The Benefits of Working from Home
For many people striking a good work-life balance can be a difficult thing to achieve. Many hours spent at the office coupled with long commutes, sorting out childcare, staying on top of the housework and doing the other 101 things we all have to do every day can often leave people feeling stressed and exhausted. The rise of online communications however means it’s now easier than ever to work full time or at least part time without even leaving the house. Many employers now offer their employees the option to work from home and a lot of self-employed people also choose to take advantage of the freedom that it can bring. Working from home has several benefits as well as pitfalls but in this post we’ll be concentrating on the benefits.
Working from home offers you the chance to cut down or even cut out your commute to and from work altogether. Since the economic recession began back in 2008 unemployment has risen and the amount of available jobs has fallen. As a result many people have had to look further afield to find suitable employment leading to long, time consuming commutes. I have a few friends who spend up to 3 hours a day commuting to and from their workplace, if you work a standard 5 day week that’s 15 hours a week spent commuting to work, just think what you could do with an extra 15 hours a week!
Then there’s the seemingly ever rising cost of fuel. It’s not uncommon for people to spend a couple of hundred pounds on fuel each month just commuting to work. Again working from home can reduce or cut this cost out completely leaving you with a sizeable chunk of extra disposable income at your fingertips each month.
Time with the Family
Spending more time with the family is something that is top on the list of priorities for most people. Working from home could allow you to put a big tick in that box. Simple things like taking the kids to school or being around when they get home can be made possible by the flexibility that working from home allows. I know a few people who work from home and many of them choose to start work early each day so they have some free time later in the day to pick their children up from school and cook a meal with them or head to the park. I know this might not be possible for everybody but it’s certainly a major benefit for a lot of people who are able to work from home.
More Time for Hobbies
For those of you who don’t have children I’m sure you’ll have some ways in mind to use the extra time that working from home can give you. Maybe you have hobbies or would like to spend more time keeping fit. Cutting out that early morning commute could leave you some free time to head out for a run, go for a swim or anything else that might take your fancy.
Depending on the job you do and the working environment you’re able to create, working from home can boost productivity by giving you the privacy to get on and do your job rather than stopping every two minutes to sort out other people’s problems or even just to chat. Many find that this lack of distraction allows them to condense down what they would normally do in a full day into just a few hours.
As we can see, if the option is available then working from home can offer many potential benefits. The only problem is that many of these potential benefits also double up as potential pitfalls. Working from home requires a lot of self-discipline and organisation to make it work and it’s certainly not for everyone. Stayed tuned for our follow up post on the potential pitfalls of working from home.
Do you work from home? What are the benefits for you?