The kids are crying, your favorite show is playing on tv and your next door neighbor wants you to go out to lunch with her. How can you ever find time to do work with all these distractions? Since you are not being supervised when working from home, you must learn to be disciplined and efficient on your own. Here are some work from home tips to help you stay focused when working from home.
- Set up a home office– Find a location in your home where you will be free from distractions and able to focus. This will be your home office. Your office can be anywhere from the corner of your living room to a separate room. Just be sure it doesn’t form an obstruction to the rest of your family. If possible try to isolate your office from personal areas of the house. If clients will be coming to your home office you want to make sure it looks professional. Since working from home may not appear as professional to some clients you can decide to meet them in a restaurant, coffee shop or at their home. If you do decide to bring clients in your home consider getting liability insurance as a precaution in case they get hurt while in your house.
- Make a schedule with goals– List everything you want to achieve each day. Be realistic on how much you can accomplish within a day. Have set hours of when you will work. Stick with this routine. Develop a schedule that compliments the other aspects of your life. For example if you are caring for children you can work when they are napping. Also consider what time of the day you are most productive. Some people have more attention during the morning while others are more productive at night. Find out what schedule works best for you.
- Abiding by zoning laws– Many people don’t know about zoning laws but if you are working from home you should. Zoning laws are used by the local government to ensure that residents of a location are not bothered by any new changes to the community such as a home business that brings too much traffic or makes too much noise. Zoning laws can even restrict the hours of business operation. Find out what the zoning laws are for your area and make sure they allow home based businesses. Where can you find zoning information? You can get zoning information from your public library or better yet directly from your local planning department or zoning board. Zoning laws will only be a problem if neighbors complain about you so be sure you don’t form a nuisance to your neighbors.
- Have a picture of your Inspiration in your office– Hang on your wall a picture of something or someone that inspires or motivates you. This can be of someone you look up to, a loved one, a car you want or places you want to travel to. When ever you become discouraged or overwhelmed the picture will help remind you why you are working so hard and encourage you to keep going.