You want to work from home, but do you know what it takes to get the job done? It’s no small feat, as any professional freelancer or consultant will assure you. While it may seem like you can get paid to stay home in your pajamas and snack on bon-bons, working from home can be much more difficult to manage than you may think. Below are five tips to help you become savvy enough to succeed:
Get Zen with your work habits, giving them your full mindshare. Make your own home office or workstation, where you can store and use your computer, phone, printer, files, stationery, and so forth. While you’re working, listen to classic music, which will keep you focused. Turn off unnecessary distractions, such as Facebook or, if appropriate, your mobile device. Take breaks to drink water or eat a snack in order to stay refreshed, motivated, and productive.
2. Be organized
Keep track of your schedule, hours, and projects. Working from home isn’t a free for all, and it requires extensive commitment and dedication. Yet no one is keeping track of you except, well, you. Get a calendar, develop your own accounting system, or do whatever it takes for you to stay organized.
This is especially important for tracking hours. Remember it is up to you to ensure you get paid the proper amount, so record all the time you spend working for your clients. If you need help, check out gtimelog.
3. Get out of your head
You may need to get out of the house too. Go to a coffee shop, a diner, or any place that will encourage (not hinder) productivity. Working in solitude may take some of the work stress away, but it can also have disadvantages. Since humans are social creatures, it’s important for you to get out in the world and interact with others. If you get the opportunity, bring your work to fun, inspiring places out of your house. Or, heck, splurge and go meet a friend for lunch.
4. Put your good shoes on
You know that saying “dress to impress?” Well, it probably excludes your pajamas. Even if you aren’t leaving the house, you should shower, get dressed, and make yourself presentable as if you were going into the office. It might sound trite, but dressing the part really will inspire you to be and act more professional.
Don’t let your work life spill into your personal life. If you only want to work five hours per day then stick to it, letting your clients know when you are available and working. There’s no reason you can’t enjoy life just because you are working from home. In fact, isn’t that the point?
Follow the five tips above and reap the reward of having a fulfilling work-from-home job!
Tiffany Sumner is a freelance writer for eLearners, where she writes articles on a wide range of topics. In her spare time she reads, writes fiction, and watches way too many cat videos online. You can follow her on Google+.