I've been working from home regularly since 2008, and have always found my WFH days to be my most productive days as a human. Over the years I've grown interested in, and read about, what makes many of us more productive at home.
Working from home can provide many benefits, but the best one is maximizing your productivity when YOUR mind works best. There are many studies that discuss how each of us has a different "best work time for me" and "best creativity time for me" as well.
"Research from neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics suggests that we’re most productive when we have the freedom to work the way our brains are wired to work. That means some people will be more productive working in the morning, some in the afternoon, and some late at night."
Source: Grant, A. (2019). Give Your Team the Freedom to Do Their Best Work. Harvard Business Review.
Whether your an early bird, a midday machine, or a night owl, for some of us breaking the 9-to-5 routine can lead to great results for both your career and your home life.
In this blog post, I will share some strategies for working from home and managing your schedule to maximize your productivity.
1. 👩💻 Identify your most productive times
The first step in managing your schedule around your productivity is to identify your most productive times. Everyone has a time of day when they are most alert, focused, and energized. For some people, this might be in the morning, while others may find they are most productive in the afternoon or evening. Identify your peak productivity time by paying attention to when you feel the most energized and focused. Once you know your most productive time, or times, you can plan your work schedule around it.
2. 🗓️ Plan your schedule accordingly
Once you have identified your most productive time, plan your work schedule accordingly. If you are most productive in the morning, schedule your most important work for that time of day. If you are most productive in the afternoon or evening, plan your work schedule accordingly. It's essential to plan your schedule around your most productive time to maximize your productivity and make the most of your workday. And save cleaning up the inbox for your lower energy times.
3. ⏲️ Take breaks
Taking breaks is essential for maintaining productivity throughout the day. When working from home, it can be easy to become immersed in your work and forget to take breaks. However, taking short breaks throughout the day can help to refresh your mind and improve your productivity. Schedule regular breaks throughout your workday, and make sure you step away from your computer or workspace during those breaks.
4. ✋ Set boundaries
One of the challenges of working from home is that it can be difficult to separate your work and personal life. It's essential to set boundaries between your work and personal life to avoid burnout and maintain productivity. Establish a routine for starting and ending your workday, and stick to it as much as possible. Set boundaries with your family and friends, and let them know when you are working and when you are not available.
When working from home, commit to only doing household chores, social media, or other non-work-related activities during your break times. Close your social media accounts, silence your text notifications, and avoid engaging in household chores during your peak performance block. Letting others in your space know that right now you're going into "BUSY" time helps everyone to respect boundaries and not slow you down.
Working from home will provide many benefits when managed well. Being able to manage your schedule around when your body is most productive provides rewards for you and your employer. 🤜🤛
By managing your schedule around your most productive times, taking breaks, setting boundaries, and eliminating distractions, you can maximize your productivity and make the most of your workday. With a little effort and planning, working from home can be the best of both worlds, highly engaged with your work life, and highly engaged with your non-work life. 🎉
Keep learning, pay it forward, and keep busy,
Want more? If you liked this, try reading this great article about Nonlinear Workdays from FastCompany.