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For a lot of people, the idea of working from home conjures up ideas of sitting on a couch in your jammies daydrinking and eating chips & salsa while watching re-runs of Charmed. And yes, it can be just that wondrous just not always or nothing would get done.

There's truly an art to being able to work effectively from home.

Now that the whole world is at home hiding from COVID-19, a lot of people have to bust out some serious "art" seriously fast. If you've never worked from home, it can take ages to figure out how to do it productively.

This article is here to be your personal Bob Ross and remind you that anyone can be an artist.

One Reddit user asked:

People that work from home regularly, what tips, tricks, and suggestions do you have for us working from home for the first time?

You've got to keep in mind that not everyone's work style is going to be the same, so not every tip may apply to you. Your situation may be entirely different from someone else's. Maybe background music works for you. Maybe you're one of those people who can't have any on because it turns into workeoke and you don't have enough people in the house to provide solid backing vocals for when you do Bohemian Rhapsody. We don't judge. We appreciate your commitment to the high harmony.

In any case, there are a few things here that most of you will probably find useful. Doesn't mean you're going to listen to the experts, though. We get it. Chillin on the couch with a bag of hot cheetos DOES sound like a good time.

Best Use Of Time

Pick a room, close the door, and use noise cancelling headphones. Everything is a distraction when working from home. Suddenly, checking the mail and doing the dishes seems like the best use of your time.

- reapershere

Time To Stop

If there's one thing especially to be disciplined about it the TIME TO STOP WORKING! It's very easy to convince yourself it's ok to keep reading a report because you might just finish it today or to finish making all of the entries because tomorrow will be that much easier or you'll finally be done with a project.

Work at home starts to bleed over into your home non-work time/life very quietly and quickly. Pretty soon it will be a habit. I've worked at home for the last 15 years and got so much more work done but I had to fight hard to win this battle.

- IPauseForHurricanes

Get Dressed


Do your usual morning routine and get dressed! Be sitting at your desk by your usual start time and stick to your usual break times. It's tempting to stay in your pyjamas and work from bed but you'll feel much better if you put yourself together each day.

- CosmicKizmet

A 20 Year Veteran

I have been working from home for 20 years, since before my first kid was born. It has been great. My biggest habits:

  • Have a dedicated space and keep regular hours.
  • Make sure your family knows they can't interrupt your work unless the house is on fire.
  • Keep a journal so nobody can question your productivity.
  • Use your saved commute hours to read the paper in the morning and/or exercise.
  • Eat lunch out of your fridge.
  • Keep good coffee in the house.

You can actually be more productive at home and live a better life this way, if you stay disciplined.

- KlownPuree

Hot Cheetos

Instead of standing by the coffee machine or wasting time gabbing in someone's office I take that time and take my dog for a 10 minute walk or play some fetch in the yard, I do some stretches, work on a craft for a few minutes. Staying productive in your "down time" while working from home directly correlates to staying productive during your work time. If you take a 30 minute break to lounge on the couch and eat hot cheetos, you'll be a lot less inclined to get back into the groove of working than if you had taken that time to do something active or productively fun.

- llama_laughter

Tasks Not Time

Set tasks not time. Don't tell yourself "oh I've been working for X hours [translation: browsing reddit] , I deserve a break". Make a list of what you need to get done and don't give yourself an out till you've gotten it done.

If you can talk to your coworkers on Hangouts / Slack / whatever. Hold each other accountable to your lists.

- AlexTMighty


Set a routine.

I wake up every morning, check my emails, respond to anything urgent, open up all the files I'll be working with for the day.

Then I make coffee.

Then I attend morning meetings, eat breakfast and drink coffee.

Then I take a 20 minute break.

Then it's about an hour of work. Then lunch. I'll usually pop on an episode of the simpsons while I'm making lunch (or big mouth, or disenchanted, or some anime, or whatever)

Then another couple hours of work.

Then afternoon snack.

Another hour of work, then it's time to pick up the kid from school. Bring her home, sit her in front of a movie, and bang out another hour of work.

Then it's quitting time. I shut my laptop and resolve myself to not touch it again until morning.

Yes, it's broken up a lot, but I don't have people hanging over my cube just wanting to "chat".

- Account_8472

Not The Couch

I've been working remote for ~8 years now.

You have to have a dedicated work space. Your job happens at your workstation. Not everyone has a spare room or a desk but make it as official as possible. Do not, under any circumstances, work from the couch.

Take an hour to wake up and get moving, have some coffee, do some stretching, read the news, listen to 15-20 minutes of a podcast. Then officially start your work day. You'll really start to appreciate the time you don't have to scramble to get ready.

I don't have an opinion on showering and "dressing up". I shower most mornings but always just wear a t-shirt and joggers.

Take a break and go the fck outside to walk around, try to get at least a mile.

Drink lots of coffee because it's awesome.

Take a 30-45 minute lunch and actually cook a really good lunch. I make a salmon, potato, egg hash every day. I'll pickle some peppers, chop some garlic and really focus on cooking for a few minutes.

Don't feel guilty about taking a few 10-15 minute break. My normal work flow even when I was in the office was 45-50 minutes of actual work and 10 minutes of di*king around.

4:00 work beer

Before you go on your walk and before you start lunch throw in a load of laundry.

Without office and co-worker distractions try to get 6 solid, honest hours of work between when you start and when you finish.

You'll miss it when you have to go back in the office.

- tpxnu16

The Zone


Have sht you will get done by a specific time or by the end of the day. Not a "oh I'll do 3 hours of work". No. Get tasks ready or you will get distracted and lose focus.

Also put on some music or something that is not too distracting get comfortable and you may end up getting in a "flow" or "the zone". That is when you really get a ton of work done. You end up doing better than in an office.

- Tearaken

24 Hours Of Wear And Tear

My husband I have worked from home since 2002. Something you're going to realize: your house now gets 24 hours of wear and tear. Be extra diligent about cleaning up after yourself and putting things back where they belong, otherwise your house, especially your kitchen, will "silt up" with mess.

- Fladagal


If you keep finding yourself on Facebook or reddit (like me when trying to do my online college course) download something like "cold turkey" to block distracting sites during certain time frames. I have 10-15min breaks in my schedule to get some down time, but other than that don't touch social media when I'm supposed to be working. Helped my productivity level a ton!


Bedroom Blues

Don't work from your bedroom. It is meant for sleep not work. You may get tired if you try to work from there.

- musichead2468

A Trial Run

I work from home most of the year.

GET UP AND BE GRATEFUL! Wear comfortable clothes and be productive.

This may just be the trial run for tele-work that many people have been hoping for, so shine! Lots of companies have been resistant to it and now have no choice, maybe it could be the norm.

My tips:

-Set-up a desk-like area, use the same travel mug you normally do!

-Don't turn on the TV and don't work in bed!

-Take breaks and take a lunch.

-If you have pets, enjoy your time with them, this is a perk. It will make you want to work harder to preserve this.

-Keep a log of the tasks that you are getting done, at first managers are more vigilant to be sure that you are working and not slacking. Once you prove that you are working, they tend to back off.

-Stop working at the same time you normally do, don't get sucked in to working late.

-Go outside and take a walk - get some exercise so that you don't get sick of your home.

- birdvery

Communication And Availability

Be online.

Be available over whatever IM your company uses. Communicate with your co-workers at least as much as you do in the office. Write brief status reports even if nobody is asking for them.

Communication and availability are important to maintain because this is what is most at risk when people aren't in a shared environment.

Status reports are useful to help you maintain focus, but also can help your manager keep track of what's going on with people. If you have daily stand ups, then this isn't necessary. Your managers are going to get asked about how the team is doing in this new environment; give her tools to effectively answer those questions. The best updates are short and frequent; daily and brief, not an essay once a week.

- sxan

You've Left Work

Start your day exactly the same as of you were going in to work. Get up at the same time, shower, shave, put on real clothes, and eat your usual breakfast. Then 'go' to work and have the same tea and lunch break you usually would. And when the work day finishes, do NOT check your work email or answer work calls. You've left work, you're home now.

- LilMaece

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Image by salmerf from Pixabay

Stupid is as stupid does. And it’s pretty obvious when some poor, misinformed, potentially ignorant soul needs to be put in their place. Luckily, there are a lot of witty ways to do just that. We love a good euphemism.

Wanna know the best way to call out stupidity when you see it? Stay tuned.

U/lientubay asked: What's the best euphemism for telling people that they're stupid?

​Get a load of these sick burns. I swear, the people of Reddit are harsh.

Call outs are a universal language.

In Russian we have "intelligent thoughts have always followed him, but he was faster".


We have something similar in German: "Intelligence is chasing you, but you are faster."


Be your own Easter Bunny.​

Looney Tunes Cartoon GIF Giphy

You could hide your own Easter eggs.


The great Harvey Korman had some Alzheimer's @ 2005, and he still went on a talk show. They asked him how he was doing and he said he was OK. "Now I can hide my own Easter eggs." RIP.


That’s cold.​

“At this point, you can only impress me."


This reminds me of something I saw in a show recently. One character said "Would you think less of me if ____." The other character said "I could never think less of you."


​I lol’d.

I think I saw this one here previously "You aren't the biggest idiot in the world but you better hope they don't die".


Once told this to my brother, his immediate response was "hey, please don't die".


It takes a very intelligent person to properly call out a dumb person. Weird how that works, huh?​

When the bears are smarter than the tourists.​

GIF by Smokey Bear Giphy

Now I know what Douglas Adams was talking about.

"A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools."


As the park rangers in Yellowstone say- making a bear-proof trash can is very difficult due to the considerable overlap between the smartest bears and the dumbest tourists.


​That’s a gross mental image.

In Greece we say "when it was raining brains, you had an umbrella".


In German we ask God for help. "God, let there be raining brains" this sounds so weird but idk how to express it better lol.

Edit: In German it's "Gott, lass Hirn regnen".


It’s probably a bad sign when your lawyer calls you dumb.

Lawyer to client who shared detailed attorney-client privileged strategy memorandum with a whole bunch of people, including an adverse party:

Client: "Is there anything you can do to fix this?"

Attorney: "No, you've pretty much waived the privilege and now they know everything."

Client: "Is there anyway to put a positive spin on this?"

Attorney: "Well, I suppose the judge might buy that this proves that you lack the mental capacity to form specific intent."


These next ones are just plain cold, but probably very much deserved.​

Meanness from a Canadian is probably well-earned.

eric cartman GIF by South Park Giphy

On a Canadian jobsite

Ahh Terry, having you around is like losing three good men.


Oof, that’s harsh.

He's so far behind he thinks he's first.


I had a keychain as a kid that said, "She who laughs last thinks slowest.”


Those are some gross socks.

Once heard someone say "Well he's about as sharp as a sock full of soup".


"Sharp as a marshmallow" was one that went around my friend circle.


In the words of the great prophets Smash Mouth, “I ain’t the sharpest tool in the shed”. That self-burn is perhaps one of the most classic euphemisms. And I just almost misspelled “euphemism”. So I can definitely relate to that lyric.

A good way to exercise your brain? Keep thinking of creative ways to insult people. Trust me, it works like a charm

Image by 1388843 from Pixabay

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