Once my second son was born I knew working from home would be really important to me and im delighted my current work/ blog situation allows this to happen. However working from home does have its pro and cons and I knew from the outset setting boundaries would be the most important part as it can be so easily to get consumed by work and end up using every waking minute to log on, check emails etc.
So one year in I though I do a post considering the pros and cons from my own experience:
- I love being able to drop the kids to school/ activities. Yes I probably am that parent who is enthusiastically encouraging from the sidelines!!
- If one of kids is sick etc, im not stressed about organising emergency childcare etc, I can be there.
- My time is my own – I can work early mornings or late at night but key is to be disciplined. Say you decided to do 5 hours a day…you need to cut it at that otherwise the temptation is for it to drift to much longer days. I can be guilty of “just checking an email” which turns into either a job being done an hour or two can have lapsed.
- Chatting to fellow remote workers/ blog buddies one of the things that crops up most is a better work/life balance which is what I have been striving for, for many years now. I know Laura of Miss LJ Beauty agrees for her too living in a really remote location makes working from home a no brainer for her. Rachel from Coffee Cake Kids agrees too being able to attend sports days, school events was a key driver for her in choosing working from home.
- No rush hour traffic!! My bus stop was half way along the route so I never got a seat!! Standing on a jam packed bus is no fun.
- Recently I have seen technology improvement’s such as a messaging platform which enable me to remain close to my customers despite being physically distant from them.
- Ill be honest I miss the camaraderie of the office, the water cooler chat, the coffee break gossip! Lately I have been giving consideration to the use of serviced office spaces local to me while the kids are at school, something like Click Offices Dublin where you can rent either a designated desk or a hot desk space. Great idea for people like me who like to work for themselves but also like the idea of social side of the office. Human interaction can be a deal breaker for some and one of the reason they don’t like the idea of working from home.
- Another con for me is that there is no “down time” the feeling of leaving work behind as you skip out the door at 5.30 on a Friday.
- A lot of people have asked do I worry more about my mental health being home full time.
- Distractions – coupled with the necessity to be disciplined I find sometimes at home I might say “oh ill just stick on this wash or make the bed” them im back working rather that being more disciplined and getting it done in the hours I had allocated to work.
- Having worked in an office for many years, then working at home for yourself it can be easy to miss the support services such as IT, Facilities etc particularly when things go wrong!!
On balance I love the flexibility of working from home, I feel so much more present in my kids lives and I don’t have the fear of missing plays/ sports days etc, work life balance has vastly improved.
Note: This is a collaborative post