There are certain pros and cons to working from home. One of the biggest cons is actually related to many little cons; it’s that you can develop and stick with bad habits. It’s easy to throw yourself off, not having a routine, welcome distractions, little things that over time build up to massive problems. I have been thinking a lot about my habits with working from home and things I want to do to counter those habits.
-Finding and sticking to a schedule: I get bored with schedules fairly easily, and this has become an excuse for me to simply ignore it. The problem is schedules and routines are important; they are even more important (in my opinion) when you work from home. If you don’t stick to a routine it’s easy to throw yourself off and simply do whatever. This will not help you to be productive though.
I have struggled over the years with finding a balance between writing and streaming and setting up a schedule that will keep me productive with both. I am slowly starting to find a routine that I can stick to, and now I need to do it.
-Being more active: Any and all office jobs can be problematic in the fact that they have you sitting all day. Health problems related to the fact that many Americans sit all day are real. Beyond that my weight and health have gotten horrible. I have never been the most healthy person so that it is noticeably worse stands out to me. I have planned gym days and active days into my schedule and routine as mentioned above. I am also looking for ways to simply be more active at home. Be it simply walking around my house, getting an exercise bike, just something that keeps me moving during the day.
-Getting dressed, doing my hair and makeup: I have gotten bad about taking care of myself. I am not happy with how I look and feel so I don’t do anything to counter that. Working outside of the house and having to take time with your appearance can be a good thing for a person. I need to make this work in my at home job. I will be unlikely to go out as I would on days where I leave the house, but putting more effort in.
-Eating/Snacking Better: This is something I have been working on for awhile now in relation to health. It is also something that working from home can be helpful with. I get to pick my eating schedule, and I have access to my foods at home. However, I am prone to slip-ups and problems. I have been working to keep less junk food and unhealthy drinks in my home and making sure to plan and schedule times to eat.
-Killing Distractions: Another issue with working from home (at least in my case) is I have nobody checking to see what I am spending my time on. It’s easy enough for me to just log into Twitter quickly, or turn on my Xbox just to check something, hours later and I have wasted time. So I am taking ownership of my distractions. I don’t keep my internet open all the time if I am writing I am limited in what music I listen to and don’t start to browse, I close out or turn off my social things (such as discord), and once again ‘planning’ comes into play. I know that I like to watch an internet program during a certain time slot, so I give myself that. That is also the time I allow myself to mindlessly browse the web. I schedule in that free time and then try to stick to it being only then. I’ve also tried to limit my multitasking. It can be good, but it can also just be a distraction. When I am writing I am writing; when I am taking a break, I am taking a break. Or rather this is my end goal.
-Learning that goals can change day by day: As I said at the start of the post learning to balance writing and streaming has been an issue for me. To that end, I am learning to adjust my goals day by day. Some days it is harder for me to have a high daily word count, other days it is easy. My Monday goals are no longer going to be the same as my Tuesday, Wednesday, etc. goals. Each day will have its own goals based on what else is happening that day. This is also to (hopefully) help me prevent getting burnt out and overwhelmed with everything I have to do, while still reaching my goals each ‘week’ even if each ‘day’ is shaped differently.
-Treating my work week as my work week: Again one of the biggest problems with working from home is there is very little to separate days you work from days you don’t. This can go on both sides. You may end up working 30 days in a row with never taking a day off and burn out. Or you might say, “Well yeah, it’s Tuesday and tomorrow is supposed to be a workday, but I can stay up late tonight”. My “work week” is not Monday-Friday but there is a schedule of sorts that as mentioned I am attempting to stick to. Part of that means treating work nights for what they are. It also means providing myself with “days off” and not working nonstop.
These are a few of the (many) things I intend to work on to help me be a more productive streamer, writer, and person.
Do you have any tips that help you with working from home? Any habits that you need to break?