June 2, 2009 by Tamara Rice

Welcome to Work From Home Tuesday. At oDesk headquarters in Menlo Park, California, every Tuesday is a WFHT.   So what better way to celebrate remote working than discussing some ways to do it well?


Please stop fiddling around with your computer themes when you’re supposed to be working.

So you think a pink camouflage home page theme will be “an improvement in your work environment” resulting in higher productivity for the day? We both know what’s really going on here: procrastination. What’s worse, if your boss is watching your screen shots and sees your wallpaper change suddenly from Frodo Baggins to Angelina Jolie … he knows it too.


Checking your Facebook account before starting your work day? Blatant procrastination, I say.

For those who actually work on Facebook, this may not apply. For the rest of us–who joined FB solely for the jollies of seeing how much weight our college roommate has gained and what our cousin’s girlfriend had for dinner last night–going to Facebook immediately prior to working is a terrible idea. It has led to needless IQ Tests, uncalled-for FB stalking, really lame status updates and senseless political arguments on other people’s walls. Trust me on this one:  FB will still be there when you have finished work for the day.


When possible, do the projects you dread first, then reward yourself with the fun ones.

Some projects are almost effortless. Others, feel physically painful to work on, they are so unappealing. “So, I’ll just get the easy stuff out of the way first,” we tell ourselves.  But do yourself a big favor and get to the hard stuff first. Putting things off will not only put you behind schedule, it will increase your dread as the project will seem more insurmountable with every passing day that you don’t work on it. Don’t use the great projects as excuses, use them as motivation!

WFHT Recommended Reading
“How to Stop Procrastinating” from Pace Productivity
“6 Reasons You Are Procrastinating” from  Stepcase Lifehack
“Stop Procrastinating Right Now!” from  GH Work/Life Balance
“How to Avoid Procrastination as a Freelancer” from Freelance Folder
“Beat Procrastination and Meet Your Deadlines” from Freelance Write at About.com

tamaraforodesksmallerMuch like a divorced marriage counselor, my ability to dish out advice is not an indicator of my ability to implement it. However, having worked from home for over a decade, I’ve learned what works and what just creates more work. – Tamara

Tamara Rice

Freelance Writer and Editor

Tamara Rice is one of several freelance writers on the oDesk Blog team. She joined the oDesk marketplace in 2009, after more than six years on staff at an award-winning national magazine.