WHO MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN THIS?:
- You should read this if you’ve been thinking about running an own online business from home but you’re still trying to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of working from home.
When someone asks if you want the good news or the bad news first, which do you normally take? Well, since I can’t hear your answer, here’s how I’m going to give it to you:
Good News First
Work When You Want. One of the best things about running your own business from home is having more control over your time. Within reason, and depending on the nature of your business, you can decide when you work.
If being available for activities with your kids is a priority for you, you can schedule work around that.
If you’re more of a night owl than a morning person, do what works for you, as long as it doesn’t include calling customers in the middle of the night.
If you’re like a lot of people and you experience a major drop in energy around 3 pm, you’ll have the freedom to only do super simple, less essential tasks around that time. Or, better yet, schedule an afternoon siesta.
Work Where You Want. With many online business models in this technical age, all you really need is a laptop or a smartphone and an internet connection. That means you’re not tied to the same dreary old office cubicle. You can change your scenery every day if you want. How does a Caribbean island sound? As long as the wifi is strong, you can make that happen.
The location freedom of an online business also means you can more than likely live where ever you want. For instance, my parents lived in Brazil for a few years while running a business who’s clients were exclusively in the United States. Why’d they do that? They traveled to Brazil on vacation and fell in love with the place. Since the nature of their business didn’t require face to face dealings with clients, they realized that all they needed to stay in business was a phone, a laptop, and internet. So, they moved.
To be honest though, even if their business did require meetings with clients, the many video conferencing options available today would have done the trick.
So, think about it for a minute. Where would you like to live if you weren’t tied to an office?
Say Good Bye To Commuting. Some years ago, I provided childcare for my sister who was a single mom. She’d leave her infant son with me in the morning then drive an hour in traffic to get to work. After a full day’s work, she had to drive another hour in traffic to get back to her son. That’s two hours a day spent in traffic instead of with her child. At the end of every standard five day work week, traffic had robbed her of 10 hours with her baby.
Unfortunately, my sister’s situation is extremely common.
Even if you don’t have kids, you likely have hobbies and things you enjoy doing. How much time would you have for those things if you no longer had to commute?
Now Some Bad News
Setting Boundaries Can Be A Challenge. When your home is your office, it can be hard not to let work creep into all hours of the day.
For people who have a traditional job, once they clock out and go home, the work day is generally over. That event provides a clear signal that it’s now time for family, friends, hobbies, Netflix, or whatever.
But when you have your own business and you work from home, there’s no clocking out and leaving the job. So, if you’re not careful, the lines can become blurred.
When that happens, work starts to crowd out time for family, friends, hobbies, and much needed relaxation.
To prevent that from happening, you’ll need to put yourself on a schedule. It helps to have a set time when your work day will end. Try setting an alarm. When the alarm goes off, it’s time to put work away and give attention to other things, no exceptions. If you need help following through, designate someone to hold you accountable. If you have children, one or all of them, will likely be more than happy to do the job.
Distractions. In addition to making sure you’re not working too much, you’ll also have to take care not too work too little.
When you work a traditional job, you’re not tempted by things like tv and your hobbies. You also don’t have your kids or significant other there begging for your attention. But when you’re working at home, you have to put up a fight against all of these things.
Successfully meeting this challenge will take discipline. You may have to go so far as unplugging the tv and putting up a “do not disturb” sign during business hours.
I mentioned a moment ago about designating someone to hold you accountable, possibly a child or a spouse. Well, it works out if that person is the same one who might be tempted to interfere with your work time. Explain that it’s his or her job to make sure you don’t work past the set time. But that means that he or she has to give you the space to work without distraction so you’ll be done in time.
Lack Of A Team. In an office or some other traditional work environment, you often have coworkers and team mates to bounce ideas off of and help get projects done. However, when you’re working from home running your own business, it can feel like a one person show.
To remedy that, you should seriously consider hiring a virtual assistant. A virtual assistant can help you manage your social media accounts, provide blog related services, perform administrative tasks, and more.
There are a number of services you can use to get help when you need it. Virtual Assistant USA, 24/7 Virtual Assistant, and Virtual Assistant Talent are just a few of the services you can check out.
Working from home may have it’s disadvantages, but it will definitely have advantages as well. If you feel that the pros out way the cons and you want to give it a try, play the Online Biz Quest game. It takes the overwhelm out of getting your online business started. Just enter your name and email address at the top of the page.