In 2016, nearly 3 million Canadians identified themselves as self-employed. These brave souls get their work done in small corners carved out of their living space.
There are countless benefits to working from home. Home-based employment means less money spent on food, clothing, and transportation costs. Self-employment also gives you the flexibility to work around home duties and family life.
Time flexibility is a big motivator for those that choose to work from home. But over time, if not careful, that advantage can become a disadvantage. When your home is also your workspace, it can be difficult to separate business from personal life. But with some planning, discipline and healthy boundaries, finding the right work life balance is possible.
Time Management 101
Make the most of work hours to maximize labor returns:
- Make a schedule. Every week, review commitments like doctor’s appointments, social engagements, etc. Block off work hours and make them a priority.
- Be reasonable. Remember to leave time for duties like cleaning, eating and relaxing.
- Post your schedule. Let family and friends know that if you are in the bedroom with the door closed, you are WORKING. Emergency contact only.
Working Hard or Hardly Working?
Distractions abound for home-based workers. Use these simple techniques to achieve full concentration.
- No personal internet use during work time. Avoid personal social media pages, blogs, email accounts, games, and viral videos.
- Set a timer. Work for a specified amount of time, then take a break.
- Take care of home first. If you know you can’t work with dirty dishes in the sink, clean the kitchen. Take care of your regular duties so you won’t feel pressured during work hours.
No Man is an Island
A big misconception about working from home is that you have to do it all by yourself. While you are the most vital element to your business strategy, modern technology makes it possible to outsource many tasks, making a work life balance possible.
- Hire an answering service to help with customer service.
- Outsource your accounting to a local freelancer.
- Pay the teenager next door to watch your kids for a few hours during the summer.
Delegate some of your lesser responsibilities to free up more time to do what you do best.
Creating the perfect work life balance means controlling your time, attention, and home-based work environment. These tips are a great start to crafting your ideal home-based career.