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15 October 2020

5 Tips to Stay Productive while Remote Working

It’s 7 o’clock in the morning and you wake up feeling great. The pandemic requires you to stay at home, so there’s no need to arrive at the office at a specific time. You’re supposed to submit your work at noon, and you completed most of the task last night. There’s a couple of hours for you to finish everything. You check up your phone and there’s a pop-up notification from YouTube, suggesting you a cute cat video. It’s only 5-minute long, so what’s the harm in watching that? You click on the link, watch the video, and suddenly it’s 6 PM.

It’s a situation that many remote workers have experienced. Before the pandemic occurred, many companies had already considered permanently remote working. With the pandemic going on, the cases of remote working have been increasing. The Jakarta Post noted that in April, about 1.2 million employees in Indonesia started working from home. In May 2020, an online survey from LIPI and FEB UI recorded that 51% employees worked remotely. 

While remote working may bring some convenience, it poses productivity-related challenges as well. How can we stay productive during remote working where there are less real-life supervisions and more distractions? Here are 5 tips to stay productive while remote working.

1. Take Control of Distractions

Distractions can come in different shapes and sizes, but let’s face it: our phones are our main source of distraction. To keep ourselves productive, we can start by putting our phones away to commit ourselves to work. With a little bit of will power, we can even treat our phones as something that benefits our productivity. Compared to five hours of binge-watching or gaming, two hours of looking for work-related information online would be more fruitful.


2. Keep in Touch with Peers

Without the company of others, remote working may turn out to be something unstructured or boring, and this are potential threats to our productivity. If this happens, reaching out to coworkers can be a good step to stay productive. Through feedback, communication with coworkers can help us regain a sense of structure and clarity. Even if we’re not talking about job, socializing with them through casual conversations can be a good mood booster.

3. Build A Good Routine

According to a research, 40% of our actions are powered by routines. With such significant effect, routines can keep our productivity in track. However, just because someone else is productive, it doesn’t mean that we must copy their habits. Make sure the routines work for us. Wake up everyday to some feel-good music, spend 15 minutes to tidy our desk. Sip a cup of coffee before we start working. As long as it works, it’s good routine.

4. Create A To-Do List

Sometimes remote working can make it seem like our tasks are scattered. A to-do list can be very helpful to keep us focused. Dividing our work into small tasks will inform our mind about what to do. Add specific time to do each task in our to-do list, and this can result in better time management, which will boost productivity. 

5. Treat Yourself

Last but not least, don’t forget to treat yourself for being productive. Buy yourself an ice cream. Watch an episode of your favorite show after completing your work. Get a well-deserved nap. Constantly treating yourself after a productive day is not only great, but also useful. It can establish a pattern in our minds that being productive equals to potential rewards.

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