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How to stay productive when working from home. One of life's great questions. Whether you're a student pulling all nighters, you're a freelancing entrepreneur taking on the world from your living room or someone with a bit of flexibility in your office job, we all struggle to focus when working from home sometimes. It's okay, we've all been tempted by a Netflix binge or a walk around the block that turns into a shopping spree that lasts three hours... just me? Well, here are my top tips for staying focused.

girl wearing tortoiseshell frame glasses peeking over top of sticker covered laptop

Put your shoes on

I know this sounds weird, but bear with me. One of the biggest tips for staying productive working at home is getting dressed, which works great. I don't know about you but I never get much done when I sit around in my jarmies all day. But I like to go one step further and put my shoes on too. I can't remember who I first heard this from, but ever since, it's worked for me. Plus it stops me flopping onto the couch or the bed quite as easily.

Make a mess

Speaking of flopping onto the couch or bed, it can be SO tempting when you feel like a nap, but a tip I learned in uni is to mess up your bed. Pile on some books, maybe a few clothes, that let's face it, were probably on the floor anyway, and make a mess. That way, when you're feeling like you well and truly can't be arsed, it's like one extra barrier between you and some sweet, sweet zzz's. 

Make plans

Making plans for the day you're meant to be working might sound counter-productive, but trust me on this one. Whether it's meeting a friend for coffee or going to a gym class, get something set in stone. That way, it's like a mini deadline you can work towards throughout the day, like getting your inbox cleared before pilates at 11. Now that would make anyone feel productive. 

pair of tortoiseshell glasses on top of sticker covered laptop

Wear glasses - even if you don't need to

I used to do this before I even needed prescription glasses, granted it was shortly after the whole popping-the-lenses-out-of-3D-glasses phase, but I swear it worked. Think of it like getting into character, but less extra. Now however, I actually need glasses for looking at a screen, which believe it or not I do 24/7. Check out Mister Spex for loads of different frames - there's a Stella McCartney pair I have my eye on. Or if you need them, you can order contact lenses too, although I don't know if they have the same productive effect as glasses do... 

Play a podcast

I know some people say they have to work in silence, and I used to think I was one of those people, until I found myself getting lost in my own thoughts and then having imaginary conversations whilst the emails pile up in my inbox. I've won my fair share of imaginary arguments, but unfortunately that's not the work I'm paid to do, so I've started listening to podcasts when I work at home. At the moment, I'm switching between Kurtis Conner's Very Really Good (SO funny), or Sara Tasker's Hashtag Authentic, which is great for any small business owners and creatives online - it's like two productive tasks in one!

Get some fresh air

Okay okay, I know this one is soooo overdone and it's everyone's advice for basically anything, but my god it helps me stay productive. I get stir crazy really easily, so getting out even for two minutes to go to the shop helps me to reset my mind a little bit. The snacks help too. 

I hope some of these tips help you to stay on top of your game when you're next working from home! Just remember to take breaks and don't be too hard on yourself, because unless you're a surgeon or something, no one's going to die if you don't get everything ticked off your to-do list today. 

Good vibes guys ✌🏼