5 Ways to Set Boundaries When You Work From Home
One of the main reasons people trade in their regular desk jobs for virtual assistant jobs is because of the belief that being a home based virtual assistant automatically grants them better work-life balance than holding an office post. While it’s true that many home-based VAs have learned to properly balance their home life and career, it definitely is something that takes effort to achieve.
Working from home presents it’s own set of challenges in terms of achieving optimum work-life balance. For one, some people found it easier to have the option to leave their work in the office and forget it when they get home. But when you make money from home, you don’t really get this chance; your home is your office. More often than not, your home life will interfere with your work life.
So how do you separate the two? How can you ensure that your responsibilities at home don’t impede your productivity at work? Check out these 5 ways to set boundaries when you work from home.
Have a clearly defined workspace.
Having a space in your house that’s solely for working can help you create the illusion of being able to leave your work behind when you move away to other parts of your home. It also sets the atmosphere when you work and helps you sharpen your focus.
Setting up a defined workstation doesn’t have to take up too much space. Even a proper work desk in one corner of your room will do, as long as you make sure that your desk doesn’t get touched by non-work related stuff and that you only use this desk to work.
Set definite work hours.
Whether you work in two-hour or eight-hour blocks, there’s no reason for you not to have definite work hours. Having a set work schedule allows you to avoid losing focus and minimizes the chances of unnecessary distractions.
Make sure your household knows you’re in work mode.
When you set your work hours, you have to let everyone at home know that you’re in work mode. This way, they will know not to bother you for trivial things.
Set non-negotiable work limits.
As much as your home life should not interfere with your work life, so should your work not keep you from spending time with your family and doing your responsibilities at home. Set non-negotiable limits such as, you will only answer work-related emails when you’re on your work hours or you’re only going to work a certain number of hours per day. This will help you be present physically and mentally when you’re needed by your household.
Take a break.
No matter what others think, working from home isn’t all fun and games. Work from home is still work. It can be stressful and draining and it will definitely take it’s toll on your physical, emotional, and mental health if left unchecked. So make sure you take breaks every now and then. It might be tempting to work for 12 straight hours since you’re just at home anyway, but doing so will be harmful to your health and end up just hampering your productivity. Take several short breaks when you’re working, and try to limit your schedule to a maximum of eight work hours a day.
Setting clear boundaries can help you make your work life and your home life so much more manageable. Sure, it might take you some time to get used to the separation of the two, but the end results will definitely make it worth your efforts.
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