A photo taken from behind. A young male working on his laptop at a desk which features another laptop and computer.

July 13, 2021, by indybamra1

8 Productivity Hacks To Ace Working From Home

By, Catherine Sibley – Employability Education Projects Officer

Whether you’re studying remotely or about to begin remote working you may be feeling a bit worried about how you’ll approach this new way of working. Or maybe you’re worried about how productive you’ll be with studying or working remotely. You should try some of our tips in this blog post to make it a positive experience!

1. Make it easy

Give yourself triggers that will help you to get into a routine so you’re ready for work. This means giving yourself a set time to start and finish work (as far as possible). Showing up dressed, rather than in your pyjamas, will also put you in a work mindset.

2. Have a designated workspace

I should be so lucky, I hear you say! Ok, most of us don’t have our own study space but maybe you can grab a specific spot at a table or specific chair. Make this the place that you always work. Having this set place will mean it’ll be a trigger to get you started and ready to work.

3. Manage your attention

Productivity research now shows that it’s just as about attention management as much as time management that results in productivity. What time of the day do you notice you do your best work?
Reserve that time for important work that requires more focus and other time for catching up on any emails or routine tasks. Check out magpie which has resources on working smarter not harder!

4. How are you using technology?

Technology can be a force for and against productivity. We’ve all got sucked into that interesting post, then another and before you know it, an hour’s gone! Put your phone out of sight and turn it on silent, turn off notifications on your laptop so you’re not distracted. Technology also offers some brilliant resources such as a tomato timer to help you focus your attention.
There are some apps to try here. And the University has information and training to help with digital skills.

5. Take breaks

If you’re using the tomato timer you get short breaks of 5 minutes where it’s good to do a few stretches and focus your eyes on something in the distance to give them a rest from the screen. At longer breaks and lunch breaks, you could take a walk, try a short meditation or maybe do a great stretching activity from the Sports Team at UoN. Taking short breaks in-between focused attention makes you more productive throughout the day.

6. Stay connected

Working from home can be isolating.
Schedule meet-ups online if physical contact isn’t possible. If you’ve started your first job, then join any online social activities that are happening. Or why not break the ice yourself, by suggesting a meet-up – you may feel awkward suggesting it, but others will also be keen to make contact and it’ll make you appear very proactive!

7. Have a plan

Before you finish work, be clear about what you’re going to do the next day. If you’ve started your first job and aren’t sure what you’re doing, make an appointment with your supervisor with an outline of a plan or ideas you’ve thought of and use this as an opportunity to check that you’re on the right track. Similarly, if you’re a student, contact a tutor if you’re struggling with an essay or academic work.

8. Be kind to yourself

Some people love working from home, others find it trickier – many people fluctuate between these two positions. Remember you’re not alone and there is support out there for you to access, so give it a try if you need to.

Take a look at the University’s mental health and wellbeing webpage which is full of hints and useful self-help strategies and self-care advice. You can also get one-to-one support with one of our careers advisers by booking a careers appointment.

Posted in Career wellbeingCareers AdviceGraduating in 2021