Being your own boss can give you control over when, where and how you work. However, if your business is home or laptop-based, your focus may be challenged without the structure of an office. Temptations may interfere with your productivity.
Regaining your momentum can be difficult, so try to use your work tools wisely to achieve your goals:
• Use social media as a resource rather than a plaything.
• Manage your email and notifications.
• When on phone calls, avoid multitasking by ignoring the computer.
• Have the materials you need on hand. Errands waste time.
Take ownership of your time
Make the best use of your time by building a schedule or routine into your day. Track your day and make adjustments as needed.
• Identify the time of day that works best for different types of tasks.
• Curb interruptions by informing others of your work hours.
• Busy work can waste time, whereas going for a walk can clear your head. Make your breaks useful.
• Stop playing catch-up late at night to make up for time lost during the day.
• Work time is not family time. Arrange for care if necessary.
Setting goals and deadlines can help you measure what is achievable. Keep lists. Crossing tasks off might keep you on track; visual cues can give you a sense of accomplishment. Connecting with peers or meeting in an office could also help you get back on track or redirect your focus.
Manage your work space
Is your work environment as professional as it could be? A dedicated work space can help you separate your personal life from your work. Do you have a back-up space to be used during an emergency?
Changing the scenery every so often can keep you from feeling isolated and bored, both of which may affect your productivity. Having other people around might make you feel more accountable. Try a co-working space, a coffee shop or a library.
Keep your eye on your goal, be it getting your business off the ground, taking it to the next level, or supporting your family. Getting paid depends on the work you produce. However, take the focus off your business, too, from time to time, to keep your perspectives fresh.