Soho's shopkeepers might be complaining bitterly about the absence of trade, but for many of those who are working from home during the Olympics, life won't be peaches 'n' cream either.

As many as 1.5m workers are working from home during London 2012, reports the Daily Mail.

But forget watching every race, home workers regularly struggle to keep their work-life balance on track, according to Maureen Gaffney, author of personal improvement book Flourishing.

While the prospect of a commute-free day in your domestic haven is alluring, the reality is that working at home is harder than you may think, she says.

work from home olympics

Working from home makes it harder to avoid distractions

She tells Huffpost Lifestyle: "Alongside the usual need to concentrate on the demands of work, you will face the challenge of having to make choices about how to structure the day; fend off endless distractions; and resisting the temptation to do just about anything except work.

"These challenges require exercising self-control and all draw on a common inner resource of mental energy that is easily depleted – that is why we can only call on this inner reserve as little as 5% of the time. So in order to flourish at home you’ll need to remove as many demands as possible on your willpower."

Here are Gaffney's tips for flexing your self-control muscle and making sure you don't miss any Team GB medals, while getting all your work done...

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  • Get Dressed

    Dress before you come down stairs. Who me? Yes you. Even the most disciplined of people have had to learn the hard way that if you work from home, staying in your pyjamas is deadly. It induces the kind of sloth that slows everything down and inevitably ends with the mortification of opening the door to a neighbour or delivery man at 3pm still in your night attire.

  • Make A Plan

    Minimise the number of choices you have to make during the day. Having to take responsibility for making choices, even if it involves choosing something you desire and value, depletes your mental resources. This in turn impairs subsequent concentration and problem-solving. So, set out a clear plan for your daily work routine in advance, including definite start, end and break times. And stick to it.

  • Start A 'Time Bank'

    Don't underestimate your capacity for self-deception. 'I'll just watch the first few minutes of the 1000 metres ...' you tell yourself. This apparently minor indulgence, however, can easily grow into a full collapse of your schedule ('It's too late to start now..'). Instead, use the principle that works well for diets - 'saving' calories in advance for a big blow out at a specified later date. Operate a similar 'time-banking' in advance of a must-see Olympics event which occurs in the middle of the working day.

  • Goals

    Set yourself one goal per hour. Your brain is a machine designed to pursue goals and to monitor the progress you are making towards their achievement. Setting goals will not just structure your day, it will make you happy. Minute-to-minute happiness is highly correlated with feeling you are making measurable progress toward your goal.

  • Minimise Distractions

    Set up a work space designed to minimise distractions. Even at work, surrounded by the paraphernalia of the office or business, the average employee spends a whopping 25% of time daydreaming, gossiping or engaged in personal matters. At home, the potential is much greater. You will be amazed at your sudden zeal to 'Just do a bit of tidying up before I start'. Create a DMZ that is clutter-free, away from passing family/friends, TV etc.

  • Office Equipment

    Equip your work space with everything you are likely to need. Searching for a waste paper bin, paper or a stapler will provide endless opportunities for distraction.

  • Visual Cues

    Seed your immediate work environment with visual cues designed to keep you task-focused. The brain is highly responsive to external 'primes' that work to automatically cue relevant behaviours. Pinning up a notice over your desk such as 'Get Down To Work' is remarkably effective.

  • Good Habits

    Use the power of habit. The brain likes to go 'on automatic' as much as possible to minimise conscious 'executive' mental effort. So keep to your usual work morning routine as much as possible. If your office routine begins with bringing a coffee to your desk, switching on the computer, opening your post, consulting your diary, checking your emails - then follow that sequence exactly at home. Though not in your slippers.

  • Reward Yourself

    Make a deliberate decision about how to use that saved commute time. Commit to using it to do things you always said you want to do, but never have the time - take exercise, play with your children, meditate, have a cooked breakfast, or prepare a delicious supper.

  • Get In The Zone

    Adopt the tactics of elite athletes. They manage their energy by building in recovery and renewal routines. Select an activity that you know helps you to clear your mind and lift your mood. Stretch, listen to music, go outside for a few minutes. Pre-select times for these routines and be disciplined about the length of the break.

  • Manage Your Mood

    Take heed of Great Britain's Katarina Johnson-Thompson smiling as she competed in the high jump during the Heptathlon at the Olympic Stadim, London. There is good evidence you need to experience a minimum of three positives to every negative just to manage day-to-day. If you want to flourish, you need to increase that ratio to 5:1. So use your time working at home to notice what is going well, to register and savour things that have gone 'just right', occasions to feel gratitude, hope or amusement

  • Keep Energy Levels High

    Adopt the tactics of elite athletes. They manage their energy by building in recovery and renewal routines. Select an activity that you know helps you to clear your mind and lift your mood. Stretch, listen to music, go outside for a few minutes. Pre-select times for these routines and be disciplined about the length of the break.