Being an entrepreneur or self employed (or simply having a home office working remotely for a company) can be a dream come true for most people although it does come with its fair share of problems. One of them being feeling isolated if you work from home. For some it may not be a concern and find they accomplish more by not having any office banter or distractions. However some other people find that it can get lonely and boring without any type of social interaction. Sitting alone at home all day in your pyjamas can spur insanity quite quickly. I know I have struggled with this at times so I have compiled a short list to help you overcome this:
1. Work at a share space
This has increasingly become a trend amongst self employed individuals who work alone all across North America. This type of work space fosters camaraderie amongst members and sharing of ideas. Who knows maybe you will form a new business idea with people you meet at a share space! In New York they seem to be all over the place and more reasonably priced compared to Toronto, about $250-300/month for high design surroundings such as Bat Haus, The Farm, Green Desk, and NeueHouse. Various Toronto options include iQ Office Suites for $599/month, Co-Work on Bloor for $325/month, and Beach Business Hub for $425/month.
2. Work once or twice a week at a coffee shop
This is obviously more cost effective than a work share space but you probably won’t be exposed to as much networking opportunities that a share space would with liked minded individuals. However, its a great change of scenery to enjoy a cup of joe while trying to meet your deadline on a certain project.
3. Obtain your social needs through other means
Signing up for fitness classes a few days a week could break up the monotony of being at home all day. It’s also a good excuse to actually try that cooking class you have been eyeing all year or attempting something else creative in the arts and exposing yourself to people you would have otherwise never met.
4. Go to Meetups in your Industry
Meetup is a great app for bringing together people all over the world to talk, help, mentor and support each other. Whether you want to run a marathon or enjoy writing, there is a Meetups for just about everything. Getting out of the house to meet people that are interested in things you are interested in can greatly improve ones work at home lifestyle.
5. Join Professional Associations
Another idea to break up the monotony of working from home is joining professional associations related to your field. Most have networking opportunities, lunches, dinners, or breakfast meetings where members gettogether for various events or have key note guest speakers. It may also help your business by joining these organizations and putting yourself out there so more people know about what you can offer. Some organizations that come to mind are Cawee, Company of Women, Young Presidents Organization, and Verity.
So there you have it, some tips and ideas to help your work at home lifestyle. Many people yearn for this flexibility as commuting to work everyday on the train or in traffic can cause a whole set of other irritations, so please be thankful that you are able to do what so many wish they could!