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7 Work At Home Habits that Will Cramp Your Style

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February 13, 2014
| Articles

 

Sleeping In and Sleeping Out

 

As a freelancer, one of the hardest parts of working from home is establishing a productive routine. It’s so much easier to give in to the sleep-in temptation. No-one is watching over you and you convince yourself that you will catch up with the work during the rest of the day.

 

This is your first mistake, without structure and routine you won’t be able to have a productive work from home lifestyle. You don’t have to get up before sunrise, but find out what works for you and stick to it. Work from home mothers might choose to customize their routine to that of their baby’s habits or sleep patterns.

 

Comfort above Commitment

 

Don’t even think about sitting around in your pajamas all day. Sure, you’re not meeting with any clients or going out of the house, but it’s a matter of respect. When you decide to fall into the trap of getting too comfortable with your work from home lifestyle you will be giving your confidence a knock as well.

 

Make sure that you are fully dressed before you start your day’s work. Put on some shoes, make-up and jewelry as though you are going into the office. One of the biggest mistakes freelancers make is giving up on caring for themselves. Respect yourself and see how others do the same.

 

Day Dates

 

Unfortunately not all people understand that working from home still means that you have work to do. For some reason they think that you now have the freedom to do anything. Friends might ask you to run some errands for them or go for lunch/brunch. Once you fall in this trap it might be tricky to get out.

 

Your attitude towards your work will show others how they should respond to it. If you keep telling them ‘I can do it later’ or ‘It’s not that important’ they will make those conclusions as well. Make an exception every now and then, but make sure your friends and family understand that during work hours, work comes first.

 

All By Yourself

 

A lot of work at home individuals fail because they are feeling isolated. Not having a team or colleagues around you could become rather lonely. People tend to thrive of the support and motivation of others. This could easily lead to you feeling detached from the world and not knowing what is going on in your field or industry.

 

Try to find other freelancers to connect with. This could be online or in person, as long as you have someone to relate to. If this isn’t an option try to schedule a work session at your local coffee shop where you are surrounded with people. This might even boost your productivity.

 

With any challenges it helps to have a mentor or accountability partner. Find someone supportive that you can trust and tell them about your goals and challenges for the year.

 

Not Planning Ahead

 

With the work at home lifestyle planning ahead is absolutely crucial. No-one is going to give you a paid vacation or sick leave. You are your own boss and you have to take these things into account. If you are planning to take a few days off, make sure that you get ahead or finish those days’ work beforehand.

 

Also keep the future in mind, don’t just think of the project at hand, but start planning for the next one. Work at home individuals are responsible for doing their own sales, job search, promotion and marketing – get clued up on these responsibility to prevent disappointment.

 

Not Separating Work And Play

 

Since you are working from home, your home might not be feeling like a place of relaxation or tranquility. Apart from sticking to set work hours you have to single out a space for work as well. Don’t work in front of the television or in your bedroom, try to keep work and play separate. You need these spaces to allow you to enter different frames of mind and really be able to shut down.

 

Living an Unhealthy Lifestyle

 

The take-out menu is a click away and you are already in your pajamas, so what is going to motivate you to eat healthy and get active? Working at home could easily have you picking up weight, getting lazy and not even going out for a breath of fresh air.

 

Find a gym buddy to keep you focused on your personal health and try to plan your meals for the week ahead of time, so this is something that you won’t have to procrastinate over. What would help tremendously is to prepare your meals over the weekend so that they too feel like ‘grab and go’ meals.

 

These are just some of the terrible work at home habits that will most definitely cramp your style. Freelancing and working from home has a lot of challenges, but once you’ve mastered these bad habits and replace them with the good ones you are already on your way to becoming successful.

 
Image Courtesy: 123rf.com

By Anneke Steenkamp
Categories: Articles
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