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Monday, March 06, 2006

The Balancing Act... Work and Home


One of the most difficult parts of Working at Home can be where to draw the line between Work and Home.

You have to be aware that because you Work at Home, you can't necessarily combine the two. Any home based business needs to be separate from home life or you could find yourself disillusioned and unhappy with both.

One key is to keep a separate office space from the family space. You can do this by putting your office in a spare room, garage, basement or the like. If you don't have all that much extra space, then try to find the least used room and set up there.

Communication is another factor that needs to be addressed. The telephone should be kept separate from the home phone. Make sure you have a line dedicated to the business, and that no one uses it to call their friends. If it is tied up, clients can't get through.

If you have only one computer, make sure you have all your work related files separated from the the household accounts. Password protect your work files, especially if you have children that use the computer. The last thing you need is to have a game downloaded over your latest project.

Set up a Business E-mail account. That way you can assure that there is no way of getting an e-mail from Aunt Bertha mixed in with client communications. You should also look into getting a Post Office Box for any snail mail you expect to receive, it helps in keeping your home address confidential.

Lastly, set regular hours for work. There is always something that could crop up, but if you have a set time dedicated to working, you should find it easier to follow through. Set a regular starting and quitting time. Let the family know that this is your work time and you are not to be disturbed. After quitting time, try not to let work interfere with family time.

These are by far not the only factors in balancing Work and Home, but they are a good starting point.

Do you have any other ways to help keep the balance?

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