The Ups And Downs Of Working From Home

Most of the time my working life is pretty varied. I work from home and I also work around London. I teach violin and I work on my blog and so my CV is pretty ‘pic n mix’ but I love it. I used to work in accounts but since then I have changed from an office job “9-5” to a flexible way of working. But what is it like to be self-employed? Is it better for you? I thought I’d share the pros and cons of being self-employed with my experience of both worlds…

Your Own Boss

I love being my own boss and deciding what I can do during a day. Sometimes in an office, by working your set “hours” this is thought to be productive and pleasing. However, working productively in those hours is far more important. When you are your own boss you can decide what tasks are best to do on that particular day and not spend ages on something you can’t achieve at that very moment. For instance, if I can’t take blog photos during the week I can use a weekend to do them. Being flexible with my time is such a plus and it makes me more productive.

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Knowing When To Stop

When you are your own boss it is hard to know when your work day ends and when your social life begins. Emails never go away and I always feel the need to reply to people straight away and not keep them waiting. So, I will spend my evenings replying to violin lesson emails for example to sort out various lesson arrangements etc. It is also hard to take a week off. Whilst I am writing this it is half term so I have not had my normal teaching. However, I have still had teaching admin to do and also spent the extra time on writing blog posts to get organised. I wouldn’t change this though and have just had to learn to embrace it.  It is hard to take a week off like an office job without switching off also. Blogging especially is hard to take a full week away from. I guess the enjoyment of doing both acts as my coping mechanism.

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Being Flexible

I love how I can be flexible with my time and if I need to do something like clothes washing during the day I can. I teach in the evening and at weekends sometimes and so it is nice on those days to have a chilled cup of tea or longer lunch to balance it out. On days where everything is getting too much and my energy levels are low I can take that odd hour off if I really need to!

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Sporadic Income

My income is not reliable as things can change. Pupils can cancel because of things going on in their lives and this can be frustrating when you are expecting the income. I have learnt not to spend my earnings until the half-term is over and this can be hard to finance if you are not used to it. I am lucky my boyfriend has a regular income but one day I would like to not worry so much about this.

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Something I love

At the end of the day I love what I do. I love blogging and violin teaching. Life may be hard with budgeting sometimes but who’s life isn’t hard? I am so much happier following my dreams and doing something I love. Quality of life is so important for us busy millenniums.

 

Are you self-employed? What advice would you give to anyone thinking about ditching the “9-5”?

 

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28 thoughts on “The Ups And Downs Of Working From Home

  1. I love working from home, but I agree it’s not for everyone. I think it helps that I worked from home sometimes before I was self-employed, so I knew I could do it productively, and I certainly don’t miss the 3 hours of travel that I used to do each day. You have to be disciplined with yourself and manage other people’s expectations – if you don’t want to be on call 24/7, don’t answer emails in the middle of the night, or people will come to expect it. I love the freedom of setting up my own work space in a place that is quiet – something I didn’t have in my previous open office. You have to learn to look at the bigger picture when it comes to earnings – August is never a good one for me, so I’ve learned not to beat myself up about it because people just aren’t around to take classes. Other months are better, and in time it evens itself out. I totally love working from home, but it might not be the best option for someone who wouldn’t have a dedicated space to work, someone who would find it too difficult to focus at home, or even someone who would feel lonely. I don’t feel lonely, but I do try to have regular catch-ups with other self-employed people doing similar work.

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    1. I love working from home too. I did enjoy it when I was part employed and part self-employed too. For most people it is finding what suits you and I think our working lives can be so flexible these days. That’s so good you have regular catch-ups with other self-employed people. I try to meet up with other people often too and regularly visit my parents which can be nice too. I think it’s important to go for walks out during the day too, even if it is a 10 minute milk buying trip so you don’t feel cooped in! I’m sure you don’t miss the 3 hours travel either! I’m amazed at how much more I can get done when I’m not travelling across London. I also love the fact I can practise my violin during the day time instead of the evenings when my eyes are tired hehe!

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  2. I don’t work from home but I am self-employed. It’s great in the sense that yes, you are your own boss and can make your own schedule and miss work if you need to but it’s also a lot of responsibility because I work by myself and am responsible for every decision and every move. No coworkers to share the trouble.

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      1. This is true, but it also means you don’t have to go along with decisions that you don’t support, and I find this really liberating 🙂 I have friends who work in training, but in different sectors, and I like to bounce ideas off them. Still, sometimes you can have 3 people and 3 different pieces of advice, so in the end you need to go with what seems right for you.

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    1. Aww glad it was useful! I would definitely recommend transitioning by doing part time employment and building up the self employment if you can. It really helped me get a taste of it without jumping straight in!

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  3. I wish I could work from home! Sadly, I am not making money off my blog just quite yet so I can’t just leave my full-time accounting job. I would love Love LOVE to be a full-time blogger in the future. I do plan on becoming a stay at home mom in the future though so that is why I started blogging to get my name out there so that I can help people through advice and how-to’s♥

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    1. I’m sure you will be able to soon! I’m lucky that I have a little violin teaching income which means I can work on my blog a bit more to eventually make more on that. I come from an accountancy background too! One option in the future might be working part time accounts and part time on your blog if your company allows?

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      1. Yeah I was thinking about the part time and part time. I just need to wait until my husband makes enough to support whatever income I will be losing. We are also in the process of trying to save up to purchase a house so we need both incomes right now.

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      2. It’s so difficult when saving up for a house. We are still renting but hopefully one day we will get on the property ladder! Lots of things to look forward to though so it’s all good. ☺️

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