Working remotely has its advantages - it allows for hands-on client interactions, a shorter commute and much more freedom and flexibility.
However, working away from the office and the stability of a corporate environment has its downsides, and many remote workers and telecommuters find that this type of professional life isn't as easy as they expected. Instead of a dream job, they are faced with a day full of distractions getting in the way of productivity.
To prevent that from being the case, here are five effective tips to stay motivated while working remotely:
1. Treat it like any other work day
Working from home or on the go may not feel like a traditional 9-to-5, but you should treat it like one. When you get up in the morning, act like you are headed to the office. It can help to always dress professionally, even though your bosses will probably never see what you look like. Sweatpants and a t-shirt can be reserved for after work.
2. Create a set schedule
Every day working remotely should come with its own schedule. Lines can get blurred outside the office, and a firm routine will minimize distractions and ensure productivity. Stay motivated by starting your day the same way regardless, plus get to work at a set time to avoid slacking off due to a lack of guidelines.
3. Dedicate personal, professional space
Working remotely may require you to be out in the field meeting with clients, but it will also mean you spend some time at home on the paperwork-side of the day. When these moments occur, dedicate space for professional and personal time. If possible, create a home office to operate in, or at least have a room that can be converted during work hours. This separation will help you stay motivated.
4. Take advantage of technology
As a remote worker, you'll need to rely on technology to stay in touch with the office. There are many devices, applications and other services that can be beneficial. For example, use cloud computing to share documents back and forth with your colleagues. Teleconferencing software can make you a part of every meeting, so you are not an afterthought working remotely.
5. Spend time away from work
Distractions are bad, but breaks are good. Finding a healthy balance here is vital for any remote worker. Remember to take breaks to focus on family time whenever possible, but balance this off of your set schedule. Telecommuting can mean you spend too much time focused on work. A moment away will keep you motivated.