7 Tips to Enhance Your Productivity While Working Remotely

In the last week, I, like many others across the globe, have found myself working from home. While I’ve done this a number of times due to illness or bad road conditions, I’ve never been home for an extended period of time as I am now. Let me tell you, adjusting to this temporary “new normal” was a lot more difficult than I anticipated. 

In the last couple weeks, I found what was supposed to be a hectic March rapidly slowing down. As events we were scheduled to attend began cancelling left and right due to COVID-19, I found my to do list decreasing exponentially; however, this has become the best time to discover new ways to get creative with my position. 

Set a routine — I’ve found that sticking to my usual routine and having my usual work hours work best for me and how I work. I usually get up, and do my usual morning skincare routine, brush my teeth, and get dressed before I start my day. I also keep my usual work hours to help me keep that space between work life and personal life.

Get dressed — Even if I’m changing over from my pajamas to leggings and a sweatshirt, I feel so much more productive when I get dressed for the day. Plus, it’s that extra push to get out of bed and to my desk. 

Create a workspace that is NOT your bed — When you realize that you’re working remotely, your first thought might be “wow I can’t wait to work from bed!” Right?? WRONG! Personally, I like to put on some chill, atmospheric music (Spotify has some great mood playlists), light some candles, and sit at my desk in my room away from distractions. I’m also one of those strange people who absolutely cannot have the tv on or I will get distracted from what I’m doing. 

Use the Ivy Lee Method — I recently started using the Ivy Lee Method to enhance my productivity at work after hearing about it through Lauryn Evarts Bosstick of The Skinny Confidential. Often times, I get pulled away from what I’m working on or something urgent will come up in the middle of working on a project, and I find that my productivity wanes. I started using this method as a means of keeping me on track when these distractions happen and it really works! At the beginning of each day, write down the 6 main tasks you want to accomplish by the end of the day. Those tasks that aren’t complete are transferred to the top of your to-do list the next day, and so on and so forth.

Take short brain breaks — The same thing goes for being in the office. I know that I can’t have my eyes on my computer all day long, nor can I stay focused for that long, so I remember to get up and get moving to give my mind and body a break. 

Check in with your colleagues — Working from home can get lonely, so make sure you check in with your co-workers just as you would if you were in the office.

Get active — We all know that sitting at your desk all day is not healthy. Make sure you get up and get moving several times a day, whether it’s taking a walk at lunch, ensuring that you’re getting up to stretch every so often, or scheduling in time to get in a good workout. Since working from home, I have a set a calendar notice every day at 5pm for my daily work out. This has helped immensely to integrate it into my routine. Additionally, there are so many benefits to staying active while staying in: improved focus and cognitive function, better sleep, boosts energy, combats health conditions and diseases, and much more.

These are just a few tips that I use to help keep me on track and productive while working from home. Do you have any WFH methods that aren’t on this list? Share them below!

-K.

HOT TIPS FOR PLANNING A JOINT BACHELOR-BACHELORETTE PARTY

One of the most fun aspects of planning a wedding is planning the bachelor/bachelorette party, but how does one go about planning a joint party for the bride and the groom?

I recently stood up as the Maid of Honor in my best friend’s wedding. It was my first time standing up in a wedding as a bridesmaid and I didn’t really know what to expect. One thing that I knew I would be responsible for is planning and executing the bachelorette party. My friend and her now husband decided that they wanted a joint party out of town, so I started to build my arsenal of ideas early on to make all of their bachelor-bachelorette party dreams come true.

When I started doing research for planning, I found that there were little to no posts about how to plan a joint bachelor-bachelorette party. So I decided to take the liberty to do it myself and bring you guys the hot tips and lessons learned during my time planning:

  1. Talk to the bride and groom about their expectations. Before you do anything, ask the bride and groom: a.) What city they want to celebrate in. b.) What their must-do activities and must-see attractions are. c.) Any other must-haves to make the weekend the bachelor/bachelorette party of their dreams.
  2. Start planning months in advance; DO NOT wait until the last minute. I started planning the party and gathering ideas immediately after the couple told me where they wanted to go. While the location changed as we got closer, I had both a Google document and Pinterest board going filled with ideas that could easily transfer. This also helps with budgeting; set a timeline for payments and purchasing decor, gifts, etcetera so you don’t blow all your money at once.
  3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I admit it, I’m a total control freak and perfectionist; I get an idea in my head and need to follow through on it. However, between my full-time job, planning the party, and maintaining my sanity, I needed an extra set of hands or two. The bride’s brother and sister-in-law graciously offered their assistance and helped play a pivotal role in the success of the party.
  4. Don’t worry about packing the schedule. It is not necessary (nor fun) to jam-pack the schedule so full of activities that you’re stressing out about making it to the activities on time and not having enough downtime. Remember: even though it is a bachelor-bachelorette party, people want to relax and enjoy their time, especially if they’re on vacation for it. I chose to leave at least one open day so that we could explore the town and do whatever it was we felt like doing at that time. 
  5. Spend a day of the trip — or at least a few hours — apart doing separate activities for the guys and ladies. It’s so important to give the bride and groom some time to focus on themselves with their guys or girls. Saturday morning of the weekend, the girls got massages at a local spa, while the guys went axe throwing. It was the perfect amount of time to focus on the bride and groom individually. Following these activities, we all met up at the hotel for a pool party prior to the evening festivities.
  6. Do not sweat the minute details.I know — easier said than done and I may or may not have broken this rule myself since it comes with the territory of being a perfectionist, but should you forget something minor or anything go awry, chances are you’re the only one who realizes it. Don’t overthink what goes in the gift bags or whether or not you have enough decor these things do not make or break the event.
  7. You absolutely CANNOT please everyone. There are only two people whose happiness matters: the bride and the groom. Double the attendees means double the opinions that do not matter. So long as the bride and groom are having fun and enjoying themselves, there’s no need to worry about anyone else.
  8. Event planning 101: If anything can go wrong, it will go wrong. People will show up to reservations late and winging the night might not always go to plan, just roll with the punches. Use your best judgement to handle the situation, and move on. Remember that you need to enjoy yourself too after all of your hard work.

Do you have any more tips that you didn’t see here? Drop them in the comments!

-K