I work from home — Yes, operative word…. WORK.


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AS A MATTER OF FACT……… I AM……….  Just because I get up later than normal and have time to actually sit at the kitchen table (ohhh yeah look at that!!! we have one of those) catching up on social networks, newspapers, magazines while enjoying a cup of coffee still wearing a tank top and a pair or shorts and have no make up on does not mean that I’m going to sit here and slack all day.  Just because the day is beautiful outside and the pool seems so inviting does not mean that I’m going to run upstairs after my cup of coffee and get ready for a swim.  What it means is:

I am more Productive

Normally I get up at 5:00 a.m. to get ready for work.  Run into the closet and just put on the outfit I picked out the night before.  I cannot give myself the luxury of changing my mind.  All my minutes are counted.  I run to the bathroom and brush my teeth (shower was accomplished the night before), wash my face and run back outside of the bathroom for the makeup.  I sit at my vanity and apply foundation (these days CC cream) and a quick swipe of eyeliner and mascara.  I’m done…. can’t fuss with anything else or I’ll be late.  Run back into the bathroom, brush my hair and put it up in a pony tail (everyday hairstyle).  Run downstairs to the kitchen and our some coffee into my travel mug while at the same time I say good-bye to Adele (the poodle) and promise to be home soon to play with her.  I must be out the door by 5:30 or I will miss my buss (5:50 a.m. bus).  I have learned to be very precise in all my moves.  There isn’t one spare minute in the morning routine.

When I work from home, I get up around 6:00 or 6:30 a.m. and go downstairs still in my tank top and shorts, feed the dog and pour a cup of coffee.  I take my coffee and my iPad and go outside on the deck or sit at the kitchen table and read the morning news or my email while I actually savor the coffee.  Yum!!!!.  I have time to talk to my husband and actually find out what time he will be home.  I don’t have to text him later.  Once he’s out the door I go upstairs and start my morning routine.  I don’t have to worry about what I’m going to wear, although I do not hang around in my PJs all day.  I brush my teeth, wash my face, put my hair in a pony tail and go into my office to turn the computer on and log on to the office.

On a day I have to commute I’m at the office at 7:30 (yes 1.5 hour commute) but it really depends on the traffic.  Sometimes it could be closer to 8:00 a.m., on my way from the bus to the office I stop to grab some more coffee and some breakfast so by the time I get in it’s probably a little before 8:00 a.m and I’m already stressed out because the bagel guy took too long……. ugh!!!! on the days that I am working from home, I walk into my office around 7:45 a.m. and start reading my email.  I respond to what I need to respond and then take a few minutes to go outside with the dog so she leaves me alone during my conference calls.

By the time 8:30 rolls around I am sitting at my computer working.  I am able to do everything I do at the office.  I log on remotely and it’s like I’m sitting at my desk in the office.  Because I have done things at my own pace and was not rushing to get anywhere I am relaxed and I can start working immediately.

I work straight through until about 12:00 p.m. at which time …. OMG I’m starving.  I’m not sure how people can wait until 1:00 to eat.  by 12 I’m ready to eat my arm.  So I run downstairs and grab something to eat.  I take the dog outside and within 10 minutes I’m back inside.  Because there is no one to talk to I come right back up stairs and sit at my computer with my food.  I don’t mind eating at my desk when I’m home.  I continue working through the afternoon only taking one or two breaks to get water and take the dog out again.

When I work in the office there are always people stopping by my desk.  My day is constantly being interrupted by a variety of distractions, I tend to get hungry in the middle of the afternoon, which does not happen when I’m home….. There’s no snack time when I’m home.

I have set up my office at home in a way that I can see outside but am not distracted by the comings and goings of the neighbors, I have a comfortable desk and a great large monitor on my computer.  This week, while I’m on vacation I’m going to set up a double screen so I can run my reports the same way I do at the office.  I have a printer, a scanner, paper, pens and all the things I have at work.  My phone calls, I take them on my cell phone while wearing headphones so it’s no different than being in the office.

I can work until 7 or 8 sometimes and not be distracted.  I can continue to work until wee hours of the night if that’s what’s required …. thank God it hasn’t been in a long long long time.

I would say that if you are going to work from home you must make sure that it suits your lifestyle.  I don’t have children so they are not going to be making noise and wanting me to go play when I should be on a conference call.  If you have children it’s probably a good idea to get a nanny to entertain the kids while you work.  You have to be disciplined.  Because you’re at home and there are so many other things that need to be done sometimes you have to fight the urge of going to wash the dishes or start dusting to get a leg up on the weekend… or start doing the laundry so you don’t have to be stuck inside on Saturday or Sunday…. You know, there are a million things that need to get done when I work from home that are not getting done because I am WORKING from home.

I suggest you get a space that is dedicated for work related matters.  I only work and pay bills in my office.  There is no television, no radio (except the computer sometimes) and no other distractions.  There is a door I can shut. So if it happens to be a day when my husband stays home I can close the door and I am not disturbed by him.

It’s easy to over compensate.  In the beginning I felt that I needed to offer an explanation as to why I was working from home and how hard I was working.  You don’t owe anyone an explanation and if your boss is ok with the arrangement then it’s no one else’s business.  Do not feel like you have to work more or longer than anyone else.  Make sure your work is done well and that your boss is satisfied with the arrangement.

Tell me, would you consider working from home?  Why or why not?

Thanks

 

 

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6 thoughts on “I work from home — Yes, operative word…. WORK.

  1. Ana,

    Like you, I am much more productive working from home – I don’t know if I could function in an office setting after 6 years in my home office. Although, truth be told, I sometimes miss the interruptions and distractions. Now if I could just make family and friends understand that I really am working

    1. I know what you mean. For now I work in the office four days and one at home. I am hoping to do three days at home soon. The problem is the stigma that the phrase “work from home” has. Yesterday someone asked me if working from home is the reason I have such a nice tan ….. As if weekends didn’t exist. My husband understands. Actually more so than I expected. It’s the coworkers I have trouble with.

  2. Ana, your last paragraph about overcompensating really hit home for me. You’re absolutely correct. i started working remotely for my boss about 8 months ago when I moved out of state and it was a difficult transition as I chase my toddler around in between the usual madness. I find I always want to explain how hard it is and how hard I work and always “proving” myself. But, you are correct, as long as my boss and I are happy, that is all that matters. Cheers to being successful in our pj’s sometimes! 🙂

    1. So glad you can relate. Sometimes we project our feelings on others and don’t give them the opportunity. I’m learning that others seem to be easier on me than I am on myself. Sort of cool to figure that out, isn’t it? Thank you for taking the time to comment. I really do appreciate it. I hope to see you again.
      Ana

  3. I love working from home! You make so many valid points…. Its takes a lot of discipline to work from home! Its true that you feel like you need to overcompensate by working more when you’re home, but the truth is, if you’re doing your job properly, you shouldn’t feel that way.

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