A lot of people like the idea of working from home. However, after being at it for some time, a few feel isolated and actually miss the office setting, where you can bump into 10 people on the way to the coffee machine, swap stories, and get instant ideas. Digital Nomads recently ran an article on “coworking” – a rising trend for people to work together in a cafe, a house, or a rented office space, to get the real-world social interaction they might be missing from being away from the corporate environment.
I think it’s understandable that some personality types are really better suited to traditional offices, especially if you’ve worked in one for many years. Personally, though, I don’t see myself letting go of the independence, flexibility, and the generous amount of quality time this lifestyle allows me to spend with my family. If you’re like me, you’ve found that there are many ways to avoid being down with the blues. These are just some of the simple things I do:
Exercise. Walk around the neighborhood every morning, and if you have one, why not take your dog with you? Or if there’s a nearby gym, get a membership and make some new friends.
Play music. Nothing makes a dull afternoon come alive better than playing my MP3 collection while working. I’ve even heard of people being able to concentrate more with heavy metal background noise, but I prefer less aggressive tunes myself.
Take frequent breaks. Every two hours or so, I try to rest my eyes from the monitor, stretch, wash my face, and spend quality time with my family. Eat a lot, but eat healthy.
Do errands. Volunteer to do some errands like going to the grocery, paying the bills, and other things that will let you get out of the house and interact with other people.
Find a hobby. Hobbies can be very relaxing, and provide an outlet for your creativity. Right now, I’m into carpentry, building model airplanes, and gardening.
Get pets. They’re not only adorable, studies have shown that having pets can actually reduce stress, control blood pressure and stave off loneliness.
Maintain contact with friends. With so many ways to communicate, it should be much easier to retain friendships. And at least once a week, maybe you can arrange dinner with your friends.
Watch the news. Working from home usually means you don’t get to go out much, so make sure you’re still in the loop with what’s happening around the world by watching news programs.
Work-related travel. A great way to learn new things and do real-life networking is to attend seminars, conferences and expos if ever they are held near you.
Joint ventures. Establish a working relationship with other related home-based businesses. This way, you can bounce ideas off each other, and maybe even get referrals.
Do you also work from home? What are the things that you practice on a regular basis?