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Working from your Home, some Rules for staying Sane

Updated on June 10, 2010

The American workplace has changed tremendously in the past decade and it has changed even more, in the past few years alone. It seems that the nine to five workplaces that everyone commutes to on a daily basis are becoming more and more a thing of the past. With rising gas prices and the internet making it possible to even hold meetings from your home computer. The internet has become the new workplace and those you meet online in social networking sites are now your new co-workers. Welcome to the twenty first century.

Working from one’s home does offer some conveniences, such as being able to make up your own hours, saving on gasoline and not having to put up with many of the nuisances of the typical workplace. On the other hand, working from one’s residence can have its challenges as well. After all, this is where your children play, meals are prepared, your pets chase each other, and domestic duties beckon. How does one manage to make a living in the same environment where one also does his or her daily living.

You have to make rules and you need certain boundaries. Roger Williams of The Florida Weekly, who is a columnist for them, has his office at his house. In order to survive, he has two rules and they are “One, you have to find the right employer or manager. And two, you have to find the right vocation” It seems Mr. Williams has found both, since his column is a breath of fresh air and a guiding light, to much of the South West Florida Community.

Here is an important message on today's changing work place and the need to maintain balance.

When you're self employed and home based, you have to deal with various challenges. The first one on the list is children. You have to teach your children that they must respect your work time and if necessary, you might need to have a sign on you door that lets them know when you are busy working. On the other hand, you do need to be flexible. If your child has a pressing issue, it is important to interrupt even the most important endeavor and attend to your child’s needs first. It is also wonderful, if you are blessed with a spouse that teaches your children to respect your working hours and is able to keep them occupied so you can get some work done.

Another challenge faced by those who choose a home business is visitors. Of course, if you are in sales and your livelihood depends on visitors, then the more the merrier. Then again, if you are a writer or have a profession that demands that you concentrate on the task at hand, then you need to find a way to let your visitors know that you are not available twenty four/seven. Roger Williams resolves this problem by having a gate installed. Let your friends and associates know if the gate is open then you are receiving visitors, but if the gate is shut you are busy and it would be best if they come by some other time. For certain visitors, such as someone bringing you a payment for your services, it may be wise to give them your phone number and request that they call before coming that way you make sure the gate is open.

When at home, domestic duties are right there staring you in the face. Some duties can’t wait, such as picking up the children from school, but other jobs can like changing a filter can be done at some other time. It is a matter of knowing how to prioritize, that is the key to surviving domestic duties, when you are trying to make a living from your house.

When one is home employed it is harder to keep a diet. After all, your refrigerator may be only ten feet or less from your home office, making it very tempting to fill those lonely hours with some left over cheesecake. Do you pad lock the fridge and throw away the key? That may be needed in some cases. The more sensible strategy is to take time to walk outside and stretch a little. You may want to schedule your meals and snacks and train yourself to adhere to that schedule. This does require a lot of discipline, but so does being your own boss.

Last but not least, you need to pace yourself. Some people are workaholics and find that they may start as early as 6 AM only to burn the midnight oil six days a week. On the other extreme are the slackers, who find any excuse to go out and are lucky to get twenty hours in a week. Balance is needed, to keep both one’s sanity and achieve a decent income. Therefore, have a schedule of your hours. Try to go for at least forty, if you are a slacker and if you’re a workaholic try not to go over forty-five hours and plan a vacation from time to time. Remember, you are now the CEO of your house Inc, therefore you have to know how to plan more and that includes your time.

Working from home can rewarding and very profitable, like everything in life, it require common sense. With our changing economy,this will be more and more the wave of the future, so even if you still have a standard nine to five it is a good idea to make a strategy in case you do become the CEO of your home Inc. Times are changing, therefore one need to adjust one’s thinking to meet the demands the changing workplace and get the most out of what can be a very rewarding experience.

Here I would like to include a link from on Work Life Balance which explains the changes as well the ups and downs of today’s workplace.


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    • Internetwriter62 profile image

      Internetwriter62 7 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Thanks Sandyspider, I still look for the balance also, with time we will both find it.

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 7 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      Thank you for this information. I am still looking for the balance.