“People are more productive working from home than people would have expected. Some people tought that everything was just going to fall apart, and it hasn't.”
The pandemic showed the world that people can work from home and still be productive. The likes of Tim Ferris had already proposed The 4-Hour Work Week as a way to boost productivity so we can reclaim our time and our lives.
Whatever your reason and arrangement, here's how to make WFH (Work From Home) work for you.
1. Acknowledge You Exist in a 360-Reality
Yesterday, I took the Modesta Mahiga 360 Leadership Podcast on LinkedIn Live with the message There is No Personal-Professional Divide and proposed How to Align Work & Life for Organizational Success. Check out the summary in the video below.
It's application here is that when you give yourself permission to attend to both your work and life priorities, you are free to design a WFH dynamic that honors you, your family, and work relationships and commitments.
2. Plan Your 360 Priorities Now that you are working from home, at least two, if not more, areas of your life will overlap. This is especially so if you have others living with you. As a 360 leader that wants to thrive at work and in life, it would do you well to plan your overall life priorities then schedule them into your WFH day. This way, rather than following a plan that ticks home and work tasks, you will actually do the things that add meaning and move the needle in the most important areas of your work and life. If it is not a life or work priority, either delay, delegate, or completely delete it out of your day.
3. Prioritize Your 360 Plans With your priorities clear, safeguard them in daily, weekly, and monthly plans, establishing healthy boundaries, and building in third-party accountability that keep you focused, productive, and effective at work and in life. In our 360 Leadership Planner we help you plan and protect your 360 work-life priorities each day to remove distractions and non-essentials as well as plan in rest and recreation.
4. Schedule in Life Keep work time, work time, but also schedule your life around it so that you are not tempted to "steal time" to attend to other matters. I have found shceduling time for God, family, rest, fun, thinking, etcetera, then blocking my calendar as well as setting labeled alarms keep me accountable to prioritize what I have committed to do each day, week, month, etcetera. For example, when I schedule in and actually follow through on taking breaks, running errands, playing with kids, and resting, I am able to discipline myself to stay productive during work because I will be rewarded with a break to do others things there after.
5. Build in Accountability Make sure people at work and home know your priorities and plans, and give them permission to hold you accountable to what you commit to do each day. At home, I share my schedule with my husband, and let my children know when I will be available. At work, I block unavailability and let my team know when and why I am unavailable for work.
6. Be Flexible Despite your best efforts, life will happen and you will get thrown off track. Don't be discouraged. Factor in setbacks to help you overcome frustrations and look ahead to improve your WFH experience. Make it a daily and weekly practice to review each day and note down
What went well in your prioritizing and planning
What needs improvement in your prioritizing and planning Make the necessary changes and try again the next day and the next day, until you have found a WFH schedule and rythm that works for you. You will find that what works in this season may need adjusting when seasons and circumstances change. Expect that and have the flexibility to accommodate shifting priorities and situations.
Make Work From Home Work For You WFH has given many the freedom to design the life they want. For the first time ever, we truly can have it all if we plan our priorities, and once we have identified them, prioritize and protect our plans in schedules and accountability that creates harmony between our work and life. If you struggle to stay disciplined and focused, establish boundaries, and deliver results when working from home, check out our Personal Goal-Setting Course that will help you know what to prioritize and stick to your plan to achieve your goals every single day.
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