How to Work More Effectively Without an Office

In the post-pandemic world of working from home, you might find new and unexpected challenges. Working remotely requires a kind of discipline that can be hard to enforce outside of the office setting. Here are a few things you can do in order to work well outside of an office setting.

Create a Separate Space in Your Home

The dedication of some kind of space as being a “workspace” can be tremendously helpful. Our mind tends to associate certain areas or certain places with a given habit that can make it easier to sit down and get things done. If you often are on your phone late into the night while in your bed, for example, your brain and body will gradually associate being in bed with being on your phone rather than sleeping. The same is true for working. Don’t try to work in places where you normally eat, sleep, or enjoy free time. Designating a separate space – an empty room, a comfortable basement, or even just an unused desk – as your daily workspace will help you create healthy work habits.

Join a Coworking Space

If you have the contact information of your peers and coworkers, it might be a good idea to organize some kind of space outside the home, especially for working together. Essentially, you get to create your own office on your own terms, and you probably won’t even need to spend any money to find it. Public spaces are wonderfully useful for just such a purpose. Parks, cafes, and community centers are all great options to explore. Working with coworkers will also mean that you can discuss ideas and help keep each other on task. Coworking spaces can reduce the isolation you feel working at home as well – even for people that live with family or friends.

Scheduling Ahead of Time

Planning makes a big difference. Knowing how long you’re going to work for, and then taking a break for a certain amount of time can help you be productive. You will have the motivation to persevere through manageable chunks of work at a time if you have breaks or other rewards to look forward to. Start every day by briefly planning when you’re going to get started, and for how long you’ll work. Plan breaks and other activities.

Personal accountability is key, especially if you struggle with procrastination. Don’t fall prey to excuses and distractions. Enforce your boundaries however you need to – turning off your phone for a time, doing work with others, or motivating yourself with rewards.

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