I’ve been working from home for five years and although I could write a book about the many benefits, there is a downside to working where you sleep.
All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go!
Dressing up for work loses it’s appeal when there’s no-one around to see it. Every day is casual Friday when you work from home. Slap on a pair of jeans and your favourite t-shirt and you’re done! Some prefer to where their pyjamas but believe me, the novelty soon wears off when you’ve been living in your pj’s for 7 days in a row.
You’re Never Off the Clock
Like most people who work from home, I work for myself and I got to tell you, I’ve never worked so hard in my life! I couldn’t have imagined working 80 hour weeks when I was commuting to the Sydney CBD every weekday. But here in my home office, the work day never ends.
I reply to emails at midnight and as soon as I move away from the computer, another idea pops into my head on how the business of running this website can be improved.
Does this ever happen to you? You stare at screens all day long like some mindless zombie and then as soon as you switch off the computer, the smartphone, the iPad etc, an idea pops into your head that has you so excited you can’t wait to start working on it. You haven’t had a single coherent thought in your head all day, so you fire up the computer, the smartphone, the iPad etc and before you know it, it’s morning and you’ve been working all night long.
Thank God for one of the benefits of working from home, the luxury of being about to take a nap in the middle of the work day! But it does make me wonder if this crazy schedule of mine is having a negative impact on my health.
So public holidays and P.O.E.T.S day (Piss Off Early Tomorrow’s Saturday) loses all meaning when you work from home. I yearn for the days when I could leave the office at 4pm on a Friday and not give the day job a second thought until 9 on Monday morning. NOT POSSIBLE when you work from home. Unless you live in a McMansion with enough spare room to physically separate your work space from your living space, you’re never more than 30 feet or so from headquarters.
I’m Getting Fat!
I’ve gained 20 kilograms since I started working from home. I spend so much time working at my desk, my office chair has a permanent imprint of my ever expanding arse burned into the seat!
Whereas I use to burn energy running from the train station to the office and taking the stairs instead of the elevator, these days I’m walking around my apartment and jumping up and down on the spot to get the blood pumping. If I were a disciplined person, I’d make the time for regular exercise and for following a balanced diet, instead of snacking at my computer. But when given the choice, I’d rather work at my computer for 12 hours a day, than spend an hour at the gym.
Go for a walk in the sunshine, you say? Not where I live in Western Sydney! You’re risking your life when you walk the streets in this part of town. I’ve really got to get out of this place, Canberra seems nice and peaceful…
Remember when your mum use to strike up conversations with checkout chicks and other assorted strangers at the supermarket because her life was so boring? I found it embarrassing as a teenager and swore I would never act like this in public. But I realised the other day after I tried to strike up a conversation with a stranger in the produce section of my local supermarket, that I’ve become my mother! Little wonder the checkout chicks have stop asking me ‘How is your day?’ because I’ve become one of those people who will actually go into great detail about my day and my life!
Social isolation is a very real problem when you work from home, particularly if you’re like me and love the sound of your own voice! In an attempt to combat social isolation, I use the old fashioned land line telephone to chat with family and friends.
I also have deep and meaningful conversations about politics and current affairs with my dog. I also discuss politics with my youngest son who is 20 years of age, but these conversations consist of texting because he doesn’t have a land line and he’s current mobile phone plan offers unlimited sms. Ah kids, you gotta love ’em.
So these are the cons to working from home. But don’t let that put you off because there are far more pros than cons in this workplace. Just be aware that working from home isn’t all sleeping in until noon and watching daytime TV!
Photo: © snowwhiteimages – Fotolia.com