Finding Boundaries When Working At Home

Happy New Year! With a month already gone in the New Year I’m forcing myself to take a hard look at what I’m doing and what I need to be doing. This is going to be a productive year even if it kills me and, let’s be honest, it just might!

Last year I wrote a post titled, “Work-At-Home Challenges & How to combat them.” The ironic thing is that in that post I mentioned dealing with the isolation of being a WAHM. But right now the theme seems to be dealing with people being home that you aren’t used to having around ALL DAY.

On January 3rd, my husband showed up to work only to find out he had been let go. Financial worries aside, it was bound to happen, he was quite miserable there. So now he’s home all day and it’s not terribly bad and yet I feel like I’m being suffocated because I’m not used to it. I’ve been working at home for over a decade so I’m not sure how people that know me still don’t grasp that I really am working and really do have deadlines to meet. That I can’t always talk all day, or attend Tupperware parties at the drop of a hat.

The stress was getting to me so I was forced to take a step back and it became clear to me that everyone around me needed a push back and I needed to create some boundaries. Here’s what has been working for me.

Setting boundaries with Family & Friends

I found a door mat that says “Go Away!” But I hardly think that will be enough to keep everyone from bothering me. So, I had to get creative.

I started by having a talk with the man. It went better than expected, so rather than waiting until I was so frustrated I blew up, we talked about it. Turns out he wasn’t comfortable with all the time he’s here. He’s job hunting but so far has been unsuccessful in finding anything. We agreed he would give me some space but then he had the idea that he might possibly help me with some work. I suppose this can be either a blessing or a curse but I figure it’s worth trying.  

But he wasn’t the only one I had to talk to, my mother-in-law still doesn’t understand that I am working and not playing house. I’m not sure she will ever get it but that’s why for now on I’m not making plans to do something because she just doesn’t understand when I can’t. Again, it’s all about boundaries.

The next talk was with the kids and how they needed to respect my work space and now that they are older they need to help out around here a little more.

Leave the house. I’ve decided that at least once a week I need to leave the house whether it’s to go to the bookstore to work or hey, I even have a key to my best friend’s house and she would never mind me going there.

Silence your cellphone so it’s not a distraction that lights up every five minutes with social media notifications, text messages and friends and family calling because, “Hey! You are the one that works from home and you’re always available!”

Lists, Lists & more Lists

It sounds daunting at first if you aren’t already doing so but make lists. I make one big weekly list and then I start with a morning list to keep me on track. Sometimes I even bribe myself with a small gift if I complete my weekly list.

How do you deal with daily issues and people while trying to run your business at home? Aside from drinking wine that is. I have that part covered.

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About Gabrielle Greene

Gabrielle Greene co-blogs on TipsOnHowToSaveMoney. Her friends often refer to her as “Gaby Gabs A lot,” especially if it has anything to do with freebies and saving money! As the mom of two teenage girls, being frugal is an absolute must. It tends to drive her husband crazy, but oddly he doesn’t complain when the coupons are for golfing.

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  1. […] time I wrote a post it was titled, “Finding Boundaries When Working At Home.” While that is still a work in progress, I am now focusing on my working environment. Oddly, […]