The popularity of freelancing and telecommuting has given rise to creating comfort arenas wherever employees or freelancers refer to as workspace. While you can select a unique place to work, decorate it with motivation-enhancing colors, and place your work equipment within reach, working at home without any distraction is going to be a must-have, if you want to succeed in getting anything done.
For freelancers whose clients aim to dedicate a significant pay package and long-term working arrangement to their collaboration, and bosses who approve employee telecommuting once in a while, a pristine work environment is going to be required to persuade these employers of your dedication.
Some of the ideas below can really help maximize your work environment, limit distraction, while keeping you effectively primed to attain results in your work.
- Create a unique space for working
While we’ve already mentioned that above, it would be a good gesture to note it again. Similar to the traditional working environment, a separate, dedicated space can be created to signify that once you are in this location or space, work commences.
The reason office spaces exist, before the rise of cubicles and co-working, is because office spaces work. The benefit behind creating a unique space to work in is that you get into a state of mind once you are in this location. You know you have carried out productive work here before, as such you can duplicate the rewards.
There are people who like to flit from one location to another, and enjoy the novelty of working in new places; so they might not consider having a dedicated workspace a necessity. However, one advantage to creating such is that in the event of unexpected intruding or disturbances, input from roommates if living with one, or other family members, a dedicated workspace could represent a form of escape, simply because it is there, and everyone beforehand knows it is dedicated to that purpose.
If you love music or love some noise on when working, by all means, dedicate yourself to creating the ideal work environment for you.
- Put up your calendar of goals and reasons for attaining them
This is what makes Google Calendar or on Android, CloudCal, personal favorites. You can put up printed copies of your goals in your work area or as reminders in places you frequent, and also the reasons for wanting to complete them. If you cover that milestone timely, would you receive a bonus or would that put you in the client’s good books? If you complete that essay or research paper soon enough, would it give you enough time to catch the evening soap opera? You are on the 4th milestone. Would the completion of the 7th milestone afford you the funds to buy the sports car you’ve been yearning to have?
The above examples are limited to short-term goals. However, you can post goals of your long-term pictures to remind you to stay on track.
Another way to carry these out is to post pictures of your short and long-term goals, results of after you’ve completed the current tasks you are undertaking.
- Create an efficient surround of items or tools you use frequently
It wouldn’t do to have to get up, or leave your work location every time, because an item you need is not readily within reach. Not only would it be time-wasting, the kids might take it that you are not really working, and hanker for attention.
In a fun way, create an enclave of your regularly need tools. Or if there isn’t much space in your home, simply have a wall shelf built, so you can place all the most important items there.
- Create work reminders all around you
Whether you work in digital marketing, web design, content writing, art or graphic design, different work tools are required for the different professions.
So, using the writing profession, as an example, if you are writing a piece or manuscript, one of your work reminders could be to check for plagiarism. You could, beforehand, browse online plagiarism checkers, and keep these handy pending when you would need to use them.
Or for coders, you could have compilers or test environments ready, to run tests before launching new websites.
- You can use time management tools
Time management tools are in their numbers. From the Eisenhower Matrix, to the Productivity Index, you would find array of these to select from. My personal favorite is the Pomodoro Timer, available on Android. In addition to reminding you of the amount of time spent on a task, the app also reminds you to focus.
There is some criticism to using time management tools with the notion that they can be limiting. However, one of the benefits to using them is that they could act as a reminder to getting you to get back to work.
- Create fun reward packages for kids and other live-in members to discourage any form of disturbance
Here, you can make your work environment not only fun to be in, but also fun for others to stay out of. One way I recommend is to create a habit among the kids, and reinforce it with a reward. For example, you could put out a sign that reads “First person to intrude after 5pm (or the allotted time) gets a cookie. Players before then are automatically disqualified. Note: the time for intrusion must be exactly one-minute past 5 or result in automatic disqualification.
If there are pets in the home, you could motivate the kids in this manner, to keep the pets at bay.
- Create referral phone calls or communications should any form of emergency arise
This might probably be the most difficult to handle. In the case of emergencies, kids and other family members would feel compelled to signal you because you are within the vicinity.
You can resolve this by doing the following: Except for extreme emergencies, wherein you’d still have to leave the workplace to attend to, create referrals phone calls and communications so contact members know who to contact.
- Turning your total living space into your workspace
You do realise you can turn your whole environment into a comfortable working place without getting distracted, don’t you?
For creatives, who can’t sit in a workplace and have to move around, bump into kids, other family members, co-workers and friends, you are going to need an ingenious method not to get distracted. Simply put a placard on you which reads “Work time. Have to pay the bills”.
Not only would these elicit some giggles, it would also arise to memorable bonding time after work.
We do hope the above would generate some ideas with which you can achieve the maximum productivity at home. In addition, if you’d love to, you can decorate your workplace to suit your moods, put in colors that excite you, put reminders of your accolades, and lighting that enhances your mood and puts you in get to work mood.