Anyone who has an office in their home knows that perils of working from home. Right now I am sitting in my comfy chair in my bath robe working on blog posts for next week. There are several things pulling for my attention, the dog needs fed, the living room needs vacuumed, and I was hoping to take my husband to the mountains for the day. So how do you keep the house from crowding out the office? Even better, how do you keep your office from crowding out your house? Are you really avoiding your work when you are cleaning the house or spending time with your family?
Anyone who works from home feels this dilemma. Even if you don’t work from home, every day when you go to work someplace else, you have to decide on what has priority. Do you get out the report for next week’s presentation or do you help a co-worker on a research project, or do you avoid it all by cleaning out the bottom drawer of your desk?
For me there is a fine line between work and home, not because I have a home office, but because I really do feel you can have your cake and eat it too. Setting priorities and not procrastinating on projects has always been a challenge for me, even when I was working for someone else. Even though they were setting my goals and telling me what project needed to be done, I had a hard time with time management. I have been in business for over 14 years now and I finally feel I can work, spend time with my family and keep my house from looking like a war zone – without going completely insane.
The other day, I was reading another book on time management – hoping to find a solution – when it hit me; I can schedule my day any way I need to. I need the quiet hours in the morning to organize my day, I also need the late night work time when everyone else (including my clients) are in bed for un‑interrupted time to work on larger projects. I also need my noise canceling headphones with music that motivates me, but I know it so well I don’t actually have to listen to it in order to keep focused. Once all those things are in place, it doesn’t matter if I am on the couch, at the park or in my home office; I can get to work.
It also means taking the afternoon off to spend time with my granddaughter, or I can take my husband to an afternoon matinee at the movie theater (admission is cheaper before 6:00pm) instead of him ruining my concentration in the office. It actually helps me work better, solutions to problems often come to me when I am busy doing other things. Looks like it will be vacuuming and a trip to the mountains for me today!