Working from home eliminates the need for commuting, or so one would think.
I ache for that commute time: that rubbernecking, traffic jammed, disabled car on the side of the road valuable me time.
Nothing but radio du jour, or book-on-tape, or simple silence to think. To figure stuff out. Time to mentally prep for your day, unravel on the way home, to aptly switch gears from home to work and back again.
Not so when you work from the comfort of your own home.
The ability to think on the fly: to juggle work, copy, production, parent/teach conferences, doc appointments, cell phone, oil delivery, UPS, dogs barking, and the unthinkable: early dismissal from school or the godforsaken snow day, doesn’t allow for the limited neurons to switch from mom mode to work mode on the fly.
Can you switch gears working at home? I thought I could, but know full well that I can’t.
How do you do it, without screaming, usually to unsuspecting kid who just wants five seconds of eye contact, or a rather attractive husband who just wants you to read something real quick, or your beautiful teenagers who only grace you with their presence for such a brief moment that by the time you look up, they are long gone.
Why do I do this to the folks I love the most?
I never put a client on hold, or speak to them with anything but forlorn adoration while I jump through the hoop no matter how high, what time, or where it is located. Is it the desperation of a paycheck, or the willingness to please (or is that the same)?
So I’ve instituted my own commute: I’m taking an hour every day: morning and night for to pre-game and post-game my work day. I’m hitting the gym in the am, or walking the walk, to mentally prep the brain for the day ahead, all while shrinking the ass.
And I’m punching out, literally, once game time starts. That means my kids swim meets, soccer games, concerts, homework, or college prep attack. No longer choreographing print runs from the soccer sidelines, or negotiating contracts from swim stands, or reviewing copy changes during halftime shows.
It’s hard when you work from home: you’re at work all the time, and can’t stop the wheels from spinning, the ideas from generating, the to-do list from growing.
But I need that commute time. I desperately need that space between.
This isn’t about miles-per-gallon, it’s about energy per neuron. As I’ve gotten older, my neurons seem to be aging, and perhaps this cerebral computer is ready to crash if I don’t start taking better care of it.
I’ll let you know how it works.
If it works.