Let’s Talk ‘Working from Home’!

I have read numerous articles on the life changing impact the opportunity to work from home has had on so many people around the world. 

Particular focus has been given to the positives of no longer having a lengthy and often costly commute and, most importantly for me, the extra time we now have. 

Time to take up morning exercise, where normally we would be on the road, time to prepare healthier evening meals that can be eaten earlier, and, of course, that precious time to give to our family, whether that is seeing more of our young children within the home, or being able to help with the school runs and extracurricular activities. 

Yes, I absolutely agree with it all, but, for me, there is another side to this life changing period in our lives. Personally, I have now found myself in an utterly exhausting cycle of having to be everything to everyone. 

Having recently set up on own business, I am trying to work fulltime (plus some) and still be a fulltime mum. 

While the flexibility of working from home has given me so much – I am now able to take and pick up my children from school, watch after school football matches or cross country runs and build relationships with other school parents – sadly, this is also taking a lot from me.

Since becoming self-employed, in a ‘time precious’ role within the financial services industry, I have had to learn so many new skills and find the strength to implement them every single day. 

In order to fit my working week into my hours, I often work very late into the evenings, once my young children have gone to bed. I am all too aware this is not a pattern I can continue forever. However, as it has been said to me on multiple occasions, the first two years of setting up your own business are the hardest. So, for the short term at least, I am happy to give this everything I have got.

Finding the Right Balance 

I am extremely confident that I am capable of making my mortgage and protection profession a huge success and establishing a business I can be proud of – one that my young family will look up to me for years to come and that we can build around a happy family life. 

So, with my newfound skill of discipline, I have made multiple changes within the home.

Yes, I will be there for school drops offs and pick ups, but I will not touch the washing machine, I will not clean a bathroom, I will not pick up toys or prepare an evening meal.

Instead, I will work. I will work using my color-coded office Outlook calendar, where I have everything scheduled for a solopreneur. And when my young children come home from school, they will help me to prepare food, tidy their bedrooms and sort the washing. We will enjoy our time together as a family.

My husband and I have also made an agreement that for two set days each week, he is in charge. He will drop everything if we receive a call from school to say our daughters need collecting or if they are at home ill. He will prepare the meals that evening and he will make sure drop offs and pick ups are arranged for all the extracurricular activities on those evenings.

Because simply, why not? We both work more than fulltime hours and he is here to share those responsibilities. 

Luckily for me, I have the option of going  into an office if I wish. Hybrid working suits me. The time I spend in the office around others in my profession is invaluable. 

Working in the office has been crucial to my personal development and learning. It gets me out of the house and interacting with like-minded professional adults. I expect it will be something I will continue for the long term, even if it is just one day a week. 

We are getting there. It will take time and I will continue to strive for that magic balance so that we establish a routine where we are all successful and happy in what we are trying to achieve. 

We just sometimes need to take a step back and accept that we cannot be everything to everyone – no matter how hard that is to say.