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29.01.2018 Back to Blog articles

When Working From Home Is Just Not Working

For many people the thought of not having to get up early in the morning and commute to work sounds like bliss. Imagine only needing to stumble out of your bed and through to your kitchen or home office at 08:59. 
Over the past few years research has highlighted problems with our current work-life balance. As a society we are increasingly pushing ourselves to do those 'extra hours' which can damage our health in the long run.

So Let's all Work from Home and Telecommute?

If only it were that simple. While working from home helps to alleviate some of the stresses in your working day, such as your commute (with most workers' commutes falling between 45 minutes and 2 hours, in the UK) and office politics, it also comes with its disadvantages.

More or Less Productive?

Many people think that they will be more productive working from home but is this actually the case? It can be hard to differentiate 'home' time from 'work' time and its very common to find yourself 'multitasking' while working from home. Whether it is putting on the laundry while a document is uploading or getting the dinner prepared before your partner comes home from work, there are a multitude of distrations to aid procrastination.
On the flip side, with your workspace in your home it can be difficult to switch off, and you may find yourself working late in the evenings or during weekends, inadvertently neglecting your leisure time and alienating your family.

Splendid Isolation?

One of the biggest disadvantages is the isolation that working from home can create. It isn't until you have tried working from home that you realise how much you enjoy chatting with coworkers about work related issues as well as personal. Admit it, who hasn't complained about their partner, flatmate, parents, in-laws or a client to their colleagues. Everyone has times when they just want to plug in their headphones and focus on work, but permanently being on your own means missing out on the social aspects of office working.
In addition, those seemingly random conversations you have with your co-workers may be less pointless than you think, especially if you are in a creative field. Being able to bounce ideas about can be invaluable for refining or even inspiring your ideas. This is where co-working in particular can combine the best of both worlds.

Finding a Work Space that Works for You

Individuals work in different ways and it's important to find a situation that works best for you and your business. 
Many freelancers and small business owners will find at some point that working from home is not right for them any more. However, working in an office every day may also not be the right choice. This is where co-working  and collaborative working spaces come in.
Co-working is a growing movement covering a variety of options. You can choose to:
  • Rent a permanent desk space within a larger company 
  • Rent a desk in an official co-working space with other small businesses or freelancers
  • Rent a hotdesk on a short term or occasional basis (for example by the hour or day)
This flexibility allows you to find a work-life balance that truly suits you. Maybe it's a long term move to help you grow your business, a sanity saver two days a week or a short term fix, while, for example, your kids are home over the summer holidays and the concept of 'quiet' becomes a distant memory, or when you are working on a big creative project and you need to be surrounded with other creatives who can help with ideas and feedback.
Whatever the reason, co-working lets you tailor-make a working situation that best suits your lifestyle, your business and the type of work that you are doing. What are you waiting for? Discover the co-working communities near you.

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