Working from home has some awesome perks and is definitely one of my favorite things about starting Bold & Pop. I think it's a serious win whenever you can trade your commute in for a walk from your bed to your workspace -- anytime I can skip a crowded subway ride, count me in. While there's a ton of really awesome things about working from home, there are those times when it's 4 o'clock and you realize the only person you've encountered throughout the day has been the mailman or the times when you find yourself having full on conversations with your dog. Times where you realize 1.) holy moly I need to leave my apartment and 2.) I might officially be losing my mind. I feel ya. So today we're chatting about some tips to be successful at working from home and keeping your mind, because you need that!
Stick to a Routine
Something that has really helped me while working at home is sticking to a routine. Contrary to what a lot of people think, working from home doesn't always mean you're working in your PJs from you bed. Although, hey I definitely have my days where I take advantage of that perk 😉. The majority of the time though I stick to my morning routine to stay on track. That means getting up each morning at the same time, showering, getting dressed, and taking my trusty assistant Scooter the weenie dog on a walk. Who, btw is also a fan of sprinkled donuts as seen below. While I'd love to sleep late every day (I'm a total night owl) I know that sticking to my routine keeps me accountable and ready for a day of making sh*t happen!
Set Office Hours
One of the perks of working for yourself is setting your own hours and having a little flexibility when you need it. Which is life-changing coming from a traditional 9-5! While my schedule may vary day-to-day based on calls, meetings or projects, I do my best to stick to specific office hours of 9-5:30. Along with sticking to a routine, having standard office hours helps me plan out my days better. Not only is a schedule important for me, but it also sets designated times my clients know they can contact me.
This schedule also goes for cutting out distractions. Another thing I hear a lot from people is, "it must be great working from home because you can clean the apartment or take care of other errands" Yeah aboutttt that. There definitely isn't any cleaning going on during my Bold & Pop hours. In fact, my boyfriend will sometimes give me a hard time about leaving my dishes from lunch in the sink until I'm done working for the day. Truth be told though, I mean serious business during my office hours and know I'm most efficient when I stick to them. Being totally honest, sometimes the toughest part about sticking to office hours is actually shutting things down. Even though as biz owners we're always working on progress and getting ahead though, it's also important to give ourselves some rest! Another important part about those business hours!
Set up Regular Calls with Team Members or Join an Accountability Group
I'm a little spoiled getting to work with Mallory because we talk pretty regularly throughout the day, but I know that's not the case for everyone! Sometimes you can go full days without having much interaction with other people and that can be a struggle. Mallory and I both have dogs and I know we're both definitely guilty of talking to them, but sometimes you just need some human connection! If you work with a team, I suggest setting up regular calls to check-in about projects and also because sometimes just talking things out on the phone will lead to awesome ideas you may not have thought of otherwise.
For those who are solopreneurs, if you don't work with anyone else I suggest joining an accountability group or mastermind. Having a group you meet or talk with on a regular basis can be a great opportunity to bounce ideas off of each other and also have some engagement with other people!
Take Care of Yourself!
This one is SO important and one Mallory and I have been more focused on this year. This may sound super simple but make sure you're taking care of yourself! We spend most of our days sitting in front of a computer so it's so important to get up regularly and walk around. Get those legs a-moving! I'm also a big fan of afternoon workouts or afternoon walks around the neighborhood. Just something to break up the day and make sure I'm getting in a little exercise.
Another thing? Stay hydrated! I'll be honest, recently I realized how bad I had gotten about drinking water throughout the day. So I made a change and started making sure I started my day with a hot lemon water and refilled my water bottle throughout the day. I realized that if I had a glass in front of me I was pretty good about drinking it, it was just the action of actually getting that first cup filled up that was the struggle. I'm a big fan of flavored waters too - lemon water, cucumber mint, citrus, or fruity. I'm all about that life and realized I was twice as likely to succeed at staying hydrated throughout the day when I had something delicious to drink.
Try and Get Out Once in Awhile
And last but not least, try and get out once in a while! This may sound out of place since we're talking about working from home but I truly believe it's essential to your work strategy. A couple times a month I try and work outside of my home office just for a change of scenery. This can be at a local cafe, park or coworking space. We're big fans of coworking spaces! Both Mallory and I try and meet up with some of our other friends who work from home or freelance locally each month. You can find me checking out different spaces around New York City at WeWork, which does require a monthly membership fee. And you can find Mallory at one of her favorites in Raleigh, NC called The Frontier -- extra bonus with hers, it's free! I really love coworking spaces because I always feel so inspired while I'm there -- even if I go solo. For me, being around other entrepreneurs and go-getters is so inspiring and always gets my creativity wheels turning.
So there you have it! 5 tips for being successful at working from home. Have some other awesome tips? Share in the comments below!