The current COVID-19 pandemic has forced many businesses to let employees work from home. For many, remote work is a new reality that requires quick adoption. However, whether working from home by choice or by necessity, it has its benefits such as saving time and money by avoiding daily commute. It also means one requires self-motivation in order to get as much done as though operating in a normal workplace setting. 

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In order to be highly effective, adoption of the following habits is critical in getting the job done.

  1. Avoid distractions:Distractions are the biggest challenge when working remotely. To keep your brain in the right mode, avoid doing non-work tasks during your work time. For example, schedule a separate time to do laundry instead of tackling it while you are finishing a work presentation.
  2. Create work triggers for your brain: When working in an office, the daily routine of getting ready and commuting helps your brain get ready for the day. But when you are working remotely, you can create a routine of activities that can get your head ready for work in a similar way, like exercising, reading the news, or making coffee.
  3. Recreate your workplace at home:Getting yourself a workspace may also be key. A more structured and designated workspace, whether it is a separate room or a fully stocked desk, can help tell your brain you are in the place where you do work productively and without distraction. 
  4. Get organized with a to-do list:A simple to-do list can do wonders in keeping you organized, motivated, and productive as you work from home. As you create your list, think about big, long-term goals, like finishing a project, as well as small goals like completing tasks that lead to that big goal. Checking off those smaller goals lets you know you are making progress, which keeps you motivated throughout your day. And work feels much more doable when it is not all one giant task.
  5. Know when to stop working: A common challenge when working remotely is usually working too much. You see your computer nearby, for instance, and you have an urge to check your email constantly throughout the evening. That is why it is important to determine in advance when your workday will end. It is advisable to retain the office work schedule unless you are forced by some urgent tasks. 
  6. Maintain Constant Communication with your colleagues and manager: The key to being successful in any professional role is communication, but when it comes to working remotely work it is an even more important asset. Since you are no longer a few desks down from your co-workers or your manager, you need to ensure that you maintain communication with them on a regular basis to connect on your goals, upcoming projects and daily tasks, or just to have a catch up conversation. 

Certainly, working from home is not easy, even for those who have been doing it for years and this is especially because it is difficult to develop, and stick to a new routine. For many, it is a whole new experience that could affect their work in a positive or negative way. It is however possible to still maintain high productivity working remotely just as you would while working at your normal workplace.