Facebook and working from home- can they co-exist?
The way I have structured my business means that I can work from anywhere and at any time, so long as I have a web connection. Everything from my CRM (via Highrise) to project management (Basecamp), even my accounts package, is all online. I log into my VOIP, my 0845 number is active and I’m ready for business. Right now I mostly work from home, and when I started my business I began to track my time. I tend to spend a lot of spare time on the web anyway, and work and social tend to get mixed together. It’s really easy to get chatting to someone, or check Facebook now and again, or get on a load of random forums. I started to find it quite a struggle not to get distracted, and simply demarcating the time didn’t work for me. All that ended up happening was that I’d be in this work/social blend all day and all evening.
The key for me in the end was simple- I loaded up another browser (Flock, lovely for social networking addicts), and transfered everything personal onto that, all my bookmarks, my email, my social networking logins, all my RSS feeds (so many blogs so little time). I then crafted my orignial browser into a work powerhouse- I sorted out all my bookmarks, loaded up work-related RSS feeds and spent some time just getting the browser to feel like I was “at work”. And equally, my Flock browser has no end of stupid add-ons, fun stuff and time wasting opportunities. The simple act of doing this, and loading up the work browser during work time, and the social browser during out of work time has seen my productivity rocket. In fact I would go so far as to say that I spend less time on social networking than I did when I was employed by someone else. It’s gone a long way to separate work and play and has made me far less stressed in the process. It’s worked so well that i’ve done the same on my laptop, and have even used Foxmarks to synch my bookmarks for both browsers across each machine. Now, wherever I am, if I feel the need to chill out, I close work and open play. It’s clear to my mind that this is non-worktime, so I’m so much more inclined after a few minutes so log out, close Flock and load up work.
Simple but effective!