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Working From Home: 10 Ways To Keep Your Sanity While Maximizing Your Efforts.

Apr 18, 2008
1. Bring your family in on your game plan.

Make sure your family knows what your plans and goals are. And, be sure to make it clear to them that they will be included in your reward system for helping you stay on track.

Rewards could be a Sunday picnic or movie. A quarterly reward could be a family vacation or weekend get away. Make it fun and follow through with your promises to them.

2. Keep a daily "to do" list.

This can be done in the evening or 1st thing in the morning. I prefer to make my list first thing in the morning when my mind is the clearest.

Look over tasks that weren't finished the day before and decide if they're still important. Add them to the list if they are and delete them if not.

Make sure you always have 10 tasks to accomplish to begin your day. Prioritize your to do list from "critical" to "would be nice."

3. Don't answer the phone.

Unless it's business related and important, don't answer the phone. Let the calls from Uncle Joe or AT&T go to voicemail.

If it's important, they will leave a message. Call the one's you think qualify for your time back in the evening.

4. Check email once a day.

This is a big one! Email can be very distracting. One thing leads to another and before you know it you've lost an hour.

Set aside 15 or 20 minutes 1st thing in the morning or in the evening to check email.

5. Treat your time like you're an employee.

The only way to keep on target is if you realize your time is valuable. You wouldn't read the paper or surf the net on company time. Don't do it on your time. Keep a mental time clock and be sure to punch in! (And, don't forget to punch out at night.)

6. Focus on one task at a time.

Multi-tasking is overrated. You will get the best job done by taking the 1st task on your list and completing it. Then jump on to the next.

You don't want to get to the end of your day and have 6 or 7 tasks only half done. That will get you nowhere.

7. Take regularly scheduled breaks.

This is a big one. Get up and stretch. Go for a quick walk. Do something to get the blood circulating at least 10 minutes out of every hour.

You will feel more alert and more relaxed.

8. Work hard, play hard.

You're driven and you want to accomplish everything yesterday! Working hard is rewarding. But, you want to play just as hard.

And, not just in the evening or on weekends (what is that, right?) but, life is to be enjoyed. "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy!"

9. Do a nightly review.

Each night, rate your day. How far did you get on your list?

Are you satisfied with your progress?

What can you do to improve the next day?

Or give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done.

10. Remember why you are doing this.

I'm sure you've heard this a million times before but it can't be said enough. You have to have a reason why you are doing this. And, it has to be a good one.

Otherwise, when your printer has a jam, or your package gets crushed in the mail or when any of the hundreds of other little things that can happen do, your attitude will take a dive.

Write down your own reasons and tape the list in a place you can see it. Review it 2 or 3 times a day and the last thing before drifting off to sleep.

But, don't just read it. FEEL IT! Fill your thoughts with emotion. Experience it in your mind as if it's the real thing and it soon will be.

By Brian Partlow, 2008
About the Author
Brian Partlow publishes tips on various work from home topics while earning a full time income around his family and hasn't answered to a boss in a long time. Check Out Brian's Blog For More Tips!
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