10 Commandments for Working from Home

Avoid the pitfalls of home-based jobs and turn your work from home experience into a huge success

Know what’s important

If you get clear on your vision and remind yourself daily of what you wish to create. when you work from home, you will be more efficient. Being committed to your personal vision will bring meaning into every minute of your day and help you get through tough times. You may want to create a vision board and hang it in your home office to stay connected to your goals in case you need a motivation boost.

Start your day with a morning routine

Create a habit of having a morning routine and you will set yourself for a day of success. Danielle LaPorte, the author of The Desire Map, says: “Good habits feel good. So if it doesn’t feel good, I don’t do it, ‘cause the whole point is to feel good.” Her morning routine includes meditation, tongue scraping, yoga and dance. To get inspiration for your morning routine, check mymorningroutine.com and be inspired to do a morning routine before you start working from home.

Create a daily schedule

Working from home without any structure may affect your productivity. Therefore, it is important to use a relatively consistent schedule every day. Read David Allen’s book Getting Things Done and get inspiration for how successful people schedule their day. You may want to experiment with different time management methods such as the popular Pomodoro technique.

Put first things first

Do your most important task first thing in the morning, when you are working from home. Do it before you do anything else. In his classic book Eat That Frog, Brian Tracy explains that “if you eat a live frog first thing in the morning, you’ve got it behind you for the rest of the day, and nothing else looks so bad.” As a rule of thumb, select the task you are dreading the most and are most likely to procrastinate on. Then follow the first commandment and reconnect with your vision.

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Optimize your work space

Staying on task when you work from home can be challenging. Creating an optimized work space can ease your mind and boost your productivity. To start with, consider your workflow and place the items you use frequently within an easy reach. Invest in an ergonomic office chair, good lighting and design your work environment in a way that reduces distractions. Find useful ideas on how to make working at home more effective on Pinterest.

Listen to music to avoid distraction

A powerful way to increase your productivity and fight through distractions is listening to music. Research shows that by listening to uplifting music you can considerably improve your mood and boost your overall happiness in just two weeks. You are also more likely to finish off your tasks fast and generate great ideas easily, which is important when you are working alone at home.Further more the music can elevate your energy level and get you into the ‘I can do anything’ mindset.

Take breaks

When you work from home, taking regular breaks keeps you from getting bored and helps refresh your brain. Without breaks you will be less efficient and make more mistakes. You can do virtually anything during your breaks, as long as you give your mind a genuine rest from the tasks at hand. So, get up, step away from your desk and walk around to get your blood moving - stretch, meditate, exercise, something to drink, doodle, even day-dream. It’s often during breaks when we get our most creative ideas.

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Avoid eating while you work

If you work from home, chances are that you eat more than you want or need to, without even realising it. Avoid mindless eating and possible weight gain by scheduling proper lunch breaks into your work schedule. "Eating at your desk encourages mindless eating, and overeating," says Susan Moores, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. "You're most likely multi-tasking and not paying attention to the amount of food you're eating."

Review and plan for the next day

Reflecting on your work helps you learn about your work style and allows you to make necessary changes. Make sure you have accomplished as much as you could and use this opportunity to schedule new tasks into your calendar. Be sure to tie up any loose ends that can quickly be taken care of, so that you can truly disconnect when you’re finished. Planning ahead when you are working form home, on the other hand, helps you start the next day with a clear strategy. Choose the three most important tasks you need to get done and plan your time accordingly.

Celebrate your accomplishments

Celebrate your best achievements of the day and create work rituals that will help you feel more fulfilled and happy in the long run. Slow down and really look at what you have accomplished. Then, reward yourself for completing your tasks. Relish the progress you make every day and celebrate what you have already achieved. This way you will regain energy to tackle what comes next.