The idea of working at home seems to be the latest dream when it comes to having a better work life. After all, the idea of doing your current job while sitting at home in your pajamas, drinking a cup of coffee while watching Maury reveal who is the father, may have a certain charm. So can the idea of sitting with your laptop at a sidewalk café, enjoying life while working.
It also seems like the idea of working at home is appealing to many, because they could alleviate not just the stress inherent in big offices these days, but the stress and hassle of commuting. Not to mention saving money on gas, Metrocards, lunch, and dry cleaning bills.
But the reality, as life coaching experts can tell you, is that working from home, while often a great thing to do, does have its drawbacks. Here are some of the negatives you may face with working at home, according to life coaching site MeredithHaberfeld.com:
You are never really off the clock
When Fred Flintstone heard the bird announce that it was quitting time at the gravel company, he was able to yell “Yabba dabba do” as he slid off the dinosaur, and head out to the drive-in for a double date with Wilma, Barney and Betty Rubble, and their kids in tow. When he left work for the evening, his job was over for the day.
That is not what happens when you work at home. In a sense, you are always on the clock. Your work can potentially expand to take up all of your time, including time you used to spend doing fun things. Granted, these days, many workers are expected to check email from home, even when they work in an office. But when you work at home, especially if you do not have a dedicated office space in your house, you can never really get away from work – literally. You may see a pile of work right there when you try to relax.
Others may not respect your time
People you know who would never dream of bothering you when you worked in an office may have no qualms about calling you during your work day now to drone on about their problems, even though they know you are working. That is because many people simply do not take working at home as seriously as they do work in a brick and mortar location that is not your home. And watch out if word gets out among your kids’ carpool – you may be the one who gets dumped on to do extra driving, because people think you have plenty of free time.
You may let yourself go
One of the good things about working at home is that you don’t have to spend money on things to make you look good for a physical workplace. That is also one of the bad things. You may see that you have let yourself go, gaining weight, not taking care of grooming, and looking like something that the proverbial cat dragged in.
You don’t have the office camaraderie
As much as you may find that certain co-workers get on your nerves, life coaching experts say there are also good things about working together in a physical workplace. There’s a reason like shows like “The Office” have struck such a chord with people – they show the silly and fun sides of working together.
In summary, working from home may indeed be for you, but you ought to be aware that it is not all sunshine and lollipops. Good luck.