The COVID-19 pandemic has changed work patterns forever, forcing many people who loved working in an office into an at-home environment. At first, this change was exciting! They could get up earlier, play music or movies while they worked, work in their pajamas, and take breaks whenever they wanted.
However, they’ve slowly lost motivation and feel incredibly lazy working from home. They’re getting behind in their work tasks and struggling to catch up. However, they can’t find the motivation they once had in the office and are worried about losing their job.
Does this sound like anybody in your life or even yourself? If so, you know how difficult time management can be for many people when you work from home.
Thankfully, you don’t have to let this strange work lethargy threaten your career progress! Instead, you can learn how to stop being lazy working from home and plan your day effectively. These decisive steps will motivate you to work from home and thrive like never before.
5 Reasons Why You are Lazy Working From Home
You’re not alone if you’re struggling to stop being lazy while working from home. Thankfully, you can enhance your work-from-home productivity by understanding what is causing your unproductive days in the first place. Here are the five biggest reasons you’re lazy working from home.
1. Upset Work-Life Balance
Studies have found that people working from home often have difficulty finding a good balance between the two. For example, people who work at home in front of the TV may find tie-together work and play emotions and struggle to feel comfortable. They might turn on the TV or struggle to disconnect or relax after finishing work.
That post-work wind-down is an essential emotional element for many people and is something that shouldn’t be ignored. Unfortunately, people working from home may discover that they constantly feel in “work” mode or, conversely, in “home” mode. As a result, they may struggle to stay focused and feel lazy instead.
Achieving that work-home life balance as a remote worker is not impossible. However, it is a challenge that someone who’s worked at an office for most of their life may struggle to meet. It requires a few simple steps that help to separate the two more fully to help you stay in work mode and stay motivated and focused.
2. Increased Loneliness
Working in an office can be a rewarding emotional and social experience for many people because it builds new friendships and relationships. The cliché of bonding with “water cooler talk” is true and something many at-home workers miss. But working from home isolates you and increases your loneliness.
Multiple studies and articles have found that the hybrid or at-home worker experiences higher than normal levels of loneliness. While some might initially enjoy the isolation and become more focused on their work, the continued lack of social interaction can cause real loneliness, anxiety, and depression to affect their work quality.
Depression and anxiety can often trigger laziness by robbing your motivation. Unfortunately, this may result in poor, unfocused work that could negatively affect your career. Even worse, it could create a cycle of depression and continued loneliness as your current employer isolates you because of your inefficiency.
3. Distractions in a Comfortable Environment
Have your in-office friends ever said something like this: “I could never work from home! I’d be too distracted!” Did you scoff at them and say that you love working from home and feel more focused than you did in the office? Unfortunately, your doubting friend may have a real point about the potential for distractions.
Studies have found that people who work at home often experience more distractions than those who do not. These may include social media chatting, working around the house (such as preparing food for the next day), visits from friends, mail deliveries, and other actions that make it hard to stay focused at work.
Furthermore, people working from home often feel uncomfortable and may relax rather than focus on work. While it’s not wrong to work in a cozy environment that you enjoy, it can become a distraction if you struggle to work and feel excessively lazy.
4. Poor Communication Routines
Proper co-worker communication is key to succeeding in any work environment. Open communication helps you finish tasks on time, produces more effective collaboration, and builds better relationships. However, working from home can make this collaboration incredibly difficult and eliminate your chance to communicate.
Losing communication in this way can cause you to become lazy working from home in a few ways. First, waiting to hear back from a co-worker may make it hard to progress on a task. You could drop in and ask a quick question in an office. You might wait an hour or more for a return email at home.
Unfortunately, this means you might end up sitting around a lot and struggling to feel focused. This lack of focus could lead to laziness at work and a struggle to stay on task. Fighting this issue requires changing your communication method to ensure that you always keep in touch with your co-workers.
5. Unbalanced Work Routine
While working from home can be initially very rewarding for many people, it’s not unusual for many to fall into an unbalanced work routine. This problem differs from poor work-home balance because it centers on your work schedule. You may take extended breaks in your workday and work longer than necessary.
For example, you may get up and start working at 10, even though your office opens at 9. This already puts you an hour behind and can cause severe work-related stress. That stress may cause you to take a break from watching TV for a while, putting you further behind and causing you to have to play catch-up later.
You might work well into the evening between steps like picking up kids, making dinner, and preparing for the day. This unbalanced work routine can rob your work-from-home motivation by tiring you out and making your job seem overbearing or impossible to perform. You can break out of this trap with the proper productivity steps.
Become More Productive While Working From Home
It is important to understand that people are not inherently lazy and that most want to work hard at their job and achieve success. Studies have discovered that people often feel emotionally and physically stronger if they work effectively and enjoy their job and tasks.
Instead of being inherently lazy, people struggling with being lazy working from home may struggle with changes in habits and environment. Adapting to these changes is critical for becoming an effective at-home employee and avoiding long-term career setbacks.
As a result, it is important to create a work-from-home routine that works for your needs and keeps you focused. This process can include several steps that help you learn more about your contributing laziness factors and how you can break through these unfortunate behaviors.
We brainstormed seven essential tips to help fight laziness when working from home. These tips are things that just about anybody can handle and should give you the kick in the butt that you need to take your career to a more robust and healthier level when working from home.
7 Tips to Fight Laziness While Working From Home
If you feel lazy working from home and need help breaking this bad habit, it is important to follow the steps below to become more motivated at work. Each focuses on one or more of the five problems outlined above and should help you become more motivated when working from home.
1. Create an Office Specifically for Working
Don’t sit in front of the TV and work but build a functional at-home office that you use to work. Your office helps make your work feel more legitimate, reduces distractions, and may make it easier to focus.
Create a functional and comfortable office with a desk, computer, good lighting, storage, and decorations that make it feel more like a work environment.
2. Use Productivity Tools
The days of multitasking are over, as it does little more than get you to do low-quality work on multiple projects. Instead, try productivity-boosting steps like the Pomodoro Technique. This technique includes 25 minutes of work with five minutes breaks and longer 15-30 minute breaks throughout your day. It truly works as a productivity tool.
3. Eliminate Distractions
Eliminating distractions when working at home may include:
- Creating regular work schedules
- Avoiding multitasking
- Make sure you stay in your office as much as possible during the workday
There is nothing wrong with taking a brief break while you work, so put a comfortable couch where you can briefly relax and keep your social media chats and television time to a minimum.
4. Set Regular Work Meetings
While work meetings might seem like a dull waste of time, they’re essential for all work environments.
They help focus attention on important tasks and make planning easier. They’re especially critical in an at-home situation because they help you stay in touch with your co-workers and improve your work balance. As a result, you’re likely to stay focused and finish your work more effectively.
5. Break Your Day Into Manageable Goals
Working from home makes it very easy to get overwhelmed by your duties and feel disconnected from your team without setting manageable goals.
Thankfully, you can break down bigger tasks into smaller duties that are easier to handle. Doing so can help you focus and avoid feeling overwhelmed and, in defense, fleeing into a lazier mindset to avoid getting excessively burdened. Set realistic work from home performance goals!
6. Take Breaks for Your Mental Health
Breaks are not counterproductive when trying to become more effective at work. Short breaks help to refresh the mind and make it easier to focus on your work. The Pomodoro Technique, as mentioned, is a powerful way of scheduling your breaks. However, you may also take breaks whenever you need to refresh your mind and avoid being lazy while working from home.
7. Install a Work Chat Client
Work chat programs help you stay in touch with your co-workers more easily. They create an office-wide chat environment that you can use to talk to anybody in the office, even the CEO. Talk to your team about creating a unified chat platform, including video meetings. Doing so can help improve communication and minimize loneliness while working from home.
Learning to stop being lazy while working from home is about creating a powerful work routine that makes sense for your needs. It also centers on understanding the causes of your laziness and adapting your life to eliminate them. Deep self-reflection can help you through these steps.
By adapting to your new work-from-home life, you can improve your productivity and become an efficient and effective worker again. Just as importantly, you can feel motivated about your career and even have fun while working. That alone is worth the few changes you might have to make.