Self Management Techniques

This post discusses the 5 Biggest Distractions When Working From Home and 8 Simple Self Management Techniques That Guarantee Success.


Before moving to simple steps to guarantee success, I'll start by listing the 5 Biggest Distractions When Working From Home.

They are:

  1. Children And Family Wanting Attention
    Isn’t it frustrating when your children or other family members resort to attention seeking behavior?
    And nothing you can do or say can stop them from demanding your attention.
    Of course, it might not seem a big deal to give in to every request by a child, spouse or other family members.
    But in reality, all those interruptions do add up.
    And every interaction interferes with your workflow.
  2. The Inability To Access Proper Office Equipment
    Your stapler that has just run out of staples now you desperately need to staple a stack of paper, Windows 10 that is just starting a long-term update or an office chair that is worn out.
    The keyboard with one missing letter.
    We have all experienced it.
    No big deal.
    But when you have to deal with these small (and sometimes big) frustrations regularly it will have an adverse effect on your mood and productivity.
  3. The Desire To Complete Household Chores
    Feeling guilty about not doing enough housework may sound familiar for many solopreneurs working at home.
    When you have a job outside your home, you leave household worries behind.
    When you work at home household chores look you straight in the eye. 
  4. The Temptation To Keep TV On As Company
    Many solopreneurs work with the TV on.
    It brings some livelihood in an otherwise empty (sound and movement wise) home.
    I don't think there is much wrong with that.
    But it can be harmful to your productivity if you let the TV distract you from doing important work.
  5. A Messy Workplace
    Look around your desk.
    If you are surrounded by mountains of paper and clutter, you are not working as efficiently as you could.
    People working at a messy desk are less efficient, more frustrated and weary, and less persistent when they face a challenging situation. Fortunately, there are remedies to tackle the distractions mentioned above.
    Let's dive into them now.

8 Simple Self Management Techniques to Guarantee Success

1. Create a Workspace
Working from bed may be comfortable, but it not likely to lead to productive behavior.

Find yourself a desk and a chair instead.

If you spend many hours behind a desk invest in a decent, ergonomically sound, chair.

Pay attention to your posture and the quality of the mouse and keyboard you use.

2. Get Dressed
Science says putting pants on makes you more productive!
It's called “enclothed cognition,” and a study found that when doctors wore white coats, they made fewer mistakes than their counterparts without a coat.

I personally always start with a cup of coffee, watch the early morning news, fix some breakfast, put in an hours work or so before taking a shower and getting properly dressed. That works for me. I don't spend all day walking around in pajamas because I can.

3. Set Boundaries
Let your spouse, kids, or pets know that working from home means that it's Do Not Disturb time.
Playing, chores and other activities will have to wait until you're off the clock.

Admittedly not always an easy thing to do but well worth the effort.

4. Find Ways to Separate Work and Life
Working in an office allows you to leave at the end of the day.
If you work from home, identify ways to separate your home and work lives.
Consider using a room divider or opting to work in co-working space.

I have a dedicated room on the first floor but I find myself mostly working at a comfortable large dining room table in our living room. My husband and I now have the house to ourselves (empty nest) so we can work in peace and quiet whenever we want to.

5. Set a Schedule
Just like a regular office, give yourself set hours and stick to them.
While it may be tempting to log back in after hours when an idea hits, write it down and save it for the next day instead.

I use 2DO app to write down ideas.

Before I plan my daily activities I take a look at these notes and decide if I have to act on them.

6. Attend Networking Events
It can be hard to work alone without any social interaction.
Fill up your calendar with networking or professional events, and make it a habit to actively seek out other people in your industry.

I am guilty of not actively pursuing this.

I’d rather spend time on doing volunteer work helping people outside ’my industry’.

I find that more fulfilling.

7. Take Breaks
If you work from home, make sure that you leave the house every so often.
Take a break every four hours and go for a walk.
A Scandinavian study found that people who walked three times a week during lunch were more enthusiastic and less tense.

This I absolutely do! I love walking and gardening to get the blood running after spending (too) much time working.

8. Go for 50 Minute Focus Rounds
Set a timer for 50 minutes, then get to work on a project.
Don't check your email, look at your phone, or check social media until the timer goes off.
Then, take a 10-minute break and reset the timer for another 50 minutes.

I use my Pomodoro timer to work in bursts.

Success with being your own boss!

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