The purpose of establishing good home office organization habits is to help you accomplish your goals most efficiently with the least amount of resistance. There are several factors that will affect this including but not limited to increasing focus and avoiding overwhelm. The habits that we’ll be going over in this article will directly impact your ability to focus as well as managing your tasks in such a way that will keep it out of your head.
Increasing focus can increase productivity up to 2-3 times! And In order to keep tasks out of your head, your mind needs to trust that those important items are accounted for. To trust, the medium you use to record these items must be reliable to you – otherwise, some deeper part of you will know that even though you’ve written the thought down, it will just get lost anyway. So let’s get into it. Let’s help increase your focus and get things done!
Simple Highly-Effective Home Office Organization Habits | Washington
Simplify Your To-Do Lists
In order to make to-do lists effective and sustainable, we must simplify it to the most basic forms. Having only 1 to-do list is not enough – you’ll need a minimum of 3 to make it work. You can record your list either on an electronic device or having a small memo/notepad for each, or have dividers.
- Daily to-do list – This is where you only record tasks that you plan on doing that day and nothing else.
- Calendar – Any item that has a due date such as tasks or events will be recorded here and preferably with an alert. If written on paper, be sure to check it first up every morning.
- Cumulative action list – All other important items are record here that do not belong in the first 2 lists. It’s easy for this list to become large and expansive so to keep it to a minimum, record only “important” items. Nonessential items should not be on this list and may not even need a list until it does become important. One way to decide if you need this additional list is to ask yourself “do I have too many important items to do?” If yes, create the nonessential item list later.
Create Actionable Tasks
A common mistake many people make when writing their to-do list is including those that are difficult to check off. If you have a project that requires many steps and you may not even complete within a day, it’s wise to segment them into smaller subtasks. A task that has many other subtasks is what many call “Projects”.
If you have multiple projects with many subtasks, it may be wise to separate the projects into its own project list. Depending on your situation, you can keep track of all of your lists and projects either by briefly reviewing them all every day and/or scheduling certain items to be reviewed on your calendar.
Minimize & Eliminate Distractions
One of the biggest – if not THE biggest – culprit to hindering productivity are distractions especially in today’s technological fast-paced information age. As a result, we must take precautions and make preparations before they arise.
For external distractions such as family, phone calls, visitors, etc., find a way to inform others so that the expectations are set. For example, let your family know beforehand, creating a voicemail with your phone call times.
For controllable distractions such as social media, the internet, and text messaging, you’ll have to discipline yourself by creating the intention before work or installing plugins to disable certain distracting sites and disabling/ silencing text messages.
Tie Up Loose Ends
Another culprit that hinders productivity is keeping previous tasks open. If you’re done with something, close it out and put it away. If it involves tabs open on your browser, save the important ones and close it all. If it involves physical items on your desk, write down any important tasks and put them all away before proceeding to your next item. Tie up loose ends.
Clear the Clutter
Clearing the clutter relates to tying up loose ends. Be sure that your working space is clear whether it’s in the digital world or physical world. The more clutter you have, the more clutter you’ll have in your mind. Clutter in your mind affects your ability to focus and thus, your productivity is sacrificed. If you have a lot of clutter, it may be because you don’t have a proper home office with cabinets and organizers.
Create These Habits & Increase Productivity
Once you begin applying the simple tips above, you’ll witness your productivity and focus increase. One of the most difficult steps is the ability to clear the clutter due to lack in organization systems.