This conversation was sponsored by Nature’s Bounty® Earthly Elements™, but all opinions are my own.
I often joke that blogging for me is a full-time job with a part-time income. While it feels liberating to be your own boss and having uber flexible schedule, I occasionally found myself simply wasting time when I could have been doing something productive instead. Over the years I experienced two of the biggest problems of working from home firsthand: working too much, and doing nothing at all when your mind is blank.
As a latent workaholic, I always felt like working a lot made me more productive, but as a result I never had time to go out, watch my favorite TV shows, or just enjoy life in general. Blogging was my life. It felt right at first, but eventually I got tired of it and moved to a much more streamlined schedule. On the opposite end, when I couldn’t squeeze out any words I would waste time reading my friends’ Facebook statuses and Twitter updates. Needless to say, those did not enrich my life nor did they make my work day more productive. And here’s where my advice comes in… After years of trial and error, I developed a set of rules and tips that help me stay organized while working from home.
1 // STICK TO A SCHEDULE. Now that my blog is no longer just a hobby, I started taking it more seriously. One of the perks of working from home is being able to set your own hours, and since I’m a late sleeper my hours are 10-6 with a lunch break around 1pm.
2 // KEEP AN EDITORIAL CALENDAR. I’m a pen & paper girl, so for me having a physical planner where I can keep track of all important dates and projects, and jot down blog post ideas is absolutely essential. If you embrace the digital lifestyle, creating an online spreadsheet will work just as well. I have one for my skincare collection, and can’t imagine my life without it.
3 // REPLY TO EMAILS. Preferably within the same day, or at least within 24 hours. I used to really struggle with this one, because the sheer volume of the emails I get is completely overwhelming. Missing even a few days due to vacation or a family event made it nearly impossible to catch up. Now I have several templates that I just copy/paste as an answer. Sure, it doesn’t seem very personal, but if a product or a story being offered is not a good fit for my blog, there’s really only one way to say “no”.
4 // DEAL WITH WRITER’S BLOCK THE SMART WAY. We’ve all been there, sometimes the words just don’t come. Instead of wasting time trying to squeeze out the sentences, do something else that will contribute to future projects [take photos, think of future blog post ideas, etc].
5 // FOCUS. For someone as chaotic and random as me, this is easier said than done. These days I combat the lack of focus with help of aromatherapy oils. I have an aromatherapy air purifier in the bedroom for a good night’s rest, and a small aromatherapy diffuser filled with a custom blend of oils from Nature’s Bounty® Earthly Elements™ on my desk. I mix 15 drops of Lemongrass Oil, 10 drops of Rosemary Oil, 5 drops of Peppermint Oil, and 5 drops of Eucalyptus Oil to create an uplifting blend that helps me stay focused throughout the day. If you would rather massage the essential oils into your temples, don’t forget to combine them in Sweet Almond Oil first to minimize the risk of potential skin irritations. You can find Nature’s Bounty Earthly Elements Aromatherapy Diffuser and essential oils at your local Walmart® in the vitamin aisle.
Do you have any tips for staying productive while working from home? If you work from home, what has been your biggest challenge so far? Have you tried any aromatherapy oils for boosting productivity? Let me know in the comments below!
Disclosure: This post features PR samples and sponsored content. For more details about my product review policy, copyright, and information about affiliate links, please refer to Disclosures & Content Use page.