Working From Home


Working from home – it has good and bad points.

One of the good points is being treated like an adult, and trusted to do what you’re paid for.  No one’s watching you – theoretically, you could get away with doing almost nothing.

So there’s a tendency to overcompensate and work extra hard, to ensure everyone knows you’re there and working, even if they can’t see you doing it.

Of course, it also helps if you really like your job and want to do it well. 🙂

Home office
My home office

Another good point is being able to pop to the shops, pick the kids up from school, put some laundry on, even grab a nap after lunch if you’re flagging.

Try taking a nap in the office and see how far you get, even in the most enlightened companies!

I once had a job where, during a quiet patch and having literally nothing to do, I started to read the newspaper.  My boss shouted at me to do some work and, after I’d explained there was no work to do, gave me a duster and some polish and told me to clean my computer.  True story.

The downside of working from home is only beginning to kick in after two months: being on my own all day.

Now, on trips to the shops, I’m the chattiest, most gregarious person in the world, happy to stop and talk with every old lady who wishes me a good afternoon.  In the post office last week I even tried to strike up a conversation with the lady behind the counter: “Did you have to go on a course to remember all the different prices and delivery methods?” I asked.

“No,” she said, dismissing me (I didn’t think there was anything weird about my question until I told some friends – they thought it was hilarious).

The other real downside is the lack of exercise.  I get no joy from any sports, and regard exercise as a tedious necessity.  The day when machines can keep my body fit and toned without me having to get involved in the whole miserable process will be the happiest day of my life.

But my working day consists mostly entirely of typing at a computer.  Previously, there was at least a walk to the station, some stair climbing, and a walk to the office – about an hour a day of walking.

Now, after two months at home, my legs are beginning to atrophy – the 10 minute walk to the post office made my legs ache.  So, I resolved to go swimming in my lunch hour at least twice a week, starting today, and forked out for a pair of swimming goggles with prescription lenses – partly so I wouldn’t have to wear my glasses in the pool, but also because not then going swimming would be £25 wasted.  Psychology, eh? 😉

It went pretty well.  Half an hour of lengths, plus a bus to and from the pool, takes about an hour, and I felt noticeably more alert and focused this afternoon – not to mention feeling good about tackling my growing belly and shrinking leg muscles.

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3 thoughts on “Working From Home

  1. farquag January 21, 2014 / 5:35 pm

    Hang in there, for most it only gets better! I have been doing it for 20 years and I love it. I started a blog for those who work at home to explore issues just like this.

    http://14stepcommute.wordpress.com

    I have recently posted about my conversion to a standing desk to combat the incessant sitting….

    • StuPC January 21, 2014 / 6:15 pm

      Great blog with some very helpful advice, Farquag – thanks!
      Have you really WFH for 20 years???

      • farquag January 23, 2014 / 6:03 pm

        It will be 20 years next month since I started, with a two year stint working only occasionally from home. A lot has changed since then, and it mostly has made it MUCH easier!

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