In the present day and age, the freedom of working from home is an option that has become more available to everyone.
Before computers, working from home was a rarity. Now, with laptops and cell phones, jobs can move locations, whether it is into your home or across the globe.
The freedom to work from home is something most of us have considered. It sounds almost too good to be true, and for some, it may be. Working from home doesn’t have to be such a far-off plan; many more employers are open to the idea. It can be as simple as asking; for others, it may require a career change.
Either way, if it’s something that has piqued your interest, it’s worth looking into. Many companies introduced working remotely as their policy after the pandemic of coronavirus came. However, it’s a bit challenging to transition from your normal company office to a home office.
Your concentration might below and this might decrease your productivity. If you’re planning on working from home, this guide is for you.
11 Working From Home Tips To Guide You on Making The Transition:
Evaluate Your Current Position When You’re Planning to Work From Home
Some positions require your presence. Others can easily adjust without your physical attendance. It’s impossible to say which category you fall in, but you can ask yourself a few questions that can help determine your situation.
Are you in a consumer-facing role? Does your position require you to be in meetings with clients all day? While you may believe there is no chance your job can adjust at home, you may be surprised by what you can do with a few adjustments.
Ask your boss if anyone in the company has taken that path and if they are open to the idea of you working from home. Be warned, however, most employers are going to want an explanation as to why you’d like to work remotely instead of in the office. Either you have a good reason or risk being turned down.
Transition Into a Freelancer Position
If your company cannot accommodate your request, you may want to consider becoming a freelancer.
Freelancing involves several specializations and you can choose to specialize in one thing. For example, you can be a virtual assistant, copywriter, transcriber, web designer, graphic designer, or social media manager, among other things.
This will require you to establish a client base within your profession. If you can do this before quitting your previous job, do so.
Another way of getting clients is through cold pitching, whereby you send emails to website owners or companies that may need your services. Let them know how you can help their business grow and why your services are unique.
If your current position isn’t fitting for freelance work, consider developing a new set of skills. You may be surprised to find what you already know, many freelance jobs need a good writer, but that doesn’t mean you have to have an English major. It may be as simple as making adjustments to your current skill set to fit the market’s needs.
Work-proof Your Home
One of the most important steps to working from home is making your home into a comfortable working place, office-like environment. Designate a referenced space in your house as your home office. If you have kids running in and out, TVs, and dogs barking at your heels, it’s going to take quite a bit of time to get any real amount of work done.
Set aside space in your house where there are zero distractions. You should also ensure that the environment is conducive. Invest in a good table and chair that will make you enjoy working. Remember, your health is important and you need to sit in a good posture.
If you can dedicate an entire room as an office, do so.
Once you’ve set aside a designated area, use it only for work. You want to easily move into the work-mode mindset when you’re in this part of the house.
Also, designate a place to meet clients. Chances are, you will eventually need to meet with a client in person. A coffee shop meet-up may suffice, but if you need something more professional, look for co-working spaces in your town.
Co-working offices are buildings that rent out individual offices and conference rooms to freelancers. If there is too much distraction at home, you can opt for working out of a co-working space every day. If you need a conference room for a few hours, you can rent out space for that reason too.
Most major cities have a few co-working options available. It’s best to determine a spot you like before you need it to avoid embarrassment with a client in a new space you didn’t check out beforehand.
Invest in Comfortable and Befitting Office Furniture
Good and comfortable sets of office furniture are must-haves for your new home office. You don’t want to have a clumsy-looking working environment. Get the right furniture, especially the right chairs, tables, and sofas.
Since you will almost be sitting down during your work hours, getting the right chair that provides the right sitting position and well adaptable for your back is a must. Also, the working table must be proportionate to the chair.
It would be best if you bent over while operating your laptop or desktop. Get the necessary tools and equipment you may need. Sit-stand desks will help you avoid back pain and motivate you to enjoy working from home.
To get your mind tuned to an effective workplace, you need to equip yourself with all the necessary technology tools and gadgets necessary. A desktop, laptop, tablet, iPhone, earphones, and other enhancing tools are necessary for a good work startup.
Suppose you have to speak to clients via phone or video message frequently and set up an area that looks professional and is sound-free. You may have to upgrade your Wi-Fi if you’re on the computer all day.
Set Your Work Hours
Do you have a working schedule? It is more ideal to set working hours for yourself as if you are running a virtual office. To do this, understand that you pen down all your daily routines and list them in order of priority against each obligation’s due time. This will guide you to know when best you should work each day. Set your work hours to meet your needs.
One other thing is that you may need to make your work hours flexible to accommodate some unexpected issues like sickness, kids or spouse urgent needs, unscheduled shopping, etc.
Doing this will also ensure that you don’t miss working on some assignments. Your clients will also trust you more since you are not the type of person who doesn’t deliver what they promise.
This could be in the morning, afternoon, evening, or late evening. It is possible to have two peak high-performing periods in a day, for instance, morning hours and late evening hours.
Don’t Neglect Your Health.
Working from home can surreptitiously eat up your eating habits, especially when working on time-based tasks. Many people working remotely may begin to eat a late breakfast or forget to eat lunch. If this irregular eating habit persists, it may adversely affect your health.
Sometimes, having snacks around your working table or at an easy-to-reach place may be very helpful.
It is also important that you take short breaks. No matter what, always take short breaks within your work hours. Sitting or standing for a prolonged period of time may be harmful.
Create adequate time for short breaks to walk around, sit-off your work-table, take a short nap, or just lay on a couch. This is a good strategy to calm your body and brain. You can set your short break for 15, 30, 45, or 60 minutes depending on what suits your working patterns.
Besides that, you also need to watch your diet and exercise regularly. Remember, working from home can make you live a sedentary lifestyle since you spend most of your time seated. While creating your schedule, remember to include time for physical activities, especially during the short breaks.
It would help if you planned your weekly meals to not end up eating unhealthy meals that are easily available. Plan daily meals and shop during the weekends or evenings when you are less engaged.
Nothing can be more annoying than keeping your social media apps alerts on while working. You may be drawn away from your work each time an alert pops-on. If you are not careful, your attention can be drawn away from your task to the social media junk.
You will be amazed to realize how much time has been sucked from your work hours when you keep your social apps on.
If you must be connected to your social media apps, keep that to your short breaks or the end of your work hours. Some people working remotely get consumed by their untamed passion for distractions, making them slip off their schedules.
In the end, they have no option than to break their working hours’ rules. The same uncontrolled passion will usually lead to low productivity and low job qualities.
Keep Track of Your Expenses
If you’re eager to work from home and are not working with a full-time employer, you’ll need to adjust your expenses. First, you’ll need to establish a DBA or LLC for your business. Next, open a separate business account.
As soon as you make the switch, start tracking your expenses. Multiple apps streamline the process for you, but regardless of the method, you use to track them, make sure you keep track.
Freelancers have to submit taxes 4 times a year, not annually, and having work-related expenses recorded can significantly decrease the amount owed. You can even write off your home office space if it’s only used for work (no kid’s rooms). Do you research taxes, establishing an LLC or DBA, or risk receiving a hefty fine from the IRS?
It’s easy to want to go running errands, hit up the gym, and go for a walk when your schedule is largely in your own hands. A break or two here and there is okay, but don’t get in the habit of letting your weekends run into your weeks.
Work from home requires a tremendous amount of self-discipline, and failure to meet your obligations can end your new lifestyle quicker than you’d imagine. Ensure that you stick to your schedule. If you go to the gym every day at 10 AM, that’s fine, but don’t make a habit of going whenever you’re bored.
Prove to yourself that you can be your own boss, and it will pay off. With a little discipline, it will become your second nature.
Don’t handle your work from home casually. One of the limiting factors to working from home success is by treating your new endeavor casually. The more seriousness and importance you ascribed to it, the higher the level of your success. Even though working from home gives you freedom, freedom without responsibility can negatively affect your productivity.
The best ethic is waking up with a mentality of going to an official office, wake at the right time, taking your bath, and dressing up officially with the right apparels. All these will enhance your daily performance and productivity.
Separate Pleasure and Work
As much as work-from-home gives you total freedom from bossy bosses, it does not give you freedom for levity. You need to give deserving attention to your family, spouse and kids. Right! But let every member of your family understand the rule of “DO NOT DISTURB,” “KNOCK AND WAIT FOR AN ANSWER BEFORE COMING IN,” and “FREE TO COME IN.”
Otherwise, you will end up finding it difficult to work from home, especially when most family members are around.
Placing the light indicator at your office door helps to checkmate undue disturbances while working.
The red light on the indicator signifies “DO NOT DISTURBS,” a yellow light indicates “KNOCK AND WAIT FOR AN ANSWER BEFORE COMING IN,” and the blue light announces “FREE TO COME IN.” Once everyone in your household knows and abides by this rule, you can perfectly remain focused and creative.
Rather than unnecessary distractions, you can Jax-up your activities. Soft, cool, and low music genres of your choice will drive away boredom, enhance creativity, and increase productivity.
The good news of this is that you may turn-on or turn-off the music at intervals when you feel slightly distracted.
Communication is a critical element for the success of any business. Working remotely requires frequent communication so that your manager can know the progress of work. You need to know that regular communication is expected from you.
Don’t wait for your manager to ask how far you are with the work. Update them of every step you take and reach out to them immediately in case of any problem. There are different tools that you can use for communicating remotely. It can be Google chats, emails, Slack, or Skype, among other apps.
You should as well stay connected with other colleagues that you are working with remotely. Work as a team and make sure that you have video conferences when chatting gets too boring.
Meeting through video calls also helps you to be more productive. According to experts, teleconferences and video conferences help to eradicate isolation while working from home.
Are You Ready For The Working From Home Transition?
Transitioning to working from home should not be hard. All said and done, it is not just an alternative way to make money, but it is really a means of setting yourself free from bosses that heave instructions upon instructions on you. It also gives you adequate time to give attention to your family members – (your spouse and children).
Freedom to plan your days and execute your daily plans without interference from dogmatic office routines makes working from home adventure more enticing to people these days.
Your earnings are only equated to the amount of time and energy you plow into your tasks; it’s just a matter of “earn as you work.” The “how to work from home tips” above will surely help things get started for you. Remember that nothing is more comforting than being your own boss and earn what you actually deserved for your effort.