For many people working remotely means you can work whenever you feel like it and in any way that suits you however, it can also present a major challenge. Without a regular schedule, how do you make sure you get the most out of your remote work time?
Most remote workers find that it is best to set a schedule even if you do not have to. This helps you maintain balance and make sure you are getting enough work done each day. It also prevents you from working too much. This may be surprising, but many new remote workers find that they work more since there is no official “quitting time.”
Over the past several weeks, I have shared many aspects of remote work through blog posts, webinars, and an online course. Given all that, you still need to determine how to get the most out of your remote work time. You can achieve this with the right schedule.
Are you most productive in the early morning? Then start work at 6 am. Are you a night person? Your workday can kick off after lunch. You can even break it up so that you have a productive morning, a long break, and then a few evening hours. Working with your natural rhythms, you can create a schedule that works for you.
At first, it can be difficult to determine how long your workday should be. A good guideline is to look at how much you work now and set a schedule accordingly. Or make it just a bit shorter and try to be more productive with your time. You can always add a few hours when you have a deadline or an important project that needs to be finished.
Once you have your schedule set, tell everyone who needs to know. You might let colleagues or clients know your schedule so they know when they can reach you. If there are people you work within another time zone, you may need to adjust your schedule accordingly. You should inform family members and roommates as well, so they do not interrupt you during your working time.
It is up to you to monitor your working time to make sure it is working the way you want it to. You should take some time to reflect and make sure you are getting results. Ask yourself:
- Are you getting things done?
- How is your energy level?
- Do you have the time to do the other things you want to do when you are done working?
If not, see what changes you can make to maximize your time. Remember, your work schedule serves you, not the other way around.
Another advantage of having a flexible schedule is that you can adjust it when necessary. When you have a family emergency or something else to deal with, take the time off you need. If there’s important work to do, shift it to another day.
“The secret of your success is determined by your daily agenda”Dr. John C. Maxwell
Since you have gone to the trouble to make a remote work schedule, stick to it! When you are off the clock, do not do anything work-related. Resist the urge to check your email. Turn off notifications. If you want to check email while your off work, set a time limit so you do not get absorbed in work again.
Your remote work schedule gives you control over your work so you can be productive and maintain a work-life balance.
Are you getting the most out of your remote work time?
Want to learn more about successful remote work? Check out my webinar, Success Overcoming Remote Challenges, by clicking HERE.