Down time

laelene Post in general blog,Tags: , ,

What do you think of when you hear work from home, self-employed, entrepreneur?  Do you imagine someone huddled over their laptop all day and all night, tapping away at those keys?  Do you imagine someone kicking back with a cool drink on a warm day, enjoying the sunshine?  Or maybe you think of someone lounging around in pajamas and slippers, cupping a steaming cup of coffee and a book.  Whatever the case, people usually consider working from home and working for yourself to be less stressful than a typical office job.

When I first started working from home, I imagined being able to enjoy myself no matter where I was (and being able to go anywhere no matter when it was).  For the most part, that has been true, but another thing that I’ve wrestled with is being able to set boundaries with my time.  I’ve enjoyed far more freedom in terms of where I am and when I work, but then it all blends together.  Lately I’ve found that I think so much about work that I even dream about it and disrupt my rest.  Without realizing it, stress has creeped up on me because I am the one responsible if things go wrong and I am the only one managing all that there is to take care of.  The pressure of that doesn’t seem so bad, yet here I am, needing a break.

In a way I feel guilty – my days are hardly ever as busy and fast-paced as my previous job, so I often feel like I’m not working hard enough.  However, just because I don’t have 9-10 hours filled with work and then a respite before it all starts again doesn’t mean that I’m working less hard.  As it turns out, the entire night and weekend concept no longer applies to me and any day, any time is work time.  Whether I’m home, out eating or shopping, or taking time off for social activities, work is just a few taps away (thank you phone apps).  So in that sense, I never get rest and I never get away from the looming work that follows me around.

This weekend, it finally caught up with me.  I’ve been so overwhelmed by the constant checklist of things to do for work that I just had to mentally check out for awhile.  So, for the past two days I hardly did anything for work and instead vegged out to a variety of random entertainment.  I buckled back up and got a bunch of work done today, but I’m still not ready to throw myself back into things again.  Perhaps I need to learn to set better boundaries so I periodic bouts of worklessness.  Harder said than done though!

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