Sometimes no matter how much I try to focus, I simply can’t get work done in my home office.
The dogs bark. The UPS man rings the doorbell. The neighbor mows the lawn.
The list goes on and on.
Sure working from home with snacks at my side and a lack of annoying coworkers lingering by my desk is fabulous — when I can concentrate.
But sometimes I simply have to pack up the laptop and thesaurus (yes, I prefer paperback) and seek out a new place to grind out my next idea or assignment.
Goodbye Distractions, Hello Unconventional Work Spaces
The unpopular coffee shop: I’m incredibly lucky to live within walking distance of a hidden gem with an endless supply of decadent hot chocolate. (I’m not a coffee drinker.) This tiny coffee shop serves those who come-and-go and don’t linger. There’s always a free table, and usually one with a window view. Scour your neighborhood for something similar and sneak away when a deadline looms.
Study rooms at the library: Sometimes I feel like a college student when I sign up for the private study rooms at my local library. That’s ok. It gets me into work mode. Larger public libraries will often have group meeting rooms and small individual private study areas. These are great for when you need a quiet space to focus or conduct an interview. I’ve recorded podcasts and attended Google Hangouts from the comfort of my local library multiple times.
A city-center park: If you live in an urban area, it’s likely there’s free WiFi floating in the air above you. Snuggle up to a picnic table at your favorite park and see what services are nearby. Some fast food restaurants, hospitals and shopping malls offer public WiFi services that you can easily tap into as you work among the inspirational setting Mother Nature has set out before you.
College libraries or common areas: Is there a community college or university in your town? Many of these facilities have public areas that welcome the local community. Stop by the library, which usually has a large study area, and ask if the public is welcome to get a library card and use the facility. I don’t think any librarian can tell an ambitious person “No.” to using a library, especially if you’re a writer.
So, do you struggle to get work done at home or the office? I definitely have my days. Tell me in the comments below about your challenges and solutions to getting work done. Let’s chat!