Make Working From Home Work for You

Make Working from Home Work for You | Perks of Being a JAP |

For about four weeks this summer I got to work from home. We were renovating our office so everyone was set up to work remotely for the duration of the renovations. While before I had worked from home here and there this was the first time I was working remotely for an extended period of time. And since it was the summer both Dave and Sadie were home too. It made for an interesting work situation that’s for sure.

I really enjoyed working from home but also missed my office. In order to stay productive while at home, I used the following tips and tricks.

1. Have a dedicated office space. Usually, when I work from home I set up shop at the dining room table. This time, I knew that I needed a semi-permanent space to work out of so I could separate work from home life and also have space away from Dave and Sadie. I used my spare bedroom/craft room as my office (below) and it was easy for everyone to know that if I was in there I was working.

Working from Home | Perks of Being a JAP |

2. Keep the same working hours. I know from other people who work at home that it’s easy to get caught up in what you’re doing and lose track of time, working longer hours than you would if traveling to and from an office. I made sure to work the same hours I would as if I was in the office so I didn’t burn out.

3. Dress for work. I slipped up on this one a couple of times but it made all the difference in my day when I got out of bed and got dressed versus heading straight to the computer in my pajamas. Plus it makes for some pretty awkward video conferences!

4. Take breaks. At times when working from home I personally feel like I have to be attached to my computer every single minute of the working day almost like I need to prove that I’m not slacking off. There’s no reason for this – I work just as hard at home as I do in the office. I remind myself to take breaks and also take advantage of the time at home to take care of things around the house, run an errand, go for a run, etc.

5. Help those around you with your work environment. Like I said in #1, I set up an office space so when I was in there Dave and Sadie knew I was working. However, Sadie is four. “Working” doesn’t really have much context for her so I made a stop sign (below – nice drawing right?) that I put on the door whenever I was in a meeting so she would know not to come in. It worked pretty well!

Working from Home | Perks of Being a JAP |

6. Change your surroundings. It’s hard to be home 24/7. Your home becomes your work, your work your home and it’s hard to separate the two if you’re not careful. Certain days I would head out and work out of a Panera or a coffee shop for a change of scenery (or if I knew Dave was having people over.)

7. If you have the opportunity to co-work, do it. Unfortunately, it only happened once during the summer but a bunch of my coworkers and I took a day and met up to work together. We missed each other! And it was nice to see each other and break up the monotony of our days at home. It’s so different only seeing your colleagues through a computer screen or hearing them on the phone instead of in the office day to day.

If you work from home what are some practices that you rely on to keep your days productive and your work/personal life separate? Or if you’ve done both, which do you prefer? Working from home or in an office?


  1. I totally agree that #1 is THE MOST IMPORTANT! That’s what helps me work effectively at home, and also for homework back when I was doing grad school. (If you saw the pic Linds took of my guest room you can see my “office” nook.) I added an external monitor and keyboard to my desk a while back that made everything even better, because I couldn’t be tempted to pick up the laptop and go to the couch.

    Now I love taking a few days a month to work from home!
    Aubrey recently posted…Budgeting Bloggers: August 2016My Profile

  2. All great tips! I wish I had a dedicated work space, but it’s not feasible in my small apartment. I seem to have made it work all right for me, though, I think because I’ve worked from home for so long (for awhile with a dedicated work space); the transition to not having one was a little easier after being so used to working from home already. And as you know, I spend tons of time in coffee shops!

  3. I technically could work from home, but I haven’t really done it (only once or twice when I had a deadline and took work home). Those are all great tips and I might want to look into working from home every once in a while, but I think overall I prefer going to an office.

    • I am torn! I love going into the office to be with my coworkers but at times I feel like I get more done from home. I also love having the ability to take care of house chores during my breaks… ugh its a toss up!

  4. Yep, yep, yep!!



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