Diaries Magazine

Tips for Working from Home and Maintaining Your Sanity.

By Agadd @ashleegadd

This was my first “real” week working from home, so clearly I’m a total expert now. Okay not really. I’m still figuring this out, but I have learned a few things this week that I thought be might worth sharing for anyone contemplating a life outside the cubicle…

1. Find your happy wake-up call. I get up at 7:30 every morning. It’s my sweet spot between feeling like I got enough sleep, and not turning into a morning sloth. Plus, I’m pretty sure Brett prefers leaving to the sight of me cheerfully typing away on my laptop as opposed to soundly sleeping. I don’t want him to grow resentful of my new found freedom.

2. Take a shower. This might sound like an “obvious” tip, but when you work from home, it’s really easy not to shower. You, and your husband/boyfriend/roomate will be glad you did.

3. Vitamin D. Open a window. Walk outside. See the sun. Ignoring your daily dose of vitamin D will turn you into a vampire. Really.

4. Stretch it out. I have this tendency to get super intense while I work, sitting cross legged on the couch with my back hunched over the laptop. I can sit like that for three hours straight without realizing that every limb in my body has gone completely numb. Not good. Find an excuse to get up and walk around every 30 minutes. Your blood circulation will thank you.

5. Finding motivation and time to exercise while working from home is still hard. I was a little optimistic when I fled the cubicle, and was sure that I was going to exercise every single day. I had plans to run two miles on the treadmill every morning and head to yoga class at least three times a week. Um, right. I’ve been out on my own for almost two weeks now and while I did make it to yoga yesterday (OUCH), I haven’t touched my treadmill since July. Say it with me: realistic goals.

6. The laundry can wait. Speaking of unrealistic goals, I also thought that the second I started working from home, my house would always be clean. I assumed I would have plenty of time to unload the dishwasher and vacuum and do awesome things like clean the shelves in the refrigerator. Um, right. In actuality, being home all day is making my house MORE dirty. Now I have breakfast dishes and lunchtime dishes and dishes from all eight of my snacks. It’s easy to leave things here and there with the intention of picking them up later. That being said, life is not going to stop if the laundry gets put away tomorrow instead of today. And when all else fails, I also have the luxury of using the pregnancy card. Ask Brett how many times I’ve used it already. I dare you.

7. It’s okay to watch Parenthood during lunch. Don’t feel guilty. Just do it.

8. Use your powers for good. One of the best things about working from home is the ability to go anywhere I want whenever I want to (within reason). Sometimes, that might mean meeting a friend for lunch and then taking cookies to another friend and then visiting another friend and her brand new baby. Be social. Be generous. Hop in your car and brighten up somebody’s day. It will, undoubtedly, brighten up your day as well.

9. Embrace the quiet. It’s amazing how productive and efficient you can be when you’re surrounded by….nothing. No phones ringing, no office chit chat, no distractions (well, except Pinterest). Use the quiet to your advantage and allow yourself time to feel inspired.

10. Pinterest is the devil. I know we all love it, but until Professional Pinner is an actual viable career (keep your fingers crossed, college freshmen!), try to limit the amount of time you spend on the site. It will suck you in for hours (speaking of which, HOW CUTE IS MY BABY STYLE BOARD?!).

Overall, the working from home gig is working out better than I ever could have imagined. There is still a LOT of work to be done to get myself up and running properly (see: obtain a business license, open bank account, learn how to use quickbooks, finish website, redecorate home office, use Pinterest to find office inspiration, etc), but at the end of the day, I’m happy.

And happy wife = happy life. Right Brett?


Do you have any tips to share on working from home and maintaining your sanity? I would love to hear them.

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