Working From Home: How To Stay Organized & Motivated - Tay Meets World

Working From Home: How To Stay Organized & Motivated

9:17:00 AM

I've worked from home for over a year now. In my previous role, I was remote with a lot of travel. I must preface this post with, working from home is not for everyone. For me in particular though, I think it would be really hard to go back to an office. The only thing I do miss is the camaraderie an office environment brings. You can bounce ideas off one another, work to resolve issues without trying to "reach" one another via phone or email, and just the people you meet in general. Most of my best friends are people I met working in an office environment. I have to go to much greater lengths to meet new people in the city as an "after-work happy hour" would be with just me, myself, and I 😂.

I will say though, working from home definitely has it's perks. I can be flexible with my own schedule, establish a very consistent routine, dress how I want to dress, and ultimately - create my own success. This is not without a great deal of discipline though. That's the key to working from home - discipline. You have to treat your day as a normal workday, thus, why I'm so driven by routine. Sure, I may be able to do it yoga pants or jeans but it's a workday no less.

I've created an office environment and use certain products in my day to day that help keep me on track and organized, without these things, I would undoubtedly have a capricious work life. The first key in working from home is to find a place where you can remain motivated and remain undistracted from the elements in your home. I have this perfect landing when you go upstairs that is outside of both bedrooms - it could be a secondary living space but I use it as an office. In my opinion, the most distracting things at home are TV and the kitchen (ha!) so I purposely am located away from both of those.

How To Stay Organized: 
The big 'key' here is to find products that define your life and keep them aligned with your goals. I have tried so many planners in my lifetime, and while I love most I have tried, most recently I am using one that breaks up my day into hours. By using an hourly schedule, I am required to hold myself more accountable so as the next hour approaches I know I need to move on to another task. If I'm unsure of how long a task will take, I allot extra time for me to accomplish the task. If I finish early, I check my to-do list to see what I can additionally accomplish. 

I live for a to-do list. I prioritize with the larger or most impactful tasks first - what must get done today? It may take me a couple of days to get through the to-do list, I tend to add to it consistently, but nothing feels more satisfying then crossing off everything you needed to get done. It keeps you organized and on top of your workday. 

This may sound silly but I also use office supplies that I love. The Create & Cultivate collection with Target is one of my favorites. Their notebooks and to-do lists are built for working gals and entrepreneurs. I also love Poppin pens, my Day Designer planner, and the Start Today journal and Priority Planner. Find products you love - it will make it easier to complete your work. 

How To Stay Motivated: 
1. Establish A Consistent Routine | You're probably thinking "duh" - however there really is some rhyme to the rhythm here. I wake up at the same time everyday, walk or run the dog, come home, make coffee, eat breakfast, answer emails and check on published posts, I then get ready quick for the day, and start tackling the to-do list. I eat lunch, work some more and end the day between 4:30-5pm with a walk/run with the dog and workout. Frequently, I will work in the evening as well but I try to set myself up for success where I don't have to. 

2. Time Block Your Day | If you are struggling to stay on track I recommend breaking your day down by hours. At 9am I will do X, at 11am I will do Y, at 2pm I will do Z and so on. This will keep you much more motivated and focused on the task at hand. 

3. Give Yourself Two-15 minute Breaks & A Lunch Break | This is a regular workday just like everyone else give yourself breaks! I love my lunch break and typically always need 15 minutes around 3pm to rejuvenate. 

4. End Your Day On A High Note | I always end my day with filling out my to-do list for the next day and then going to move my body. For me, working out started as the only way I could clear my head and relieve stress. Now, I have to do it to feel good. I take the pup on her second outing for the day and then come home to finish my at-home workout. You can read a chapter out of your favorite book, turn on the 5 o'clock news, spend an hour of technology-free time with your kids, etc., whatever you do - do it for you!

5. Leave Your Office At The End Of The Day | The best part of my office? I leave it at the end of the day. Sure, I may take my computer downstairs but I'm not working in my office anymore once the workday has ended. This creates that "normal" workday environment that you get in a typical office environment. It motivates you to keep coming back...and to keep working hard. 

Bonus: Give Yourself A Day Away | Try a new coffee shop, go meetup and work with a friend. It's OK to change scenery and if I'm feeling foggy or distracted one day, I love going to a coffeeshop to get some work down. Sometimes, working from home can feel very isolating - it becomes necessary for you to get fresh air and change of scenery. 

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