You Totally Got This.
On Monday I wrote a little feature for Style Me Pretty Living about how to stay motivated while working from home! I’ve been working from home for years now, and I feel like I have sort-of mastered the art… most of the time. (Ha!)
Anyway, I thought I would go ahead and share the article on our blog as well! You’ll have to let me know what you think. xx
Working from home has its advantages (pajamas, I’m looking at you!), but it also has its fair share of challenges. Finding a “work from home rhythm” takes time, discipline, and practice. I am a work from home veteran. I’ve been doing it since I started ABD years ago. After some serious trial and error I have finally gotten this whole thing down to a science! Sort of.
To be honest, I just reverse engineered my best days. I am an avid list maker and write just about everything down in my planner. So here’s what I did after a series of horrible, no good, completely unproductive days. I looked back at my most productive days and figured out the magic that made those days so successful.
I am going to be honest with you and tell you that they were not mind blowing, innovative ideas. There was actually little to no magic involved at all.
What made the greatest difference were simple things like… going outside. I know, ground breaking stuff! But I realized on those days when I never stepped outside my front door that I was significantly less productive.
So here are my 5 tips and tricks for a successful, less distracted, and uber-productive work-from-home day:
#1. Set Up for Success!
The night before, so let’s just call it Sunday night, I lay out my work clothes (i.e. not my favorite pink pajama pants) and my work out clothes. Growing up, my parents made my sister and me do this each night before school. They called it “setting up for success”. It was so annoying at the time, but of course, it was BRILLIANT! This makes a huge difference in the morning. My pre-planned outfit is one less thing I have to think about and I love it.
#2. Get some exercise!
Getting a morning run in or a trip to the gym is one of the biggest game changers in my day. I try not to think of it as this a “chore” (which is hard some days), but more of a mental health thing. I switch up my routine often so that I don’t get bored… but getting my body moving first thing in the morning keeps me going all day!
I have never, ever been one of those people who can skip breakfast. Like, never. But I do notice a huge difference in eating the right kind of breakfast at the right time. So not eating a donut at 10:30AM because I got sucked into my inbox! Breakfast is a serious priority and it makes a world of a difference.
#4. Dressing Up & Cleaning Up
Getting dressed each day feels silly sometimes when you work from home because, if we are being honest, no one will ever see / know / care/ judge you…. So pajamas it is! But that is not true. I feel 1,000xs better when I get ready, put on make-up, and my favorite jewels. It doesn’t have to be cocktail attire, but just something to remind you that you have an important job to do. Plus I am more willing to hop out for a quick lunch date with my husband or my girlfriends if I am already ready! So that’s an added bonus.
Also, keeping my desk clean of clutter is another must for me. I have a table on the other side of my studio that I lovingly refer to as the “piler” for things I am still working and not yet ready to file away. My brain and creativity need clean white space.
#5. Take a mid-day walk.
This one is the hardest for me! I tend to hyper focus and completely zone-in on whatever project I’ve started. Then I look up and it’s 7PM and I’ve forgotten to go outside all day. It doesn’t help that my dog, Lucy, is so lazy and sleeps (and snores) by my feet all day long. She just about never begs to go outside, so I have started writing a “take Lucy on a walk” reminder in my planner each day. That way I won’t forget to head outside for that 5 minute of much needed sunshine! This let’s me clear my head and helps me focus better when I do get back to my desk. Also, Lucy ends up being in a much better mood too! Ha!
Bonus Tip: Write all five of these things down in your planner the night before, that way “get dressed” is staring at you all day… you’ll actually want to do it if not just for the sole reason of crossing it off.
Okay, so that’s it! My totally not innovative but completely fool-proof work-from-home plan. I pinky promise it will work!
Photographed by: Daniel Nichol Photography