Since becoming self employed four months ago, it has taken me some time to figure out this whole ‘WFH’ malarky. I am probably one of the biggest procrastinators out there so it was a huge struggle for me to find a routine that not only worked with me but also made sure that I got my work done. It is safe to say that I am still not great and have days where I get incredibly distracted and only accomplish half of the things on my list because I decided to waste 2 hours of my time scrolling through TikTok but hey ho, we live and we learn right? Here are a few tips of mine which I find really useful and thought why not share them.
Set an alarm. And make sure you stick to it! My biggest struggle with WFH is getting my lazy ass out of bed haha. But set your alarm to a reasonable time and make sure to wake up at the time everyday to get your body into a routine. Maybe on the weekends you can let the alarm slip but that’s up to you. For me, my alarm goes off at 8.30am every morning which it probably should be earlier but like I mentioned, I am very lazy so I’m going to make sure I can get as much sleep as possible haha.
P.s On a Sunday I normally wake up at like 10am. Shh it’s the weekend so I think it’s acceptable.
Have a good breakfast. I used to be awful when it came to eating breakfast before heading to school – a cup of tea and biscuits was my choice of meal. Shocking I know. Surprisingly ( I mean, not really) even when I left school I still had the habit of having a bad breakfast so now I always try and eat something which is more substantial to give me lots of energy for the day. Don’t get me wrong, I still have my cup of tea but I will also have porridge with banana or weetabix.
Get dressed and ready for the day. Simple as it may seem, it really does help for motivation. You can literally put on anything but as long as it’s not your pyjamas then you are good to go. I also read somewhere that you don’t have to save your best clothes for important days and I completely agree. Wear your new floral dress or your new jeans. Weirdly, when I feel like I look nice I actually get more work done haha.
Plan out your daily tasks. Get a notebook, it can be any notebook or even a random piece of paper, and plan out the tasks you need to do for that day. I find it slightly easier to do it in chronological order as well but that’s just personal preference. I also throughly enjoy crossing them off once I’ve completed that tasks, it brings me a little joy each time lol. But I find it helpful to follow a list of things that I need to and keeps me motivated to carry on working throughout the day.
Create a separate workspace. I would highly recommend not working from your bed because I personally find it really demotivating and makes me feel like a slob but of course, that’s just my opinion. So creating a workspace could either be at the dining room table, the sofa with a table pulled in front of you, a desk, on the floor, anywhere that is suitable for you to work! I like to mix it up as I find it helps with my creativity and stops me getting bored of the same thing.
You’ll then want to customise it to how you work. For example, I am a really messy worker. Always have been and always will be lol. I like to have my stuff all over the place so I can visualise and create better, whereas my boyfriend has to have a clean (almost empty) desk with all his pens and books lined up neatly. Everyone is different so find out what environment you work best in.
Stay away from distractions. In the beginning of this post I mentioned that I easily waste 2 hours scrolling through TikTok – yah I wasn’t kidding. Best thing to do is just put your distractions far away from you so you can stay focused. Obviously, I think our mobile phones will be the main thing to fall under that category, so what I do either is put my phone under a cushion or book, OR if I want full on concentration then I put in the other room. Partners can also be a big distraction too! I know Eli is for me!! We both tend to stay in different rooms whilst working though which is good because we work very differently.
Stick to your schedule. Within my list of tasks to complete, I always add in three 25 minute slots for breaks. This will include my morning break which normally is a cup of tea, time for lunch and then an afternoon snack break. It’s up to you whether you want to move away from your work space and chill somewhere for 25 mins but you have to remember 25 minutes only and then straight back to work. I usually tend to have my mid morning cuppa whilst working still, I’ll have my lunch on the sofa looking at Instagram and then my afternoon snack I try and eat whilst working again. But of course, it’s all down to what you feel more comfortable doing. I love having these little breaks though because it splits up the day and encourages me to finish my tasks.
Brighten up your workspace. This one is definitely down to personal preference but I absolutely love having a vase of flowers near me when I am working. Not only do they smell incredible but when I look over they kind of just make me feel really happy and positive. They also add a little colour which helps with my creativity.
If flowers aren’t really your thing then open a window if you can. Fresh air does the world of wonders and can make you feel less ‘trapped’.
Small amount of exercise to get the body moving. I suck at this but I really am trying to get better haha but every time I do do a small amount of exercise I always feel great afterwards. Whether that’s yoga, some cardio or a stroll around the block, it’s good to get the body moving and give your brain a refresh. I wish that I could do some yoga but I’d rather stay in bed so I always tend to my exercise late afternoon! Just find a time that suits you.
Keep your household jobs for later. It can be difficult to ignore all the jobs you need to do in your home, i.e the washing up, hoovering or changing the bed but make sure you don’t find yourself doing all those jobs during the day when you should really be doing work. I always leave them sort of tasks to do around 5pm because then I know I’ve spent a whole day doing my work and won’t feel guilty.
Give yourself something to look forward to. After all the hard work you did during the day, I think it’s only right that you give yourself a little reward whether that is watching a film, doing some online shopping or FaceTiming friends/family. The evening is yours to do whatever you want so enjoy it and be proud of yourself for doing the work you did today!
I understand that it is a very odd time in the world with everything going on but we all need to try and stay safe and positive. We are all in this together. Sending so much love. ❤️