain to family members that you need privacy. Having a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door is ideal, but it’s better to have a separate home office in a form of granny flat or backyard cabin. Note that some neighbours or relatives may still find it difficult to understand that it’s not okay for them to show up whenever they want to even though you’re at home.
Schedule Chores Efficiently
If you have household chores to attend to, your work productivity may suffer. Keep in mind, however, that you don’t have to accomplish all chores, especially during working hours. You need to reschedule or eliminate some tasks, so that you can meet your quota (if you have) or concentrate better on your work. Here are a few tips to consider:
- Get up a few hours early to accomplish simple household tasks, like prepping dinner or breakfast.
- Do your laundry once a week, or when you’ve finished all your tasks for the day.
- If a household chore suddenly comes to mind while working, write it down. You can also list down small chores that you need to accomplish only after work.
- If possible, rearrange or shorten your working hours to suit your chores and responsibilities better.
Work from home comes with perks, but there are also lots of challenges to deal with. A detached working space, establishing some boundaries, and scheduling tasks efficiently can help you work better.