So today’s blog post is sort of multipurpose – it’s a personal confession, a bit of a reminder to everyone, and there might be a little slap in the face on the side.
We’ve all talked about how important it is to have a support network of people that support your decision to work from home. That’s extremely true, and it certainly makes life a lot easier. Easier – not easy.
So I’ll get to the confession part first so that you have a little background. Lately, I haven’t been feeling so well. I’m not sick or dying of some horrible disease, I’m just not feeling the best. I’ve long dealt with things like anxiety, depression, insomnia and nightmares.
I don’t know what causes these things to happen, I just know that they make me feel like complete and total crap. I’ll be honest, it’s one of the reasons that I first started working from home, to make it easier to deal with days and weeks where just getting out of bed was a long and difficult struggle. Over the years I’ve found out that many of my work at home colleagues have done the same thing and for similar reasons …. essentially making it so that when they aren’t feeling well they don’t have to call off sick or have someone asking them 20 questions about why they’re not in the office today.
It’s a huge relief in a lot of ways not having to call off sick or try to save sick days. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy to work from home. It’s still not easy. It’s often actually more difficult. People think that because you work from home you can work whenever and wherever, even if you’re sick. And the feeling is contagious, because we tend to think that we should be working even when we’re not feeling our best and we push through and carry on thinking that’s the best thing to do, or it’s what we should do, or some other thing that we tell ourselves…
And all of that somehow leads us to forget to take care of ourselves. There’s no boss looking over our shoulder saying, “Hey, you need to go home and get some rest,” so we push through the day and we put too much stress on ourselves, making us sick, making us feel like crap, and we pile it on until finally our body physically starts to reject what we’re doing and we feel sick.
Sometimes a project or a goal requires pushing through the rough water, I totally get that. Sometimes the electric bill needs to get paid so your family will have heat in the winter and you work extra hard to make a little extra money to take care of that, I totally get that too. The problem starts to occur when everything becomes a rush, everything becomes urgent, everything becomes “just one more thing,” and we let ourselves take on too much and tell ourselves that it will all work itself out later.
I want you to stop for a moment, evaluate your situation, evaluate your to-do list, evaluate yourself and your health, and I want you to take some time for you. Take care of yourself. Have a cup of tea, chat with a friend, watch a movie with your kids, get away from the computer, go do stuff. While you’re at it, schedule your annual doctor’s check up – and I mean that, as women we tend to forget our own healthcare because we’re so busy trying to take care of other people.
What did we learn today?
Working from home is not easy, it’s hard.
We push ourselves too hard sometimes and our bodies can only take so much stress.
We need to take care of ourselves.