Last week I shared 3 tips on how to increase your productivity while working from home:
Set up a workspace that includes comfort, convenience, and good vibes.
Incorporate healthy habits into your day by habit stacking.
Make a concrete plan to take control of your day.
As many of us continue to navigate our new normal, it’s important to consider the fact that we may have to continue to work or study from home for the unforeseeable future. It can be helpful to reflect on how things have been going so far. Have you been feeling super productive? If so, that’s great! Be sure to take note of what is working and keep doing it. If you’re feeling as though your productivity has been plummeting, then here are 3 more tips that can help you to be more focused and motivated, and get you back on track to being a productivity powerhouse!
1. Decrease distractions. Working from home can often mean that we are even more distracted than usual as there are so many distracting things around us at all times. The major culprits can be things such as your family, your phone and your fridge! These distractions can take a huge toll on your productivity so you want to ensure that you are controlling them instead of letting them control you. My advice is to follow the old philosophy of “out of sight, out of mind.” Try your best to find somewhere in your home that is away from others. If that is not possible, then try using earphones to listen to classical music (the only music that has been shown to increase focus) to drown out the noise so you that can focus. I also recommend turning off the notifications on your phone so that you’re not constantly interrupted. A Harvard study found that when you’re working on something and you’re distracted by your phone, it can take you an average of 25 mins to refocus on what you were originally working on! If you were to add up all the times you get interrupted by your phone, I’m sure you’d be surprised at how many hours are wasted by simply trying to get refocused. What has worked best for me is actually putting my phone in another room when I want to get focused. My productivity levels always quadruple when I do this! Trust me, it really works.
2. Master the art of single tasking. I used to pride myself on the fact that I could multi task well and work on several things at the same time. Over time, I slowly began to realize that I was actually taking longer to complete tasks and I was getting less done! When I did some research on the act of multi-tasking, I discovered that I actually wasn’t multi-tasking at all, I was switch-tasking! According to an article on Medium, “Switch tasking is doing multiple different tasks that aren’t directly related to the same outcome.” Switch tasking can cause you to take almost double the time you need to complete your task and also cause you to feel more stress and make more mistakes! I highly recommend that you try choosing JUST ONE THING to focus on at a time. It can be helpful to keep a running list of any other questions, tasks or thoughts that come up while you’re working, so you go back and deal with them after you’ve completed your task.
3. Take control of your snacking. Many of my students have been reporting that they have been eating a lot more since being in quarantine. Being at home and in close proximity to the fridge and the pantry can definitely increase the temptation to eat more frequently. Boredom can also contribute to excessive snacking. And all those trips back and forth to the fridge can decrease your productivity. If this is a problem for you, I recommend keeping a food journal. Food journaling has been shown to help you to be more aware of what you’re consuming, which can in turn help you to limit your consumption. Pre-planning your meals and snacks in advance can help to keep you on track and more focused on your work. Stocking up on healthy, brain boosting snacks can also be a win win that can boost your work from home experience.
And speaking of working from home… Check out the interview I did for the Lifestyle Designed podcast where I speak with Micheal Lambie, the extremely talented interior designer who designed my home office.
Stay safe and stay healthy and please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or need any support.