Psst…I’m working on something that needs your input. After six years of WFH experience, I’ve compiled a list of daily benefits that a non-traditional work life provides. I’m bursting with info surrounding the whats, hows, whens and whys, so much so that I am writing an e-book to share the knowledge, and I’d love to hear from you!
Take a look at my list below and share your own ideas, questions and interests about WFH. What do you want to learn? What do you need to know before making the switch to full-time telecommuting? What excites you about it? What scares you? Your insights are valuable and I’ll do my best to address every comment in full detail. I’m also working with a group of WFH colleagues from every corner of business, so this e-book is for everyone, not just writers!
So, what are the benefits of WFH from my perspective? Let’s start with basics:
The Fun Stuff
- Wearing yoga pants all day. (In case you were wondering, this reason will always be at the top of my list!)
- Snuggling with your furry friends during business hours.
- Making time for personal health before the workday starts. I love me some at-home BodyRock!
- Finding a workspace that suits you, e.g., a desk, park bench, sofa or bed (Fact: Truman Capote, Edith Wharton and Marcel Proust all worked from their beds.)
- Watching Netflix on your lunch break.
- Traveling without taking time off (or losing money).
Home and Family
- Running errands without neglecting work (or getting the stink-eye from your boss).
- Recovering from a flu bug without penalty or lost income.
- Eating healthy and frugally by cooking at home for lunch.
- Saving on commuting costs, vehicle wear and tear and sanity (read: traffic jams).
- Taking time to do the dishes, laundry, etc. while on work breaks.
- Being home for the cable guy’s super convenient 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. service window.
- Being available for your kids before and after school. Saving on childcare costs doesn’t hurt, either.
- Blocking out office noise and distractions to focus on the task at hand. My productivity skyrocketed once I began WFH.
- Working for multiple employers within the same week. To that end…
- Increasing your income from multiple sources.
- Making your own hours. I am not a morning person. After getting Mister off to school, I need some time to wake up and focus before starting the day. While the average corporate job can’t accommodate my natural preferences, a WFH schedule means I can work whenever I want.
- Having more control over who you work for and what you do. For example, I write about personal finance, parenting and technology because all three topics interest me. I love finding new clients in different fields. Every day is something new, and the variety keeps me interested.
- Setting your own hourly wage based on experience, job scope, and other factors. Being self-employed means I earn way more than I ever did while working for someone else. Why? Overhead costs. Many moons ago, my first full-time writing job was with an e-learning company in Chicago. They billed clients $115 an hour for my services while only paying me $16. Sure, the discrepancy bothered me, but I also understand that they needed to pay for office space, electricity, taxes, insurance and all the other costs associated with running a business. That said, my time is worth more than $16 an hour. I love having control over my own overhead costs and salary. Placing a price on both has helped me grasp the potential in every workday.
- Deducting business expenses like home office space, computers, cell service, internet, electricity, and more! I saved $3,000+ in federal income taxes last year alone.
- Learning about project management, negotiating, communication and all the other components that keep a WFH business running smoothly. You don’t need a promotion to learn these skills. You’re the boss; these skills are part of the job.
- Working with clients who live elsewhere. We’ve talked about the global WFH community. Working for companies outside my home state broadens my market, exposes me to new businesses and even allows me to travel every so often. My last trip was to Salt Lake City when I was three months pregnant with Mister; not a bad place to get things done!
- Moving into a new niche without quitting your existing job or risking your financial stability.For example, I’m a full-time writer, but I have also sold graphic prints as a hobby. Both of these income sources are listed under my business name, which means that all equipment and software are tax-deductible.
- Learning other skills that fall outside your comfort zone. I could barely open Adobe Illustrator a few years ago and now it’s one of my favorite pasttimes. I also feel comfortable listing it as a skill on my resume. It’s a win-win.
- And finally, achieving that rare and amazing work/life balance. The freedom is truly priceless.