25 Ways Remote Experts Develop a Productive Routine
by Thom Brown
Are you a remote worker looking to achieve more? There’s one thing that will guarantee this: productivity. The more productive you are, the more your hourly wage will be. The most expert remote workers have perfected their routine. Below, we reveal 25 ways you can develop your own productive routine, based on the success of the top remote workers.
1. Having a Dedicated Workspace
If you have a separate space made solely for work, then you’ll be in the working mindset the moment you enter it. When looking for apartments as a remote worker, consider Anyplace Select, where the dedicated workspace is all set up and ready to use.
2. Scheduling in Breaks
People often assume that productivity means doing as much as possible all the time. However, this is a recipe for burnout. Force yourself to take regular breaks to prevent fatigue, headaches, and eye strain while maintaining your mental health so you can continue growing in your professional life.
3. Adopting Minimalism
Minimalism is all about reducing the number of decisions you need to make each day. In doing so, you’re able to dedicate your mental energy towards your work tasks. The most productive remote workers don’t care about material possessions. They’d rather focus on getting stuff done.
4. Prioritizing Tasks
If you don’t consciously choose which tasks to prioritize, then you’ll naturally end up doing the easy, unimportant ones. This is understandable – they’re less daunting because they don’t matter as much and require less effort. However, if you always do this, the big tasks that progress your career will be pushed back. So prioritize and do them first.
5. Making Lists
When forming a productive routine, a simple to-do list can be game-changing. In the morning, write down three big things that you want to accomplish by the end of the day. Below this, write anything else that needs doing. This keeps you on track, helping you measure and analyze your progress. It’s also incredibly satisfying to cross off. If you’re consistently managing those three things, then you’re moving forward.
6. Sleeping at Regular Times
Do you ever accidentally over-sleep and then realize half the day is gone? You’re not alone but you need to work on regular sleeping patterns. If you’re always going to sleep at the same time, then you’ll wake up at the same time, too. This helps with time management and also helps you ensure you’re always getting the perfect amount of sleep.
7. Doing Deep Work
Deep work is a type of work in which you are giving 100% focused attention to the task at hand. In the modern world, this is the most valuable type of work. However, it’s also never been harder to achieve. Learn about deep work and implement it to become more efficient at work.
8. Using Remote Work Tools
There is so much software out there to help remote workers create a productive routine. Are you making use of it? Research remote work tools and sign up for the ones that you find appealing. All businesses use tools like Slack and Monday nowadays because it streamlines workflow and communication.
9. Reading About Productivity
Productivity is a skill, a muscle. To get better at it, read about and research it. Blog posts like this one are a good starting point, as are YouTube videos and podcasts. To really up your game, though, consider reading books about productivity.
10. Prepping Meals
Mealtimes can be huge time wasters. Deciding what to have, along with preparing, cooking, and consuming food can – if you’ll excuse the pun – eat into your work timetable. Prep it all beforehand. Then, you simply have to microwave it and eat it during your break.
11. Turning Off WiFi
Remote workers depend on the internet so they’re often scared to turn off their WiFi. However, leaving it on can make it too tempting to check Facebook, emails, Slack, or the news. If you’re working deeply on a task like filling in a spreadsheet or writing an article, then turn the WiFi off and ignore the rest of the world. Only turn it back on when you have a reason to.
12. Writing Reflective Journals
You can only get better if you’re able to assess your current performance. At the end of each day, write down how happy you are about what you’ve achieved. Give it a rating out of ten. If you’re not happy, what held you back? Use a reflective journal to think about how you could solve this problem.
13. Automating Processes
Automation is an awesome but often under-utilized tool. Many of the dull and time-consuming tasks you do each day might be better performed by artificial intelligence. Find out what you can automate, put the processes in place and then enjoy a more productive routine going forward.
14. Outsourcing Tasks
If you can’t automate, then outsource. Consider how much your time is worth and pay someone to free up this time for you. If you spend three hours a day replying to emails, then why not employ someone to do this for you? You can then use your time for the tasks you find the most interesting and fulfilling.
15. Discovering a Flow State
If you’re finding it incredibly difficult to be productive, then you might be doing it wrong. There’s a special psychological state called flow where the work just pours out of you. Understand this practice and figure out how to achieve it. It’ll lead to effortless productivity.
16. Eliminating Distractions
Did you know that the average person gets distracted every eight seconds? That’s just worse than a goldfish. The main distractions are phones and notifications so turn them off. Think how much more quickly tasks will get done if you’re not being constantly distracted from them.
17. Surrounding Yourself with Productive People
The people you surround yourself with have an incredible influence on who you are as a person. If they’re all working hard and maximizing their potential, then this will inevitably rub off on you. You’ll also have a network of experts to call upon if you need any immediate advice or support.
18. Focusing on Goals
Productivity is often about motivation. Sometimes, you just don’t feel like working. During these moments, it can help to focus on your lifelong goals. Think about what you’re trying to achieve. Are you trying to become a millionaire or buy a house? Visualize these goals and use them as inspiration to keep working.
19. Investing in the Best Technology
Investing in technology means investing in your own long-term career success. If a computer takes forever to load or complete the tasks you need to complete, then it’s slowing you down. Save up some money and buy a better laptop. Faster, more reliable technology can speed up tasks significantly.
20. Avoiding Procrastination
Procrastination is the art of delaying important work in favor of ones that don’t matter. Learn how to stop procrastinating and instead get to work on the task at hand. Understand that this is a psychological block that you have the power to overcome.
21. Finding Healthy Stress-Relief
The build-up of stress is a major barrier to productivity. It makes it hard to focus on your work. However, turning to stress-relievers like alcohol only compounds the problem. Build healthy stress-busting habits into your schedule, such as exercise, meditation, and massage therapy.
22. Staying Organized
Organization is so key to getting stuff done. How long do you spend looking for paperwork or digital files? Get it all organized into folders so that it takes mere seconds to find. Start creating spreadsheets and getting details compiled into an easily searchable database. Or – even better – hire an assistant to do this for you.
23. Giving Up Old Habits
There are only so many hours in the day and you have to dedicate this time to something. Perhaps you’ve always watched TV or browsed social media out of habit. What if you didn’t? How much more time would you have to spend on building the life of your dreams?
24. Saying No
If you’re lucky, you’ll be inundated with new remote work opportunities. While saying yes to everything at the beginning of your career can be useful, eventually, you have to start saying no. Don’t feel obligated to take on everything that comes your way. Instead, hand-pick the more meaningful or valuable jobs and give yourself more time to do them to a higher standard.
25. Taking Advantage of Passive Income
The great thing about passive income is that it feels like free money. Say you create an online course or ebook. Once it’s all been created, you can be gaining money in the background without putting in extra effort. Whether you sell one product or a million, it’s no extra work for you. This means you can be earning money both per hour and per sale – that’s twice as much money for the same amount of work.
Anyone can create a productive routine that helps them achieve more. There are many ways to do it; the 25 methods listed above are just the most tried and tested methods. Give them a go and see how far you can take your remote work business.
Where to next? Find flexible month-to-month rentals across the globe on Anyplace.
Born in Oxford, UK, Thom has been a digital nomad since graduating from the University of Sheffield in 2016. He’s a freelance writer and founder of Thom Brown Travel. Thom specializes in minimalist, ethical, and meaningful travel writing.