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Avoiding Interruptions & Distractions

Whether you are self-employed or whether you work remotely for an employer, make no bones about it…working from home is WORK! Yes, in most cases, you can define your own schedule, work in your slippers and call your own shots. However, if you’re going to be successful in your work at home position, you are going to have to be disciplined and professional at all times. I can imagine most of you are nodding your heads in agreement as you read this. After all, you intend to earn a living and are smart enough to realize that you can’t do so without taking your position seriously. While you may know this, how receptive are others around you to this fact?

Nothing Kills Your Productivity Faster!

One of the more common complaints from work at home moms is the lack of respect others have for your time. Of course, people aren’t being intentionally rude. It’s just that they know that you are at home during the day and, not realizing that you’re still handling serious business, some figure that you are available for their needs. This can range from family members who demand your attention during working hours or friends who call during the day for idle chit-chat. Such distractions can murder productivity, so it’s important that you know how to lay them to rest before they arise.

The following are a few tips to help you avoid personal interruptions:

  • Hold a family meeting about your work schedule and stress the importance of your solitude at this time
  • Turn all personal instant messaging programs off when in official work capacity online
  • Silence alerts for incoming text messages and IMs on your mobile phone
  • If possible, silence your phone’s ringer OR create a voicemail message notifying callers that you are not available during work hours (ex: “…if you’re calling between the hours of 9a and 2p, I cannot answer because I am working, but your call will be returned when I am done.” However you decide to word your greeting, be sure to include the fact that you are working, so that personal callers will take the hint that calls during this time are purposely being ignored.)
  • If possible, find a private area of your home where you can work in peace, without a lot of foot traffic and where you can “disappear” to during work hours

By employing a few of these, friends and loved ones will soon get the message that you are serious about your job. As you treat your work as a priority, others will too. Comments are open on this post for you to share some of your methods of avoiding unnecessary personal interruptions.

How do you do it?

How long did it take people to take the hint?


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