Monday is blog posting day here at CTC. But as you can see, it’s Tuesday. Because we wanted to really make a point about being motivated working from home. And that point is this: If you don’t do it, no one will.
We created a list of all the things we wanted to blog about. And we continue to add to that list. So we just need to pick a topic, write about it, and post on Monday. Easy. But WE have to do it. No one else logged into the computer, reviewed the topic choices. No one else hashed out a rough draft. No one else found an appropriate photo.
Because there is no one else. There’s just us. And if we don’t do it, it’s not going to happen.
Eh, big deal, right? It is a big deal. Because if we don’t post our blog, we’re missing out on you, our follower, to read it. And if you don’t read our blog, maybe you’ll forget about us. And if you forget about us, we don’t matter. Plain and simple. We disappear.
Everything you do matters. Everything you do is important in your work. And if you ease up a little bit here, and slack a little bit there - why are you doing it at all? Be consistent. Put in the effort. Have a schedule. Work hard. Have fun. Be great. And show your greatness to others. All the time. Because if you don’t, there is someone else out there who will. Don’t disappear.
When you work from home you’re typically more relaxed and a lot happier. That’s a good thing. However, you may end up become a little too relaxed, which can lead to some very lazy, unhealthy behavior. Here are some tips to ensure you stay healthy while working at home.
Start Your Day With Exercise
You want to start your work day energized and ready to focus your attention on work. Hanging out in your jammies or sleeping in doesn’t do you any good, and quite frankly, it isn’t going to make you want to get your work done. Get up and get out. If you’ve got a gym membership, use it. Get up early, and move. If you don’t have a gym membership, find an exercise program on TV, or through any of the “on demand” programs. Or use your kids’ Wii Fit, or XBox Sports, or any other video game that will get you jumping. (Try one of those dancing games - loads of fun, and a great way to get you feeling awesome at the start of a day!)
Whatever you do - DO IT. You’ll have a great surge of energy so that you can focus on your work.
Sure, you can sit around eating bon bons, but it’s only going to make you sluggish and chubby. You know better. We know better. You can’t eat all the pizza, ice cream and chicken fingers that you want. (Yeah, that sounds like a ten year old’s birthday party.)
Have regular meals. (Not a whole pizza.) Eat good, energizing, tasty meals. I know, that’s logical, but when you’re at home and busy working, you’re going to look at the clock and say, “oh, it’s 1:30pm - I guess I should eat something.” And you wander into the kitchen and grab a handful of chips while you browse the fridge trying to find something to eat. And by the time you find something, you’ve devoured the whole bag and aren’t hungry. Don’t do that.
After you work out, have a nice breakfast. And after you work for a while, have a nice lunch. At regularly scheduled times. And plan some good things to eat. Have proper food on hand. And watch out for snack attacks. A glass of milk and five cookies is not a snack. Keep some chilled fruit in the fridge. Have a sliced apple with some fine cheese. (You can be elegant and snack during the day!) Treat yourself kindly.
Get Up and Move
Some days you are swamped with work, and if you have a stationary desk-type job, you know that hours can go by without moving. This is bad, really bad for your circulation and awareness and focus. Get up and move. Regularly. Schedule it every 30 minutes if you have to. I don’t care if that means taking 20 minutes to go up and down stairs washing laundry and putting it away. you have to move. Your brain - and your butt - will thank you.
Power Naps are Okay
I love naps. Of course, taking a two hour nap in the afternoon isn’t very productive. But sometimes I just feel sluggish in the brain after a long morning (or too many carbs at lunch!) and I just need to wind down. I set the alarm on my phone for 15-20 minutes, shut off all noises (tv, radio, office phone, etc.) and just relax. Close your eyes, enjoy some quiet moments, and refresh yourself. You don’t have to do it every day, but if you’re feeling tired, take some time for yourself.
We talked about getting up and moving. Taking a break is totally different. Taking a break means that you stop working. No business work. No laundry. No dishes. Don’t go grocery shopping. Don’t get the oil changed in the car. Stop working. Mentally. Have a little fun. Play a game. Read a book. Put on some music and dance around the house. Watch some of the TV shows you’ve had recorded forever. It’s okay to just to take some time and goof off.
You’re probably thinking that this must be the most foolish post ever. What reasons could we possibly come up with for someone to not work from home. Because we’re all about helping people move to that work from home environment. But it’s not for everyone, and you need to know that before you start to glamorize a work at home lifestyle.
You Think it’s Easy
If you think that being at home and running a business or working for someone else is easy, well, you’re nuts. Plain and simple. This is, by far, one of the hardest things we’ve ever done. We are entirely, 100% responsible for our actions and our outcomes. If you don’t think that puts a lot of pressure on you, well, you’re nuts. :) Sure, you don’t have the daily commute, and you have all the comforts of home. But you also have all the work, too. And all the responsibility that comes with it.
You Will Have Lots of Freedom
Yes. But not really. Because you have to answer to not just one boss, but multiple bosses. Each of your clients is your boss, and they can take away all of your freedom in a day if you don’t carefully plan and work out your schedule. You do have the freedom to plan your day as you like, but only within the work you have to do for your clients.
You are a Social Butterfly
The drive to work is annoying, but once you get there, you’re chatting with everyone, and looking forward to the Friday lunches with your department pals. If you enjoy the social aspect of going to work, stay away from work at home opportunities. Depending on the work you choose, it may be days before you actually speak to someone. Sure, you’ll probably get emails that you respond to, but those aren’t real conversations. And actually, the talks you have with your clients aren’t going to be real conversations. They will be work conversations. You won’t get a moment to talk about the latest entertainment news, office gossip, or plans for the weekend. If you need daily chats and visible interaction, don’t work from home.
Why do we work? Is it to help people? No. Because we can help people any time, all the time without collecting a paycheck. Is it the excitement of learning new things and interacting with people? No. We can do that whenever we want without reporting to a boss or a client. We work for money. We have a job for money. Because we have bills to pay. (This is why kids don’t work - no bills! Parents take care of everything!)
So, we need money. Now let’s ask the question that brought you to this blog: Can you make money working from home? Of course! But let’s face it, that’s not the question you need to ask. The real question is, can you make enough money working from home to pay your bills? The answer? Yes. Of course you can. But…
It’s not easy. That’s the honest truth. It takes work and perseverance, just like a “real” (aka brick and mortar) job does.
There are many people out there that are flaunting their “wealth” online, saying they make thousands each day working from home and they don’t have to do anything. Really? Let’s think about this. Supposedly you can work from home making thousands without working hard. Don’t you think if that was the truth we’d all be doing it? Exactly.
You will make money working from home, but the amount that you make is entirely up to you and how much effort you are willing to put into your job. If working just enough to put $50 in your pocket every week is what you need and you’ve got it - great. Do it. And have fun. If you want enough to pay your rent, your car payment and have some fun money leftover, you’re going to need to do more, and push yourself harder to get new clients and make more money.
It isn’t rocket science. You already knew this, but perhaps you were enticed by some “get rich quick” post you saw online somewhere. Don’t fall for it. Stay on the path that uses your best talents and skills and grow each day. Don’t expect to make everything you need in one week. Perhaps the first week you’ll just make $25. But the next week will be $32, and a few weeks later you’re up to $50. You’ll get there, to that place you want to be. Just take your time and do it right.
Frankie and Andrea take turns sharing stories. Just good talk over a cup of coffee.