I get a lot of questions about what it's like working for myself from home. They usually fit into one of two categories: "Oh did you post your photo to Facebook today? All done for the day then?" (my dad) to "How the hell do you find the time to juggle so many different clients and types of work?" (usually every other person who has ever worked for themselves in freelance).
Obviously we tend to lean toward the latter - working for yourself brings a certain hunger that I have to admit, makes me sometimes miss the steady income and monotonous office life. It brought stability even though it lacked a few things: mainly passion and challenge. As a writer and marketer, we crave a little bit more. We tend to feel things differently, crave emotion in a different way and want to help others do the same for their brand/magazine/company/whatever it may be. We're also a new generation up against the old ways of doing things. I recently tried to explain what I do to my boyfriend's mother while on a safari in South Africa and I realized this is not only a job that didn't exist 10, 15 even 5 years ago, it's also having to explain how people engage with the world now.
And while it definitely has its perks (I wrote about this in my last blog post): work wherever you want, while you travel, while you sit in pjs, while you drink your second or third cup of coffee with your pup - guess which one is me? (Oh wait, are all of them me? 🧐?) What I have discovered is a few life-saving things to help create a routine. So if you also work from home, maybe some of these items will help inspire you? And please comment for other tips that work for you! Let's lift each other up!
1. Create an inspiring work space. This can change and evolve day to day. Sometimes it's Starbucks, sometimes it's your couch, sometimes it's the kitchen table. My biggest change recently? I FINALLY ordered a desktop - iMac (yes I am 100% an Apple yuppy with every product I can get my hands on). Having a set "office" has created such a creative outlet for me - I brew a cup of tea or make a coffee, head to the office and just switch into office mode. I find hours can go by and I'm so much more inspired here lately!
2. To-do lists. Post-Its, workbooks, notes in your phone, pen on your hand, lipstick on the mirror - I don't care where you write it down, just do it! I suffer from self-diagnosed OCD (that's a thing right?) I love creating lists and ticking items off. Not only that, it lets me see what's high priority and what can wait. When you have a number of different projects or clients on the go, it also lets you switch hats just a little more seamlessly!
3. Take breaks in nature. I have to admit, I started to do this more once our pup Kingsley came along. But it has been such an incredible boost! Writers block? Overwhelmed? Need to change focus? Getting up, and getting out can do a world of difference to your mental state and therefore your creative state.
4. Connecting with other humans. This one can be incredibly tricky when you work from home! But don't belittle the banter you'd experience in an office setting. Bouncing ideas off of other people, taking a break from your workload, or just pausing to meet a friend for coffee can do wonders for your creativity and mental health! And no, sadly, your pet doesn't count - it needs to be a two-way convo!
Have I missed any other tips for maintaining your sanity while working from home? Feel free to comment below! 🤓
Work form home co-workers not so hard working...