Two weeks at home gave me a unique view into the working at home life. Well ok, technically, I was at home recovering from my surgery for two weeks, but I could not help but feel like this was my “dry run” at what life will be like when I join the forces of WAHM’s everywhere. Two weeks, at home, with nothing to do…how could I not be productive? I was not allowed to run errands, to do any lifting, to workout, or do anything other than recover. What better a time to try on my new WAHM hat? Right? I even had my new office, how could I not take advantage of this chance?
The truth is that I was somewhat productive. I did get writing done, and a few things set into motion. But? I also really needed to RECOVER. So I did. But somewhere along the way, I also learned a few things, that I feel like will help as I make this career transition into being a WAHMaven (because we are mavens really aren’t we?).
Lessons Learned from my WAHMaven Dry Run
- The hours between bus pick up and drop off move at LIGHTENING speed. You would think that eight hours is a lot of time. It is not.
- Working at home means sticking to a schedule. I had read about the need for a schedule in a great post by Kate Canterbury for Better in Bulk, with five tips to work at home successfully, but I had not FULLY understood. Now I get it.
- Connecting and developing relationships on Twitter takes time. And effort. And more time. I see myself needing to schedule in twitter (and Facebook, and Pinterest…and who knows what else) into my daily schedule. (see #2)
- Music keeps me on track. I have always played music when my students are writing or working, but I realized that it is good for me too. I tend to jump around less (from writing a post to checking my twitter stream, and so on) when I have music on.
- I need a master list of sites/groups/boards that I want (or need) to check in with each day. From LinkedIn to Facebook groups to boards that list freelance opportunities, I tend to forget about all of the places that I “should” be maintaining a presence. Of course, this also means creating another calendar appointment.
- There is nothing wrong with asking for feedback or help from a mentor or friend. There are people that have been working from home for a long time, or if nothing else, longer than I have. While I want to respect their time, they have probably learned a lesson or two, and in most cases, are willing to share. Asking for their opinion or what they might do in a particular situation as long as you do not monopolize their time is more than appropriate. We have all been new at something at some point in their lives. One day, the newbie becomes the veteran, and will reciprocate by helping someone else in the same way.
Two weeks at home and six lessons learned. That is not bad as a start. I am sure that I will learn many more when my WAHMaven status becomes full time after the school year ends.
What about you? What tips or lessons have you learned about working from home? Or….do you have any questions?