The past few months have been a bit of a rollercoaster. I've been getting more and more involved in freelance work, as well as trying to keep to a set routine with my blog and YouTube channel. Such a move has led to far more hours spent working from home, surrounded by distractions and temptations (e.g the biscuit tin). I'm no good at routine, so I don't try to force one. Instead I've tried to take little steps towards making the thought of sitting working at home a bit more pleasurable in itself.
For me, the biggest help has been creating a specified work space. Although the temptation to work from the comfort of bed is often very real, I've come to accept that I'm at my most productive when sat at a desk surrounded by stationary, a fresh brew in hand. I'm lucky enough to have a spare room that accommodates such a set up, although in our old flat we managed to improvise by making the most of an unused corner in our lounge. We also picked up a super comfy leather office chair in our local charity shop. I find that keeping my work area clean and tidy is a massive help too, as is decorating it in a way that feels homely and welcoming. I no longer loathe sitting down to get on with the boring stuff; but feel relatively happy to shut myself away for a while and really knuckle down.
Making lists has been another big support. Planning my own work schedule and designating tasks for the day can seem pretty daunting and I initially found myself spending more time deciding what to do next than actually getting stuff done. I'm not the best at organising or prioritising by any means, but just jotting down a 'to-do' list for the day enables me to focus and plan my time a little more wisely. Although the feeling of having a fully ticked to-do list at the end of the day is a great one, I'm also trying to be realistic and not be too hard on myself if a couple of things get carried over to the next day instead. Obviously this is different when I'm working and blogging, but I always try to keep the latter as stress-free and enjoyable as possible. I genuinely love to blog and I don't want to pressurise myself to the point where I don't anymore.
I guess my only other tip is to take regular breaks and remember not to be too hard on yourself. For some reason, when I'm working from home I find myself feeling really guilty every time I jump up to make a cup of tea or start planning what I'm going to be having for lunch. In reality, everyone needs to take a break from the computer screen every once in a while. I have a tendency to become increasingly distracted the longer I work, so just popping out for a 5 minute walk or allowing myself to flick through a trashy magazine every now and then actually really helps me to come back refocused. I've come to realise that I get far more done after taking a quick break than I do when I'm forcing myself to remain at my desk for hours on end.