Even for those seasoned in the workforce, working from home can be a tricky beast to tame. From dishes in the watering hole calling your name to kids roaring from the other room, it can be difficult to stay on-task.
Up to 43% of Americans tend to work from home, and this number is only expected to rise as technology improves and employers become more flexible.
Whether you work from home for your primary job or just want to add some structure while working on your side-hustle, we want to make this experience as productive and positive as possible for you.
So here are some tips the Printful team uses when working from home. Incorporate this working from home advice into your workflow and watch your stress levels fall and your productivity rise!
Working remotely has its perks, most of which relate to saving time and alleviating stress.
That’s precious time you could be using for working on your side hustle or taking up a new hobby. While working at home, you also save money on gas or money that you would be spending on public transportation.
To manage these challenges, it’s important to create healthy at-home work habits. Here are some of the tips our team uses when working from home.
While there’s no single way to hack working from home, there are several tips you can follow to work from home successfully. Most of them involve creating healthy work-from-home habits based on organization, structure, and routine.
A successful workday starts with organization that takes place before your workday even begins.
Do also let them know when you have a free moment to be able to grab lunch or take a break together!
Set yourself up for continual success by setting a morning routine, structuring your day, and using the right organizational tools. Take time and read our blog post where we share our knowledge about how to be more productive.
Now that you’ve set yourself up for success for the day, structure your day so you can set a workflow that works for you.
Before starting our tasks for the week, we at Printful set our priorities and estimate how long it’ll take us to complete those tasks.
We then block off certain hours in our day to get them done. Exercise discipline to complete those certain tasks.
And keep in mind what times of the day you best accomplish certain to-do list items. If you’re more bubbly in the morning, try to schedule all your emails and calls for when you first clock in. If you feel more social later in the day, use the early afternoon to focus on your people-centric tasks.
From there, write down your schedule in a notebook or planner or use an app to plan out your day.
Need any productivity app suggestions? We have a whole video of Printful team favorites!
First up on the list is ToDoist, which helps you prioritize your tasks and jot down your daily or weekly goals.
Next up, there’s Evernote, which offers free downloadable templates for scheduling and goal tracking.
Then there’s Trello, an online collaborative tool that’s geared toward the visually inclined. If you enjoy the aesthetics and the flexibility of using flashcards, planners, and boards to track your progress, then consider using Trello.
Finally, one of the best ways to stay organized and on the same page as your team is to collaborate using online tools. We use G Suite, which includes Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drive to share information widely and contribute to each other’s work.
To see the rest of our top productivity apps, check out our Top Productivity Apps video!
Working from home, you can’t stop by your co-worker’s desk for a quick Q&A about a project, but you can shoot them a message on Slack, a messaging platform used for work.
If your conversation seems like it’s going to take longer than a couple minutes, feel free to use the platform’s audio and video calling features. Google Hangouts, Zoom, and Skype are other calling options to consider, especially for larger or external meetings.
As ideal as it sounds, it’s impossible to be productive 100% of the day. Plan breaks to keep your mind running smoothly.
Breaks will increase your energy and focus up during the day so use them to stay socially, physically, creatively, and intellectually stimulated!
Explore different break-taking methods to see which one works best for you. The Pomodoro method suggests taking 5-minute breaks for every 25-minute working period, while the Rule of 52 & 17 suggests taking 17-minute breaks for every 52-minute working period.
If you miss coffee breaks with your team, use group chats to stay social. Ask them how their weekend was, send them a funny gif you saw on social media, set up a video call over lunch, or send pictures of your pets (even better, refer to your pet as your co-worker and update the team on how your “co-worker” is doing).
I’ve gotten into the habit of taking my breaks with my coworkers, just like we do when we’re in the office. We’ll mutually decide on a time and then call each other up and chat for 10-15 minutes.
There are plenty of online opportunities to get your body moving at home.
Just one of the many condensed workout apps available, the highly-rated Johnson & Johnson 7-Minute Workout app allows you to fit in workouts that range from 7 to 32 minutes. It offers dozens of exercises you can customize to create a workout that fits your fitness needs.
If you’re looking for a low-pressure and low-intensity method of getting active, try yoga! Yoga increases your concentration and allows you to improve your balance, stability, and posture. YouTube has a wide selection of yoga videos that you can fit in on your breaks.
Check out this lunch break yoga sequence from a popular YouTube instructor Yoga with Adriene.
I’ve noticed that when I take a break to do yoga or meditate, I come back feeling refreshed and ready to tackle whatever tasks are on my schedule.
While the morning commute is a great time to listen to podcasts or audiobooks, audiophiles can adapt their work-at-home schedule to listen to their favorite audio content from home. Tune in while in the shower or while preparing your meals so you don’t feel like you’re missing out!
And the videophiles can get their content while getting ready in the morning, sneaking in a quick midday stretch, or munching on their lunch.
For those interested in learning a skill, consider checking out any of the massive open online courses that you’re drawn to. Whether your passion is animation or entrepreneurship, there’s something out there for everyone. Take a look at UDemy or Skillshare to browse your options.
If you don’t have time for a multi-hour course, you can subscribe to some newsletters of interest or peruse educational blogs.
To get the news delivered straight to your inbox, check out the New York Times Daily Briefing. For the pop-culture savvy, NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour newsletter is a personal favorite of mine. It’s perfect if you’re a TV/movie buff like I am.
Whether you’re a working from home newbie or an expert, it’s never too late to brush up on your remote skills.
We’ve taken you through the organization, structure, and routines you need to successfully work from home. Now it’s up to you to put these work at home tips into practice!
Do you have any tips for working remotely? Share them with us in the comments below!
Best of luck in your work from home journey!
Noni loves to learn about digital marketing and stay on top of cultural trends. You can often find her watching movies, creating video content or lost in online click holes.