It's been a little less than a year since I decided to leave my day job and work full-time for myself. I had always wanted to start my own business and have had a entrepreneur way of thinking ever since I was young. I was constantly thinking about what I could invent and how I could do it and it wasn't till about a year ago and LOTS of hard work that I finally found what was going to make me happy on a daily basis and now I am so beyond happy that I made the change and am able to work with the people that I choose.
I really did like my day job and I give a lot of credit to that job for teaching me the ways of the public relations/social media business because without that job I wouldn't be where I am today.
I get a lot of questions about what I do over on IG stories and thought I could give you a little glimpse into what I do for work and how I go about doing it each week.
I am going to introduce a new series to my blog called "Self-Employed" and each week you can count on a new post touching on different topics of working for yourself. This past year has been a lot of trial and error and I am still learning each and every day so I thought I would share my journey with you all in the hopes to inspire some of you to go off and do what you love. Before we get into it, I'll never forget when my dad told me, "make sure you always do something you love for work because you spend the majority of your life doing it and why not be happy." That has always stuck with me and I truly love what I am doing now and hope that you all do too.
First up, tips on working from home.
Don't try and do everything: When I first started working from home I thought that I could all of a sudden do it all. I thought that I could wake up, workout, go to the grocery store, do all the laundry and finish my work for the day all before having to cook dinner for my family and spend time with my husband when he got home from work. That was a BIG mistake on my part! The truth is that I like doing all of those household things, but it was becoming a big distraction to my work. I now remind myself daily to treat my work day as though I am sitting in an office setting. Breaks are good, but just make sure you're saving all your other duties for before or after work. I also have gotten in the habit of trying to get all the chores done on the weekends so I don't feel distracted to do so during the week. Of course things come up, but just make sure you're treating your work day like anyone at an office and you'll be just fine!
Don't always work from the same place: Even if you have the most gorgeous workspace in the world and feel productive every time you go into your home office, sitting in the same place with the same surroundings everyday can hinder your creativity. Plus, those of us that work from home can relate to the fact that we sometimes just need some human interaction. It gets boring and old sitting along day in and day out. Set a couple days per week to find a new coffee shop to work at or even just take your computer outside somewhere for a change of scenery. You'll be amazed at the creative juices that start flowing the second you get out of your familiar space.
Set a schedule and stick to it: When I was working for a company I obviously was on a strict schedule. I had to be at work by a certain time every day and couldn't leave to do anything I wanted until it was 5 p.m. When I was starting this business I was so excited because setting my own flexible schedule sounded incredible, but it was actually a rude awakening. At first, it was quite hard for me to find structure and be productive in what I was doing on a daily basis. I don't know about you but I still love writing in a paper calendar. I found this extremely helpful when starting my own business. I now write everything down in my paper calendar even if it's as simple as posting to Instagram. I also love the feeling of checking things off my calendar. I think of it as a to-do list for every day of the week that includes phone calls, meetings, social posting and much more.
Turn your phone on silent when possible: In an industry where I am constantly needing to look at my phone for social media purposes it can be hard to get anything done when I tend to go down a Instagram rabbit hole when either focusing on my blog content or content for my clients. Instagram can be both good and bad. It can definitely provide some great inspiration, but it can also be hard when we're constantly comparing ourselves or clients to other people/accounts. It has really helped me to put my phone on silent for a certain amount of time per day so that I only focus on work on my computer. Remember, if you were in an office setting you wouldn't be constantly on your phone so again, treat it like your at an office.
Be sure to turn off at the end of the night: This is SO SO important. I am still struggling with this one and would love any tips if any of you have them because this is HARD. It's hard when both my jobs (blogging and social media consulting) revolve around my iPhone. If I'm not looking at my own content for the blog then I am looking at my clients pages and vice versa. I am going to try and implement putting my cell phone away at least an hour before bed so I can focus on spending time with my husband and winding down from the work day. Just because you don't work at an office doesn't mean that the work day is a breeze. I am usually exhausted and burnt out by the end of the day just like anyone would be when working a 9 to 5.
What do you find helpful when working from home? Do you struggle with some of the things above? I hope that you enjoyed the start to a fun series that I am excited to introduce to the blog on a weekly basis. Interested in knowing more about a specific topic when being self- employed? Send me an email or DM on Instagram and I will be sure to include it in one of my next posts.