You’re a mom. Which means by the time you sit down and read this article, you’ve already gotten your family up, gotten your kids dressed, fed them breakfast, pulled Jimmy down from the top of the cabinet, packed lunch, hauled everybody to school, and are likely trying to plan how you’ll finish fixing that hole in the wall before you have to attend your PTA meeting.
You have minimal amounts of free time. But apart from your role as a mom, you’re also a professionally-minded, working individual, with career and life goals. How can you make use of those professional skills, continue to hone your abilities, achieve your long-term goals AND run your home?
Enter the world of working from your home.
The Benefits of Working from Home
The first benefit of working from home is pretty self evident. When you work from home, you get to work from home. You get to be in charge of your schedule. Which means you can fit in any writing, designing, marketing or what have you at any time of the day. You can also keep your skills honed in case you have a desire to enter the workplace full time in the future. And you get to make a little extra income.
The downside of working at home is you have to be your own boss. If managing time is one of your weak points, you may have a hard time getting the work done with no one hovering over you to make it happen. It’s easy to put off work when you don’t have to go to an office every day. It’s also easy to limit your interaction time with other people if you work from home.
Have a designated work space. It’s a good idea, if you decide to work from home, to create a designated office space for yourself. Get yourself a desk that is a permanent work spot. No matter how much you want to, don’t make your kitchen table your temporary work spot. Either your table will be permanently cluttered, or worse, you’ll put off doing work because you don’t want to take everything out to set up your station.
Create a space where you can always work, and where you can safely leave your laptop and all work-related materials. Don’t do any work there but professional work. Let that area remain solely associated with your job and it’ll be easier for you to get into working mode once you sit down.
Create a consistent work schedule. Designate a few, uninterrupted hours of the day to your work, and then stick to that schedule. It’s easiest if the time of day is consistent throughout the week. Don’t plan anything else during those hours if it can be helped. Think of that time as your work time. You wouldn’t leave work during your office hours except for good reason, and the same should be true for your office hours at home.
You’ll be more successful working from home if you take your work time seriously and give it the proper attention. Resist the urge to put off work for other concerns. The last thing you want is for your work tasks to pile up until right before their deadlines.
There are a lot of options available to you if you’re interested in working from home. The key is to do your research and have confidence in your skills. Many companies post jobs for work-from-home positions, but many others simply need to be approached with the right game plan to be willing. Here are some positions to consider to help you get back in the game.
- Freelancing: Do you have strong writing skills? Freelancing might be just right for you. Businesses often hire out for editing, copywriting or content writing. While freelancing positions may not always be long term or consistent, they can often develop into more regular positions. And if one doesn’t work out, there are always other freelancing positions available.
- Design: If you’re fluent in HTML and have a background in design, there might a freelance web or graphic design position open to you. Often you can be hired out by a single company, or do a variety of projects for different clients. If you don’t know much about web design but are willing to put in the time to learn, there are a lot of available resources online to guide you.
- Translator: If you’re bilingual, it could quickly become a money-making skill. You might find work with a translating company, or you may work freelance translating articles and websites.
- Blogging/E-book Publishing: Now, the wonderful woman who writes this blog will likely tell you that keeping up a blog is a full-time job. It’s also a great way to bring in a little extra income doing what you love. If you love to cook, if you love to fix, if you love to organize, start documenting your experiences. It might take awhile before you see any income from your blog, but once you have a following and have established your authority, you’ll be surprised at what you can earn.E-book publishing is different from blogging, but they often go hand in hand. If you have a great idea and want to share it, start writing an e-book. It’s a great way to earn extra income. And if you keep up a regular blog, you can even market your e-book on your own blog.
- Private Label Cosmetics: There are two ways to do cosmetics from home. One is to sign up for a multi-level marketing business. You sell products, earn rewards, and recruit others to do the same. Another approach, and one that tends to give you more freedom, is starting your own line of private label cosmetics.Private label cosmetics are cosmetics manufactured by one company and sold by you under your own label. The benefits to private labels are you can sell quality products at lower prices, because you don’t have to do all the manufacturing and marketing. If you’re interested in marketing, sales, or cosmetics, creating your own private label could be immensely satisfying for you. Plus, it’s something you can do on your own time.
The key to successfully working from home is to keep searching until you find the right fit. Your dream job won’t find you. You have to go looking for it, constantly exploring new options. But once you find the right fit, the reward of being the master of your own schedule will have been worth the work.
Mary Kremer loves, loves, loves writing and traveling. If she could do both forever, she’d be a happy camper. In her free time she hikes, tries to exercise, and bugs her husband about things like women’s issues as he’s trying to fall asleep.