Working from home has become more normal than ever, yet keeping focused, especially when you’re a working mom, can be a challenge. Here are our top 10 best working from home hacks to keep you motivated and crushing your career goals.
Change Your Scenery
Because different spaces in a home or apartment can lend themselves to different kinds of work, occasionally moving around can be a great way to stay focused and productive throughout the day.
Safely trying out external environments like a coffee shop, friend’s house or coworking space can also help change up the workday, increase energy levels, and lead to better focus. If you can work from anywhere, make moving around extra easy. Have power cords, wireless peripherals (mouse, keyboard), and batteries on the ready or stashed in a bag. This way when there’s a chance to work from somewhere else, everything is ready to go!
Sneak in Exercise “Snacks”
When you work from home, it’s easy to sit for most of the day. Over time, this lack of movement can have a negative impact on your health. That’s why exercise snacks are a great, easy hack for adding exercise throughout the day! Try working in short bursts of exercise once an hour or every couple of hours. Before a meeting, drop and do ten pushups, or ten jumping jacks. Heck, even lean against a wall and push yourself back from it a dozen times. Those simple little actions will boost endorphins and productivity.
Schedule “Stop” and “Go” Times
One of the best hacks when working from home with others around is to have a set schedule, which is especially helpful for trading off responsibilities like childcare or setting up blocks of time to work without interruption.
For workers on the phone a lot, buying a headset is a wise investment. Not only does it free up your hands, but it will also make those calls less of a pain in the neck—literally. Working moms need this work from home hack in their lives!
Working from home means stocking the kitchen however you want. While it’s tempting to load up on quick and easy (not to mention tasty!) favorites, ditch the chips and cookies for healthier options instead. Staying hydrated is equally essential to productivity. To up your water intake when working from home, try filling a gallon bottle before bed and sticking it in the fridge overnight so it’s chilled and ready the next morning.
Twice as Nice
If you haven’t added a second monitor to your home office set-up, give it a shot. Research shows that workers are up to 42% more productive when they use more than one monitor.
Corral the Cords
Cables and cords create a lot of under-the-desk clutter. Consider opting for wireless keyboards and mice, this is one of our favorite work from home hacks. Not only does this cut down on the cable clutter, it also provides options for placing devices in more ergonomically correct and comfortable positions. If wireless devices aren’t your thing, put clips on the back of your desk, then thread the cords through them. This helps corral the cords while keeping them within easy reach.
Break It Up
One of the downfalls of working from home is that workers can get so swept up in the workday that they might not remember to take a break. Make sure to schedule breaks—and take them, too! Use an app, a calendar alert, or even an old-fashioned alarm clock to remind you to take care of yourself during the workday.
Most people visit the same websites every day as part of their work routine (think: Slack, Gmail, etc.). Instead of closing out those tabs every night then waiting for them to reload in the morning, keep them open all the time, or set your browser up to automatically reload the tabs when it’s reopened. In fact, depending on the age of your computer, what operating system it’s on, and a few other factors, you may want to leave your computer on most of the time and only shut it down occasionally (as in, once a month!). No matter what you decide, though, it’s a good idea to invest in a surge protector for your computer, monitor, and other important electronics.
Deal With “Catty” Coworkers
You love your cat, but the annoying habit of crawling onto your laptop when you’re trying to work? Not so much. Leave out an old laptop or keyboard for your kitty to crawl on while you keep up your productive pace.