8 Tips for Being Your Most Productive While Working from Home

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Working from home can be tough. Aside from all the distractions keeping you from actually working, being in a comfortable setting isn’t always the most conducive environment for being productive. But since everyone is stuck at home, it’s time to make the best of it. So, if you’re ready to take control back over your day, take a look at this list of productivity hacks, the at-home edition. Give these researched-based productivity boosters a try and take back control over your day.

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Start Your Day Early

Believe it or not, waking up at 5:00AM or 6:00AM isn’t the root of all evil, it can actually do a lot of good, according to SleepAdvisor.org. As the website states, our brains are actually most active in the mornings. It’s no surprise that some of the most successful people claim that they are super early risers. Get in the habit of waking up early by adjusting your biological clock — wake up and go to sleep at the same time every day. For help gently waking up instead of getting shocked by an alarm clock, consider looking into purchasing a wake up light alarm clock. These clocks use a gradual increase in light to naturally pull you from your sleep, as opposed to abruptly ripping you from a stage of deep sleep. Getting up early may stink at first, but the payoff is worth it — besides, going to bed late and waking up late may compromise how restorative your sleep is, anyway.  

Try Intermittent Fasting

This new diet craze probably sounds like a strange addition to a list of productivity hacks, but it’s science, after all. After going 12+ hours without food, the body goes into a state called ketosis. Long story short, studies show that fasting revs up the body’s natural production of a calming neurotransmitter called GABA. GABA is essential in the overall reduction of brain fog and anxiety, while also improving memory and focus. GABA  helps with stress management and boosts our mood. So if you’re looking for a productive morning, start intermittent fasting the night before, and get those GABA levels up.

Write When You Wake Up

The first two hours that you’re awake, with your GABA levels soaring, your mind is not yet shackled by stressors of the day or inhibited by the overwhelming stimulation that is your cell phone. If you’re a writer, use this time to start writing, free-flow onto the page before you even check your phone. This will be a great thing to read through later to find some hidden gems to expand on in whatever it is you’re working on. If you’re not a writer, this is still a great time to destress and get your day started by journaling or goal planning. If you’re up early enough, say at 6:00AM, no one will be expecting to hear from you for a few more hours, so this is your time to let your creative juices flow.

Exercise 

This tip seems to make every list — but it’s for a good reason. Exercise not only bumps up the body’s natural production of mood-boosting neurotransmitters like serotonin, according to every study ever, but it can actually make you smarter. {Sort of.} Studies show exercise improves semantic memory, which is one aspect of intelligence.  To boost your mood, get mentally sharper, and make yourself more alert, go get some exercise while you’re cramped up at home. Gym closures are no excuse to not break a sweat!

See More: Local Fitness Businesses Offering Online Classes + Streaming Options

Front-Load Your Day

Break out your to-do list and pick a few of the most important and time-sensitive tasks. Those are your goals for the day. Take advantage of all those heightened feel-good neurotransmitters flowing around your brain from intermittent fasting and exercise, and take on those heavy hitter tasks first. You’re ready for it. Plus, science shows that you’re naturally most productive in the earlier hours. Ticking off tough tasks from a to-do list early on in the day is a great confidence boost and it frees up afternoons for more enjoyable activities.

Limit Your Social Media Time

This is self-explanatory, but a critical addition to this list. During this time of isolation, it’s not exactly realistic to quit social media cold turkey. Staying in touch with friends and loved ones is essential to surviving this crazy time, and social media can be an invaluable tool for keeping businesses afloat with all these mandatory shutdowns. Nonetheless, it’s clear that social media is the number one tool used by the world’s greatest procrastinators, and it can kill creativity. Studies show that the less time we spend stimulating our brain with social media, the sharper and more productive we are.

Set some social media boundaries to increase the time you spend being productive every day. Check your phone’s screen time app, see how much time you’re spending camped on your phone, and set a *realistic* goal to decrease that time. Maybe start by cutting an hour your first week, then two hours the next week.

Set a Schedule

Consistency is key, people. Take a minute out of your day to draw yourself out a schedule. Budget your daily hours, set a plan, and most importantly, stick to it. Next step — create a weekly schedule. Come up with some weekly {quarantined} hopes and dreams. Then take it a step further: Create a monthly schedule. Now, don’t get ahead of yourself here and try to plan exactly what you’ll be doing at 3:16PM, April 23rd, but do set some goals you plan to accomplish throughout the month. Following a schedule is imperative to productivity and consistency is the most defining factor of success. 

Read More: If You’re Working From Home, Here Are Some Great Tools to Use

Get out of Bed

No matter how tempting it may seem, don’t try to do your work from bed. Not only will this make you work less efficiently, but it could also negatively impact your sleep, which will make you more tired and less productive — it’s a vicious cycle.  You don’t want to associate your bedroom with the pressures and alertness of work-time, and you don’t want to associate your work with the relaxation of lounging in bed.  Your work is important, so treat it with the respect it deserves and find a more structured place to do it, even if that means your kitchen table needs to double as your office.

 

Hopefully, these productivity hacks can help all of our readers stay focused in a time where it seems so easy to slack off and feel a little hopeless. If you’ve been catching yourself snoozing until noon, racking up about 600 steps per day, or staring at your phone until your eyes burn, remember — this isn’t the end of the world, it just feels like it right now. Maintaining a normal, healthy schedule is essential to the foundation of your mental health right now.

Have any tips? We’re trying to stay as up to date as possible.

Please email hello@hobokengirl.com with updates. Thank you!

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Corinne is a Jersey girl who has always loved to write, create, and make people laugh. Always the “comedian” of the friend group, she's a stand up comic and aspiring comedy writer. She studied communications/film and media at the University of Miami, with a minor in both psychology and exercise science, but now she’s living in downtown Jersey City. Singing and playing the guitar and piano are her favorite hobbies when she’s not writing, working out, or going to comedy shows.


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