Best Practices for Working at Home

Numerous businesses are perfectly suited for being home-based, and you will find benefits not only in lower overheads, but also in an improved quality of life. If you have children, then having a home office can allow you to spend more time with them, while also being available for them when necessary.

Though the experience is ultimately very rewarding, there are important factors to be considered in maintaining a balanced and healthy life, both personally and professionally. In this post we will explore seven suggestions based on best-practices.

Create an Independent Work space

The most important advice you will ever receive before creating your home office is to ensure that you a dedicated area. This could be a spare bedroom, your basement or even a closed off section of your garage. It is essential that this be a private and separate space, not shared with any part of your home.

Define Your Boundaries

It is easy for the lines separating family and work to become blurred when working from a home office, which is why it is important that you define specific rules and guidelines. These will help minimize unnecessary distractions and allow you to remain focused on your work. Even though working from home gives you easy to access to your family, which you should always take advantage of, it should still occur with set conditions.

Remember That Your Health is Important

Create an environment that is both comfortable and healthy. Furnish your office with furniture and equipment that are ergonomically correct, even if they cost a bit more. Shop around for the best chair you can afford, select a large computer monitor and definitely consider a standing desk. New standing desks even allow for easy switching between standing and sitting, and the health benefits are certainly worth the effort.

Schedule Breaks

Your health and sanity will never benefit from long hours without a break, while research shows that regularly scheduled breaks can actually boost productivity. Take a short break of 5 to 10 minutes every 90 minutes and use the time to stretch, do some quick exercise, go for a walk, or even just stare out the window. It must be a break from work, so don’t cheat by using the time to make some important phone calls or anything else remotely related to work.

Stay Fit and Maintain a Healthy Diet

Even with regular breaks and an ergonomic work space, you still need to take care of the basics. This involves maintaining a healthy lifestyle, exercising regularly and eating balanced meals. By investing in your health you stand not only to lose excess weight, you will find yourself with a lot more energy too.

Spend Time with Friends

Reconnect with friends regularly to further enhance any breaks you take from work, and do this through meaningful conversations, not through social networks or other electronic means. Interacting with other people can have a very positive impact on your focus later, and even help you gain additional insights into any problems you may have encountered at work.

Work Regular Hours

Just because working from home allows you to start your day earlier, or work until late at night does not mean you should. Maintain regular working hours, and at the end of the day turn off the computer and work phone, and spend time relaxing with your family. Schedule vacation time, or extended breaks, when you really get away from it all.

Maybe you have already applied all of these suggestions to your own working environment, but if you haven’t it isn’t too late to start now. You will certainly notice a difference to your business and to your own health.

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