Use these tips to create a space in your home for getting things done.

When you work from home, potential distractions can abound that jeopardize your efficiency, says Jennifer Shelby, who works in public relations from her Worcester, Mass., home. For example, Shelby learned to dress for work even when at home and avoid the temptation to stay in her PJs.

Here are other pointers for ensuring an efficient, productive home office:

  1. Establish a professional routine without too many breaks. But establish some breaks with time frames. For example, Shelby regularly takes a few minutes periodically to walk the family dogs. Jeffrey Crane, founder of Concept to Creation, a Gilbert, Ariz., company that consults on home design, also works from home and often uses his breaks to grab a glass of water, check on his children, and eat lunch away from his desk.
  2. Have a door or partition to set physical boundaries and establish rules with family.
  3. Have a dedicated work line to pare nonwork calls.
  4. Include locked cabinetry if work involves confidentiality.
  5. Plan the space to expand, perhaps with extra storage.

Maintain a healthy work and family balance by leaving work at a set time unless a project must get done.