I've been working from home for a year now and I wouldn't change a thing! However, at first I struggled to focus without collegues around me and the pressure of your boss sitting near you. What helped me to focus more was particular applications on my iPhone and laptop computer - i'd like to share these with you and help anyone else who is working from home!
Key things to remember when working from home
- 1. Get into a routine and create a schedule
- 2. Set up a dedicated office space or room in your home
- 3. Don't stay in your PJ's! - Dress like you are going to the office
- 4. Keep in constant communication with other staff members
- 5. Go for a morning or afternoon walk - I take my dog every morning before starting work
- 6. Eat healthy and regularly
RescueTime - Desktop and phone application, £Free
RescueTime is a service that helps you understand how they spend their time on the computer. Rescue time is downloaded to your laptop/computer and can also be added to your mobile phones. You can assign websites that are 'distracting'and websites/tasks that are 'productive'. RescueTime then prodides a dashboard which presents graphs showing how productive you have been on that day and you can compare it to past days.
Forest - iPhone App, £0.79
This is my favorite and it is such a simple idea! If you get distracted by your mobile phone easily (like me) then this is a great app for you. You decide on a time that you would like to not touch your phone – not even for Whatsapp. You can set that time on the Forest application and ‘plant’ your virtual tree. The tree then stays on screen growing whilst showing motivational sayings such as “Hang in there!” and “Go back to your work”. There is a “give up” button to stop the app but that just adds to the guilt if you do give in.
Trello - Desktop, iPhone and Android App, £Free
I use Trello to manage my freelance work and budgeting my money – but it is also a fantastic project management tool. The mobile app is great to use for simple to do lists and it is very easy to use. You can move around and edit your different tasks (or ‘cards’) as well as having the ability to create as many boards as you want! If you write far to many to do lists like me then this is a great app for you!
Coffitivity - iPhone and desktop App, £Free
If you work from home and feel lonely in your quiet home then this is a great app for you. I personally work better when there is noise or if i’m in a coffee shop with people around me. Coffitivity recreates the ambient sounds of a cafe to boost your creativity and help you work better. You can choose from different options and scenes such as “morning murmur” and choose to play your own personal music in the background.