One of the major issues with having your own home-based business is distractions. It’s easy to abandon work when the television is just down the hall (or in the same room), or the laundry is calling your name.
Ultimately YOU are responsible for your success or failure, and the household duties and the freedom to postpone work can sometimes be too enticing to pass up. To have a successful business, one must exert control. Control over surroundings. Control over time. It is important to stay focused on your business and not what’s on the TV. Here are a few ways to help minimize the distractions.
Location, Location, Location. Set up your office area as far away from high-traffic areas as you can. Avoid kitchens, living rooms, near the front door, etc. The best solution is to have a room solely for your office. However, that’s not always feasible.o When space is an issue, set up your area in a corner of a room, and keep potential distractions out of view, or you will soon be focusing on them instead. Try to create a barrier from the rest of the room, which produces visual and psychological separation.
Organization, Organization, Organization. This will really make or break some people. For starters, only keep things in the area that are of use for your business. Sparse decorations are okay, but keep the guitar out. Second, keeping supplies organized and well-placed eliminates many future headaches.
For those with stacks of papers floating around, filing cabinets and trash cans do wonders for eradicating messes. Also, keep often-used supplies close at hand, whereas rarely touched items need to be put out of the way. To save space, consider placing the phone on the wall.
Plan, Plan, Plan. It’s best to have a clear idea of what needs to get done. Some people arrive at their desk, and kind of meander their way through the day without any focus. That wastes time that you don’t have.
For maximum profits and efficiency, write down all the tasks ahead of you. You might want to split them into two lists: priorities and projects. List the most important tasks first, and work your way down. Every evening pick which tasks need to get done the next day. Work on the priorities first, and if there’s extra time, tackle a project.
These lists are not set in stone. Emergencies do come up, but knowing what is ahead of you helps you stay focused. Also, crossing off completed tasks creates a great sense of accomplishment, and gives you something to look forward to.
These three easy steps will help you eliminate distractions and propel your business into greater prosperity, but old habits die hard. Commit yourself to making the most of your office and your time, and your productivity and confidence will go up, while your amount of stress goes down. An organized office and a good plan of attack will keep you focused and sane.