How To Work From Home Like A #GIRLBOSS

31 October

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Working from home is the ultimate dream, right? No commute, no coworkers stealing your biscuits, and you can work in bed in your pyjamas if you want to. I’m lucky enough to work from home a few days a week, but it's so much harder than I imagined when I started, especially in terms of staying motivated and not getting distracted. 
Here are a few things I’ve learned about being productive when working from home.
Stick to a routine
I’ve found that keeping to a proper “work day" format really helps me to stay motivated and focused on getting things done. I used to wake up just before I needed to and start working straight away, not getting out of bed unless it was absolutely necessary. I wasn’t giving my brain time to wake up and wasn't really giving my best to my work for a good half hour or so.
Now, I get up at least an hour before I start work and make sure that I have breakfast, a shower and get dressed so instead of feeling groggy and tired, I’m wide awake and ready to go when it’s time to start work. I also find that getting dressed, even if I’m just wearing leggings and a t-shirt, makes me feel much more put together and work-ready.
Set up a designated work space
Working from bed or the sofa is cosy, but it confuses the boundaries between working and relaxing. It's also not the best for your back. If possible, having a space in your home for work only means that your brain will automatically be in work mode while you're there, and keeps the sofa as a place to relax.

One thing I’ve definitely noticed about working from home is that other people tend not to realise that you are actually working and will chat to you or ask you to do chores since you’re at home. Having a room or space which you only use to work should let them know that you're doing work while you're there so nope, you can't clean the bathroom right now.
Work out what kind of environment you work best in
I used to have the TV on all the time when working from home, and it can be quite nice to have a bit of quiet background noise when you work alone (This Morning FTW). However, I soon learned that when it came to completing tasks that I found daunting, or that required a lot of thought, I ended up getting distracted by Holly and Phil's dulcet tones instead of focusing on work.
Now I tend to switch everything off when I'm working on something new or difficult, as I find that this helps me to think properly. On the other hand, some find music or noise helps them to work more efficiently. It’s all about trying new things to find out what works for you and going from there.
Take breaks
It’s easy to fall into the trap of working for hours and hours without a break, but it's unhealthy and could actually make you less productive. Think of all the little breaks you have in an office; making tea, eating lunch, chatting to co-workers. It’s harder to justify these small breaks when you’re working from home because you aren't in a typical work setting.
Try taking a walk or even doing some minimal housework (like putting the washing on) once or twice a day, and make sure you take a proper lunch break instead of working through it. Sometimes a little bit of time away can give you a burst of inspiration you didn’t know you needed.
On the same note, know when it’s time to stop working. You don’t realise how important your commute is at helping your brain to switch between work and personal time until you don’t have it anymore. The lines become blurred when finishing for the day involves simply closing your laptop instead of a journey home, but it’s important that you don’t feel obliged to spend all your waking hours working simply because you can. I find that going out, even just to the shops, helps me to wind down after a day of working at home
Enjoy it
As much as working from home is a transition which takes getting used to, it definitely has its perks. Make the most out of the extra time and flexibility it gives you and enjoy staying in your nice, warm house instead of waiting for the bus in the rain.

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