Every remote worker wants to be productive in their online jobs. They want to make the most out of their time without feeling overwhelmed. But it’s easier said than done. That’s why mindful productivity is a useful tool to help your online careers.
Mindful Productivity is a state of mind where we are intentional and aware in the present moment. It also acknowledges that we are not perfect. We can make mistakes and feel certain discomforts while finishing these tasks.
And with this awareness comes the light feeling of acceptance and can lead to instinctively finding solutions to our shortcomings. And on the positive side, it can add fuel to our qualities that can lead to success.
We all want this state! But how to do it? Here are 13 ways to practice mindful productivity while working-from-home!
Acknowledge Your Emotions
First of all, acknowledge what you are feeling right now. Are you feeling incomplete? Inadequate? Or are you feeling ecstatic about your work today?
It all starts with acknowledging your emotions. Acknowledging doesn’t mean you have to succumb to it — like if you are lazy, it doesn’t mean you have to stop working. And on the other hand, it doesn’t mean you have to punish yourself for it.
Acknowledging just means you need to “note” that you’re feeling that way. And it’s okay.
Forgiving Yourself from Past Mistakes
Next is forgiving yourself from past mistakes. A lot of people blame themselves for tasks undone in the past, whether it might be a big deal or not. For example, you might say to yourself, “I am so lazy I didn’t finish my tasks yesterday,” or “who am I to rest, when the productivity I had last month is down the drain.”
These seemingly harmless thoughts compound in the long run. And might turn to a self-limiting belief in the future.
Learn to forgive yourself. Every day is a new day. We have to focus and restart our achievements and failures on the present to fully become productive.
Work in an Ideal Workspace
The place you work in really has a factor. Imagine working in a loud area where roosters crow, your children crying, or somewhere you can hear the drilling of a construction site. You will probably snap before you can practice mindful productivity.
Choose an ideal workspace! It doesn’t have to be grandiose. You just need a quiet place you can focus your efforts on. Check out these 14 tips for an inspiring work-from-home workspace.
If you want to reap the benefits of mindfulness, you should not multitask. Many think that the more they switch from task to task, the more productive they would be. That’s far from what the experts say. According to research, frequent interruptions and task switching will cost around 40% of your productivity.
Why? We can’t really switch tasks and give our 100% instantly. There is a delay in our response called the “task switching penalty.” Think of it like a “lag” if you continuously switch your tasks from one to another. It takes up brainpower and limits what you can do. Practice being in the present by focusing on one task at a time.
The human brain is designed to ward us off potential dangers like when a predator looms or a fast car approaches. The brain scans the immediate surroundings and stimulates our body to be ready.
But this constant scanning is not beneficial in the modern world. It’s the reason why we are easily distracted by things in front of us. If we see a social media notification, we stop and check it out. If we see a Netflix show, we stop and watch first. Too many distractions prevent us from becoming productive.
If you want to battle this biological tendency, try out the Pomodoro Technique. It takes advantage of our penchant for distraction. You set tasks with a Pomorodo timer, usually around 25 minutes at a time. This time is short enough for your brain to work on it during the present. Afterwards, you reward yourself with a 5-minute break for your distractions like social media.
Eat Healthy Foods
Mindfulness is not only a mindset. It’s a lifestyle. And healthy lifestyle choices like choosing nutrient-rich foods will help you in your mindfulness journey.
As much as you can, have a serving of fruits and vegetables every meal. It doesn’t have to be intrusive of what you usually eat. You can also try supplements for added nutrition.
Another aspect of health is a healthy lifestyle. And it’s not only with food, but it’s also with exercise. Exercising doesn’t need to be intensive (unless you want a lean beach body).
Exercising can just mean a 30-min walk, a yoga session, or just simply moving around and getting your heart pumping. With this, it can increase your vitality and reduce stress. And these two crucial improvements will surely help you focus on the present when you practice mindfulness.
Get Enough Sleep
To function well, you need to have enough sleep. How can you practice mindfulness when you are cranky and lethargic on your working hours?
On average, a healthy adult should have around 6-8 hours of sleep to get rested. As much as possible, set time for sleeping to be alert and refreshed the next day.
Time for Yourself
Health is not only physical; it’s also emotional and mental. When you want to practice mindfulness, you need to emotionally heal from all your stressors or your problems. You can only do that if you give time to yourself.
Relax. Watch that Netflix series. Get a massage. Pamper with a spa session.
Anything that can lighten your mood. After this, you will feel refreshed and probably would be ready to focus on your days ahead.
Social Media Detox
Social media is a powerful tool to get connected. But sometimes, it affects our mental health.
Yes, we need to know what’s happening in our country. Yes, we might want to see our friends doing well in our lives. But if it affects you negatively, and you feel down, I think you should tone social media down for a bit.
Our mental health is crucial in mindfulness. We need to have a healthy mental landscape to appreciate what’s currently in front of us. So do a social media detox once in a while to protect your mental health.
Learn to Say No
There are numerous distractions in our work schedules, especially when at home. Your mom suddenly wants you to do some errands. Your auntie abruptly stops you for a coffee date. You got enticed to watch that latest Netflix episode.
If you want to practice mindful productivity, you need to learn to say no. Say no to the things that will not take you to your goals. These surprise distractions might be relevant. But do you really have to do them now? Can you not schedule it at another time, when you’re not busy?
Remember, mindfulness is focusing on the now. Is your “now” really socializing with your auntie in the middle of the workday? Though important, I doubt.
So learn to say no! And focus on what’s essential as of the moment.
Aside from the health aspects above, we should also remember our social health. As remote workers, we don’t see a lot of people. And according to a study, loneliness is one of the biggest struggles in working remotely. Isolation from our family and friends can take its toll.
So, we need to reach out and cultivate our relationships. The online world can detach us from people. But it can also be used as an easy way to connect with most. You can reach out using instant messaging our video chat to still maintain and strengthen our bonds despite not seeing each other in person.
And a healthy social life can give us a better standpoint in practicing mindfulness.
Ask for Help
No man is an island. Many think that they can do all their tasks alone. Although some may do, there will come a time when you need the help of people.
Don’t shoulder all your problems alone. Have a confidant to share all your burdens with. You don’t need to find a solution when you talk to them. Sometimes, just knowing that someone does care and listen takes out all the anxiety.
And this is a primer to better productivity in the long run.
Here are 17 tips for harnessing the power of mindfulness in your working life. We all have past experiences and future worries. But by living at the present moment, we can make sure that every minute counts. And we’re happy while doing it. Cheers to a productive remote working career!