19 Feb How to Stay Sane When Working from Home
Working from home definitely has a lot of upsides. For starters, you can work in your pyjamas, or wear whatever the f**k you want. You could answer your emails naked, chat to your friend on Facebook or pop to the kitchen for as many snacks as you like.
The downside of course is that it means you’re at home alone a lot. And when you’re home alone, it’s easy to get caught up in your own head.
If you’re someone who gets depressed but you work a full time job, then you have to get up and go into work whether you like it or not. But if you work from home, then there’s no-one forcing you out of bed every day. And this is where the problems start.
I love working from home because it gives me the flexibility to do what I want, when I want. Plus I get to focus on building my own business rather than building someone else’s business for them. As an introvert/extrovert I love having time to myself, but ironically when I actually get all this time to myself, I wish I could have some human interaction again.
Here’s how I stay sane working from home:
Make a friend who also works from home
If you only hang around with people who work full time jobs then it’s easy to feel alienated from the 9 to 5 world. They’re super busy at the office all day, then socialising with their colleagues over a pint after work. Meanwhile the only interaction you’ve had is a comment on your latest Instagram photo.
Try to make friends with other freelancers who are in the same boat and who can empathise with your situation. To avoid getting lonely, reach out to them and see if they’d like to work together or simply grab a coffee during the daytime.
I am fortunate enough to have a small network of friends who are bloggers, personal trainers or business owners with flexible working hours so I know I can hit them up if I need some human contact.
Take a walk
If you have a dog then great, take it for a walk around the block or go to the park at lunchtime. I don’t have a dog so I volunteered to walk my neighbour’s dog for free. In the beginning I was worried that I’d taken on too much responsibility walking someone else’s dog every day, but soon I realised that taking care of something was actually a great way to keep me sane. If I didn’t have the dog then I would probably never get out of my pyjamas.
Find a workspace away from home
If staying at home gets a little too much then you can always find a local coffee shop or a shared workspace. WeWork has lots of collaborative workspaces where you can rent space, network and share ideas. As soon as I feel myself feeling restless I pack my laptop into my bag and visit one of my favourite cafes. Yes it can get a little pricey paying for hot chocolate when I could make one at home, but at least I’m getting out of the house and interacting.
Attend networking events
As a blogger living in a big city like London I’m fortunate that I get invited to lots of networking events. Since these events usually happen on weekdays, it’s a great way to get out of the house and socialise. Sometimes I really don’t feel like attending and wish I hadn’t hit the RSVP button but as soon as I drag myself out of the house I’m glad I did. Look on sites like Eventbrite or Meetup for events in your industry/area.
Take up a hobby
When you’re working from home it’s important to have something in your life that doesn’t revolve around a laptop. Make sure you have a hobby, whether it’s going to the gym in the morning, hitting up a dance class or doing some yoga. For me it’s acting, so I take regular acting classes where I can make friends and interact with other people.
Try to keep a routine
This one can be easier said than done. Since I don’t have to set an alarm and I don’t have specific working hours, it’s easy to end up sleeping in, then working late into the night. When you work from home you’re never really ‘done’ for the day, since you can answer your emails day or night. It’s important to set yourself a cut-off time so that you can go socialise in the evening or simply relax in front of the TV. This way you’ll sleep better and you’ll be ready for the day ahead.
Do you work from home? How do you stay sane? Leave your comments below!