5 Huge Time-Savers for WAHMs
Since there’s no clock to punch out at the end of the day, time-management is everything for work-at-home moms. Without a plan, it’s easy to get distracted and spend your whole day technically “working”, without getting much done. Here are a few ideas to help you keep work at work, and make time for the most important things in your life.
1. Clean up your social networks
This is the queen mother of productivity hacks. Take half an hour to clean up your Facebook feed, setting everyone to “Acquaintances” and receiving only important updates—you’ll stay in touch regarding birthdays and weddings, but you won’t have to see as many Instagrammed pictures of food. Never use your personal Twitter, Reddit, or Youtube account at the office; you might even consider installing a content filter to block time-wasters from your work computer. You’ll be amazed at how little you miss them.
2. Buy a crock pot
If you don’t already own one, a crock pot can be the best time-saving investment your family ever made. Since you’re at home during the day, you can keep an eye on dinner without having to spend your afternoon on it. There are tens of thousands of crock pot recipes online—you’ll never have the same meal twice unless you want to—and they usually respond well to freezing, so if you’ve got a big week coming up, you can save a lot of time by cooking in bulk.
3. Invest in a high-speed connection
When you first called your ISP to get hooked up to the internet, they most likely set you up with the basic package—good enough for ordinary browsing, but a little slow if you depend on it for work all day long. Especially if your home business involves a lot of browsing, those thirty-second interruptions of waiting for a page to load can add up over the course of a day, and really throw off your productive groove. Usually, the “premium” package is about $20 more per month—but if it can give you a month’s worth of increased productivity, it’ll likely pay for itself.
4. Be productive on the go
If you’re out of the office a lot or running errands during most of your day, you need a good mobile way to keep working. Laptops and tablets are great when you have space and time, but if you need to make quick adjustments to a presentation, check your accounting, look at finances or send notes to team members, mobile phones offer a lot. Close deals on the road with your mobile device using document signing apps, an online invoice system and mobile accounting software.
5. Schedule downtime
Especially when you’re excited about what you’re doing and the list of tasks seems a mile long, it can be difficult to make time for relaxation—but you’ll be far more productive if you give your brain some time off. People who make time for physical exercise in particular score higher on basic cognitive tests than those who don’t; so neglecting your health can make you much less effective (especially if you consider the time you’ll lose when you inevitably get sick). This means making time for sleep, taking breaks during your workday, and (especially) giving yourself a “workday” with a definite beginning and end.
Tara Wagner is a staff writer for TechBreach. She has worked from home for over a decade, and loves sharing news and advice with fellow telecommuting moms and dads. She’s fascinated by new tech and new ideas; and when she finds time to unplug, she enjoys long hikes in the mountains near her home. She lives in Denver.
Photo credit: thebusymomsdaily.com