If you are stuck in a cubicle all day or in a job you hate, working from home might seem like a dream life. Working from home definitely has its perks, but it can also be a major challenge and a huge adjustment. The truth is that while working from home is amazing and awesome, it is not always quite as glamorous as you might think. I work part time from home running this site and as an administrator for a non-profit called Young Life. While I love getting to be home with my kids and taking Downton Abbey breaks during the day, it can be very difficult to get things done with two small kids running around. In order to work from home efficiently, I have to be diligent and disciplined. I have to set boundaries between work and family, just like a regular job. Lately I’m trying to implement the four tips I’m sharing with you today to help me be more efficient and keep my work/life balance in check.
1) Make a work schedule and stick to it. Oh, this one is so hard. I know that when I schedule in work and family time and SEPARATE them, everything works better for everyone involved. I am trying my best to schedule in work time and then when it is over, quit working.
2) Turn off social media during work time. This one can be super tricky because a lot of my work as a blogger involves social media. Facebook can be a HUGE time suck, so if I’m working on a deadline I have to close my FB and Pinterest tabs and not open them back up until I’m done. One helpful thing I’ve tried lately is to put my phone away while working. This might sound like a no-brainer to you, but I often pick up my phone and surf Instagram while photos are loading or I’m waiting on something. While this might SEEM like it is efficient, I’m actually wasting more time scrolling.
3) Only check email 2-3 times per day. Does your inbox drain your life away? Schedule times to check it 2-3 times per day, and then let it be. I check mine at 7 am, 2 pm, and 8 pm. I’ve found that I don’t miss out on much and I’m not distracted by the constant influx of email. I can still respond in a timely fashion, but I don’t feel the need to be constantly on call. If someone really needs me, they can text or call me. Let’s be honest here, no one but my family REALLY needs me to respond in an instant.
4) Be off when you are off. With both of my paid jobs, there is always something else I can be doing. Blogging and ministry can both be all consuming, so I have to be really careful to not turn back in to a workaholic. This was a constant struggle for me before kids, and I can often feel myself getting pulled back in to the full time work mode. After creating my schedule, I have to make myself not open the laptop when I am supposed to be off, and wait to return emails til work hours. This is healthy. This is balance. This is boundary setting. I am pledging right now to be better at it, for my family, my health, and myself. I’m challenging you to do the same.
One tool I’m using to work from home efficiently is the HP x360, with four amazing modes to use for work and family time. I use mine in laptop mode for work, as a tablet for easy social media use, in tent mode for watching movies with the family, and stand mode for just about everything. HP is bending the rules for what technology can do AND partnering with Meghan Trainor for her #ThatBassTour across the U.S. Check out the tour and fan created documentary here. How do you work from home efficiently?
This post was sponsored by HP and the #ThatBassTour. All opinions are my own.