When I became an entrepreneur, I dreamed of working from home. No commute, flexible hours, and not having to do my hair. And then that dream came true.
However, after a few weeks, I realized working from home is way harder than I imagined. I did not know there were so many means of procrastination. I had to make some changes and fast if I wanted to get work done.
Here are some rules I learned along the way to help me avoid procrastination.
1. Set up a work area. Sit a table or desk. No couch or bed.
2. Maintain a start and stop time. It doesn’t have to be the traditional 9-5, after all you are at home. But setting an alarm to wake up and get to work keeps your brain on track.
3. Get Dress. You don’t have to put on a suit or dress but for me putting on causal attire puts me in a state to work rather than my pajamas.
4. Stay from distractions. Turn off the TV and social media alerts that are not business related.
5. Make a to do list. Make a list of everything you need to complete for that day. This will keep you on track and away from procrastination.
6. Take a lunch break. Just like you would do at a job off site. Allow yourself some leisure time to recharge and prepare you to go back to work.
What are some rules you have for staying focused when working from home?
I survived. This day wasn’t my greatest, but I got to the gym and did it.
I accidentally did 800 easy between intervals instead of 400, but I’m not going to be too rough on myself. 5.5 miles with warm-up and cool down.
A few of us are particularly guilty of staying late with the boss. This article was not encouraging. Basically, it said you have to put in the face time. Our PR firm is medium sized, so absences are tough. Steve handed this article to me this morning. I think his point was he appreciates all the extra effort. Maybe?
By @alexwneill “Had so much fun with @BenBassofficial @marksteines & @cristinacooks at @homeandfamilytv!! Tune in to @ABCnetwork tonight at 9|8c for the @RookieBlueTV 2 Hour Season 5 Premier !! #RookieBlue #BenBass @muchandhousepr #MuchAndHousePR #PRGirl #homeandfamily @hallmarkchannel”
If you haven’t heard, Public Relations is one of the Top 5 Most Stressful Jobs. That’s right, TOP 5. Makes sense since PRs are the go-to people when corporations need damage-control and need to be able to think quickly and intelligently when under pressure. Public Relations Executive beat out Police Officer, Photojournalist, and Senior Corporate Executive on the CareerCast.com Most Stressful Jobs of 2013 list.
Though we may not be PR Executives just yet, the title of PR Wannabe bears its own level of stress. Here are some tips to help you fellow Wannabes de-stress.
1. Get Organized.
My father used to tell me all the time, “Everything you do is 20% execution, 80% organization.” I think he was preparing me for a career in Public Relations. PR is all about organization. The sooner you get in the habit of staying organized, the sooner you’ll succeed. Start by organizing your accomplishments by internship or job, so you can track what you’ve learned so far. You can also organize writing samples from classes into folders. This will make it easier when you’re looking to put together a portfolio for job and internship interviews. Organizing your research into PR firms, boutiques or brands you’re interested in will also help you create a library of information. And don’t forget the contacts!
2. Plan Ahead.
In PR, it’s not enough to have a Plan A and Plan B. You need a C, D, E and F too. This goes for Wannabes too. Thinking ahead in your internships or jobs will help you get noticed and will take a load off yourself and others. Keeping a list of brainstormed ideas as a reference for when the office is running low on creativity is a great example of preparing for the future and taking initiative. Think of it as the Bank of Ideas. You make deposits into a savings account as an investment for the future, just in case you ever need to make an emergency withdrawal. If you’re still looking for a job, coming up with some PR campaign ideas or social media strategy plans is a great way to show off your skills in an interview!
3. To-Do Lists.
To- Do lists, or task lists, are to PR what fire hoses are to Firefighters- you can’t do your job without them. Keeping track of what tasks need to be done and the order of when they need to be done is critical to PR success. I recommend keeping two lists- one for the day and one for a more long-tem period, the week or month. As a Wannabe, if you aren’t in the workforce yet, putting together a to-do list of tasks before interviewing is a good way to ensure that you’ll be ready for your interview. Some tasks for this list might include researching the PR firm, researching the person interviewing you (if you know), revising your resume and printing out copies, preparing an outfit, and writing a thank you note after the interview.
What are some other ways you keep unnecessary stress away?