Working from home has many advantages and disadvantages. As I sit here writing this article I am reminded of the many successes and utter failures I have experienced over the last three years. This article is not meant to deter anyone from choosing to work from home as ultimately it is the best choice I ever made. I write this to keep many people from suffering from the pitfalls I had along the way.
When you choose to work from home you are free. You no longer have a 9-5 job and a boss who breathes down your neck. You don't have to deal with the everyday demands of coworkers you don't like, and there certainly isn't a dress-code. Your work environment is now your home environment and quite possibly one of the most comfortable to be in. This is assuming that you like the atmosphere in your home.
When you join the work at home world you will discover that for every advantage there is a disadvantage. While the above may sound wonderful everything must be in balance. When you choose to work at home you are a slave. Your work has to be done by you, there's no one to delegate a task to if you are running behind. Since you are home your family may have a hard time leaving you in peace to work, and interruptions can be frequent making it hard to stay on task. You will still have interactions in the work at home world, and if they are unpleasant you cant send a customer service representative to take care of it.
Working at home can be a joyful experience, especially when you find something that does make money. There's nothing like logging into an account and seeing money that has appeared while you were sleeping. It gives you a sense of pride knowing that your hard work, sleepless nights, and missed activities paid off in the financial department.
Did you notice I said sleepless nights, and missed activities? You will certainly have them, and in abundance during the first year. What if all your hard work doesn't pay off? Are you willing to be flexible enough to change tactics and business plans all together? The hardest part of working at home is facing failure. A plan may not have worked out well and unfortunately when you lost the nagging boss you lost the ability to blame things on him. The work at home world can be a very scarey one, often times described as tight rope walking without a safety net.
What about the holidays and weekends off? I think I am correct in saying that when most of us decide to work at home we go to bed with a smile on our face; waking in the morning happy because we dreamed of all the weekends and holidays we would have off. That was before we actually got started, and the truth smacked us like a ton of bricks. The truth can be ugly. Weekends and holidays are no longer something you look forward too because you know you are getting a break. Breaks are a thing of the past for a work at home entrepreneur. Breaks cost money, and now more than ever before you are aware of the adage "Time is money."
I know by now you are probably wondering why anyone in their right mind would want to work from home? The answers are varied and simple but here is an important one "Residual Income". The work I do today may not pay me immediately but it will pay me forever. Most of the work at home fanatics like myself set a goal. I started by saying I wanted to make enough money to pay my phone bill, and I reached that goal. After my goal was reached I set another and another, gradually increasing my cash flow every month. I also changed my lifestyle so I wouldn't feel so much pressure. Since I was changing the way we made money I also changed the way we spent money. I did this because I knew how much money my household needed to run and in the beginning it was very disheartening to not make that ammount.
I had to learn that I was only one person, and that a traditional business is run by many people. When you work from home you are your own internet technician, secretary, owner, and operator. You will fill many positions all the while having the energy of only one person. I often tell friends and family that I sent my SuperMom clothes to the dry cleaners and I got back duds. You have to learn not to be so critical of yourself, and you have to shrug off the bad stuff.
You find a sort of balance in the madness, it takes practice but eventually you get to a point where taking a deep breath is easier. Remember that you are working toward something and everyday that you work gets you closer to that goal. Riches in the work at home world aren't made over night, and they aren't made easily. If there was such a thing as making $100,000 dollars in a week we would all be doing it. However if you are willing to stick with it rain or shine you will make it. Remember when you are asked at the next party "What do you do?" you will be part of the privileged few that can say with a smile "I work from home."