Hello everyone! Since I’ve been working from home consistently for about seven months now, I figured I’d share my honest experience with you!
Now, I was no stranger to working from home before the pandemic. I had done a hybrid model for years before the pandemic. But working from home full time is a bit different. Here’s my experience with it!
My Experience Working From Home
Now, I actively searched for work from home opportunities so I will say I did go into it wanting to only work from home. I really wanted to avoid the dangerous winter commutes of Northern Illinois, avoid wasting time in traffic, and just be more comfortable. I’m happy to say that is exactly what happened!
I love that the time I otherwise would have wasted in traffic was no longer a thing for me. Previously, I would commute an hour or so each way from the office, which limited what I could do. For example, I could never make it home in time to go to book club, even if I skipped dinner and went straight from work. Finally, I was able to join book club and do other stuff like make it to places before they close or just relax after work before heading out.
I will say, I did used to build in errands into my commute. For example, my dentist was on the route home from work so I would make sure to schedule appointments after work. My dentist is quite far from my home now, unfortunately, so going forward I would likely need to schedule a weekend appointment or take time off to go to the dentist instead.
Now though, I mostly build them into my weekly ballet class trips. My ballet class is near a ton of stores like Target or PetSmart so if I need something from there, I’ll just go before or after class. It’s so nice to be able to do that and take care of everything at once!
I also love that I don’t need to spend crazy amounts on things like clothing, shoes, wear and tear on my car, gas, lunch, make up, and more. Working from home is much more casual regarding dress code, although some people will call it out from time to time. But car repairs and gas costs are virtually non-existent now for me, as is make up. I can’t believe how much I used to spend on this stuff, particularly car/gas costs when I was in grad school as well. It’s such a relief not to have those!
I would say the downside is things like hanging out with coworkers or bringing in baked goods and such. While we do hang out and get to know each other, it is harder to know if someone is busy or not. And now there is no sharing of baked goods! It is a little lonely, but it is what it is.
Another annoying thing is just general home noises! I live with my parents and my dog. My dog will bark from time to time or whine and somehow manages to act up when I have meetings. It makes calls with my manager, team, or clients much more stressful than it needs to be! I’ve considered putting my dog in his crate in the next room for meetings multiple times to just try to drown out any barking should it happen. My parents also will think they can walk in whenever and loudly ask if I’m busy. Even if I say I am, they will then say “oh I just wanted to talk to you about XYZ”. For the most part, it doesn’t happen often but it’s still annoying since it’s never anything important. My dad tried to get me to leave a meeting the other day to go look at some furniture piece he put together and my mom will ask me to “fix” her phone. Usually I shut that nonsense down really quick but I suppose even in an office there would be interruptions too!
Oh, it doesn’t help that my office is right above the garage so anytime someone opens/closes it then it’s so loud!
Even so, it’s nice to be able to have more flexibility. I was able to take my dog to his vet appointments multiple times already without having to leave work early since it’s so close to my home, when before I would probably have had to ask permission to leave early or wait ages for a weekend appointment. And it just gives me a much better balance between work and my personal life! Plus, it means I get to spend more time with my little dog!
So that’s my honest experience working from home! Honestly, it’s not for everyone and I understand that. For me, I do like it and it fits my needs right now so I plan to work from home for a long time!
Thanks for reading!
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