My physical office is about a 12 hour drive from my home. As you might have guessed, I don’t go to the office every day. Even so, I need to work just about every day in order to keep the wheels of commerce spinning and to keep food on my table. That means that on most days, I work from home.
Let me describe my home work environment: I have a large La-Z-Boy rocker/recliner that is my Heaven on Earth. It feels like it was made just for me. There is nowhere else in the world where I am nearly as comfortable. The chair is getting up in the years (aren’t we all), but it is aging well and is still comfy and functional.
I’ve seen a lot of history, both personal and global, from the comfort of my rocker recliner. I rocked my son to sleep when he was an infant in this chair. I sat in the chair while watching countless hours of TV and movies. I spent most of my days and some of my nights in this chair while recovering from cancer. And for the past few years, I have conducted the majority of my business life from this chair.
On any given day (and many nights), I’m in my chair with my laptop balanced partially on the arm of the chair and partially on my right leg. The laptop gets so hot sometimes that I have an almost constant burn on the inside of my right knee. The skin is discolored from the heat. Even so, it’s a good position to work from.
In case you can’t tell, I love my rocker/recliner. However, I have to confess that I have not been as productive in my chair as I might have been in an office. I’ve known this for some time. Instinctively, I feel I could be more productive at a desk, preferably outside of my home.
I am very drawn to working from home. I like the idea of it. But I have to admit that working from home does not always lead to the highest level of productivity. Take today for instance. I needed to balance our family’s checkbook. In my previous life that involved going to a physical office, the checkbook would have had to wait until I got home at night. Not so in my home office. If I think of it and it’s available, I do it.
Likewise, I just spent 15-20 minutes talking to my son. I can do that because we are both home. Had I been at a physical office, I would have spent those 15-20 minutes being more productive (at least from a business standpoint).
Adam Baker has a video post up at Man vs Debt that speaks to this dilemma. He too is finding that sometimes, he needs to get away from the house in order to get anything done. His post is all about how changing your work environment can change your life.
As I mentioned earlier, I have had a feeling for some time that my productivity was suffering because I was working from home. However, up until this point, I have resisted the urge to get an office. I do believe that getting out of the house (at least every once in a while) can increase production. I also think that having a space set up specifically to do work can help increase production. However, until now, I just haven’t been able to justify it financially. I’m wondering now if I haven’t been short-sighted.
Baker’s video post made me bring to the front of my mind something that has been lurking somewhere is the dark recesses of my brain. I need to give this some serious thought. Do I need an office outside my home? Can I justify the expense? Good questions that deserve more thought.