The Truth About Working in Pajamas

There was an old book called “How to make a full-time living on your kitchen table in your underwear.”

That’s not the exact title, but you get the idea.

Many people have this fantasy of working in their pajamas. When you’re all dressed up for work, it seems like the ultimate fantasy.

I’ve been working doing what I love for over 15 years. So the question is: “Does Frederic work in his pajamas?”

The answer is: sometimes.

It’s a psychological thing.

Pajamas are associated with relaxing and doing nothing. You’re at home in your pajamas, drinking a cup of hot tea, bundled up in your lazy chair while watching the snow fall outside, finishing the latest novel or blasting through a season of your favorite TV show.

Psychologically, pajamas make you a bit lazy.

I find that when I work from home in my pajamas, I approach my day with a certain nonchalance that isn’t completely conducive to getting things done.

But I must admit that sometimes I do work in my pajamas!

I find it better to get dressed. Nothing fancy. A pair of comfortable jeans. A comfortable and decent shirt that you wouldn’t be ashamed of wearing outside. And a pair of house shoes.

Dressed in this way, I already feel more productive. A few other tricks:

1) The cleaner your house and your office is, the more focused and productive you’ll become. A mess encourages a distracted mind. But if you want to be just super creative, a bit of a mess in the office is apparently good, according to some new research.

2) Take a shower and do your grooming to start the day. Taking a shower just seems to have a psychological effect that gets me started for the day, even though I might not leave the house until 3 p.m.!

3) Work in specific blocks of time. You could say that you’re going to work from 10 a.m. until noon, take a lunch break, and do a few more blocks in the afternoon. Have some sort of plan of what you’re going to work on, and at what time, otherwise you’ll get distracted.

4) Generally it’s best to avoid answering emails first thing in the morning, until you’ve put in at least one hour of something productive, like writing.

5) Get out of the house! It’s easy for people working in the comfort of their own homes to become hermits and enjoy the coziness of their own little world a little too much. I like to start the day with a walk outside, when weather permits (today it was minus something ridiculous in Montreal, so I skipped the walk).

But of course, you have to see what works for you. If working in your pajamas makes you feel incredibly productive, then by all means do it!