Welcome to the very first post on KBJWriting.com. I hope to share some of the lessons learned in my five plus years as a freelance writer by answering questions and addressing concerns of writers and those in need of quality writing. So without further adieu, the first post:
Working from home is a dream come true for many people, but it has its challenges. One of the most common is isolation from the outside world. I love the idea of being home all day, setting my own schedule, working well into the late night hours, and creating a perfect work environment, but some days I just need to leave the house.
Unfortunately, my desire to get out of the house does not always coincide with taking a day off. These are the days I head to the coffee shop up the street from my home to work for a few hours.
The coffee shop isn’t the only option. I have spent afternoons at the library and the occasional late morning at the park, though outdoors is not always an ideal writing location.
If you think working from home is losing a bit of its charm, head to a nearby location for a few hours of work. Of all the great things there are to say about working from home, there are five great reasons for packing up your computer and sampling a new location.
Change Your Location, Change Your Inspiration
Working outside your usual environment sparks your inspiration. Many writers are skeptical about this, but once they are out and about, they realize it makes a big difference. The process is similar to vacation. Different surroundings give you a different perspective.
It’s rare, but there are times when freelance writers meet new clients while working outside the home. A curious stranger might approach you about your work. You might overhear a conversation, opening the door for introductions. There are even times the owner of your favorite location needs your services.
The next time you are working in your local coffee shop, ask about their marketing plans, their social networking, or their desire to offer a newsletter to customers. And always make sure you have business cards on hand.
Excuse to Focus on Long-term Projects
When I work from home, I get locked into the daily grind. I have a handful of regular clients and they get my attention before anything else. Unfortunately, this puts most of my long-term plans on hold. Scheduling a work session outside of the home, specifically to work on long-term projects, forces me to focus on other work.
Just as writers tend to focus on the same tasks day after day when working from home, there is a tendency to behave more casually than you would if you were working outside the home. (This is a polite way of saying there are days freelance writers work all day in their pajamas.) Leaving your comfort zone reminds you how important it is to embrace professionalism.
Good for Emotional Health
Finally, working outside the home is good for your emotional health. Freelance writing from home is a lonely career. It’s worth it, but writers need to balance their solitude with social interaction. A little interaction with the barista or some subtle eavesdropping is usually enough to boost your mood, reminding you there is a world outside your front door.
Where do you like to work? Have you found any other benefits to writing outside of the home? If you enjoy working outside of the home, do you think it’s because your at-home space needs a little work? Wednesday I’ll talk about creating the perfect productive workspace. Thanks for reading!