Thursday, October 12, 2017

Working From Home: the Good, the Bad, and What I've Learned

By laundry day, I don't have much left to wear: just my nice button-up blouses and stylish slacks with no hint of elastic or stretch. That's rightwhen laundry day rolls around, I'm left with nothing but my old work clothes, a reversal of what many people experience. It's a strange side effect of working from home, where my standard uniform is either clothes that resemble pajamas orlet's be honestmy actual pajamas. 

I love working from home. The best part about it? That's got to be my coworkers. 
Aren't they cute? 

I also like being able to make a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch, or being able to take a break to do choreslike laundryif I need. Not having to drive to work is also a definite bonus, especially when the weather's bad.

But there are downsides. 

I work from home, but I do work. I have a lot to get done, often on deadline. Time management is essential.

Separating work life from home life is another challenge. I often work on the weekends, and in the evening. Sometimes it seems like I'm always working.

And then there are the stretches of days when I don't step outside my front door. I try to prevent this by at least going on walks occasionally, but that becomes difficult when it's been raining non-stop.

Working from home isn't for everyone. Some people need more structure, more socialization. Personally, I love it, despite the minor issues.

Whether or not you're a writer, if you work from home, here are some tips I've learned from my experience. I may or may not be good at following this advice myself. 

1. Make a schedule. Even though you're not clocking in at the office, you need to know when you're working and when you're not.

2. Get organized. Time management is essential, so you need tools like to-do lists and calendars. 

3. Create a work space. This can help you separate your work life from your home life and keep you organized. It's also necessary if you're hoping to deduct a home office on your taxes. (This is not tax advice. Talk to a tax expert for that.)

4. Get out of the house. At the very least, use your lunch break to go on walks or run errands. You can also do some of your work at a coffee shop for a nice change of scenery.