Tips On Managing Stress When Working From Home

by WorkFromHome on September 17, 2011

When you worked a 9-5 job, you imagined how productive and stress free you would be if only you could work from home. Now, your daydream has become reality; and you find yourself stressed! What do you do to handle stress that accompanies working from home? First, identify stressors, plan an attack, and then enjoy your job!

Balancing Work and Home

You find fulfillment in your work and need to provide financially for your family, but you wonder if you are missing the best years of your children’s lives as you ask them yet again to leave you alone while you work. To help alleviate this stress, create a work schedule that includes family time, children’s activities, and uninterrupted work time. Employ family members as your teammates by assigning household chores or creative tasks they can complete while you work. If possible, reward them with a special treat funded with money you make from your business.

Interruptions

When you work at home, interruptions threaten your productivity and concentration. Friends, family, clients, and even pets call or stop in to chat or ask for favors. You must take control of your workday. To minimize interruptions, unplug the phone, advertise office hours, lock the door, and set a consistent time each day to work.

Financial Concerns

Now that you work from home, you alone hold responsibility to pay your bills, provide health insurance, and fund retirement. Your stay at home career may not award you a millionaire status, but opportunities to use your talents, make a flexible schedule, and be available to your family outweigh financial costs. If you continue to struggle financially, enlist friends to brainstorm new branches for your business, seek marketing and advertising assistance, and creatively cut your budget or barter services with a trusted friend. Additionally, remember to schedule time to complete your business’s financial paperwork.

Social Adjustments

Loneliness, depression, and isolation may threaten your emotions and productivity as you work from home. You no longer have easy access to a co-worker’s advice or invitations to lunch. To lessen solitude, recognize your need for socialization and schedule time for friends. Join a social club, invite friends over to celebrate met deadlines, or stay active in your local career organization. Set aside a few hours for a girl’s night or date night every month. Maintain a support system of trusted confidantes who know, love, and support your decision to stay home. Plan activities you enjoy into your schedule to meet your emotional needs. Eating healthy foods and regular exercise helps to maintain mental health and stave off depression.

Deadlines

As a project deadline approaches, you realize you have too much unfinished work. Rather than hide your face under a pillow, face the deadline with an organized plan. Use a whiteboard or poster board to track each project, and break the project into manageable goals with projected completion dates. As you meet small goals, you confidently face the project deadline knowing you are working consistently to meet the goal. If life events prevent you from successfully completing the project on time, explain the situation to your family and ask for extra help covering your household chores and giving you uninterrupted time to work.

Frustrating Clients or Work Projects

In addition to looming deadlines, demanding clients or complicated projects cause stress. For troublesome clients, compare the financial benefits of keeping the client versus the emotional stress their demands or personality may cause. Either terminate your relationship or analyze ways to minimize friction. For complicated work projects, take breaks. A fresh perspective later can alleviate the mental block and show you a new way of handling the problem.

Every career includes stress. Recognize the unique stressors of working from home and create a plan of action to overcome these stresses. Remember the reasons you choose to work from home, and enjoy your career decision.

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