Working from home gives you the flexibility to choose when and where you work. It’s an enviable freedom that most nine to fivers can only dream of, and it certainly makes that elusive work-life balance more obtainable.
But it’s not a holiday, or any less of a responsibility than working on location. In fact, it takes more self-discipline and motivation to work successfully from home, because you don’t have someone standing over your shoulder to keep you accountable.
We’ve taken a look at some of the most common traits of successful remote workers, and come up with the top five things they do every day to stay at the top of their game.
1. They’re Super Organised
They’ve got their days mapped out and breaks scheduled in. They leave room for the unexpected and make the most of digital technology to help keep them on top of it all, from storing and sending files, communicating with their employers, recording their hours and even reminding them when to take a break for optimum performance.
2. They Set Boundaries
People who work from home generally do so because they want greater flexibility and freedom to work on their terms. But when you literally live at work, it can be hard to switch off and before you know it, you’ll find yourself working more than ever before. Successful remote workers set boundaries to create order and structure in their work day, and to ensure their accessibility isn’t abused.
3. They Take Time to Themselves
It’s difficult to flourish creatively or grow as a person if you’re chained to your desk all day. Successful remote workers realise this and schedule in time to step away from the screen and look at the bigger picture. It might be quiet reflection on a leisurely walk around the block, or perhaps a high-energy workout to get the blood pumping and ideas flowing. They can return to work feeling revived, re-energised and ready for anything.
4. They Never Stop Learning
The successful remote worker gets a thrill out of learning new things, whether it’s a formal qualification to upskill them in their field, or reading expert advice to further refine their own practices. They seek out quality information, keen an open mind, and a willingness to always learn more.
5. They Block Out The Noise
Working from home comes with a lot of distractions. Whether it’s the postie knocking at the front door, the neighbour mowing, phone ringing, kids yelling, cat meowing, a pile of washing calling your name, Facebook notifications or those endless pings of new emails. It can be really hard to focus. Successful remote workers call on their organisation skills to block these distractions. They set times for reading and responding to emails so they’re not a slave to their inbox, and they rely on their proven structure to bring order back to the craziest of days. They have a dedicated workspace with a door, which creates a physical barrier from outside distractions while they work, and perhaps most importantly – acts as the trigger to switch off. When they leave the room and close the door behind them, they are home.