Some of you might disagree with me on this, but I’ll say it: Working from home sucks. This isn’t to say that working for yourself sucks, but working in the same place that you woke up in taxes on your soul after a while.
I changed jobs about a year ago, to one that let me work more on my own time and schedule, and a lot more from home. I thought it would be a great opportunity to get more things done on my own time. Unforunately, I’m just not built for that sort of thing.
I used to hate the idea of sitting in an office from 9–5 and the like, but I actually really miss it these days. I have to go out of my way to recapture a bit of that experience, because the truth is without that structure my motivation, productivity, and general attitude goes to shit.
If you’re different, more power to you. If you’re anything like me, here’s some tips that I constantly have to remind myself to follow:
- Keep to a routine, even a stupid one. Do the basic things anyway like getting ready in the morning, dressing like you’re about to be working, etc. Makes me feel lots more sane.
- Start each day by leaving your place. If you don’t it’s easy to get sucked in.
- Go out for little things. Start thinking of going out for food, coffee, groceries, etc. as payment towards sanity and an excuse to get out of the place. Maybe set up shop at a coffee shop for a few hours, especially if you drink coffee like I do.
- Make a to-do list. There are lots of systems for to-do lists from simple (a list) to complicated (a series of lists divided by importance and urgency) but whatever your system, keep to it.
- Talk to people. It’s the best way to stay sane.
- Set limits. Work some sort of hours (whatever works for you), and don’t slack off during them. Otherwise you wind up letting not-quite-working take up all waking hours, and you feel like shit by the end. Trust me.
As you can tell, this is a kinda personal issue for me. I’ve learned a lot this last year about how I work when I’m not at work, and I’m still learning. Share your thoughts, tips, etc. in the comments, because others, and myself, could use them.