Sometimes it’s easy to go into “lazy” mode when you leave work. You might be tempted to hit the couch and turn on the TV the minute you get home. Instead, you know you should be doing useful things like reading, cleaning your garage, or grocery shopping. The following are some tips to avoid the temptation of slacking off after a long day at work.
Start Right Away
You’ll lose energy if you get too much downtime. Do not wait until after you finish dinner to start working on a project. Once you are out of “the zone,” it will be difficult to get back. Keep moving and avoid sitting for too long when you get home.
Go Somewhere Else
You might reach a point where your bed or couch gets too hard to ignore. If you want to jump start your personal projects then you should go out and find a place you where you can work or learn new things. Being outside your comfort zone forces you to focus on your goals.
Coffee shops are an ideal place to write your blog or catch up on the news. Being outside your house will spare you from unwanted counterproductive distractions like the TV and bed. Being in a public place will also keep you stimulated helping you stay awake longer.
Practice the 10-minute Rule
When working on your side projects, start by spending ten minutes on them, never less. When your time’s up you can stop and congratulate yourself for a job well done. If you feel like continuing with your task, then do so.
Don’t worry if you only spent ten minutes on a side project. The important thing is you got started. Ten minutes is precious when spent on taking steps towards your goal. Chances are, you’ll get pumped up enough after the first ten minutes that you’d want to continue on.
Choose Projects Close to Your Heart
Projects you are attracted to and passionate about are easier to work on. Working on something close to your heart gives you the energy and drive to accomplish your goals. If the project isn’t very exciting (such as doing laundry) give yourself a reward that you are passionate about. It’s easier to dedicate your precious after-work hours if you’re really into a project.
Get Some Exercise
Exercise is a must to help extend your hours working on your side projects. Ideally, you should spend at least 30 minutes of your time on exercise. If you can’t spend this much time, even a walk around the block can give you an immediate energy boost. Doing exercises regularly increases its’ benefits.
Start with a 20-30 minute light to moderate workout. You will instantly feel the results and get motivated to be more productive instead of wasting your time on your couch.
Write Your Schedule
Writing down your schedule will make you feel invigorated and excited throughout the day. Have your evening planned even before you leave the office. Having specific goals makes it easier to get started and accomplish them.
Keep a check-list in your workspace to keep track of all your goals. Keep your goals realistic so you won’t get overwhelmed; you can create more complex goals as you go along. Remember, you also have other commitments to take care of.
Get Up Early For Your Projects
Sometimes taking on side projects can feel like a daunting task especially if no ideas are coming in. When this happens, you can go to bed and wake up early instead. You can spend some time to read or start on your projects before going to work. Waking up early will also help you avoid the stress of rushing to work.
Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself
You can’t stay productive all the time. Some nights you’ll be in the zone, while on some nights you’ll feel like sleeping right away. This will happen to you, and when it does, you have to forgive yourself and move on. Productivity after work isn’t everything.
Just pick yourself up the next day. If you’re too hard on yourself, you will likely feel down and might want to give up on your project entirely.
Simon Bukai owns and operates Vista Health Solutions, a health insurance marketplace. Vista Health Solutions provides helpful advise and valuable insight to consumers looking for the best health insurance solution. Simon’s experience in the industry has made him knowledgeable on many health and insurance related topics. Visit the site at NYHealthInsurer.com for more information.