Kevin McCloud
Brand Ambassador for Green Retreats

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How to Work from Home Efficiently

25th March 2020

What Not to Do When Working from Home

At Green Retreats, we are massive advocates for working from home. We feel that everyone should have the luxury of remote working while not impeaching on your home life. This is one of the reasons the brand was established, to allow people to have a separate space to work from. While we have discussed frequently why we feel working from home is more efficient, we think it is also essential to consider how not to work from home. During this time, it can be a trap we all fall into, allowing external elements to distract us from work at hand. Here’s what you should do while working from home to increase efficiency.

Set Boundaries

Boundaries must be set from the get-go, not only for yourself but also for your family while everyone is at home. If you are used to working from an office, chances are you work the standard 8 hours per day. Working from home shouldn’t be any different. It is vital to maintain your routine, or you may face losing efficiency with your workload. For those set hours in the day, it is essential to focus and not allow home matters to interfere. If you have young children at home, it is crucial to make them understand that, while you are home, that does not mean you are available to their every whim. The excitement of having mum or dad at home can be overwhelming.

Having space away from home, such as a garden office can give you the illusion of “commuting” to work and hopefully create the separation between home and work. This is why setting boundaries is essential for yourself too. It is just as easy for you to become distracted by the dirty dishes in the kitchen sink or the dog who’s looking at you with those eyes. Be strict with yourself. Maybe making lists is a more natural way for you to stay on top of what needs doing that day. And how satisfying is it to physically tick things off a list?

Pinnacle garden office with hot tub to the left

Plan Ahead

Which leads us onto the next point, plan your week ahead of schedule. Knowing daily what your tasks are for the day will give you a goal to work towards. While there is a beauty of flexibility with working from home, a schedule allows you to commit to jobs on certain days without deferring. Maybe you find it easier to work digitally? Operating systems such as monday.com  and Toggle will enable you to plan your workload and share it with your team. This allows you all to stay on top of what needs doing by each individual and creates a sense of community despite all being separate. This is also an excellent way for managers to stay up to date with their staff.

Person writing in a planner with a cup of tea to the right

Don’t Get Distracted

There are so many distractions within the home that could keep you from work. One of the biggest distractions is the television and with that comes Netflix, YouTube, Disney Plus. Need we say more. Of course, there are many things we’d rather be doing at home, but it is essential to find ways to keep those distractions at bay. Why not consider working towards goals and rewards? If I work solidly from 8 am till 11 am I’m going to treat myself to a delicious mid-morning coffee. Or maybe your reward is a screen break, out in the garden. Or a quick browse on social media. Ultimately, we are all humans and distractions are inevitable, but it’s how we cope with them which make the difference between a good home/work balance and no balance.

If social media is a distraction, make sure your phone is hidden away or set your phone to aeroplane mode so as not to receive notifications. Another reason why a garden office is an excellent solution to remote working is that you are distanced from the home and distractions within it. The snack cupboard won’t be winking at you from your garden office.

A woman working at an iMac

Don’t Work in Your PJ’s

While a luxury of working from home may be that you don’t necessarily need to get dressed, it is a known fact that staying in your pyjamas all day can reduce your efficiency and make you subconsciously feel as if your day has yet to begin. Getting changed out of your pyjamas can also give you a sense of distinction between work and home. Working from home, the days can very quickly begin to blend, and you can lose the variation between your job and relaxing. Getting dressed daily in fresh, albeit comfy clothes can offer this distinction between the days and also helps you not to fall into a rut and sets structure in your day. Shower and get dressed in the morning for work then once your workday is over changed back into your pyjamas to relax.

Looking through bi-folds in a kitchen to a garden room

While many of us may have suddenly been thrown into working from home without much notice, keeping a positive mindset is crucial at this time. With the mentality and tools and, working from home can be just as effective and efficient than working from an office. 


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