4 Things You Should Consider Before Deciding to Work from Home

4 Things You Should Consider Before Working from Home

Working from home is an amazing opportunity. No commute (so no extra gas!), you can stay in your pajamas, and if you can cut down on the cost of childcare. However, there are some downsides to working from home, and you should consider them carefully before making the transition. I currently work from home, and there are four big things I have a problem with.

1. Self-Discipline

Some work-from-home jobs allow you to set your own hours. This requires an enormous amount of self-discipline. I work as a freelancer, so I can basically work when I want. Sometimes I have the urge to put it off to get other things done, or let myself take a ‘personal day’. I’ve recently had to start really cracking down on myself to stop lazing around and get my work done! Even for those people with iron willpower, it can be a struggle at first.

There’s another side on that spectrum, though. When I first started working from home, money was very tight. To help combat that, I started working every waking hour. I skipped meals, I didn’t take any ‘me’ time, and the house was a mess. I was telling myself that the money was just sitting there, waiting to be made, so why not make it? After several months of that, I had quickly spiralled down and was a mess. I finally had to start making myself taking lunch breaks, and stop working when my husband got home from work. It took some time to realize that I couldn’t work 24/7, no matter how badly we needed the money.

2. Distractions

Distractions come in a million different varities: a knock at the door, your toddler standing at your knee whining because he wants to play, a phone call or text you just have to answer. Those things certainly distract me sometimes, but my biggest distraction is simply the internet calling to me: get on facebook. Check your email. Watch Netflix! It’s hard to block out those distractions and get your work done. This is another part of the challenge of self-discipline: You have to make yourself ignore the distractions and get to work. True, some distractions really do need to be tended to, but the majority of them just need to be tuned out.

3. Social Interaction (or lack of it)

My biggest complaint about working from home is the lack of social interaction. There aren’t any coworkers to talk to at lunch or go out with after dinner; there are no customers to chit-chat with. I’m home basically all day, every day. Don’t get me wrong, I love my son to death, but it gets boring talking to my non-verbal toddler all day!

One of the main way I’ve found to combat the loneliness and seclusion is to join forums or chatrooms. Find people online you like to talk to and chat with them a few times a week. Make a point to go grab a coffee with your old friends or join a club (public libraries are great places for those!). Don’t let yourself become too isolated.

4. Costs

Working from home often requires expensive internet services. One of the jobs I had working from home in the past required me to have the highest residential internet speed available, which in my area was almost $300 per month! It also required me to have a good computer. You definitely have to weigh out the costs of working from home versus the income you’ll be earning.

Working from home can seem like a blessing, but there are drawbacks to them. Learning what those drawbacks are before you start working from home can help you prepare for them. By learning from my mistakes, it will be much easier for you to successfully work from home!

For those of you who work from home, what were your biggest barriers and how did you overcome them? Share below!

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9 Comments

  1. Yes! There is a lot I didn’t realize about working from home until I was actually in it. Most of my work has to be done late in the evening after my husband and kiddos are in bed. My one year old needs a lot of attention during the day (as he should) so I try not to work too much when he is awake. Thanks for this awesome post. I feel you!

    1. Samantha

      I also have a one year old, but mornings are my most productive time of day. When he first gets up in the morning he’s in a pretty independent mood–sometimes if I try to play with him, he’ll push me away and go play on his own! It’s hard, but sometimes you really do have to follow your child’s lead and work around their schedule.

  2. I love this!! I started working 3 days out of high school and it was from my boss’s house…that was ok and productive. But when I had my kids and started working from home..OMG!!! It was so hard! I finally found my groove (most days) and now I never want to leave my house!! Awesome awesome awesome tips for anyone making this transition 🙂

    1. Samantha

      I started working from home when I was pregnant. working from home with a child was such a huge transition! I’m pretty similar to you in that some days, I lose my groove and don’t get much done. I’m still so thankful for the opportunity to work from home, though!

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