Challenges of Working From Home
by Mary Ramsey
I’ve been fortunate to work from home for many years now. Sometimes it is great and other times it sucks. You think there are too many distractions at work? Wait until you are at home. Oh wait! Most of you are working from home. Welcome to the world of distractions of many colors.
Let me do a quick brain dump of all the distractions I face on an average day: laundry, what to cook, the dog wants a treat, the cat wants a treat, the spouse wants a treat, dirty dishes, fur balls rolling across the floor, what to cook, running out of paper products, learning/teaching online meeting protocols, where can I set up a temporary work space, what to cook, chores, unlimited family time, finding my own space and quiet time.
A glance at my pros and cons list for working from home provides more insight into my love/hate relationship:
The trick for me is to have some structure with a whole bunch of flexibility built in. It’s like too much of a good thing will spoil it.
Yes, you can throw in a load of laundry on your way to the kitchen but don’t let the laundry take over your day. Build some boundaries, set timers, or set aside some time during each day for each type of activity.
For example, I only do household chores in the morning. In the afternoon, I work on finances which can include personal stuff since we own our own business. It’s taken me a long time to find a system that works for me. (Mostly because I was trying to fit my square self into a round hole.)
A simple test you can do is to make notes on how many times you are being distracted during the day. Keep a list. Then see how you can group the distractions together and purposefully do them the same time each day. Find a system that works for you.
Our dog, Wyatt, expects a treat every morning. He and I have trained each other to meet up at 9:30 for his treat. Sometimes he’s early but once he gets his treat he takes off.
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