One of the best things about working from home is that you get to choose your hours! But while it may be tempting to adjust your work schedule every day based on family commitments, the rhythm created by routine is what’s going to help you be an efficient typist who finishes work quickly and accurately.
With that in mind, set a daily “start” time you can stick to every day and make sure you leave yourself a four-hour window of uninterrupted space to complete your typing. To make sure that’s as easy as possible, check your email and social media before starting your work day and not during or in between transcripts. That way your mind won’t be swirling with the day’s to-dos when you sit down to take your first listen. After all, it’s not just about making sure you work a certain number of hours — it’s about maximizing the time you have. Starting at a certain time everyday will minimize fuzzy periods of distraction and allow you to end at the same time everyday, which is good for creating more family and personal time.
Want to optimize your daily routine even further? Here are three more tips that will help you become a successful, work-at-home transcriptionist:
1. Create mini-routines.
Although the word “routine” can bring to mind monotonous repetition, they’re really just a consistent way of performing the tasks you have to do everyday. If you’re a mom, you probably already have a routines set up to get your kids off to school, take them to practice, or put them to bed because it’s an efficient way to make sure everything happens at the right time. Similarly, creating specific routines in your work-from-home schedule will help you get into an effortless flow of work.
For example, in the morning you could read your emails while eating breakfast and spend 15 minutes outlining the tasks you need to complete after your transcription work is done. That way you won’t be thinking about household to-dos while you’re transcribing, and will have a clear action plan for your day after you’ve finished your audios. If you do this every morning, it will create a habit that helps you seamlessly transition into your work schedule.
2. Take breaks.
While it would be nice to knock out all your transcription in a single sitting (cheers to strong coffee!), many days you may need a break to clear your head and recharge your mental batteries. At that point it may be tempting to start knocking out your personal to-dos as a change of pace, but that may hurt your productivity as you get bogged down by household tasks. Instead, grab your lunch and eat on the patio or take a walk through the neighborhood. Catching some rays is a proven way to boost your happiness and mental clarity, without allowing yourself to get distracted by post-work chores.
3. Reward yourself.
A great day isn’t all work and no play! When you finish a particularly long transcript or knock out the day’s audios in record time, don’t hesitate to make yourself a fresh pot of coffee or eat a square of brain-boosting dark chocolate. Rewarding yourself appropriately throughout the day provides positive feedback for your accomplishments and keeps things from getting stale. Your home environment offers a ton of opportunities for relaxation and enjoyment, so use them to your advantage by having a “treat yourself” moment after you’ve done something worthy of reward.