Working from home might be the dream, but it's not for everyone. If you're very social or need lots of direction or input from your coworkers, you'll probably find yourself unhappy and wildly unproductive. However, if you love the solace and flexibility a home office offers, there are strategies for combating the potential obstacles home working creates. Whether you're Sebastián Sepúlveda working from home
during a portion of a larger project, or you're working from home permanently, here are four tips for being successful:
Ok, maybe you should take wild advantage of no office dress code and get cracking while you're still in your PJs. Most people, however, report that they are much more productive when they take the time to get dressed before going to work. Whether it's the routine trigger getting dressed trips or the fact the clothes make you feel more professional
(ever dressed up for an over-the-phone interview?), taking a few minutes to brush your teeth and apply deodorant can help you feel a little more normal.
Set Office Hours
You don't have to keep the rigid hours you kept in office, but if you don't make a plan for how you earn money online
, you're just setting yourself up for cramming all your jobs into the wee hours of the night. Or early, early morning. On the other hand, because work is so nearby, it's easy to work all the time, and before you know it, work has consumed your entire life. Using a
system such as time-blocking
helps you keep some kind of schedule so that you can keep your work/life balance in check.
There's nothing worse than finally getting the chance to work from home, and then feeling guilty because you're not working during normal office hours. Take advantage of your new-found flexibility! Meet a friend for a leisurely lunch, start your work day earlier (or later), or pick up your kids from school. Doing so will help you make sure you're enjoying working from home and don't burn out.
One of the biggest obstacles to successfully working at home is not having coworkers or team members to connect with each day. An easy, simple way to solve this is by reaching out to other people
with similar job titles who also work from home. You can join groups in your city by using an app like Meetup or join local trade organizations. Or, connect with other work at home colleagues. Either way, regularly visiting with people who share similar challenges can do wonders.
Working from home can be a godsend, especially if you do it the right way. If you make sure to get dressed (at least some of the time), set office hours, be flexible, and connect with other work-at-home people, you'll be on your way to thriving as a work-at-home person.
Lucy Wyndham is a freelancer, remote worker and small business owner who has worked from home for the last seven years. You can reach her by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.