Four Productivity Tips For Remote Workers

November 13, 2018

Working remotely has many perks but sometimes it’s hard to maintain productivity when WE are the BOSS.  We all tackle our work days differently, yet we all want to “work smarter, not harder”. Here are some ways to be more productive as a work-at-home professional.

 

 

 

1.) Take care of your body and mind
 

Drink a glass of water immediately upon waking up each morning:

 

After 8 hours or so (6 or 7 for those of us less fortunate to get 8 hours a night) your body is definitely in a dehydrated state. It is suggested that drinking a large glass of water as soon as you get up can increase your metabolic rate and make your brain work faster.

 

Take care of your eyes:

 

Screen time affects our eyes. There are several ways to combat and minimize the effects:

  • Take breaks, looking away and focusing on some further away.

  • Use eye drops to maintain eye moisture and prevent dry eyes.

  • Reduce screen glare by using a screen filter.

  • Use eyeglasses to filter the blue light rays emitted.

 

Stretch and take ‘time outs’.

 

There are plenty of studies and articles indicating the dangers of sitting for long periods. Make it a point to stand up, stretch and walk around throughout the day. You can put it on your calendar as a reminder at specific times to take a break.

 

2.) Eliminate distractions

Whether we are the ones getting sidetracked by outside influences or with social media, distractions slow down our productivity. Here are a few recommendations to help reduce distractions and stay in the zone:

 

Reinforce your self-control.

 

Many of us use our ‘breaks’ to check personal email check, Facebook or Instagram… most of us can do so reasonably. Others may have a problem and get sucked in. A 5 minute break can easily turn into 30 minutes or more. Be aware and set time limits if you aren’t good with keeping track of time.

 

Block out environmental distractions.

 

Maybe it’s your kids in another room, your neighbor’s barking dog; or it’s too quiet in your home office.  Music or ambient noises like rain or a coffee shop can be effective in helping you to block out the distractions around you.

 

3.) Determine your zone of genius
 

Productivity experts agree that multi-tasking is slowing us down. It is suggested to group tasks together as much as possible during the week. So, for example, Monday mornings your return calls and emails and set up appointments for the rest of the week. Tuesday and Thursday mornings are for client meetings. Wednesdays can be for proposals, or reports, etc.

 

Another idea is to do your work in blocks of time.  Review your to-do list and prioritize the tasks. Take the top priorities from your list and put them into set time-frames.  Focus on one task at a time in 30-minute (or the amount of time-frame that works for you) slots. Don’t respond to emails or voicemails, or do anything else during that 30-minute time slot other than the sole task at hand. Then, once your 30 minutes is up, you take a quick 5-minute break and move on to the next task. By utilizing this method you create blocks of time for each item on your to do list versus attempting to be productive without visual time-frames.

 

Block scheduling works best if you start with the big “must-do” items on your list and write them in first. After that, build in smaller chunks of time for the less vital items.

Shorten the time you’ve allotted to do your work.

 

Ever noticed how much we accomplish in a short work week because we are headed out for a vacation? If you purposely allot less time to complete a task, chances are, you will find a way to complete it.

 

4.) Block off time to evaluate your progress
 

It is suggested that at least once a month, to set aside some time to evaluate and make adjustments to your time management processes. This will help you visualize how the changes or adjustments you make each month are having a positive or negative effect on your productivity.

 

Block scheduling (also known as time blocking) is a simple productivity method that works for almost anyone. With this method, you create blocks of time for each item on your list rather than listing off appointments and to-do items with no time-frame. There’s a specific start and end time for every task. Time blocking isn’t limited to appointments. Use this scheduling method for all the activities you want to accomplish during the day.

 

One great approach is to review your to-do list and prioritize. Take the top priorities from your list and slate them into set time-frames. Time blocking typically works in 15 or 30-minute increments, but adjust for what fits your life.

 

Block scheduling works best if you start with the big “must-do” items on your list and write them in first. After that, build in smaller chunks of time for the less vital items.

 

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