19 April 2012 @ 01:06 pm
Work at home schedule  

Hi there, I'm hoping this question is appropriate in this community. I'm looking for a job right now, but it's a slow process. Anyway, I have an online store and can make a little money on the side until I get a job but I'm finding it really hard to get sewing. I'm doing some cleaning too, the house is under construction and needs organizing. It's a small place. Any suggestions on how to schedule my day and get things done? Anyone work from home and have some suggestions?

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Current Location: Canada, Manitoba, Riel
 
 
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
mymaninthemoonmymaninthemoon on April 19th, 2012 06:14 pm (UTC)
I work from home, for a large company, and not for myself, so this may not work for you. I have set hours for my job - I'm to be available between 8/830a-5/530p EST. I also take a lunch break usually around 130p (Just works for me), for an hour. I have an actual office with a door and no other distractions (except my personal laptop streaming Pandora and a cute cat that has a window seat in my office). During those times I'm working. After 5/530p, I do whatever needs to be done. Now, that's not to say on a morning/afternoon break I don't throw in laundry or go run errands at lunch time, but when I'm working, I'm working.

I would say in your situation, make yourself a work space that you can go to, but also escape from so work isn't ALWAYS there. (I close the door to my office after hours/weekends) Also, set work hours. From 12p - 4p, you're working, or whatever works for you. Leave all distractions behind and just work. If you were at a job away from home, you wouldn't be there to organize or clean etc. It just requires discipline b/c you ARE there, but you also need to work.
Meanderthalmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:28 pm (UTC)
I'm going to need to cultivate that attitude. Unfortunately the house is so small there's no room to have my work area separate, but I think there are ways I can define it, with taking out all the work items and then putting them away after.
Sarcasticia Nitpickersontisiphone on April 19th, 2012 06:19 pm (UTC)
Yup. Set boundaries. You need to set aside a couple hours a day (whatever you intend to spend working) and make that your "work" time. Turn the TV off, ignore the dishes piling up in the sink, and make a list of what you need to get done that day. Then get to doing it and try to avoid as many distractions as you can. Basically, if you're going to work at home and actually get anything done, you need to treat it like your job. That doesn't mean just banging straight through, just like you would in the workplace - take a few minutes every hour or so to goof off, check email, and especially attend to your physical needs, like stretching, eating, drinking, etc. I also suggest training the other inhabitants of the house (possibly with the exception of cats, who are going to ignore you anyway) not to bug you when you're working. Otherwise you can lose a lot of time to random people assuming you're available to do something for them. Similarly, guard your not working time fiercely. When you're done with work for the day, put it down, stop doing it, and start doing the other things you need to do. Don't let it eat your life.
Meanderthalmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:29 pm (UTC)
Cats pester me constantly :) Thanks.
Sarcasticia Nitpickersontisiphone on April 20th, 2012 09:30 pm (UTC)
Yeah, me too! They have no respect for work hours at all.
Meanderthal: Kitty wetmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:48 pm (UTC)
All times are cat times!
Altamiraaltamira16 on April 19th, 2012 06:24 pm (UTC)
Set up a routine. Take a shower in the morning, and set up an amount of time for each task so none of it eats your whole day. If you are focusing on a job search as well, devote several hours in the morning to what needs to be done. And after that, do not do any more of it, and go to your next task which is sewing for a couple of hours a day. If you need to break up these tasks, devote little chunks of time to other things. But don't let any of it take over your day.
Meanderthal: Mark Twainmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:48 pm (UTC)
Discipline! Where can I get some? :)
paleskinbeautypalesknbeauty on April 19th, 2012 06:58 pm (UTC)
All teh above. When I sew, I get up and get ready shower, eat, dress and sew. Its flexible. Some days I have to shop, so I do that. I like to swim and teh pool i use it open in the am so often I go there first. You do have to treat it like a regluar job and work regular hours or nothing really gets done.

Also, know your personal creative time. If you are more active and creative in the mourning hours, then use it...or if its in the evening, do your housework in teh am and your sewing in the afternoon. Good luck
dushamoyadushamoya on April 19th, 2012 07:07 pm (UTC)
This, plus if you find that you are sewing for you work everyday, stop. I did that in the beginning with my etsy shop, and I started to get to where I dreaded sewing, and never worked on any projects for fun. It's taken me a year to really tackle a decent "work" schedule, but I'm getting there. I sew much better in the evening, so I wake up, do my normal house-wifey stuff and play with my toddler, and then do all of my sewing in the evening after dinner. If I have to do any ironing, I do it earlier in the day. This gives me enough time to complete enough for my shop. I also take at least two days off a week from it, usually Sunday and another day, depending on my workload. If I'm so inclined, I use those days for hobby sewing and quilting.
dushamoyadushamoya on April 19th, 2012 07:11 pm (UTC)
Oh, I also want to add - I have a really hard time staying focused when I do sit down to work. I have a dedicated work space, but it shares space with my living room (because I won't work at all if I'm completely shut away from the action). I have had to accept that I just have to add my completely useless puttering time into the time I need to sew.
Meanderthalmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:30 pm (UTC)
I think I'm going to need to accept that too. I just have to set the rule that when something comes up that makes me stop what I'm doing, I need to get right back at it during my "work hours". Thanks :) I have an Etsy shop too.
Nancieeicnan on April 19th, 2012 07:08 pm (UTC)
Like everyone else said - routine is your best friend. I've been working from home for 7 years (for a large corporation not self employed) and couldn't stay focused without a dedicated space. My house is also always under construction and I find when I'm not working at my desk I lose focus and start puttering around the house.
Meanderthal: Victrolamadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:31 pm (UTC)
Puttering I am super good at. Can't I make money puttering?
Herkko Rosvo-Ronkainenmissingkeys on April 19th, 2012 07:26 pm (UTC)
All of the above, but add shoes! I think that may have been a Flylady tip, but shoes are magnificent things. If you live in a shoe-free house, clean a pair of shoes that you won't wear outside and wear them while you work. It was suggested as a tip to make you feel more motivated, perhaps a bit more professional, but certainly like you're actually at work. I don't know about anybody else, but it certainly works for me.
Meanderthalmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:30 pm (UTC)
Shoes?! That's a great little trick :)
laplorlaplor on April 19th, 2012 07:29 pm (UTC)
I'm watching this because I'm in almost the exact same boat, only I have some EI benefits coming in just now so working on any side projects isn't really beneficial.

My biggest find so far is that I MUST get up at the same hour every day and try to make the first thing I do something that really counts - like do the groceries or clean the bathrooms. Otherwise the day feels wasted.
Meanderthalmadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:32 pm (UTC)
I find it takes me a couple of hours before I'm really awake, but I still need to get up early. I can't seem to get anything done if I get going too late.
Storm's ramblingsstormkitty on April 19th, 2012 07:57 pm (UTC)
I have worked from home for myself for the last 4 years. This year, though, the game changed as I now am moved in with my boyfriend and his 12 year old son. So, in addition to working (I freelance, so I don't have FT hours all the time by my choice) and taking care of the house, I also have to coordinate becoming an instant parent.

I only work in the mornings because that's the time I am most alert and focused. My work now is a lot more focused and detail oriented than it was, so I have to do it when I'm most sharp. At 11:30am I walk up to have lunch with my boyfriend and bring the car back here. At 2:30pm I pick up the boy from school and then supervise homework and his chores. In the afternoons is when I get most of my housework done. At 5pm we transition to dinner and evening routines (quiet time, reading, board games sometimes, and then bedtime for the boy).

It was very important to me to have a good life/work balance. I have many friends in my industry who work 18 hour days every day. I can't physically do that, and I don't want to. I had to find what worked best for me and then work to stick to it.

Good luck!
Meanderthal: Bunnymadfishmonger on April 20th, 2012 09:32 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I am going to have to work out some kind of tailored schedule for myself.
AH-HAjohnadreams on April 21st, 2012 05:11 am (UTC)
Pretty much agreeing with everyone else here about making yourself a routine. It might help to create a general daily schedule for yourself, write it big on a poster and stick it on your wall. My friend who works from home blocked in hours for her to have "fun" breaks (for reading, going online, playing a video game, etc.), errand breaks, cleaning breaks, and so on, so she was never stuck at her drawing table for more than a few hours at a time. Also, this might sound obvious, but you don't have to work everyday. Take weekends off, or choose your own days off. I find it's easier to be committed to working hard when I know I have a couple of days entirely dedicated to slacking off :)
Meanderthalmadfishmonger on May 2nd, 2012 12:57 am (UTC)
That sounds great, thanks.
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )