The unbearable lightness of procrastination has never been more palpable than these days, and who could blame the procrastinator? With all the free content just waiting to be accessed, it’s never been easier to spectacularly waste time without even noticing it before it’s too late.
New-found work-at-home employees are at especially high risk, as freelancers have already learned the skill of optimizing time. The trick is in making a schedule, for starters. The rest will naturally follow.
1. Define Urgent and Flexible Matters
First of all, some tasks are more important than others. If you are working from home, the job still must be done within the projected deadlines – no matter your other plans.
As mentioned above, the easiest (and most efficient) practice is to draft a schedule to help you keep things in order. Start by including all daily tasks – including taking a shower in the morning, working out, and enjoying your lunch break.
To creative souls, the idea that every little thing needs to be pre-defined and set within strict time-limits may appear outrageous at first, but remember that this strategy serves to help you get started, not to limit your leisure time.
So, an example schedule should look something like this:
7:30 – 8 am: getting up, taking a shower
8 – 8:20 am: breakfast
8:20 am – 12:30 pm: work
12:30 – 1 pm: lunch break
(and so on and so forth)
2. Brainstorm Your Work-Related Tasks
Stick to the schedule to get the daily job done. Give it your all as you would if you were at the office. Enjoy the perks of staying at home, though. E.g., you may dress as you like, as long as you don’t wear your pajamas.
Pajamas may sound like freedom, we know, but they quickly turn into laziness, and procrastination follows soon afterward. Rather, wear leisure clothes.
Some people have discovered that dressing up in their business attire suits them better. It helps them cope with the fact that they’re still performing their work-related duties, even if the setting has changed. Obviously, you should choose whichever option aligns with your character better.
3. Take Your Time With Breaks
Since you’re staying at home, you’ll get an extra couple of hours to use in whichever way you see fit. Many people have discovered they enjoy eating home meals, so you may add a slot for cooking activities, for example.
The same goes for regular workout routines. Even if you’re pressed for time, you can always find 10 minutes or so to unwind.
Overall, schedule a break for the activities you enjoy, including procrastination. Hey, not doing anything from time to time may serve to restart your brain, so why not? As long as you keep things in moderation, anything goes.
4. Dedicate a Time Slot for Wasting Time
Yeah, you’ve read that right. It is a well-known fact that many people tend to get distracted more when working from home. Usually, this translates into excess email checking and browsing social media pages – usually with no aim at all.
Having more time for yourself is great, so think about the things you’ve always wanted to do but never had enough time for them.
Which activities suffer the most due to your hectic schedule? Is it reading or exercising or cooking or meditating? Something else? Whatever it is, it’s time to use that extra time to start enjoying them.
Dedicate a slot for them in your schedule and then add another one or two for wasting time in whichever way you find it enjoyable. Note that in this way, you will have an exact calculation of how much time you spent doing various activities, which will, in turn, help you keep things in perspective.
5. Learn a New Skill
Now, take this advice with a grain of salt, especially if you’re wasting too much time browsing everything and nothing online. There are people who have taken the tip literally without taking their preferences and talents into consideration.
If you have two left hands, obviously don’t attempt tailoring. However, you may try your hand at something interesting you’ve never had enough time for before. For example, intellectual people will find that the choice of free online courses covering pretty much everything under the sun is more abundant than ever. From painting to molecular biology, you’ll find a couple of courses to help you grow both professionally and privately.
To top it off, there are additional ways to spend some meaningful time with your family while using your brain waves in a creative way. For example, many stay-at-home parents have discovered that online school is a great opportunity to bond with their children while refreshing their knowledge.
These are only some of the examples to give you an idea. Think for yourself what you would like to learn and do in your spare time. We recommend you do it before you start browsing the offer. As mentioned above, it is so rich that if you don’t have even a vague idea of what you are looking for, you’ll end up procrastinating instead.
6. When You Can’t Go Outside, Go Inside
This platitude has been misused more times than we care to think about, so don’t take it literally. In its basic sense, it implies meditation or similar spiritual activity, but it doesn’t have to be necessarily that way. As long as it is about you and you alone, anything will do.
What exactly does that portend? We are simply adamant about giving ourselves the alone time we deserve. Social activities and workouts are fine and all, but people also need some free time only for themselves. In which way you will choose to spend it is entirely up to you. It can be anything from meditation to a hobby or simply playing with your pet. Whatever helps you recharge!
In a Nutshell
Doing nothing is not necessarily bad as long as you give it some meaning. If lying flat on the floor gives you the much-needed relaxation you deserve, so be it. The point is to avoid procrastination. Don’t do “nothing” for the sake of “doing nothing.” Instead, pick an activity that will help you relax. Over time, you’re bound to discover something new about yourself, so it’s definitely worth a go.
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