Freelance Friday: 10 Tips to Make Working From Home Work for You

November 11th, 2016 by Search Influence Alumni

This blog is part of our Freelance Friday series, where we discuss everything and anything related to freelancing. If you are a freelance writer and are looking for additional work, consider applying at Search Influence.

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1: Create a Great Working Environment

Setting up a designated work area is crucial to your productivity. Try to situate yourself in a space with a lot of natural light. This will help you stay awake and focused. Make sure you have ample desk space for your arms and that your monitor is at a slight distance. Pick a room or space that is quiet and out of high traffic areas.

2: Stay Organized

Staying organized is one of the most important skills you can develop as a freelancer. Make sure you have everything you need to get your work done. Keep notebooks, pens, and flash drives handy. Make sure your computer is organized as well. Using bookmarks and categorizing folders can help you store and find important things easier.

3: Stick to a Work Schedule

Developing your own work schedule will help you sharpen your time management skills. You can set your working hours according to your lifestyle, but make sure you stick to it—and don’t forget to factor in time for breaks and lunch. The best thing to do is model your workday after a typical workday at the office. Don’t forget to mentally clock out at the end of the day. You will run the risk of feeling burnt out if you are constantly working.

4: Get Dressed

It’s tempting to stay in your pajamas when you are working from home, but don’t let the “no one is going to see me” rationalization fool you. Dressing up as you would for a regular day of work will put you in the mindset of getting work done. Don’t worry— you don’t have to put on a three-piece suit, but a clean set of jeans and a t-shirt should do the trick.

5: Refrain From Social Media

Social media is a great way to stay connected and get updates on current affairs; however, it can also be a big waste of time. There are some apps that can temporarily block Facebook or allow you to set time limits for phone usage.

6: Know Your Limits

Some people need white noise or music to help them concentrate. However, these things can also be distracting. It’s important to know your limits. If a fast beat makes you want to dance, then opt for something mellower to listen to while you work. If you can’t tear yourself away from the TV, then switch the channel to the news.

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7: Let People Know You Are Working

If you live with other people, it is important to let them know when you are working. This will minimize interruptions so you can efficiently power through your work. It will also let them know the best times to reach you should they need to speak with you.

8: Change Scenery Every Now and Then

Working in the same place can be monotonous, so try to change scenery whenever possible. This can help you open your mind and induce creativity. It could be as simple as moving to a different room or taking a walk to your nearest coffee shop (as long as they have Wi-Fi).

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9: Meal Prep for Lunch and Snack

One of the great things about working from home is that you are next to your kitchen, which makes it impossible to forget your lunch. However, working next to your kitchen can leave you making countless trips to the refrigerator to see if something tasty has magically appeared. To avoid this, prepare your meal and snack beforehand so you are not aimlessly scavenging for food.

10: Buy a Plant

A little random? Yes! But there are many benefits to having a little plant in your work area. Plants filter air naturally, boost mood, and can ultimately increase productivity. Not to mention an office plant will bring a little bit of the great outdoors to your workspace.

Working from home can be a liberating experience, so try to make the most out of it. With these tips (plus our happy and healthy tips from last month), you can step up your freelance game to ensure you never miss a deadline.