Working from home, Tip #47

The greatest advantage - and the greatest pitfall - of working at home is not keeping a regular 9-5 schedule. It means that if I want to take a yoga class on Wednesday morning, I can catch up by simply working a few extra hours on Tuesday night.

The pitfall is that, sometimes my brain gets so tired from a full day of working with words, that it isn't as sharp after 6pm.

My solution? Doing something manual to help my brain reboot.

To rest the intellectual-wordy part of my brain, I made pizza. From scratch. I kneaded the dough and let it rise twice. I made tomato AND pesto sauce from fresh ingredients. And then while my pizza bubbled in the oven, I washed all the dishes.

I returned to my keyboard a few minutes ago feeling clear-headed and fresh - ready to tackle the short translation and revision that awaits.

Heck, I even squeezed out a blog post. With photo!


Wings said...

I also use household chores (dishes, cooking, laundry) to step away from work for a bit. When that fails, I take a nap.

ad said...

Also a big fan of naps... About 3pm is best, I find.

Julija said...

I too think working at home is all about rhythms, though productivity is far harder to achieve than most people anticipate. I've been working from home forever, it seems (at least 10 years), and I've only gotten really disciplined in the past 5.

Having a kid was strangely helpful. My 3-year-old son is on fire with activity and energy most of the day. Once he's off to daycare and my workday begins, every minute is precious. The silence that was once, on occasion, oppressing is now treasured, and solitude is welcomed now that it doesn't spill over into loneliness.

ad said...

Interesting way that you phrase it - about solitude not spilling over into loneliness.

On days when I don't succeed in having real face-to-face interaction, I try to give myself a project - fixing the garden fence, hanging up photos, etc - so that I can maintain that balance.

I only wish I knew all these coping techniques when I first worked freelance in 1999.