Ever dreamed of making your own schedule, not being at the mercy of a timeclock and working during the hours that suit you best?
In today’s world, that dream might actually become a reality. With more and more employers offering telecommute options to their employees, and advances in technology such as enhanced email, Skype and affordable office machinery, the home office has become the wave of the future.
Working from home can be a mixed blessing however, and one should consider some of the pros and cons of home office life before you dive in.
You won’t have to fight traffic anymore, nor will you have to worry about wear and tear on your vehicle. If you live in a place where you might traditionally have a long commute or tons of traffic, this can be a really big benefit to working from home.
In addition to saving money on gas and vehicle maintenance, you can also save money on your wardrobe.
You certainly won’t have to deal with corporate attire, as no one will see you working in your yoga pants.
A study conducted by Staples in 2011 indicated that people who work from home experience 25 percent less stress than those who work outside the home.
While this may vary individually, it tends to be easier overall to reduce one’s stress when they aren’t constrained by the 9-to-5 grind.
Depending on where you set up your office space, you may be able to write off a percentage of that space when it comes time to do your taxes.
Those write-offs can also include things like office supplies. Even a portion of your utilities can be considered a work expense.
Working from home can potentially make it a lot easier to eat healthy and work out regularly, as well as offering more time with family.
You won’t have the temptation of those office donuts or be restricted by a certain timeframe when it comes to exercise.
It can also be easier to take a few hours off for your child’s dance recital or other event.
A study by Harvard Medical School indicated that sitting for long periods of time can be very detrimental to your health.
If you’re at home, you can stand and stretch or even go for a walk when you feel like it. You will no longer be chained to a desk all day, which can be good for you both mentally and physically.
As leisurely as it may sound, working from home isn’t for the lazy.
While it’s great to not have to punch a time clock, if you don’t think you can motivate yourself to get out of bed and get the work done, this might not be for you.
Part of the fun of working outside the home is getting to know people you might not otherwise meet.
You won’t have the advantage of working next to someone on a regular basis, and as a result, you may find yourself missing the employee camaraderie that comes from working in an office.
You might find yourself worrying about a task you didn’t complete at work now, but imagine if work is right in the next room, making it all too easy to keep working long past your normal quitting time.
Being able to disengage from your job has its own set of positives and it can be very difficult to step away when you work at home.
Even for those who are natural introverts, working from home can be isolating and lonely. You can literally go days without seeing or talking to another human being, and that can make anyone feel a little stir crazy.
When you’re working under the eye of your supervisor and they see you every day, your accomplishments, work ethic and ability to get the job done are clearly evident.
But when you’re a telecommuter, it can be easy to be “out of sight, out of mind” when it comes to work, which could mean you won’t be an immediate consideration for promotion or other advancement.
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