Covid-19 has made a lot of changes this year. This includes the way we earn. More and more individuals have switched to working from home to keep safe from the pandemic.
It all sounds nice, but working from home is a whole other ball game. Managing your time at work at home is something else. It all goes to the nth level if you are a parent who is multitasking your children's schoolwork, preparing your reports before the deadline in an hour, and preparing your presentation during the coming conference call. Management of time at this point might be a bit of a moot point. So here are some helpful tips for time management that will help you become more efficient at working from home.
Create a list
When you start working from home, there can be a lot of things happening all at once. Your duties at home can become distractions as well. But do not fret, make a list! Listing things down, either on a pad or even just on a notepad on your phone or laptop can help you see the bigger picture and visualize which one of those tasks is to be prioritized. Create a list that can set your entire day. Place everything in there, work-related first, then down to the grocery list if you need to do a grocery run. Arrange them in order and start plowing them down one by one. If you need to, you can prepare the list the night before. That way, you can do things on schedule.
Bonus Tip: When you save time and keep with the schedule on your list, there can be times that hurdles get in the way. Like passing up files. There can be moments where home computers won't be able to read Docx files. Plus, sending files like that might take time. With that, some life hacks come in the form of docx to pdf converters online.
Noise and distractions are everywhere in a home environment. And that's normal. You can't just throw out the TV and the kids and their toys.
With the help of your family members, set up specific places where there are designated activities. Set up your desk in your room, for example, and this should serve as a place for you to work. Any place beyond that isn't for work. Living room? For leisure only. Dining? For eating only. It helps in creating a connection between a literal physical space and what you ought to focus on.
That being said, do not hang out in spaces that aren't for work. Staying in the living room with the kids and Netflix blasting in the background will be a horrible way to work.
If you have come accustomed to multitasking all the time at the office, it won't be like Sherlock Holmes when you transition to home. Especially with all of the house chores and responsibilities that come with staying at home.
It will also tire you out quicker. And as an employee that is working from home, getting fried too quickly in this environment is bad. When you multitask, your mind has to keep resetting when you switch your focus from one thing to another. For you to not burn out and save time, work on things one by one. If you get to finish one task, you can jump on to another one smoothly. That's why creating a list is the first item here. You don't have to multitask, work on things one by one, and you will be fine.
Minimize going to social media too much
You may not know it at the moment, but there can be times that a person might be spending way too much time on social media while working. The chances of this occurring increase as there isn't anyone policing you when you are working from home. You are technically free to surf anywhere on the web at this point.
But before you go and ruin the whole time management theme, keep in mind that doing so is a sure way to mismanage your time while working at home. You can instead start by deciding not to spend that much time on Facebook or Instagram. Stick to your list. Once you've finished your day's schedule, you are free to go on social media. You can also do the extreme and remove web-browser shortcuts to these sites. Whatever style works for you, do it. The important part here is that you do not fall down the rabbit hole of Social Media.
Know when you are most active
It is a bit of an unorthodox thing. Are you more active and energetic in the morning? Or in the evening? Though most of the workforce has a set schedule like nine to five, for example, it isn't much surprise to know that some people are active either during the day or during night time. That is fine. However, this doesn't mean that you would not work in the morning if you do not feel like it.
Pace yourself. If you're more active in the afternoon or evening, you can prep your tasks during the day time. You can fix up your list of tasks while drinking your morning coffee. Also, learning the time of day you are most active helps make you more efficient. If, for example, you feel more focused and relaxed when you wake up in the morning, try to do the heavy tasks at this time. Because you are more focused, tasks will be more of a breeze. This way, you will be just cruising along with lighter work tasks by the time the afternoon hits. It's all about pacing and timing.
Try to imagine that you are still going to an office
One thing that will make sure that you manage your time now that you have set up all of the items above is for you to have the right mindset. Working from home doesn't mean you can relax and chill while passing along a few reports and all. Work is work. So having the discipline to wake up on time, prepare your list of tasks for the day, and keep to that list is very important.
So set your alarms and get some good night's sleep. Tomorrow is another day to work.