If you have been following along with Project Motherhood for a while now, you know that in June of 2013 I went from full time working Mama to a full time working from home Mama – a decision I am beyond happy that I made. While it was scary at first to be self-employed and responsible for every penny that comes into the bank account roll, I’ve embraced the challenge and the inevitable ups and downs that it brings. So whether you are considering the self-employed path or taking a position that allows you to be more flexible about where you work, here are some things to consider about taking the plunge to working from home.
Working From Home: 5 Truths “They” Don’t Tell You
1. It might take some convincing of your spouse.
I love my husband to death, but it took some major convincing before he understood how I was going to be helping to support our family by working at home and how my plans for making that happen were going to work. It was a vision that I had floating through my brain with many steps that needed to be achieved in order to make it happen, but I needed to somehow make it tangible – so he could see the vision, too.
2. People will talk, and might not understand.
So I delved into this topic much deeper in my post “8 Things Never to Say to a WAHM,” but it doesn’t make this truth any less powerful. A lot of people just don’t get it and think that we “work from home” just for fun – or aren’t really working at all, like it’s code for sitting and binge watching Real Housewives all day. You have to develop a thick skin for this and make sure people know they can’t just call you to chit chat during your precious office hours when the kids are at school. Sometimes it’s necessary to be firm, and sometimes they will never understand. Read more here.
3. Your bed becomes your office.
Living in NYC, I don’t have a home office in our small apartment, and I’m jealous of those of you who do! So, if you are anything like me, you will be spending many, many hours sitting in bed with notebooks, calendars, post-its, and loads of cups of coffee with you, with your laptop at the epicenter of your bed. It’s inevitable! (And it’s still called work!)
4. Pencil skirts become yoga pants.
People always say to me how my life looks so glamorous – mostly because they closely follow my Instagram feed. In reality, events and dressing up don’t happen as often as it may seem, and my life is filled more with computer work than anything. Therefore, whenever I took the leap to working from home, I traded my pencil skirts for yoga pants, most days!
5. You’re relied upon for everything.
Even if you do have a totally supportive network of people around you who really “get” what you do, you will still be the person who is relied on for everything “because you are at home” or worse, “because you don’t have a job” – assuming you will always have the time to do it. Need a volunteer for the school field trip? You! An unexpected errand needs to be run? You again! Kids need to go to the doctor, bathroom needs cleaning, cookies for the bake sale? You, you, you! You will need tough discipline within yourself to fend off all the distractions and demands.
Yet, the upside is there too; for example, when you have a sick child you don’t have to “stay home from work” – you can stay home AND work, and still provide the lovin’ your child needs. You are the boss, YOU get to decide!
There are the challenges to working from home, no denial. But obviously, there are many very good reasons that working at home works for me and for increasing numbers of ambitious Mamas.
Are you working from home? Do you have any truths to add to my list?
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