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7 Ways to Multitask While You’re Working From Home

Work from home

Working from home is the ultimate productivity hack — if you know how to take advantage of it. The key is multitasking effectively and on the right kinds of tasks. Use these seven strategies to get more done while you’re getting business done in your home office.

1. Sweep and Mop the Floors (Without Lifting a Finger)

The bigger your home, the longer it takes to sweep or vacuum. Even in modest apartments near Lansing, this is a multiple-hours-per-week kind of job. That’s time you don’t have when you’ve got a million other things to do on the home front. 

Why not automate your in-home floor cleaning — ensuring it gets done in the background while you work from home? Or, let’s be honest, do anything other than clean your floors?

Invest in a robotic floor cleaning device with vacuuming and mopping capabilities. Some of Roborock’s robotic floor vacuums double as mops, for example, without the mess of a traditional soak-and-squeeze rag-on-a-stick. You might still need to stick a vacuum extension under your fridge and oven every now and then, but you’ll eliminate 90% of your weekly floor cleaning time in exchange.

2. Listen to Podcasts While Doing Admin Work

Your admin time is really your own time, even if you’re technically “on the clock” while it goes down. Why not take the opportunity to learn something new? 

Put on your favorite podcast (or the new one you’ve meant to get to for months) while you answer emails, review workplace chat messages, submit your hours or time off requests, and check off any of the no doubt far too numerous admin tasks you’re expected to do on a daily or weekly basis.

It won’t make the work go any faster. But it’ll leave you in a better mood when it’s done.

3. Use Muted Meeting Time to Do Things That Don’t Require Your Full Attention

As long as your camera’s off, no one can be sure you’re not following along. Right?

Here’s the thing: Most meetings are unnecessary. If you’re required to dial into work meetings where you’re not the star of the show — or even expected to provide input — then you don’t need to devote your full attention to the proceedings unless and until you’re called on.

Slacker attitude? Maybe. Or maybe your boss shouldn’t expect you to waste your time.

4. Make Meals With a Slow Cooker or Smart Pressure Cooker

Cook while you work? 

Yep — if you have the proper tools. With an electric slow cooker or smart pressure cooker (like an Instant Pot or one of its many imitators), you can create incredibly flavorful meals with surprisingly little active effort.

Looking for slow cooker meal ideas with minimal prep? Bustle’s “fast” slow cooker recipes have you covered with nearly two dozen creations that you can put together over lunch and have ready to eat by dinner time.

5. Do “Low Stakes” Laundry During the Workday

Depending on the composition of your wardrobe and how much you actually care about keeping your clothes in good shape, your laundry routine might be anything from an afterthought to the domestic equivalent of precision manufacturing.

Even if you find yourself on the “precision manufacturing” side of the laundry spectrum, though, you probably have “low stakes” laundry that you can wash and dry on a regular setting without any mental effort at all.

This is the type of laundry you want to do during the workday. Better than doing it after hours, when you’re either trying to wind down or your attention is even more divided by kids, pets, dinner, and whatever else.

6. Make Calls While You Exercise

Some calls are best memorialized for posterity. Casual check-ins with direct reports, longtime clients, or sales contacts? Not so much.

Those are the kinds of calls you can take while you exercise. Of course, you don’t want to be talking through an upcoming presentation while you’re too winded to talk, but if you’re trucking it on the stationary bike or out walking the neighborhood after lunch, you can manage it.

7. Block Out Time for the Things You Can’t Multitask Away

Some argue you shouldn’t multitask at all. Even if you’re bullish on the practice as a whole, you probably agree that there are some jobs that do require your full attention.

Writing reports, preparing presentations, reconciling financial records — these types of tasks require real focus.  So block out time for them. Call it your daily “no multitasking” session if it helps. Get it done, then get back to getting more done.

Make Your Work-From-Home Life More Productive

These seven life hacks will make you a more productive work-from-home employee. They’ll make your life easier too. Your boss will notice. Your partner will notice. The other folks in your life — they’ll probably notice too.