Working from home is not all sunshine and roses. It certainly has many benefits. For instance, it lessens the need for you to brave the traffic every day and allows you to be more flexible with how you spend your time and energy. But it also has its cons, especially if your home is not designed for carrying out the specific work that you do. If you live near a busy street or with pets and children, for example, then there’s a good chance you’ll have to deal with a lot of everyday noise while you’re working. This can be distracting, especially if your remote job demands the utmost concentration or a quiet environment.
In case you’re in the process of finding jobs in the Philippines, work from home options require special preparation before you accept an offer for one. This includes making sure you have a work area and an environment that are conducive to the work you do. It’s important that you are able to focus on your tasks during work hours, so here are some tips on how you can best manage distractions while working from home.
Be Aware of the Common Distractions When Working from Home
Forewarned is forearmed, and the same applies to noises and disturbances that are coming from one’s own home or neighborhood. If you have a good idea of the sources and the kinds of noises that you can expect to deal with, then you can prepare for them early on. For instance, if there’s noise from the street, such as from passing vehicles or kids playing outside, you can upgrade your windows that are facing that direction. You can install glass or timber windows and doors, use fitted rubber spacers, or put up curtains that are designed to reduce noise. The heat can also be a source of distraction, especially in a tropical country like the Philippines. In this case, you can install an exhaust fan or air conditioner in the room that will serve as your home office before your start date.
Talk About Your Boundaries with Your Housemates
The people you live with also contribute to the distractions that you can face while working from home. You need to talk with them about your schedule and how you can work together to make the environment at home comfortable for everyone, even those who are working remotely. If you have other adults in your home, perhaps you can let them know about your work and sleep schedule so they can refrain from playing loud music during that period. If you have kids, it’s a good idea to brief them about your responsibilities at home and at your remote workplace. Let them know as well who they can go to if they need an adult while you’re busy or how to get your attention when you’re in a meeting and an emergency comes up.
Prepare a Place Where You Can Concentrate
Your remote workplace should be conducive to productivity. Aside from maintaining a cool and quiet workplace environment, you should also try to organize the space so it’s easier for you to do what you need to do. If you spend a great deal of time in front of the computer, for example, then invest in chairs and tables that will keep you comfortable. This way, you won’t be distracted by body pains when you’re trying to get work done. In addition to ergonomics, try to pay attention to the space’s lighting and whether the tools of the trade that you regularly use are easily accessible to you. If you expect to work from home for the long term and your budget allows it, consider doing a bit of remodeling so you can move more easily in your own workspace.
Let Other People Know That You’re Busy
The arrival of unexpected visitors can significantly impact your schedule. If you have relatives or friends who stay nearby and tend to drop by your house when you’re in the middle of working, their constant presence can be a cause of distraction. Talk to them ahead of time about your schedule so they can visit you during your free time, or work on a strategy so that their visit won’t distract you. If your parents regularly spend time with your kids while you’re working, perhaps they can just wave at you from the window to let you know that they’re visiting instead of coming into your work area and disrupting your flow.
Have a Plan for When Things Are Distracting
There will be days when it feels like everything is working against you, despite all your preparation. The next-door neighbors and passing vehicles might seem extra noisy, or your kids and pets might demand more attention than usual. How are you going to move forward in such a situation? The best thing to do is make a plan to solve these issues before they arise. Perhaps you can consider working in a cafe if a construction project starts taking place near your home office. If your kids get sick, maybe you can plan to get one of your relatives to watch over them if you’re unable to take a leave. Planning for these situations in advance will help you make quick decisions and reduce the level of distraction you may feel while at work.
Working from home is becoming a more popular option in the Philippines. If you want to enjoy the same work arrangement and all the benefits it brings, make sure to follow this list of tips so you can focus even while working apart from your team.
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