Owning a home office for many people can be synonymous with a good life, a secure job, or a lack of professionalism. Yes, it is true; our friends and family often label us as people looking for quick and amateur ways to earn money. But the truth is that it is not so. Remote work is challenging!
On the one hand, we do not have the pressure or demand from our bosses to perform our tasks. On the other hand, we have to assume the role of boss and employee. Notice, because the work doubles, so do the responsibilities. When deciding to work at home, we have to be very clear about the goals to achieve and work hard to accomplish each one.
The troublesome struggles of working from home
1. Make your schedule
Sound great, doesn’t it? Henceforth, you don’t have to task yourself to a specific time for work and sleep. You control your time and freedom is at your feet.
But then, you might be surprised that it doesn’t go that way.
Most people home office work much more than they would in the office. Other remote workers struggle to maintain a regular schedule, operating a few hours a day and then working all night.
There are some interruptions that cannot be avoided. There are delivery dates that will require working overtime. Family obligations also interfere, and even friends and acquaintances that might want to come visiting.
How to fix this: How practical if you don’t have to go to work. This means: No nerve-wracking and gas-consuming stop-and-go, no traffic jams, no crowded train or a delayed or cancelled train, ideally even sleeping in. Anyone who works in their home office will quickly notice that they are given time. Most of the minutes are won by the absence of arrival and departure times. But time can also be expressed at lunch, as there is no longer a line in front of the canteen or microwave between you and your meal.
2. Getting along alone rightly – how wrong is that?
Commenting on the latest series that is sweeping Netflix or explaining our adventures at the weekend is something we usually do with our office colleagues. However, losing these usual practices can make us feel a certain sense of isolation and loneliness. Not having the physical contact of the traditional office is the first thing we miss.
How to resolve loneliness: To make up for the lack of physical closeness, you can organize calls and virtual chats, to comment on the development of the projects. It is also essential to have communication channels focused on fun and not just work. It is good to be able to share things from day to day, which helps people feel comfortable within the team and can even forge friendships. Create a specific channel for that, so that you don’t miss the ‘cafeteria’ moment.
3. Set your income targets
There’s more of a problem for singles who don’t support a family. Still, it’s easy to get into the trap of setting short-term income goals and then working the minimum amount to reach them. The danger in this approach is that it prevents you from accumulating long-term savings, which everyone should have, particularly the self-employed.
How to fix financial risk: Instead of earning a specific dollar amount every day, try to make as much as you can on your workday. This means establishing and maintaining a reasonable work schedule and working it every day, even if you have met your “daily goal” before noon. Don’t worry, excess money won’t hurt you, and it may save your bacon if you get sick or do it later.
4. Ignore administrative work
If you think working for you means you can ignore practical tasks, think again. In fact, you’ll perhaps do more organizational work than you’ve done while at the workplace. And don’t even think about blowing this thing up. Ignoring the fundamentals of your profession wouldn’t just ruin your business but also get you into trouble in the cycle.
How to fix this pitfall: Administrative duties are necessary both to guarantee livelihoods and to develop good self-esteem; By feeling useful, we learn to believe in ourselves. However, like any habit, overwork can damage our physical and mental health with amazing ease.
That is why it is important to always control the amount of work that we face on a day-to-day basis, on the one hand, and the way in which we react to it, on the other. Otherwise, the logic of productivity will drag us to make professional work our reason for living, something that cannot be healthy.
5. Work overload
Frequently, full remote workers feel they need to “prove” that they are productive even from their home office, so they tend to work more hours than they are entitled to or take on more tasks than they have time to do. This overload of work can increase stress levels and, in extreme cases, end up causing a burnout.
At the same time, there is another fear: working more hours than stipulated by the contract. It is somewhat more common among the self-employed who work alone. They do usually work 24/7, and that is a sentence. Here you are part of a team, and you can have more freedom, someone to replace you on vacation, etc. In a classical office setting, workers are allowed to function only within some stipulated hours because we consider productivity and efficiency drop, and they lose social life.
How it is solved: To prevent this from happening, you must establish some routines that you must follow:
- Set some start and end times for the day and respect them.
- During the day, make stops and breaks, even go for a walk if you can, so you will avoid spending your hours inadvertently in front of the screen and losing track of time.
- Maintain the usual breakfast, lunch and snack times
6. Abandoning the Pajama Syndrome
The fear of “pajama syndrome”, which can lead to a feeling of abandonment or lack of motivation, is a major concerns of those working from the comfort of their residence. Starting the working day in pajamas makes it difficult for us to activate our “work mode” and prevents us from establishing a separation between personal and work life.
How it is solved: To avoid falling into that loop, force yourself to establish a routine before going to work, the same one you would follow if you had to travel to an office: get up early, shower, dress in comfortable clothes (but not in pajamas), eat lunch and sit in front of the computer. The virtual call can occur at any time, and you have to be presentable. Appreciate that time you earn avoiding trips and take advantage of it to make these morning routines a moment of personal well-being.
Working at home is a challenge for those who like to take risks, which are not afraid to fail and, for those who believe in their potential, with sufficient humility to understand that it is necessary to learn every day.
There is nothing like working a home business, and doing so has many benefits. But don’t believe in the hype. Becoming a self-employed worker means that your job role suddenly expands, and you have multiple job descriptions, not just one. While you don’t have to write an employee handbook yourself, reconsider standard business policies and procedures to see if they can help you keep your home business running smoothly.