9 Easy Steps to Create a Productive Work From Home Environment

Working from home is such a nice idea and people who do it hate it and people who travel to their offices everyday in fact love it.

Working from home is not as easy as it sounds and challenging compared to working in an office, with all the commitments and distractions around. So if this sounds like you, here are some easy steps to make the best out of it while not stressing out.

I have prepared this step by step guide to create an effective Work From Home environment with Easy to Follow steps. This will improve your WFH productivity

1. Prepare a dedicated workspace

Do not work from your bed. In fact try to keep away from the view of it if possible. It has magnetic properties capable of grabbing you back to it though how important your work is 😅.

Prepare your workspace in a simple way, ideally like your office table and try to keep it without much clutter. Keep only what is necessary for your work.

Your workspace has to be simple with less clutter
Image by <a href="https://pixabay.com/photos/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=1209605">Free-Photos</a> from <a href="https://pixabay.com/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=1209605">Pixabay</a>
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Your workspace has to be simple with less clutter

Keep a separate shelf to stock up your things that you will need while working. Keep the shelf in walking distance in your view. This way you can keep your working table well ordered.

A shelf will serve to keep your table tidy
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A shelf will serve to keep your table tidy

2. Prepare a ‘To Do List’

Prepare a To Do List for the following day every night before you sleep. I know this sounds fishy for those who are not used to work with written down plans, but trust me this works.

It has a psychological effect to wakeup in the morning when you have a list of things to achieve the next day.

Another advantage is when you achieve something which you have already listed, it tiggers a chemical called dopamine which is a neurotransmitter, one of those chemicals that is responsible for transmitting signals between the nerve cells of the brain. Dopamine is a ‘feel good’ chemical and it plays a vital role in our brain to feel us ‘Happiness’.

This you can either write down on a paper or use a mobile application. If you prefer an application, check out this blog post which highlights some of the best mobile applications to create a To Do List.

to do list
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I prefer writing it down on a paper

3. Set a start and finish time

Some people think, waking up without an alarm is the best achievement of their work from home journey but what if you see it different. Think that you can start your work early as possible while others are still on their buses to work.

an alarm to wake up in the morning is not a bad option for those who work from home
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Waking up for an alarm is not a bad way to start

Yes its true that Working From Home is flexible, that you can wakeup at any time and work until you finish your work so that you don’t have to think about timing, which is a lazy way of looking at WFH.

Though you are a full time work from home employee, or a self employed, working from home, setting your working times is rather important to keep a self discipline in your work and to achieve your full work efficiency.

If you are a morning person, try start early so that you are always ahead of others and you can finish early. The other option is to align your work hours with your office hours in which your subordinates also work.

4. Take Breaks

Do not try to finish your work early by working straight for 6 or 7 hours from the morning into the afternoon without taking any break. Its not a sustainable way of working from home.

Instead, take clear breaks for your meals, for cooking, laundry and even for exercising. The beauty of WFH is that you can do all these while you are working, but make sure you take breaks. Do not over multitask.

Multitasking is not a productive WFH technique
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Multitasking is not a productive WFH technique

5. Social media

Working from home with your mobile, with active social media feeds, giving you tons of notification every minute does not create a good working environment.

You have few options here,

  • Log out from all your social media accounts while you working
  • Keep your mobile switched off
  • Disconnect your mobile from wifi and mobile data (which I do)

If you are too addicted to social media, you can take a ‘Social Media Break’. A fifteen minutes for every two hours of straight work for instance.

Work and social media go in line only if you work in a social media
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Work and social media go in line only if you work on social media

My advice here is, get more breaks. Breaks improve your productivity and the quality of work. In fact, it’s a way of utilising the flexibility of WFH. But make sure you come back to your seat on time without getting caught up in a never ending social media browsing or a gaming session with friends.

6. Music

Listen to some soothing, mind relaxing background music which will make you feel calm and energetic and take you out from the distractions of the outside world. This will improve your focus.

7. Interact with the family

Take some time to interact with your family. Talk to them while you taking breaks. There are several reasons why you should do this.

  • Everyone is not having the luxury of working from home and you are lucky, so share it with your homies
  • When you keep interacting with the family while you take breaks, they will not come back distracting your work
  • Human interaction is something you miss when you WFH compared to working in an office. Human interaction has something to do with your work efficiency and mental balance. So at least interact with the people at home

8. Exercising

Though this is the last step to create a productive work from home environment, this is one of the most important thing to put your attention.

Especially if you are a long term work from home personal, you should include an exercising time slot into your work. Yes I know you can exercise at any time while you work and its flexible, but my advice it to dedicate a time for that. At least 30 minutes a day.

Physical exercising is a great way to release your work stress
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Physical exercising is a great way to release your work stress

If you are fitness conscious, go to the gym (which is what I prefer doing), or else, at least take a walk in your neighbourhood.

9. Change your Work Table once a Week

Though Work From Home Sounds great for those who work at offices, there are so many things you will miss. For instance, team working, updates on fashion, trends, news, because you are not going out.

And some people who used to work outside get stressed out with working from home conditions even though they have the best paying jobs with the most comfortable working spaces at home.

So, take a break and say good bye to your home work space at least once a week and go work in a library or in your favourite coffee shop. Invite your friends also to come if they are working with you only.

Conclusion

Working from home is such a flexible way of doing your job or the business. More than anything else, it gives you the opportunity to manage your life more efficiently. However, to have a sustainable WFH experience and to have a work-life balance, you need to be structured.

Comment below if you think there are more steps to add here. Hope this helped!

Thanuj Gunawardana

Freelance writer specialising in marketing, business and tech. Say Hi on Twitter

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Great content. Keep up the good work!

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