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Working from home is an incredible opportunity for many people. Especially for women who prefer to be close to their school-aged children. The thought of setting your own work schedule and becoming your own boss sounds like a dream come true. Instead of having to put on an embarrassing company uniform or stuffy office attire, you can simply roll out of bed in cozy pajamas and begin your work day. Whether you are interested in becoming a home business entrepreneur, a freelance writer, or a virtual assistant, it seems that the convenience of a home office makes life so simple. Or does it?
While all of this sounds like an excellent lifestyle on paper, it may surprise you to hear how many new work-at-home mothers find out that their latest job is one of the most challenging responsibilities they’ve ever had. Even more unexpected is the reason behind this: an enormous lack of self-discipline!
A Work-at-Home Job Versus Commuting to Work
Working outside the home means there is a structured system built for you from the get-go. You know exactly what time you’re supposed to start working, how long your workday is, and what is required of you. You know that failing to carry out the tasks you’ve been assigned within the allotted time frame can eventually lead to bad consequences.
People tend to follow a routine at work without thinking twice about it. It is often a very different story when you no longer have an authority figure looking over your shoulder. This means developing self-discipline is a crucial step in becoming a successful work-at-home mom. This article will explore some methods that can help you build and maintain the discipline necessary for this kind of work.
Choose a Job that Suits You
Picking a work-at-home position that personally suits you is the most important step in being able to maintain self-discipline. If you do not enjoy the work that you’re doing, chances are you won’t do it. Of course, not every single aspect of any job is enjoyable. But if you choose a home occupation that you dread more than you enjoy, it is probably not going to work out well for you. You will likely find yourself procrastinating and continually putting off responsibilities. Over time, you may find that you’re no longer making enough income to justify working from your home office.
If you despise writing, don’t become a freelance writer or blogger. If you are a highly introverted person, don’t telecommute for a call center or work as a customer service representative. Luckily, there is such a vast range of work-at-home opportunities that you will definitely find something you like. With satisfaction comes motivation, and with motivation comes discipline!
Set a Schedule for Yourself and Stick to It
The idea of a flexible schedule may have been one of the main reasons you’ve decided to work from a home. But the reality is that without any set schedule, the likelihood of completing tasks in a time-efficient manner is unlikely. This is especially true if you have chosen a work-at-home position that requires you to make or answer phone calls. If you are not regularly available to speak to potential customers, your business is going to fail.
Some work-at-home opportunities allow a bit more flexibility than others. If you are planning on adopting a loose schedule, choose a field that does not require hard deadlines. For instance, instead of appointment setting, consider freelance work which allows you to set your own time limits.
Create a Pleasant Home Office and Work Environment
Designating a particular room as a workspace and making it your own can do wonders for your motivation. It is also essential that this office space is quiet. If you have young children, you should consider working only during the hours that they are in school or daycare to minimize distractions. Constant disturbances when you are attempting to complete assignments can be very frustrating. They can also lower your productivity. Think about utilizing professional office services to support your business. Use only reputable high-speed internet companies, top-quality scheduling software, and a reliable online faxing service.
Make the space inviting. Add pictures of your family, fresh flowers in vases or handcrafted corkboards to post your to-do lists. Attempting to concentrate at a cluttered table, or a room with piles of dirty laundry can take your mind off of the task at hand.
Set Goals for Income and Reward Yourself
Presumably, you already had a budget before making the decision to begin working from home. You know how much your bills are, what amount you want to put in savings, and what sort of income you need to support your family comfortably. If you have found an opportunity to work at home that will afford you this budget, that is wonderful. However, when starting out, it’s pretty safe to say that your income can vary from month to month. New work-at-home mothers should set a goal that slightly exceeds the expected amount, and they should proceed to work until they reach that goal.
The pay for jobs worked at home can vary depending on the availability of work, the number of hours worked, and whether you are paid by the hour or per assignment. Setting a goal and sticking to it ensures that you don’t fall below your means. You can select a desirable item or outing to reward yourself with when you’ve achieved your goal. Many women find that challenging themselves, and later enjoying the fruits of their labor, is incredibly motivating and a fantastic method of sustaining self-discipline while working at home.
Krystle Cook – the creator of Home Jobs by MOM – put her psychology degree on a shelf and dived into a pile of diapers and dishes instead. She is a wife and mother to two rambunctious boys, sweating it out in her Texas hometown. She loves cooking, DIY home projects, and family fun activities.