When I accepted this new adventure at Shout it Out Design, I knew I would be working remotely in Raleigh, N.C. I was very excited to be able to work from home, but was met with some caution from others who warned me it might be harder than I expected.
Though I’m still getting settled into my new normal, I thought I would share my newbie’s perspective on working from home!
We’ve all had days when we wish we could wear our comfiest clothes to work. I’m fortunate to be among the 37 percent of U.S. workers for whom yoga pants are business attire! This newly-expanded-work-appropriate wardrobe justifies the enormous pile of yoga/lounge pants I own. I have never been more comfortable at work.
A perk of getting to wear comfy pants all day is that I look forward to putting on my cute professional clothes when I pop out for a networking event or meeting. (Of course, I am right back in yoga pants when I get home/back to the office.)
I’m an outgoing introvert. Yes, it’s a thing. What that means for me is that after a day in a traditional work setting I would leave feeling drained, in need of time to recover. I was not typically excited about going out or meeting up with people when I was not at work; I already had plenty of time with other people and needed some gosh darn peace and quiet!
Now that I’m an introvert working at home, I get plenty of quiet time to myself and I feel content. With those needs met, I’m excited to run errands after work or meet up with friends on a week night!
I could see how lack of interaction while working from home could be considered a major negative for an extrovert, so if this makes you cringe you might consider finding co-working spaces or other ways to be around people and get energized.
I have an adorable dog and cat who count as major work-from-home perks!
They follow me around the house all day, and I am able to reach out to love on them while I’m working. Being around our pets more often is great for my well-being, and theirs! I’ve noticed they seem more tired at the end of the day than they do when they’re alone all day.
This one came as a surprise! When I was in an office setting my trusty Fitbit saw a lot of steps as it traveled with me through the halls handling tasks. Somehow I thought I would have even more steps being at home, but my activity level has dropped significantly. Everything I need is right at my desk. I can feel my Fitbit judging me.
I do have a convertible standing desk to combat sitting fatigue, but moving forward I will need to find ways to ensure I’m more active during the work day so I don’t lose out on the activity I used to get.
So far I have found that with fewer distractions at home, I am laser-focused on my work. This is the level of productivity I would normally achieve only when working early/late before the normal workday or going to the office on the weekends sans distractions. While this level of focus is great for accomplishing tasks, I find it draining and difficult to maintain all day long.
Pacing myself and working on a variety of projects will be key to keep being super focused from being super exhausting every day.
I’ve only been at this work-from-home thing for a couple of weeks, but I can say that the pros outweigh the cons for me. I am grateful for the flexibility it allows me and am definitely enjoying it!