How Do You Walk the Line Between Work and Home? Share Your Best Practices With ALA

by ALA Staff

13 Reader Comments

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  1. Best way is to share your home office with others especially peers in the same industry. That way it gives you the busy atmosphere without the environment.
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  2. I meant to say the busy atmosphere “without the commuting”.
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  3. I do not live with family, however I live with 2 other guys. One of which is 22 yrs of age and the other 34. The 34 yr old always needs help with his computer, printer, internet, etc. The younger one wants me to forget about work, play video games, go out, party, and have fun. I have a full time job during the day and trying to balance work and play at home becomes a daily battle. So when I really wanna work I wake up early on Sat and Sun mornings hours before either of my roommies crawls out of bed. I get about 5 hours of work done on those days.
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  4. I work from home as a full-time employee, so it’s slightly different than the freelance game. To keep myself sane and to not take over the whole loft (I live with my girlfriend and a roomate) I try to stick to the following: * Wake up before everyone else to start work. Ideally 5am, though sometimes I fail here =)
    * Set an iCal alarm to break for lunch (I forget without it) and one at the end of the day so when my girlfriend comes home I am not working on something
    * Keep a time log in a small gridded moleskin, to input into Basecamp at the end of the day
    * Backup, backup, backup.
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  5. I’m in the UK - it’s more like $11/gallon (£1.20/litre) at the moment. And that’s not the most expensive!
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  6. Even if you won’t see anyone or be out of the house, taking the time to get ready for work (like taking a shower and changing out of the pajamas) first thing in the morning makes me much more productive. It also helps when colleagues or clients need to meet for a quick meeting, I don’t have to delay to make time to shower and be presentable.
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  7. * Wake up earliest * Spread the hardest work out to be before the easiest * Reserve IM and email for lunch breaks (and love!) * 10 min breaks every 50 minutes is better than one giant break * Write to-do lists when wrapping up for the next day.
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  8. bq.  Even if you won’t see anyone or be out of the house, taking the time to get ready for work (like taking a shower and changing out of the pajamas) first thing in the morning makes me much more productive. I knew it would happen, but *_Carl_* you’re the first to give me something I wish I’d written about! You make a great point and it works the same for me too. Thank you for bringing that up.
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  9. I have 5 kids at home and we home school, so they are frequently there when I work from home.  I used to hide in the basement office, but I don’t have that anymore.  I have learned to tune out all the commotion and can focus in on tasks.  I actually have more trouble when it is quiet and the kids are gone, because then I can snack or mill around.  This is a learned skill.  I have also read that this is how Tiger Woods focuses on the golf course.  He puts all the distractions in the background and was trained to do this early on. I also make it a point to get into and chat frequently on IM to give the appearance to my team and colleagues that I am actually in the office.  This works well in our office due to already having several geographic locations, so many people don’t even know I am working from home.
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  10. Still haven’t completely solved this one. We’re in that percentage of people who don’t have a home phone anymore.  My cell phone is my business phone.  It’s also my personal phone.  Obviously, problems arise.  I once received a call for a prospective client in India at 3am.  I woke up this morning on this the last day of my vacation to someone wanting to talk about a website.  How do you find the balance without carrying two phones in your pocket or tethering yourself to a landline or VOIP phone? I’m going to look more into your Grand Central recommendation, but I thought that commercial use was prohibited?
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  11. I started working from my home 3 years ago. Working from home you get WAY TO MUCH freedom….
    So you have to learn to limit yourself. This post at ZenHabits was of great help to me:
    http://zenhabits.net/2007/09/haiku-productivity-the-fine-art-of-limiting-yourself-to-the-essential/ Sorry about my little english. Im from Argentina.
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  12. I’d looked into Grand Central previously but it seems like it’s still in a private (or invitation-only) beta?
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  13. Jeffrey, here. We’re not actually accepting comments in this forum. Instead, please email your best practices on working from home to homebased at alistapart dot com (subject: “Working From Home”?). Best answers will be published in a future issue. Thanks!
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