Working from home as a parent of a toddler (who isn’t in daycare) and working in the office both have their own challenges. What doesn’t change is that you sometimes have to deal with difficult coworkers (your “coworkers” at home being your tiny dictator).
During my nearly year-and-a-half of working from home, here are some of the main differences I’ve found between office life and work-from-home life:
- Your work day starts between 5-6 a.m., before your kids and real coworkers wake up, so you can actually get some work done before the craziness of the day starts.
- You’re put together from the waist up: hair and makeup done, business top on, but PJs on the bottom… just in case you have a video call.
- Your productive times have shifted according to sleep schedules, segmenting your work day into craziness that looks like: 5:30-7:30 a.m., noon – 2 or 3 p.m. (if you’re lucky) and after 7 p.m. and weekends.
- Your bathroom breaks are always social… but your coworkers often touch you while you go.
- Lunch breaks occur over the kitchen sink or hovering over your computer, as you finish your little coworkers leftovers.
- Your work tunes consist of the white noise machine over your baby monitor, Music Together CDs and the Disney Pandora station.
- Conference call background noise from your end is a screeching toddler yelling at for your dog to stop barking, following him, staring at him or the like.
- No matter how comfy your office set up is, you end up working from the couch or bed. (Or maybe it’s just my pregnant ass that does this…)
- Your trips to “the water cooler” are determined by the amount of silence coming from the play room – not how thirsty you are for a beverage or office gossip.
- You can hug, kiss and cuddle your coworkers without fear of a lawsuit.