Working from home. Is it as good as it seems?

A lot of people want to work from home.
It can be a euphemism for something of a day off, pottering round the house in your slippers, with no one over your shoulder watching your internet activity.
Perhaps you answer a few emails, and scribble some notes for a presentation you’ll be making shortly.
But you do it on the sofa with a cup of coffee and daytime TV for company. And suddenly you’re quite caught up in ‘Escape to the country.’
So what are the pros and cons of working from home?
The main pro has to be no commute – particularly if you live anywhere near the Southern Rail network.
You’re also free of office politics, and invasive/stupid/irritating/heartless management.
But this may also be a downside. You’re away from office politics but you’re also away from office camaraderie – no shared jokes by the coffee machine.
And in truth, you’re management may actually serve you well, keeping you encouraged and focused.
Because working from home may expose a lack of discipline, if it’s there in you. It’s a good deal easier to get distracted away from the office. You notice the orchid needs re-potting…
Though the flip side to this is, without all the office ‘stuff’ going on around you, you may be able to get a lot more done.
It depends rather on your personality.
‘Going to work’ can also help with boundaries. A half-hour journey home can help you to let go of the day. The self-employed can find it difficult to end the day, because they don’t physically leave work. And there’s always something more to do.
There may also be problems if there’s family around. If you’re at home – and however many times you explain that you’re ‘working’ – you may be expected to take your part in the necessary chores. (Which are a full time job in themselves.)
On this front, people often find returning to the office something of a break.
And relationships? If your partner is also around during the day, there could be the difficulty of, well, simply seeing too much of each other.
I was talking to a woman who is quite desperate now her husband has taken early retirement.
‘He completely invades my space,’ she said.
As the old adage goes, ‘Marriage is for life, but not for lunch.’