work from home, home based business, distraction, can't focus, How to be more productiveWorking from home is definitely growing in popularity by leaps and bounds.  Epic numbers of people are starting businesses where they can work at home. It’s an opportunity to ignite your passion and create a dream business, whether it’s full time or after a regular work day. However, working from a home office comes with its share of stresses and can pose some challenges in the concentration department. How to focus when working from home can be a challenge.

Attention span…what?

A common trait of an entrepreneur is an amazing level of creativity. The downside is you can easily get detoured from work. Distractions pop up like Outlook dinging, phones ringing and of course, Facebook. Concentrating on one project can be blown when you remember something else that needs your attention. Insert your mind producing your latest fantastic ideas about another project.  And dare I mention that doing dishes and laundry seem like a much better idea than the project that keeps repeating on your to do list? The possibilities are endless to become overly sidetracked.

So how can you stay focused when working at home? Here are five tips to help you prevent getting distracted at your home office:

Designate home office space-and stick to it.

Create a space specifically designated for your work. It’s best to have a space where you can shut the door. Your desk area needs to be functional where you can grab what you need in a snap. Use calendars, dry erase and bulletin boards to keep you on task. Try using sticky notes of all sizes to guide you toward your goals and keep clear what your plan is for the day.

Be careful that you don’t work in an easy chair. An extra comfortable chair might be nice for a change of pace but there are some downsides.  There are greater distractions like the television or family members wanting your attention. Also, your posture becomes compromised with your computer or smartpad in your lap. You will begin to notice more tension in your neck and low back when working from your recliner. Sitting at a desk keeps you ergonomically fit

Keep a work schedule.

Set a designated time to work, just as if you were going to the office. Structure your day to include meals and breaks. Have ways to remind yourself to include self-care in your day. Stretch, drink plenty of water and refuel your body with nourishing healthy foods. The upside to working for yourself is that you can build in times to refuel your body, mind and spirit.
There may be times when you have to give a project and extra push to meet a deadline. Make sure you don’t get caught up in working too many hours. Sometimes it’s hard to shut off the computer for down time. Do practice keeping your time sacred for your best health.

Set personal life boundaries.

Set clear communications and boundaries with family, friends or roommates when you have a home office. Be clear about saying no to ongoing extra responsibilities. Teach your loved ones that time spent working at home does not equate to doing extra chores around the house. Plan your time and clearly set your limits with others.

Keep healthy foods and water on hand.

When you have a desk at home there is less of a temptation to hit a fast food drive-through. Prepare and plan your meals as well as keeping healthy snacks on hand. Drink plenty of water and keep hydrated. You’ll be surprised how this tip will keep you energized during your day.

Set times to connect with people.

Set specific times during the day that you’ll answer emails, respond to calls, and engage in social media. Set a timer to hop on and off the internet. Close social media tabs when working on your computer. This will reduce the temptation of checking the latest feed.

You can overcome the challenge of distraction when working from home. Create a system that best fits your style and personality and reduce stress when working from home.

24 thoughts on “5 Tips on How to Focus When Working from Home”

  1. We run 3 businesses out of our home. All of your advice is dead on, especially the quality of food, rest and boundaries that you allow yourself as regular rhythms like weekends, meal times, and the like get out of whack.

  2. Love the 5 tips you've shared! They are certainly of great value!  Keeping healthy food and water on hand…love it!!  It is so easy to munch on unhealthy snacks! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Excellent tips here Lisa!  It's so important to have a structure and focus when we work from home… I can get caught by the "multi-tasking bug" from time to time and it really does not help ;).   Thanks for a great post.

    1. No, multitasking only increases stress but it can happen before you know it. Thanks, Moira

  4. I needed to read these tips, especially" Close social media tabs when working on your computer. This will reduce the temptation of checking the latest feed." Ok, Ok, I'll do it! Thanks, Lisa!

  5. Working at home is quite a trend these days. I find it so much easier to have my own schedule and workspace. There are concerns about distractions, but your tips are good ones to work through that. Thanks for sharing.

  6. I struggle with the one about personal life boundaries…whent he in laws are off or home while I'll still working, they often fail to realize that I am working…and wtht the big difference in my time zone and that of most of my clients, I often have to work hours that collide with the times everyone is home…it can be a struggle of dsitraction for me especially while having to also juggle being the household cook and overall caretaker…have not honed this one well yet…

    1. This is a tricky skill to master. Not everyone understands what is involved in having an online business.In my experience it can be a tough boundary to set. For our well being it’s important to keep setting those boundaries. Thanks Carl

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