I am assuming that you are here because you currently work from home or possibly have dreams to do so, or maybe you are younger and just aspire to having a lovely sanctuary to do your homework. Whatever your stage in life is, working from home can be tricky. There can be many distractions, you don’t have anyone to bounce ideas off, you can’t always get out of the office for lunch and you don’t have a boss above you to keep you on track. I have been freelance for my whole working career but since becoming a blogger and having to graft for myself and occasionally have very important deadlines I have had to work out the best way to work from home. I personally prefer working from home than in my local cafe because I need my self made environment around me…that being said, I do write some of my best work in a notepad on the train whilst commuting. I have been a long time lover of all things stationary and have always had a desk in my room from a very young age, wether that was to do colouring in, my homework, my dissertation or later on in life my tax return. I have fond memories of new term time and buying new pencil cases, pens, pencils and covering my exercise books in stickers of the coolest pop stars in Smash Hits. Flash forward a few years and I am still obsessed but would rather spray everything white and gold a la Pinterest 🙂 .
My 5 top tips to successfully working from home below will hopefully help prepare you for working from home and inspire you to add a little beauty to your working environment. If you don’t have a home office, then why not buy a cute small desk from your local charity shop and paint it with a fresh lick of white paint, or even simpler you can buy fold away desks which you attach to a wall and fold up to keep any mess out of site. Whatever your situation, try your hardest to find a spot to work from that isn’t the sofa or your kitchen table, both for your sanity and the comfort of your back and neck muscles.
Read my interview with Paperchase here.
This post is in collaboration with Paperchase [AD].
1.BEAUTIFY YOUR ENVIRONMENT
You have to like where you are working from to produce good work. You need to feel inspired and excited to work and you will then thrive and be the best you can possibly be. My top tip is to make a mood board on Pinterest, much like mine here and head off to the shops to replicate it. Try and make every moment a Pinterest worthy photo and you will be proud of where you are working and most likely want to show it off 😉
2.ORGANISATION IS KEY
Keep all of your documents, papers and notepads in obvious places. Clearly label your files for admin and each aspect of your working life. Keep on top of your filing regularly so you don’t have an ever increasing to do list piling up besides you. I love having a To-Do list by me at all times which I will either write the night before or first thing in the morning. Make these jobs small and bitesized so you can tick them off regularly. It is the mini accomplishments which build up and make you feel as if you can accomplish anything.
(Gorgeous gold scissors, ruler and envelope paperclips are part of a set from Paperchase)
Distractions when working from home are ten times worse than in a standard office and you need to be prepared for these distractions and either know you are going to allow them or prevent them from actually happening. If you find often find yourself getting distracted and lacklustre, pop out of the house for 10-20 minutes, take the dog for a walk, water the plants in the garden or go and get a takeaway coffee from your nearest shop.
If it is your phone which is constantly getting in your way…anyone else click on social media apps every few minutes without even realising they are doing it? Turn off your phone or even stick it on ‘do not disturb’ mode where only those in your favourites list can actually contact you incase of an emergency. I have even heard about a tree app of some sort which grows trees as you work, to only stop growing as soon as you touch your phone…I’m pretty sure I would end up with a forest of dead trees, but I am intrigued and need to seek this app out.
Why not find some music which suits you and your way of working? Spotify has a playlist for every mood. I personally need music without words when I am composing an email, blog post, article etc. Yet when I am tidying or being hands on creative I love listening to the top 50 pop songs to sing along to.
4.TIDY DESK, TIDY MIND
Each night when you finish working, tidy up your working area. Don’t go to bed leaving your house messy and dirty. If you leave mess over night you are likely going to wake up in the morning and have to wash the dishes and put on a load of laundry further delaying the start to your productive day ahead. Keep your desk nicely filed away and be excited to get back to your desk the following morning.
5.KEEP THE BOOKS UP TO DATE
I am assuming that at least 75% of you that work from home are freelance. If you are, a huge point I must add is to keep your accounts in order. I actually have a few side note, extra points to add. Actually, I could probably do a whole extra post on this though, so here are my absolute must have tips for this. Get a ring binder, put in 12 plastic sheets and separate them into months. These months will signify a full tax year. In front of each of your plastic wallet, pop in your bank statement. The plastic wallets are for you to store the months receipts in. If you have different receipts then add in a couple more plastic wallets (I personally split mine in two, expenses and travel receipts). The benefit to having your bank statements printed out means that you can go through it and highlight in different colours all of the different incoming and outgoing payments to help make your tax run smoothly. You have probably just submitted your tax so why not get ahead of the game and set this up for the following tax year.
I hope my tips can help you as you work from home. Is there anything you do that keeps your home the perfect working environment.