some time I believed the amount of work I accomplished each day
was directly related to my total morning coffee intake. Coffee’s
my most important work tool. To test my theory, I stopped drinking
coffee. For the first few days, my theory was proven true. (It is
hard to work when you fall asleep at your computer.) But then I
adjusted and stayed up later to get my once-morning work done later
at night. I finally realized I get most of my best work done between
6 a.m. and noon. The same wasn’t holding true for my new 6 p.m.
to midnight segment. So, this morning I went back to what worked,
brewed a fresh pot of coffee and here I am. Tada!
I was faced with the question, “How do I fall asleep earlier when
I’ve gotten used to staying up late each night?” The answer? Exercise.
If your body wants to stay up and you want to rest, tire your body
out: exercise for 15 minutes to relieve stress and take your mind
off sleeping. Walk wonder-dog or swim a few laps in your tub. Try
a few push-ups or search for spare change under the couch. Exercise
can also promote healthy eating and provide energy.
you’ll need that energy. How do you find time to work out, eat well,
kick butt at work, raise a family, not drink too much coffee, and
take care of your living space? Some of us are lucky enough to work
from home at least part of the time: no commute, no office politics,
no interruptions, one big weekend. Right? Well, speaking from experience,
it sounds much better than the reality even if you are wired to
the gills. Three mail accounts (which means email constantly pouring
in), cell phone, fax, office phone, high speed Internet, multiple
computers present a very different atmosphere from actual human
co-workers. The isolation can drive you crazy. And those 15 annoying
calls I receive per day from people trying to sell me something?
None provides real human contact no matter how hard they try. In
an office environment, the interaction we receive from our co-workers
is extremely important for morale and productivity. Even if co-workers
are two cubes away, at least you know they are there. A dog is hardly
a substitute for a co-worker, and mine whines even more.
do I do to fill the void? I needed more than just exercise and eating
right. I joined with some home-workers in my area and we formed
a small group that meets once a week to discuss projects, goals,
and problems related to our work-at-home status. This helps but
is still no substitute for a small cube on the fourth floor exactly
42 steps from the coffee machine.
things to think about before you move back home to work.
Roberts, a triathlete, cyclist, and avid roller-blader has been
the Webmaster of LiNE Zine since its inception—most of the time
from his home—or the park. Send your comments and suggestions to