Working from home: Avoiding the common pitfalls

It’s billed as the dream, but there are a lot of occasions where working from home can be anything but that. From the outset, it looks as though nothing can go wrong. You can wake up a couple of minutes before your working day, while even work out of bed if that’s your thing.

However, in and amongst all of the obvious benefits are a lot of pitfalls. There have been some pretty drastic studies conducted about the loneliness-factor when working from home, and this shouldn’t be ignored. As it turns out, this is just the tip of the iceberg as well, and there are a whole host of potential problems if you don’t plan your new home office life strategically.

Bearing this in mind, let’s take a look at how you can avoid some of the common problems that working from home brings.

You don’t have a fixed place of work

This first point might raise a few eyebrows as when you work from home; you theoretically do have a fixed place of work in the form of your own home. However, it shouldn’t always be like this. As we have already alluded to, there are a whole host of benefits from working from home, and working out of bed will fall into this category for some of you!

There will be occasions where you need a change of scenery, though. There will be occasions where staring at the same four walls, with little company, is going to drive you crazy. This is where you need to get yourself out to a co-working space, or even a café in the local vicinity. This will just bring you into contact with a few more people and do wonders for your mental state.

Make sure you have set hours

Another common pitfall amongst the WFH brigade is that it’s difficult to work within the standard 9-5 hours. In other words, because there is no clock-in system as such, it means you work whenever you decide. For a lot of people, this becomes very difficult to balance, and before they know it, they are checking their emails before they go to bed.

As we all know, this is not going to do your mental health any favours. You might have your computer station on hand for the entire day, but you need an adequate work-life balance. Without this, working from home just isn’t going to work for you.

Fine-tune your communication techniques

This final point covers a slightly different topic to what we have looked at so far. Technology has meant that face-to-face meetings are no longer the norm, but that doesn’t mean to say that they aren’t incredibly useful.

When you work from home, this face-to-face contact is often lost. This means that you have to rely heavily on verbal communication, and for some people, this can be really difficult. It means that you need to fine-tune how you communicate; making sure that you get your message across the best possible way in your conference calls.

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