Working from home

As today continues our snowy, icy, bitterly cold winter, it seems like a perfect day to celebrate working from home.  While working from home means no snow days, it also means I [almost] never have to navigate icy, snow-covered streets (by foot, bus, or car) to get to an office, which is huge.*

My jury duty stint a few weeks ago, with two mornings where I had to dress, pack a lunch, leave the house, and arrive somewhere at a specific time were brutal (especially the 8am arrival time on a Monday).

Six months into my part-time, work-from-home job, I’m pretty happy with the arrangement.  Sure, I miss some of the socialization with coworkers that I had in past office jobs, but there are a lot of perks to working from home.

Top 5 things I love about working from home

  1. No commute.*  Zip. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Nothing.
  2. No dress code.  Sure, I could put on “work” clothes every day, but why?
  3. Access to a full kitchen for snacks and lunch.
  4. Ability to integrate around-the-house work.  Need to toss in a load of laundry?  No problem.  Even on really busy paid-work days, I can usually find five or ten minutes here and there to attend to household tasks.
  5. Ability to integrate exercise — sure, you could whip out your yoga mat in the office, but if you’re in a cube or other “open” office layout (which seems to be the norm these days), that feels a bit awkward.

An average workday

There is not really an “average” workday, as the workload varies a good bit.  Most weeks I put in about 20 hours over four days (M,T,W,F).  I start working around 8:30am, after I drop Sir off at childcare, and try to wrap up by 4:00pm, so I can have a good start on dinner before I retrieve Sir.

On days where I have less paid-work, I usually fill the time with housework and/or errands.   Either way, there is not much sitting around, and I usually feel rushed in that last hour, frantically trying to make dinner while tying up loose ends with paid-work and housework.

Number 4 on the list is kind-of a blessing and a curse.  Since I can get a lot done during the day, it means that Matthew and I can just relax in the evenings, after G’s in bed, which is very nice.  On the other hand, it creates an imbalance in our marriage, where I am the one doing most of the housework.  This arrangement makes sense, practically speaking, but we’re examining it and trying to balance things out a bit.

Number 5 on the list is still tricky unless I plan for it, which I’m trying to do more of with some exercises for my back.

I almost included ease of taking a nap in the list, but, honestly, unless it’s a really slow work-week, I’m actually better at napping when Sir is also home and napping.

If you currently work from home, what is your favorite thing about working from home?  If your work in an office, what do you think you would most enjoy about working from home?

*I do have a short (half-block) walking commute to Gabriel’s childcare, but even in not-so-great weather, getting out for that little walk twice a day is good for me.  Since it’s an in-home childcare, and I can get Gabriel there in almost any weather condition, he also has no snow days, a fact for which I am truly grateful, especially this winter.  Mama needs her childcare.