While working from home eliminates the hassle of staying in a traditional work setting, it also puts your time management skills and abilities to the test. As a stay-at-home entrepreneur, effective time management is exceedingly important if you wish to achieve success. Furthermore, knowing effective time management tips will help you with work-at-home jobs.
Working at home has become very popular this period as most companies try to cope with COVID 19. If you manage your time very well, you will be able to work on your business and live a balanced life.
The unifying factor across every job and industry is your ability to manage your time and prioritize your tasks. Since being able to manage your time effectively is considered important for remote workers.
This article has been put together to educate you on the realistic tips for time management to apply for optimum productivity.
Below are the best time management tips and practices worth trying.
1. Keep Track of Your Time
There is no way you can manage your time without knowing how you spend it. This implies that you must have that knowledge before you can draft a realistic schedule. Do you underestimate or overestimate the amount of time spent on completing a task? Do unproductive activities take up your time? You can only find out if you keep track of your time.
You can pick any of the time-tracking apps on the Internet and put them to good use. Some good examples are RescueTime and Clockify, and they are user-friendly.
With the information they offer, you can determine how much time it takes you to complete a task and the unproductive activities that distract you.
2. Plan Your Schedule Ahead of Time
When you have found the amount of time spent on specific tasks, you can venture into planning your daily schedule. Without a daily routine, it isn’t easy to maintain focus.
So, you end up spending the day without achieving much. Proper scheduling is among the most effective tips for time management for any individual who wants to be generally productive.
Recent technological advancements have made schedule planning an easy task. Modern calendar tools go a long way to help you maximize your time without overstretching yourself.
Taking a few minutes every night to plan for the next day will help you accomplish more. Also, ensure you give room for breaks, exercise, household chores, and lunch.
3. Consider Your Energy Levels While Planning
The only person that knows you is you!
This means that you know specific hours of the day where you are highly motivated to work. In truth, you can not be fully productive for the whole 24 hours in a day. If you work from home, it is important to find out your best working hours and stick to them. For instance, most remote workers prefer to wake up late.
If you are in this category, you might sleep till midday and work till night. Of course, short breaks must be added in between. Having afternoon meetings will work best for you, but this implies that you may have to stay up late at night. The best option is to discover what works for you as it enables better time management throughout the day.
4. Stay Away from Irrelevant Meetings
Please stay away from irrelevant tasks; they may seem productive, but they waste your time in essence. Assuming you have set up a meeting, ensure you have a clear idea of the meeting’s agenda and desired outcome.
After the meeting, you should have a clear plan for the actions needed to be taken. To save time, you can replace some meetings with emails if it will fulfill that purpose.
You can use that time to work on accomplishing a better objective. Your communication lines can be kept open through email; that way, you can encourage effective communication with your clients or colleagues while reducing meeting times.
5. Schedule in Some Down Time
You do not need to work from morning till night to be productive. Doing that will only get you burnt out as a result of doing needless busywork. Rather, you must understand that things will come up, and strategic breaks will be needed all through the day.
Ensure you make room for gaps to accommodate unforeseen events that can come up at any time. Even if something does not come, take a break and relax a bit.
Most times, you feel like an underachiever when you create gaps in your calendar; however, it is the exact opposite. If you apply the 80/20 rule, you will find out that you do not need to spend as much time on certain tasks.
6. Have A Designated Workspace
Pick separate areas or rooms around the house and set it up to be your workspace. For instance, you can carve out a section of your wide corridor or an unused room for work purposes. Consistently applying this time management tip helps you create a connection between your mental focus and the physical space. Also, try to find quiet spots in the house as they will help you concentrate more.
7. Spot Distractions and Eliminate Them
As a remote worker, you will encounter some unique interruptions and distractions from working from home. The common factors could be your family, household chores, or even the television. Sum up the distractions; then, you can adopt methods to reduce them.
For instance, while working in your home office, you can shut the door to avoid getting distracted by your family. Also, when you want to do something fun, ensure it falls within your scheduled break.
8. Utilize Time Blocking Assistants
Time blocking involves setting specific timeframes for tasks, events, or activities you wish to undertake. It is a widely used and effective time management technique. After creating the time blocks, you can add them to your calendar. Time blocks have proven to effectively promote your focus on a particular task for a certain period.
However, to make this technique work, you need to have the right tools. They include:
- A calendar app for creating time blocks and receiving reminders
- A time tracker that tells you the required time for a specific task
- A to-do app or organizer that helps you prioritize
9. Dress like you’re going to the office
One of the best ways to put yourself in a working mood is by dressing up. Don’t just be in your pajamas and feel that you will be in a working mood. Pajamas are for sleeping, so your guess is as good as mine. When you are focused, you manage your time effectively.
Getting up and wearing good clothes even though you are not going out is a great time management tip. Wear your best clothes and take a seat; it will help you get in a frame of mind to focus on your work projects.
10. Minimize social media distractions
One of the biggest distractions around the world today is social media. Are you finding social media constantly distracting you?
One of the best ways to minimize social media distraction is to log out of your social media accounts during work time. You can remove them from your web browser shortcuts or try working on a private or “incognito” browser so you can’t auto-login to any social media pages.
If you can get rid of social media distraction, you have conquered one of the time management issues.
Working from home can be exciting and stressful all at the same time. You avoid the stress of commuting to the office, but at the same time, you might not take it seriously as there is no supervisor to monitor you. You will be accountable for how you manage your time and achieve the result.
As we all know, time is one of your valuable resources, which means you have to manage it properly.
Working from home can be an exciting experience, but you will not achieve much if you don’t practice time management. We are sure you can pick some tips to apply in your remote work life for better productivity.
Do you have any time management tips you are using while working at home? Do let me know in the comment section!
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