Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon may enjoy working late nights, but they aren’t for everyone! Working from home should be a treat. Granted, it’s vital that you treat it as a job and not an ‘eh, I’ll do it when I feel like it’ pastime. Still, being the boss means you can tailor a career around your life and create shift patterns. So, it makes no sense to spend all night working into the late hours for the sake of the company. Yes, the business should be successful, but you have to find a balance between life and work.
Otherwise, stress and pressure will increase and life won’t seem as joyful.
The question on everyone’s lips is ‘how do I eliminate late night working?’ Well, the answer is to leave work firmly where it belongs: at work! The following are the six tips that can help you find the perfect balance.
Start A Critique
70 and 80 hour weeks should be full to the brim of administration work and pencil pushing. In fact, there shouldn’t be a single minute where you have time to take a break. Anyone that works more than 50 hours a week is clearly at breaking point and needs to review their efforts. Or are they? The truth is that lots of long days and weeks can be condensed into a regular shift. The trick is to critique your efforts and figure out where you are wasting time. As a home-based entrepreneur, you may spend too much time having breakfast and watching afternoon TV. Or, there is a slight chance you surf the internet instead of sending emails and adjusting the website. Once you understand that you are wasting precious time, you can restructure the day to your benefit. For example, some businessmen and women set meeting deadlines as not to fritter away the morning hours.
Knowing that you are a procrastinator isn’t enough; you have to be proactive. As a professional time waster, it’s hard to get into the mood which is why a software program may come in handy. Productivity Planner receives a fantastic review by the guys and girls at Netstar who say it will ‘keep you accountable to yourself.’ Okay, it sounds as if the company is laying it on thick, but the reviews do match up. Lots of businesses rely on planners nowadays because there is too much to remember. Plus, technology can alert you to important issues and keep them fresh in your mind. Consider there is a meeting you can’t miss – a planner will inform you to be ready fifteen minutes beforehand. Some people have a level of organization in their bones, whereas others need a small push.
Go Big And Then Go Home
One sure-fire way to stay in the office past 5 o’clock is to mismanage tasks. Whatever people say, please don’t believe the nonsense that states every job is created equally. It’s stupid, it’s untrue, and it shouldn’t be pedaled around a home office. Like all things in life, there are important tasks, less important ones, and others that can wait. Use this equation to your advantage and structure the day to tackle the main issues as early as possible. Because they are a big deal, it’s logical to assume that they will take the longest time to complete. So, by the end of the day, you should have made a huge dent in the to-do list. All of the other stuff can wait until the morning, or the next day, or even the next week.
Leave The Laptop
You’re in the office and decide to call it a day. It’s a smart idea. But, then, you unplug the laptop and take it downstairs to the living room. After dinner and during a pivotal scene in Homeland, a work-related issue pops into your head. ‘Did I send that email?’ ‘Did I pay that invoice?’ It’s easy to let your mind wander, especially during relaxation time. However, it’s vital that you let your brain wander all the way out of the office in your head and out of the door. Thinking about work will only make you want to continue and that’s a bad idea as there is always something extra. Leave the laptop in the office and resist the urge to log-in to any business accounts until the following day. Just because you do it from a sofa or a bed doesn’t mean it isn’t work.
Home-based entrepreneurs have to learn to say no. To be fair, it’s a trait of successful people around the world, but it’s integral for a home office enthusiast. The reason is simple: people will try to take advantage. One minute you’re working and the next the niece and nephew are in the living room climbing on your back. There is nothing wrong with helping a friend in need, but it has to be the last resort. Otherwise, the odds of working until midnight are not high but certain. Sometimes, there are unnecessary interruptions and they need to be avoided like the plague. Or, you can find a way to incorporate them into your free-time. Say someone needs a ride because their car broke down, you can tell them you will do it during your lunch hour. Then, productivity shouldn’t fall and the hours while away.
Take A Break
Autopilot isn’t just a software program on planes. Employees have it inbuilt too, and they use it throughout the workday. Think about a typical day at the office. Is Monday similar to Wednesday and Friday? If so, it’s tempting to follow the same structure and turn on the autopilot function. The problem is that you can’t react to changes which can lengthen the amount of time in the office. Instead, take regular breaks and come back refreshed and ready to rumble. That way, the output should be higher and you should complete tasks in record time. Just don’t have longer than one hour for lunch and fifteen minutes for a coffee break.
Do you burn the midnight oil? Hopefully, the info above will help you get a better night’s sleep.