WFH: How To Manage Your Time
Leading on from my previous working from home post all about how to focus, which you can read here, I thought I'd follow it up with a few little tips on managing your time well when working from home. When at work and you have clear time frames to get tasks done, it's easier to manage how you are going to use your time but when at home, it can be difficult to decide how to best tackle your work day. It's easy to simply procrastinate, trust me, I've been there...
Have a To-do List
I mentioned a similar point in my 'How To Focus' blog but it also applies here. Having a clear and manageable to-do list will set the tone for the day. Try and allocate certain time frames to each task, estimating how long each one will take. I would advise over estimating time; from experience I've found things can often take longer than you think. This gives you a clear plan for the day and it feels good when things get ticked off!
Multitasking can actually be detrimental to your productivity and we aren't programmed to be able to simply switch from one task to another just like that, as much as we think we are. You may think you are being organised and able to save time but we aren't about saving time; it's about using your time wisely and managing it appropriately. When switching tasks it takes our brains at least 15 minutes to refocus on to that task, imagine how unproductive that would be if you were changing tasks every few minutes!
Many of you will be in contact virtually with your work colleagues so keep that up! Schedule in call times and keep each other on the ball of what jobs need doing. The more it feels like you're usual work environment the more chance you have of being time efficient and getting things done as you would in your workplace. This applies to work calls too, schedule them in!
Learn To Say No
Probably one of the most important things about working from home is learning to say no. It's a tough one to implement but it's a huge one when it comes to time. Accepting more than you have the time for can become overwhelming and can lead to being overworked, missing deadlines and working late into the night which isn't ideal. Juts like in the workplace, you only have a certain amount of hours in the work-day. If your schedule is full (because you've planned it already remember), politely say no and agree to look at it at a later date.
Like I've said before, working from home isn't an easy task for many so with a few simple tips and tricks you can make it a much easier task :)