I never thought of myself as a stay-at-home mom. I enjoyed the direction my career was going and always thought that I would work outside the home, even after my children were born. After the birth of my daughter, my husband and I decided that with the stress of both of us working full time, never spending any time with our children, and the rising cost of daycare, it was time for me to come home. The question was, “Is working from home really a viable option?” Was it possible for me to be a stay-at-ome mom to my children and have an income from a job that I enjoy and that is beneficial to our family, both personally and financially?
And so began my search. We’ve all seen offers promising us loads of easy money with minimal investments of time and capital. Unfortunately, we don’t as often seem to personally know anyone who has succeeded at these schemes. No, the fact is, that you really can’t get something for nothing. However, that doesn’t mean that working from home will not work. In fact, we’re seeing trends of more and more people choosing to work from home.
The benefits of working from home are clear: ability to have quality family time, to be available for your children and spouse, the flexibility to arrange and re-arrange schedules, not to mention commuting and daycare cost savings.
Working from home has its challenges. When you work for yourself, the term “self-motivation” takes on a whole new meaning. Suddenly you are both boss and employee. The trick is to find balance. For many people, that means setting up “office hours” and sticking to them. If you decide you will work from 8 a.m. until noon, Monday through Friday, that means that you sit down and begin work at 8 a.m. and when the clock strikes noon, you stop, knowing that you will continue again tomorrow at 8 a.m. For other people, a less rigid schedule may be a better choice, where they discipline themselves to work a set number of hours each day, but are not as concerned about when they work those hours. The common denominator is that in each case, a successful work-at-home story begins with work. Just like a traditional job, you must work to be successful.
Of course, the most important key to being a success is making the commitment and then taking the next step to just do it. It is always scary to take the first step on a new adventure, but the rewards can far outweigh the risks. You have time for your children and their needs, while still bringing in a paycheck. And, you are growing and developing both personally and professionally as you continue to grow a business where you are the boss.