One of the biggest perks about working from home - slowly moving from bed to the sofa five minutes before you start - can also be your biggest challenge, says Eyre-White.
Don’t forget that you are there to work - so set yourself up the right way, get dressed and brush your teeth at the start of the day rather than sitting in your pyjamas for eight hours. “Switch from home to work mode,” she says, by having something you physically do to “flip the switch”.
“Maybe it’s walking round the block, making a special kind of tea, or lighting a candle at your desk. It doesn’t matter what it is but do it without fail to create a strong association in your mind,” she says.
She suggests choosing three to five things to do and aim to get the majority done before lunch. “We all slow down in the mid-afternoon and having a lot of your list under your belt will give you the momentum to power through,” she recommends.
In the office your day is broken up by everything from meetings to water-cooler chats, lunch breaks and even toilet breaks, but when you are sat at home on your own with no face-to-face interaction planned it can be easy to just work for long, unbroken periods.
“When we’re in the office our day is normally broken up with meetings. Although this can be frustrating, they divide the day up and create natural chunks of time,” explains Eyre-White. “ In contrast, a day at home can be very unstructured.”
In order to be productive she recommends imposing structure on yourself. For example, working in 45-60 minute chunks of focused work followed by a short break. “This can be an effective way to break the day up and maintain your concentration levels,” she says.
It can be difficult to tear yourself away from your laptop if you’re worried people might think you’re slacking off, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take breaks. “Just because you’re feeling comfy at home, it doesn’t mean you don’t need a proper break,”says Eyre-White.
“Leave your desk for lunch and take advantage of being at home to walk the dog and blow the cobwebs away for half an hour in the afternoon. You’ll return feeling refreshed and more productive for the rest of the day.”
“There are a lot of potential distractions when we work from home,” says Eyre-White. “So proactively manage things which might interrupt your focus.”
She explains: “Keep them limited to short breaks in between chunks of focused work. A change of scene is all we need to give our brain a break, and it’s the perfect time to put a load of washing on or empty the dishwasher.”
“If you’re the kind of person who'll miss your colleagues when you work from home, build opportunities for socialising in to your day,” says Eyre-White, who recommends trying to call colleagues rather than always email or Slack messaging.