Working from home has its challenges. Being alone all day can be draining. Sometimes the personal stuff and your business get all mixed up and cause boundary issues with everyone from clients to family members. But I still absolutely love everything about working from home, even on those less-than-ideal days when I’m sending logo concepts off to a client while also catching up on laundry.
If you’re struggling to enjoy your home office environment, here are five things that helped me cultivate an enthusiasm for being boss from home.
Getting Dressed Every Day.
I know a lot of my fellow work-from-home bosses are in it for the PJ’s. But for some reason I just can’t channel my best self in loungewear. So one way that I make working from home work for me is by getting dressed every day.
Sure, my wardrobe has changed since my days in a “real” office. I don’t put on dress pants or heels. In fact, I’m usually barefoot all day. My go-to outfit is jeans and a casual top, or maybe a comfy dress in the summer. If I’m heading out somewhere that day I’ll usually throw on a favorite blazer and a couple pieces of jewelry to top it all off.
Keeping Consistent Work Hours.
I usually keep typical workday hours of 9am to 6pm because that’s what matches up with my husband’s schedule. What good is working for myself if I never get to spend time with him?
Your ideal hours might be different than mine. The important thing is keeping them consistent. Your productivity will increase when there are limits to how much you can work on your tasks. Consistent hours also sets boundaries around when clients can expect to have your attention.
Making Your Home Office Your Happy Place.
The moment I walked through the door of my home office in Memphis, I knew I was in boss mode. Making that space my own was a huge mindset shift. The best part was that all I needed was the help of a friend with an eye for design, a coat of paint, and a hundred bucks!
I’ve carried that happy place vibe over to Shanghai. On the walls are some favorite art prints. All the ugly office supplies are hidden away. I have two different work areas to move between when I need a little change of scenery but don’t want to leave the house.
If you’re happy to be in the place where you work it will show up in your work!
Dealing with Loneliness and Cabin Fever.
Working from home can cause a bit of cabin fever. There are days I really want to be around other creative folks.
Back in Memphis, I used to pop over to a local coworking space for creative entrepreneurs I helped launch on days when getting out and about made sense for my workload, I’d end up bouncing around ideas with other coworkers and soaking up the creative energy. These days I try to recreate that vibe by chatting with my REVELinBiz mastermind ladies throughout the day or setting up Skype chats with other creatives so we can talk shop.
Attending local creative events or workshops can also do the trick. If you really want to keep up a constant level of good creative vibes, a collaborative side project is a great remedy for the work-from-home loneliness.
Be a good boss.
I heard somewhere that people don’t quit jobs. They quit bosses. We must remember that we’re our own boss. So shouldn’t we be a good one?
Feeling under the weather? Call in sick. Want a tool that would help you do your job better? Surely a good boss would approve that. Job well done? Reward your best employee for their hard work.
If you’ve been feeling stuck in rut working from home, I hope these tips will help you cultivate a new love for your work environment!