10 Ways to Prevent Yourself from Doing Overtime when Working From Home

Working from home is now a standard for many companies, especially with the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. While working from home, many people found themselves getting up earlier or stay up later to complete their work even though they no longer spend time to commute. Some of my friends found that they are overworking to compensate the lack of presence in the office. They feel guilty for not pulling up enough weight as they do when they were working in their workplace.

To be made to feel that you need to compensate your productivity is so wrong. You can’t help but to remote work and your supervisor should take that into account that remote working has its advantages and disadvantages. There are plenty of distractions in offices too.

Overworking can be dangerous to your mental health and your productivity the longer you do it. 

To prevent this from happening, here are 10 ways that you can do while working from home:

1. Set clear boundaries

When you are working from home, have a clear office space where you can focus on your work.

Set a set work time that you will follow and share it with everyone so that you won’t be distracted during your work schedule. And remember to keep to it.

2. Focus on immediate tasks

Always plan how you will work everyday by listing down the tasks that you have and start working on those that have a high priority.

Doing this will help you stay productive and also give you a boost as you achieve each goal before the end of the day. 

3. Say no if you can’t handle the task

A person can only do so much in one day and it is not ideal if you say yes to a task when it is clear in your work schedule that you have too much on your plate.

Don’t be afraid to say no if you are asked to do an extra task, especially if you have a lot on your plate.

If your boss wants you to do the task, ask them if it is ok to do them at a later date after you finish the other tasks that you have on your list. 

Read More: Learning to Say No At Work

4. Inform the people in your home about your work schedule

When you are working from home, let the people with you know your work schedule. This will help you organise house activities and reduce the possibility of distractions as you are working. 

5. Reduce the distractions around your work desk

At home, you can be distracted by a lot of things: from the people living with you to the things in your home office. It can be hard to focus, especially if they become too much.

Start by reducing your notifications or putting it on silent. You can also use noise-reduction headphones to stop background noise from disturbing your work. 

Read More: Tweets from Working at Home Parents who are going Crazy

6. Schedule and follow your lunch breaks

You should always have breaks in between your work to recharge your batteries. Have your breaks outside your home office so that you don’t immediately think about work during your break-time. 

Your eyes need a break from staring at the screen all morning so please don’t whip out your phone and start staring at it too.

7. Close your office door after working

It can be tempting to go back to work even after we set a work schedule while working from home.

To prevent this, close your office door after you clock out for the day and don’t even try to go back to your office until the next day. 

For me, I will shut my laptop and store it inside a drawer or my cupboard. Out of sight, out of mind!

8. Turn off your work devices

It can be hard not to respond to work emails, especially after you clock out for the day. However, these messages are often follow-ups which you can check out for the next day.

Log out from your messaging apps or use a personal phone if you want to be free from work notifications after your work hours. Unless you are resist that ! email you just received at 11pm… yeah, right.

9. Do your interests

If you always think about work, it can be hard to think about something else.

During your break, do your best to focus on doing other things and regularly do it as best as you can. This will help your mindset adjust that you are taking a break at that time and not working. 

I like to have a debrief moment once I log off work. Usually, I will take my daughter for a stroll and fully paying attention to her. Or I will go to the kitchen and start cooking up a storm.

10. Always think about the positives

Some people may be overworking to stop themselves from focusing too much on the world around us. However, always focus your mind on the positives like your family and friends. Take a new hobby and find something else to distract you instead of dwelling on the negative things. 

Stay Cheerful!

It is very easy for us to feel guilty if we feel like we are not doing enough work, especially if we are working from home. While it does open opportunities for us to keep on working, this feeling of guilt can cause us to practice bad habits like overworking and affect our overall well-being.

For tips to stay maximum productive during working hours, check these out:
10 Sure-Fire Tips to Work Productively At Home
7 Productivity Apps for Working from Home
Best Technology Gadgets to Boost Our Productivity and Comfort when We Work from Home

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42 Comments Add yours

  1. Simon says:

    Good piece of advice for peaceful work from home✨ Well done Kally ✍️ Have a Beautiful Friday and a fantastic weekend with your little one💐😉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you very much, Simon. I hope you’re still doing well in your new job.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Simon says:

        I’m doing good✨☺️ Sadly we still stuck at work from home. Management might have hard time to realise what I do. But they’ll eventually understand 😊 Enjoy the weekend Kally ✨🤗

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Kally says:

          Good to hear that you are still well and working, Simon. Look towards the positivity. I’m sure your results and teammates will speak volumes about your performance.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Simon says:

            Thanks for the wishes Kally ✨😊 I’ll continue to spread positivity and drive my team to the best, even after extending the lockdown, they can’t lockdown our spirit 😉👍 Will always find a way to climb back. Have a Fantastic Tuesday ✨

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Kally says:

            Thank you so much, Simon. Your comment perk up my day.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. gifted50 says:

    Great advise. Although I am a healthcare worker and cannot work from home. I do write a lot and this can consume more time than I like. I am consciously working on a balance. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you so much for being a frontliner during this time. You are very courageous and admirable.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. gifted50 says:

        Thank you Kally, it is not always bravery…lol.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Dragthepen says:

    Great points. Very informative

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you so much! Have a great Sunday!

      Like

  4. Priceless advice. Thanks

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you so much. Have a great day !

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Awesome KaLLY!

    Ya gotta TAKE charge to be in charge (A motto is “Managers manage”); as you Kally, no -doubt do!

    God Bless,
    Patrick

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you, Amazing Patrick! Stay positive and blessed as always.

      Like

  6. equinoxio21 says:

    Very good advice. Contrary to some managerial belief, home office workers tend to pull longer hours…
    Hope all is well?

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Kally says:

      All is well. We just came back from the beach. The little one is overjoyed and couldn’t stop talking about it until now. Kept bugging me to bring her to the beach again. I hope all is well with you?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. equinoxio21 says:

        We’re fine thank you Peng Yu. The little Princess certainly enjoyed the beach. Most kids do. 🙏🏻

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Ankur Mithal says:

    Timely. I am sure many people are struggling to achieve the right balance.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Its a new type of shift in the workplace, people tend to take some time to adjust to it.

      Like

  8. These are great points you shared Kally. I love them. 🤗

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you, Herry. You are like my flashlight in the darkness.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are welcome Kally.
        Aww. That is so nice of you to say. 🤗

        Liked by 1 person

  9. All great suggestions!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you, Cindy!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Nabeela says:

    Informative for all those who are struggling to work from home….

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you, Nabeela

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Great tips! For those who get hyper-focused on project and may have difficulty watching the clock, I’d also suggest setting alarms or reminder notifications that will interrupt to let you know it’s time for a break or clock-out.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Kally says:

      That is a good one. I often forgot to have my lunch until my little one start bugging me. I get too lost into what I am doing.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. amidugedson says:

      Great tip

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Kally says:

        Thanks a lot!

        Like

  12. amidugedson says:

    Working from home is new nirm for many people, thank you for your advice.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you and welcome to MiddleMe!

      Like

  13. Great article, Kally and spot on! It is as much about giving yourself permission to do these things and not feel guilty about it at the same time, but it makes so much sense.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you so much, Sean. To lead a healthier life, we need to strike a fair balance between work and play.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Reblogged this on strategic teams and commented:
    This wonderful post from Middle Me comments that overworking at home (so, working remotely) can be dangerous to your mental health and your productivity the longer you do it. To prevent this from happening, Kally has 10 ways that you can embrace while working from home:

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you so much for sharing this out!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. msw blog says:

    This is such a good post, and such a relevant topic. You and your readers may enjoy these post on the topic
    https://reallifeofanmsw.com/tag/working-remote/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you so much! Love your posts too.

      Liked by 1 person

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