The life of of the work-at-home entrepreneur is often lauded as the holy grail of work scenarios – no commute, no boss breathing down your neck, setting your own hours, and generally doing whatever you want, whenever you want. Well, the holy grail comparison may be correct, but not for the reasons that most people think. The freedom to do what you want also brings the responsibility to make sure everything’s getting done, and it’s the thrill of balancing those two things that really makes the work-at-home life worthwhile. So, if you’ve been looking at your office job and thinking how much greener the grass is on the other side, here are a few misconceptions you may want to take into account:
The truth, however, is that most of us would never WANT to go back to a regular job.
We Can’t Find “Real” Jobs
I’ve gotten this from people, and it seems to be a recurring idea that people with “regular” jobs somehow don’t see a work-at-home job as something on par with an office job. As if being your own boss makes your business something “less.” The truth, however, is that most of us would never WANT to go back to a “regular” job. Working from home can be a challenge, but the freedom and satisfaction it brings is more than worth the extra work.
We Don’t Get Anything Done
To many people in the regular workforce, the day of someone working from home goes like this: wake up around noon, surf the internet, do an hour or two of work, then take the rest of the night off to watch movies or go out with friends. In reality, working from home requires many of the same hours as a normal job does, and often quite a few more. The businesses we work with have business hours, and there are still calls, meetings, and emails that need to be exchanged. On top of that, without the “end” of work hours to tell us to quit, many self-employed at-home workers regularly put in ten or even twelve hour days.
We Spend All Day In Our Pajamas
Many caricatures of people working from home paint us as unshowered, unkempt cave people, shuffling from the bed to the desk to work all day in our pajamas. Well, the fact is… yeah, once in a while that happens. However, the majority of the time, we’re up, showered and dressed just like anyone else. With the plethora of videoconferencing apps, Skype, etc. you can be sure that we have just as much need to look good as someone heading into the office.
We Don’t Mind Interruption
The fact that your buddy works from home doesn’t mean that he’s happy when you drop by in the middle of the day to talk. Working at home is still working, and unannounced visits and personal calls are as unwelcome during work hours as they would be in an office. Don’t be surprised when your call goes to voicemail, and don’t think that just because your buddy doesn’t say anything when you stop by that he’s ok with the interruption. Respect our time the same way that you would respect anyone else’s.
We Can Take A Day Off Whenever We Want
I think that people sometimes forget that people who work from home aren’t magically pulling money out of their computer – we have clients, projects, meetings, sales calls, and deadlines just like any other business. The truth is, our schedules are sometimes LESS flexible than they would be at an office job, simply because we’re often taking on multiple roles and juggling responsibilities.
So there you have it – the work-from-home life perhaps made a tad less glamourous. The fact remains, however, that most of us would never trade it for anything. The freedom that comes with succeeding – and failing – on your own merit and doing things your way is worth the struggle and challenges that come with it.
What’s something that your friends and family don’t understand about your work-at-home job? What’s your favorite thing about working from home? Share your answers with us below!