It’s official. I’m been working from home for about two years now. During that time, I have built up my teaching resources store, brought this blog back to life, increased my e-mail subscribers, continued to grow my following with my teaching blog, started helping people live healthier with essential oils, and started providing virtual assistant services. PHEW! It’s been a hectic ride, but I’ve learned a lot about working from home. That’s why today I want to share with you the truth about working from home.
You’re Busier Than Ever
I thought as soon as I started working from home, I’d be able to finally start cranking out that two page “to do” list I had created so long ago. Instead I find myself adding to that list. As a matter of fact, I’ve hardly even touched my original to do list. Now that I’m home full-time, I have more time to read blog posts, listen to podcasts, attend webinars, and network with others. All of this means that my to do list has grown significantly! I believe I’m up to about five pages worth of materials. Which leads me to my next point…
Time Management Increases
I’ve also been pretty good at using my time wisely. However, now that I’m home full-time, I’ve found that I’m even better with utilizing my time. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I never get sidetracked with Facebook – but I’ve gotten really good at knowing what has to get done and about how long it’s going to take me. The combination of these two time frames helps me ensure the work I need to complete within any given day or week gets done.
As good as my time management has gotten, I’ve realized just how hard it is to have a great work/life balance. My work is always right in front of me in the form of a computer or cell phone. It’s taken a lot of effort (and a few disagreements with the hubby), but I’ve finally started just putting the computer away at night. And the cell phone doesn’t come out at all during supper or when we sit down to relax and unwind in the evening. I’m not going to say I’ve perfected this by any means, but I’ve gotten better with work/life balance over the last year.
Working from home gives me a great deal of flexibility. It’s so nice being able to run out and do errands during “off” hours. And I love being able to call my chiropractor to find out they have an opening right now. If I can run over, I don’t have a line and I know I’ll get her undivided attention. Plus I’m able to plan ahead and get a great deal of items scheduled out into the future. It’s not unusual for me to have blog posts written for 2-3 months in advance. This frees up my time to do virtual assistant work or create more teaching resources. I knew the flexibility of working from home would be amazing, but I didn’t know I would love it this much.
As much as I have loved working from home over the last two years, I sometimes struggle with motivation. There may be an entire month where I can’t think of anything to blog about. Or I may get into a rut and not want to create a single new product. Plus I’m in charge of the general house cleaning, so there are times where I don’t want to lift a finger. Thankfully this motivation seems to go in spurts. So one week I may clean the entire house top to bottom and completely ignore my online obligations, while the next week the house gets ignored. It goes back to the flexibility and being able to set my own hours.
I wish I could say that finances have been a breeze since I started working from home, but that would be untrue. Yes, I had some side income coming in before I took the plunge and quit my full-time job. However, this side money was nowhere near my school administrator income. I thought I would eventually get there, and I may – but I’m not there after two years. We are at a place where the money I’m making plus the daycare costs we are saving is about equal to what I would make if I went back to teaching. But my husband and I have cut back on expenses, paid off debt, and we live a simple life. This has allowed us to better live on one income.
Even after the truth about working from home, I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to be their own boss and set their own hours. Each day will not be all rainbows and roses, but it’s a great lifestyle that I’m hoping I can continue to enjoy for many years to come!
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