Working remotely can sometimes be challenging, especially in the beginning. Distractions like household chores, Netflix, and your phone can make it difficult to focus. While working from the couch in your pyjamas is comfortable, it doesn’t fuel motivation the same way an office would. 

As a solo business owner, you’re entirely responsible for your workload and productivity. If you need a little help staying motivated, try using the following methods:

  • Have a plan
  • Create a schedule for yourself
  • Treat your mornings as if you worked in an office
  • Create a dedicated workspace
  • Limit distractions and interruptions
  • Work from different locations
  • Exercise, preferably outside
  • Accept the process

Have a plan

The first step to improving your motivation is determining what you want to achieve. Set long and short term goals and follow a plan to get them done. This way, you’ll get a clearer picture of what you need to accomplish each day so you can dedicate enough time to each task. 

Start every day or week by writing down what you need to get done, when, and how long you expect each task to take. There’s no need to micromanage yourself, but even something as simple as a To-Do list will help keep you focused. Plus, it’ll feel really satisfying to tick tasks off the list. 

Create a schedule for yourself

You can build on the previous step by creating a schedule for yourself. Without a structured workday, it’s easy to let time slip away from you. You might find yourself stretching out tasks by taking lots of mini-breaks and having to work later in the evenings. Or you might need to pull an all-nighter to finish a project you let slide. 

That’s why it’s good to have a clear schedule and establish a time to begin and end your workday. Find a start and finish time that works for you (the standard 9-5 isn’t for everyone) and try to stick to it best you can. 

A great way to help you stick to your schedule is to make your clients or customers aware of your working hours and set Out of Office responses outside of those times. 

Treat your mornings as if you worked in an office

Skipping the morning commute is one of the main perks of having a home office. But the downside is that you don’t have anything getting you out of the house. Being cooped up inside every day can create feelings of loneliness, which can do serious damage to your motivation and productivity.

One way you can avoid this problem is to treat every morning like you would if you worked in an office. That means going outside every morning before you start work. Even a quick 15-minute walk is enough to get your brain and body going. You’ll feel more energised and ready to take on the workday when you get back inside. 

Create a dedicated workspace

While working from your couch is tempting, it can make it harder to stay motivated since you also relax there. You might also be tempted to work from your bed, but that’s not a good idea either. Studies have shown that working from your bed can decrease sleep quality and negatively affect your work productivity. 

Instead, having a dedicated space in your home that you only use for work can help you stay focused since you teach your brain to associate that spot with productivity. If you need inspiration, check out our guides on how to create a home office in a small space and how to organise it

Limit distractions and interruptions

Do you struggle to get back in the zone every time something interrupts your flow? In that case, you can stay motivated by limiting distractions and interruptions as much as possible. This can mean muting your phone and email notifications until you complete a task.

If you have kids at home when working, find something to keep them occupied (a film, game, or task) to limit the times they interrupt you. Establish ground rules for when they can interrupt you and give them an incentive to keep them motivated. Once you’re done with your task, reward your children (and yourself) by doing something fun. 

Work from different locations

Being cooped up in your house all the time can make you feel isolated, so try working from different places a couple of times per week. Whether it’s a coffee shop, local library, or a friend’s house, changing your environment can do wonders for your motivation. 

That’s because switching up your location gives you a reason to interact with people, which helps connect you to the rest of the world. In addition, new interactions and experiences can help you refocus and give you inspiration that boosts your productivity. 

Exercise, preferably outside

If you can, try to exercise outside every day. Getting some fresh air and (hopefully) sunshine or at least natural light helps increase your energy levels. More energy means more motivation. Even a quick walk around your neighbourhood can be enough to clear your head if you’re stuck. 

If you have an outdoor space, consider working outside when the weather allows. Simply sitting outside can do wonders for your motivation. 

Accept the process

Our final working from home motivation tip is to go easy on yourself. No one can stay hyper-focused and motivated 100% of the time. The best way to stay productive is to accept the process. If you’re struggling, do what you can on your To-Do list and take a break if you need to.

The most important thing is not to beat yourself up and trust that inspiration will return if you just keep going. Without the motivating power of a team and an office, it’s easy to get distracted. So do your best and give yourself credit for managing to stay productive without them. 

Make financial management easy for yourself

Financial management can be stressful and time-consuming when you’re self-employed. When trying to stay motivated and focused on your tasks, the last thing you want is a bunch of bookkeeping tasks to take up your time. 

That’s why thousands of small business owners use Countingup’s two-in-one business current account and accounting software to stay organised. Countingup lets you manage all your finances from one simple app. Features like automatic expense categorisation, invoicing on the go, tax estimates, and cash flow insights streamline your financial admin so you can focus on running your business.

You can also share your bookkeeping with your accountant instantly without worrying about duplication errors, data lags or inaccuracies. Seamless, simple, and straightforward! 

Start your three-month free trial today. 
Find out more here.