First of all, why must one use the word “hack”? Is “hack” the new tip, suggestion, or behavior? I don’t like it much but it’s trendy, SEO loves it, and hell I want to sound cool for once.
Let’s face it, if you’re like me, you’ve longed to work from home since your senior year in college (university as they call it across the pond). I’ve never wanted to sit behind the desk in corporate America, or had a yearning for the corner office. I’ve envisioned myself as a free spirit dancing with Alvin Ailey or the New York Ballet Company. Since that didn’t quite happen, and I landed in a classroom, the principal’s office, and then behind the computer screen, I guess I could share the 5 life changing hacks for women for work from home (because that’s me; sort of).
1. Treat your work like a business
Whether you’re in business for yourself or are a remote employee with a flexible schedule, treat your work like a business. Create a business atmosphere: declutter, create an attractive backdrop for interfacing with clients, and keep discourse professional.
It’s easy to become relaxed at home so sip coffee in between clients and calls.
2. Own your day
Nothing supports productivity more than an organized day. Maintain an office and personal calendar to track appointments, outside meetings, break time, and reflection. Starting the day with a clear purpose sets a professional tone and helps to tackle the tasks that are before you.
3. Get outside
Ok yeah, I know you work from home and have to commit to this in order to remain successful. However, one of the behaviors of successful people is having a key circle. Though online chat is fun and so are message boards and forums, but real-time, live conversations with your peers are stimulants for creativity and opportunity for professional discourse. Successful people aren’t linear beings, they’re multi-dimensional, so get outside, soak up the sun and live a little. Oh yeah, turn off social media throughout the day. Your Facebook update and Pinterest goals can wait.
In point one, I briefly mentioned creating a professional space. Oh that’s key, it’s important, this designation will keep you going. If you’re working from home, I strongly discourage working from your couch or on top of your comfy blanket. No way and no ma’am.
Oh chile, I learned all about delegation early in my career. My very first mentor told me “Even though you can do it all Reginia, don’t”. And I don’t. I learned to delegate. As a classroom teacher, I delegated, that’s how I came up with classroom jobs. As a school administrator, I delegated, that’s how I groomed teacher leaders, and as a pro-blogger, I delegate in order to manage time and be efficient. If you’re a remote employee and your company allows for an assistant, by all means, get one. If you work for yourself, a virtual assistant can be a life saver.
Working for myself and at home (for the most part) has been one of the greatest triumphs of my career. The transition was a bit tougher than I imagined but the rewards are stellar, or sweet, whichever sounds better.