Working from Home? 6 Productivity Hacks So You Can Spend More Time in Bed

 

Although there are definite perks to running your business from home – no noisy commute, working in the buff – there are some things that prove a bit more challenging when you’re going at it alone.

I used to write from my kitchen table. And although I quite enjoyed having control over the music and level of air-conditioning, I also acquired an insatiable urge to look in my fridge every five minutes. After a particularly salty day where I polished off an entire jar of pickles, I decided I needed to get a hold of myself. And my business.

So here you have it, a tried-and-true collection of ways to boost your productivity at home… so you can have more time to eat pickles and dance around your living room.

I would’ve never believed it before I tried it, but having two adjoining screens is mega-handy and doesn’t require as much co-ordination as you might think.

The point of adding another screen isn’t to do two things at once – if you’ve read any self-help book, you know that cramming is never the answer. The point is to complete tasks with ease. If you’re doing something that needs more than one window open, you have more room to neatly spread out your information. Save clicks, save time.

Rather than scheduling the typical one-hour time slot for group conversations, cut it in half. If saving time isn’t enough, there are plenty of other benefits that come with compressing your meetings. People come on-time and more prepared. Things are moving faster, so members stay alert. You become hyper-aware of how you spend the allotted time, evaluating the meetings’ efficiency.

And if that still isn’t enough, do it because Harvard said so.

Ever wonder how much time you spend gawking at cute cat pics when you’re supposed to be working? Apps like RescueTime  track where you spend your time online and plugs it into an easy-to-read graph. There’s no excuse for not eliminating pointless browsing once you have a pie chart in front of you showing how much time you spent stalking your ex.

If you’re anything like me, turning on your computer in the morning is sometimes an exercise in emotional restraint. I love my job, but even if your job is to pet puppies all day, it never feels good to open up a To-Do List of just how much there is.

Time management consultant and best-selling author David Allen is responsible for a little trick that cuts your list down in the first ten minutes of your work day:

If a task takes less than two minutes to complete, do it now. Don’t add it to the running list of bigger things to complete or wait until later – stop what you’re doing and take a second to knock it off now.

Throw a ball, eat some pickles. Take breaks, it’s good for you.

Rather than jumping to open every email as it comes in, set an alarm in your calendar to check your email a few times a day. Reviewing your inbox in batch means you’ll give your full attention to the task, and will also stop those few emails you missed the notification for from slipping through the cracks.