So, what is it like working from home? One word… fantastic!
If your job allows it, or you are starting your own business, I highly recommend it.
This is me though, this is possibly not for everyone.
If you thrive off of talking and mingling with others all day every day, then rather stay at the office. Or if you are in sales and presenting a product in-store, then this may not be for you. But for me, I enjoy the quiet time. I love being at home and the flexibility is a bonus. I can now get other things done during the day that also need attending to during working hours. And, I don’t miss that morning or afternoon, standing dead still, going nowhere traffic, not even for a second!
As with all things though there can be a downside. To avoid feeling lonely and talking to your kettle, try:
- Having client meetings
- Taking time off to spend extra special time with your kids
- Working from a coffee shop
- Taking your dogs for walks
- Joining a co-working space
- Taking breaks and going on errands
- Meeting up with a friend for lunch
- Exercising in the outdoors or with a group of people in a team/gym
But, you will need to be disciplined. As with anything in life, there are distractions:
- That pile of laundry, no matter what you do it doesn’t get smaller, it has a mind of its own! Do it during breaks, not when you are looking for an excuse to procrastinate.
- The same goes for the dishes in the kitchen.
- Starting supper too early – leave those extravagant, laborious Sunday roasts for Sundays.
- The ringing doorbell. Or, you can do what we did, it broke, we didn’t fix it.
- Keep your TV watching to the evenings rather.
- Don’t finish your favourite book until bedtime. It gives you something to work towards and look forward to.
A rule we are trying to implement in our house – no cellphones or work in the afternoons/evenings whilst the kids are awake. A quick check of an email, usually turns into a long email response, so don’t do it. Do your work during set times, and spend the rest of your time with your family.
You have to find the balance, and I know, it’s easier said than done! Especially when your office is now in your house. But if you are aware of where you are falling short, if you can identify where you need to make changes, then that is already a big step in the right direction.
If you are trying to be a more ‘present’ parent, then switching off technology and tuning out the work rush has to be done so that you can focus on the little ones. In turn, you will relax properly and be able to focus more clearly when you do open that laptop again. If you are not able to increase your amount of quality living time, then why work from home in the first place?
A home office can mean:
- Kids on your lap, whilst you are typing.
- Kids taking stationery out of your drawers and decorating their faces with your highlighters when you look away for a second.
- Kids wanting snacks, just as you are about to complete something important. (A snack is something, which usually has a waiting period of a few seconds!)
- Kids wanting you to “come lie with me mommy and read a book” – see above, don’t mix work and family time, both will suffer.
It can also mean:
- Better concentration.
- Fewer disruptions during working hours.
- No wasted time in traffic.
- Flexibility – You can shower and dress whenever. If I start working at 5am get a ton of productive work done and then only get dressed at 10am, I can.
- I am fortunate and have a lady who helps with the cleaning some days a week. On those days I can really just focus on my work, it’s great!
- Using more technology in getting things done, simplifying things – Skype, WhatsApp, DropBox, etc.
Weigh up the pros and cons before making your choice.
It is not for everybody and if you are easily distracted you will need to work on that. It may also depend on your type of career and what you do on a daily basis and where.
Ultimately though, it is the way the world is going, and if you do it right, you can improve your quality of life. That’s something worth thinking about.
Owner | Virtually Admin
Virtual Business Administrators