How to stay motivated when working from home

Motivation… one of those really important things we all need to make the most of each and every day. Whether it is the motivation to get out of bed instead of pressing snooze, the motivation to make a healthy lunch instead of grabbing the nearest snack or the motivation to go exercise when you would rather watch a box set or see the latest release. Whatever the task involved we all need the motivation to complete it!

This, for some, comes easily but for others, it can be a lot more challenging. Add into the mix the unique situation we are all in at the minute where we have been told to work from home where possible to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and motivation can seem an even bigger challenge, though it is vitally important right now to get through these uncertain times.

So how can you stay motivated when your daily life has been turned upside down, when families have been told to work, study and play all in the same environment and when your daily commute to work now consists of moving from the bedroom to the dining room table which is now your new office space? It isn’t always easy but below you will find a few ideas to help keep that motivation going whatever the weather may be.

Maintaining a little sense of normality in a situation that really isn’t normal is a really good starting point. Get up at your usual work day time and eat a healthy energising breakfast then dress for work, though it could be a little more relaxed than a suit. Prepare daily or weekly schedules and follow them closely. Include appointments, meetings, lunch and breaks and set a dedicated start and end time to your working day. If, for whatever reason, you lose an hour, such as a child needing help with school work, make up the time where possible but don’t be too harsh on yourself. Remember your employer knows that this is an unprecedented time for all.

Organise your workload and tasks. Keep your workspace neat and tidy and where possible dedicate the space solely to work, creating a clear divide between work and home life. If it is not possible to set a dedicated space, tidy up work things when finished to close down the office for the day. If you can avoid working in your bedroom as this can have a negative impact on rest at the end of a working day.

For some self-motivation comes easily but if you are someone that struggles to stay motivated set yourself hourly targets. Try working to music and allow yourself a reward, such as 15 minutes reading a book or listening to the start of a podcast. If you set yourself the challenge of working for longer, then reward yourself at the end of the day with an episode of your favourite series or a film.

What works for others might not work for you so not be afraid to create your own patterns and schedules, as long as you meet your working requirements and deadlines then you are being successful. Remember don’t be too hard on yourself this unique situation is a daily challenge for us all.