I would really like to be able to work from home. I actually don’t mean that in a “I would really like to spend my days surfing Tijuana donkey porn with impunity” way, although clearly that would be nice, especially if you want to search up some of the more hardcore stuff that involves ping-pong balls because wow, talk about hard to explain to your unexpected office guest (“Oh, just doing some research on . . . expulsive physics”), and I realize there would be a lot of downsides to not working in an office. The tendency to allow certain personal ablutions to slide in a horrific manner and developing the shifty, gimlet-eyed gaze of the cave-dwelling hermit are just a couple that come to mind.

I love my routine of getting ready for work and being able to leave my house behind — transitioning, somewhat, out of one aspect of my life and into another. I like being around other adults a few days each week, none of whom require me to spoon puréed banana into their complaining mouths or explain for the hundred billionth time that big boys poop on the potty, not in their Thomas the Tank Engine underwear. I like my coworkers, my office, our building, the chef-prepared lunches and dinners, my hardware budget that allows me to occasionally buy a brand-new computer for home use, the fact that my company is so incredibly flexible.

I don’t, however, like my commute. I don’t like being so far away from daycare during the day, and knowing when I leave I’ve got an hour or more to fight my way home. I don’t like the hectic mornings and dinnertimes that always leave us scrambling and unable to relax with the kids. I don’t like feeling like the house is always a wreck, like between work and being with the kids and exercise and freelance projects I have no energy whatsoever for tackling the chaos in our home.

It’s also true that I often feel very . . . adrift at my office job. I think it’s a combination of me only being there part-time and the way my department is currently set up, but I feel like no one really expects much of anything from me these days. My role is nebulous: sometimes I work on this, sometimes I work on that, but sometimes other people do those things too and nothing is particularly within my own bailiwick anymore. It seems to me that if I were able to continue working for my company from home my role by necessity would have to be defined further, there would have to be concrete deliverables and a way to assess my performance other than “Yeah, I think she was here today. Or was this her day off? Meh, I forget.”

I’m pretty sure I could be about a thousand times more productive working remotely with laptop in hand, either from the ass-dent in my sofa or the local Starbucks. Eliminate my long commute and the need to be semi-presentable each morning, and I’d actually start work about two hours earlier. Give me free rein to complete a series of tasks and get rid of the endless time-wasting bullshit sessions? Who knows how much more I’d get done.

So here’s my dream for 2009: freelance from home. For Workplace, presumably on a contractual basis instead of the employment status I have now, for as many clients as I can sanely take on (edited to clarify: while keeping the kids in daycare part time — holy god, there’s no way I would even want to try and do it otherwise). Meet the new challenges that lifestyle change would bring, take better care of our home and family life.

How about you? What are your career ambitions for the next year or so?

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FB
FB
14 years ago

I want to get out of my current crappy-paying first “real” job out of college and find a job where 1) I am paid enough money to move out of my parents’ house since I’ve been squatting for almost two years (FAIL) and 2) the credit for my brilliant ideas goes to me instead of the thieving co-workers in my current office. In 2009 I want to rediscover the joy of working my ass off in a job I love.

sooboo
14 years ago

Man, I hear ya. I work from home and I totally love it. My one complaint is that I can get distracted by all the little things that need to get done and it cuts into work time. I have to work to stay focussed. Goals for the next year include making more money, get the work out there in a bigger way (I’m an artist), do some public commissions, have a show in NY and apply for some grant money. For the record, I shower and I do get dressed in clean clothes every day. Otherwise it makes me feel weird.

Pete
Pete
14 years ago

Finish and sell my home software project.

Melanie
Melanie
14 years ago

I want to graduate aesthetics school (one more month!!) to become a real esthetician and spend at least the next five years preforming facials, removing hair and perhaps even working for a dermatologist. I just want to get started on this career path.

Regardless, spa certificates for you where ever I land, if you’d have them. (You really deserve it!)

Kirsten
14 years ago

Interesting that you should mention this – my career ambition is to manage working from home more efficiently and successfully. When I thought about working from home originally, I had all these ideals about how fabulously clean my house would be because of course I’d be HERE to stay on top of it all – and yet, I struggle ALOT with trying to figure out how to juggle a 5 month old, and a full time job AND staying on top of all the finances and house stuff. Let’s just say the clean house thing is the first to go because any extra time I have, I’m catching up on work. Sounds crazy to some people I know – but this working from home stuff is harder then it seems. PLUS, you have to deal with the husband who thinks you’re in your pj’s and sitting on the couch watching tv all day. I think he forgets that I actually do WORK.
Listen to me ramble, I could go on and on…but I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be with my kid AND keep a decent income, so there’s that :)

Meg
Meg
14 years ago

I’m going to volunteer my ass off until I get hired as a zookeeper. Hopefully sooner than later!

Amy
Amy
14 years ago

My goal for 2009 is to better juggle being a mom, a full time employee (of a great company with a not so great management team) and not be a total bitch to my kids and husband. Ok, so I’m not a bitch all the time, but I have my moments. I think working from home would be fabulous and I agree with you…..I think I would be so much more productive just doing my job without all of the office politics. I might as well be in the sandbox with my kids : )

Sara
Sara
14 years ago

eff the career ambitions. career is ok. now we’re trying for a kid. shit, it’s scarier when i write it out.

Lesley
Lesley
14 years ago

I’ve worked from home for the past two years and love it. No more commutes (the part I hated the most) and extremely reduced patronage of the coffee houses and restaurants is saving me money. Beyond that I appreciate being able to make my own coffee, snacks and lunch. In my own kitchen. I prefer going for walks in my neighbourhood which is much prettier than the one the office is in. And last but not least, I get to use my own bathroom. This is huge for reasons I won’t go into that concern certain colleagues.

At noon I can do a workout or a yoga session and lie on the carpet to stretch sore muscles as I need to. (A back and neck injury is the reason I was set up to work at home.)

When I turn off the computer at the end of the day I’m already home. And yes, I’m able to leave it behind.

I don’t have kids so I’m not sure how it would be for someone who does but if they are in daycare, that would solve the problem of constant interruptions (hope I don’t catch hell for saying that).

I get way more work done at home than I ever did at the office because I have fewer interruptions.

If I want or need the office, a cube is still reserved for me, but it’s hugely pleasant having the option of working remotely.

Mama Ritchie
14 years ago

I would write all the pros and cons about my work at home gig but I just finished the European clip and it’s 12:39 am. My house is a pit, I can’t remember if I brushed my teeth today, and I’m pretty sure I can smell myself. I went outside once today, in the same clothes I slept in, to walk the dog. Of course, I was home working when my son said to me, “Wow wow! Nice glasses!” And I get wet sloppy kisses all day long – from all of my boys, the dog included. So there’s that. I’m passing out now, in the same clothes I wore to bed last night. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll carve out the time to shower so I don’t offend the dog.

nic
nic
14 years ago

My career ambitions for the next year? to not kill myself while working two jobs and going to grad school part time at night? Sadly, that’s all i’ve got.

but when i’m done with my mba, I’d love to just pick up, move to Vegas, and get a job in Financial Analysis at one of the big casinos.

Kristy Hall
14 years ago

My general approach to all things career is to just keep re-evaluating and not to be afriad to change it up if it’s not working. So, in 2009, I actually have two pretty broad goals:

1) Complete my transition from full-time director for a great company to part-time “individual contributor” for the same great company (working for my replacement!!).

Sure, this could be a real nightmare for all involved but crossing my fingers that it’s worth the risk to be home a few days a week with my son while also keeping my foot in the door. My commute from NJ to Lower Manhattan is a ball buster so I guess reducing the time spent on the train is like a career goal.

2) Work very hard to develop a business idea that has been brewing for several years. I only recently had the epiphany that no one is going to start this thing for me and it’s okay to try something and move on if it doesn’t work! (It only took 15 years of corporate slave labor to teach me this little pearl of wisdom!)

(www.twoandahalftravelers.com).

JMH
JMH
14 years ago

I love my job…BUT I am a teacher and I have a whopping 10 minute commute. Also, my daughter attends the school where I work and my son will join us next year when he is in kindergarten. So, I am very lucky and in a unique situation. I always have these grand ideas each summer (when I don’t work) that my house will be spotless! Scrapbooks completed! Homecooked meals every day! But, realistically, it is HARD to do all of that with 2 kids at home. And, sometimes I get a day to work at home (paperwork to do) and I never get much accomplished. I feel guilty not doing the laundry, mopping the floors, etc. Ususally on those days, I choose to go to a coffe house or a libray to work AND I make sure my kids are not a home. So, for me, working at home is not an option. However, I wish you all the best to make your situation the best for you :) Good luck!

thejunebug
thejunebug
14 years ago

1) Get promoted. My workplace has a policy that you have to be “doing” a new job for 6 months before they can promote you to the new position, and I have been doing my new job for TWO YEARS. There was only room in the budget for one double promotion, and I was supposed to get 2 (for a total of four hops up the ladder). So I’m waiting for the 2nd one and hopefully it will happen this year. I’m tired of not getting paid to do my job! I’m losing out on about $10k/yr.

2) Move to dayshift. After 4 years of working the nightshift, I’m done. Really done. I want to move to dayshift and I’m going to actively pursue every single option available to do so until I get there. I WANT A BABY, and I cannot have one while I am nightshift. :P

3) Take classes. Specifically looking at a professional program through Rutgers in Jan 09, also possibly thinking of going back to ‘real’ school in fall of 2009. We’ll see.

kdiddy
14 years ago

my job pays my grad school tuition, so I have to stick with it until spring 2009. but I, too, want to work from home. however, I’m slowly breaking into a new field (sorta) and I realize that I probably won’t be able just plop my butt at the desk in my dining room and be like, “I’ll just watch the money pile up!” but I’ll be a professional/technical writer and I like to think that I’ll be in a position to telecommute in a few years.

Casey
14 years ago

Working from home is great, but it can also slowly drain the life out of you. I did it for a year (when my first was born) and it was more stressful than actually being at the office. It’s frustrating when you need something from someone right away and you can’t just walk over to their office, you have to wait for them to answer the phone or email.

When I worked from home, I tried too hard to balance the time. I felt bad if I stuck the kid in the exersaucer to get work done and I felt bad if I was playing with the kid when there was work to do.

If you can do it without the kids there, great. It’s nice to not have to change out of your boxers and t-shirt all day.

Samantha jo campen
14 years ago

In a perfect world I wouldn’t have to work. So there’s that dream. But assuming I will still have to in ’09 I’d like to work for a company with kick ass benefits, making $20K more without a long commute. Inside sales or marketing, since that’s pretty much what I do now, but if it were relating to helping children or animals in some way that would be even better. Oh, and some freelance gigs too if that’s not too large an order! :-)

stephanie parnell
14 years ago

I already work from home and make decent (for a 24 year old with no degree…) money, so I don’t know why on earth I want to pursue anything else, but I do. So I am going to begin school in the Spring, get my associates so that I can start volunteering and getting experience in my field (social work, counseling, case management, etc.) and then once I have enough experience to get an entry level position, I’ll go back to school and get my bachelors. The beautiful thing about my job now is that, if you go to school for a field that they have up and running, they will pay for it. And since they pay for it counting on being able to use you one day, I will basically already be able to have a job without much effort. :)

Joanne
14 years ago

I really hope that works out for you, it sounds smart. I think it’s also smart to leave your house a little bit, too, but that’s coming from a SAHM who does a little too much S’ing at H.

Don’t laugh but I am hoping to get a few more part time jobs after January. In January, my daughter will be one and will be finished with the total PITA that is nursing a baby who will not take a bottle. So I’m hoping to maybe get a bartending/waitressing job one or two nights a week when my husband can put them both to bed. And I’d like to get a few more houses to clean. I’d like to have more money than I do, just money of my own and also I’d like some feeling of accomplishment. With both waitressing and housecleaning, I feel there is a real set to do list from which I can check off items. This helps me sleep better.

Then the next January, once she’s two and my son is four, maybe I’ll get her in a mom’s day out type situation and, unless I have another kid by then (LORD help me!), I could possibly ever be alone in my house. Oh, the napping I would do! :)

Jeanette
14 years ago

I hope to be able to semi-retire and only work 20 hours a week. I can still receive full benefits and only have to work 2-3 days a week. It’s actually financially possible right now, but I have certain obligations here at work for a while yet.

ELC
ELC
14 years ago

It does sound like you have the perfect job to do from home, although it always looked like you had the perfect office to go into as well. While working from home takes a lot of self-discipline, we know you’ve got plenty of that!

I work for myself from home as a Kitchen Designer, and things have slowed down so much that I think we are going to have to cancel daycare, which basically means I’ll be doomed for 2009, as least career-wise. Which is ironic, because my one goal would be to make a lot more money.

Jen
Jen
14 years ago

I will be graduating from law school and taking the Bar exam in July 2009, so my career goal is to pass the test so that I may begin a career, already. I’m 32, single, and so ready to be out of college. More than career goals, I’m wondering how I will manage to find, create, build and manage a family outside of being a lawyer. Should be interesting!

Also, I have a brother and sister-in-law who have both chosen to work from home, and they love it. They don’t have any small kids, though, which makes it easier for them to focus their attention, each in their own little home offices.

I send you courage and fortitude in making the change!

Claire
14 years ago

I used to really want to teach high school until Florida budget cuts made that dream a shattered reality of crushing proportions. So now, my main goal is to stick with the measly paying job I have but tack on some online instruction. There’s a lot of online universities for which my masters qualifies me. It’ll make my nights a little busier but the extra cash will make weekends more bearable.

Good luck with your work from home goal!

Jenny
14 years ago

Immediate goal: find more work to do! My position is brand new in my company, and the first 6 months I was pretty busy with projects & research, but now it’s starting to slow a little and I’m starting to get a little bored with it.
Long term goals: once my hubby is done with his degree, it’s HIS turn to be the breadwinner! At that point it’ll all depend on where he finds a job, but if we can get back out to Seattle (we’re in Toledo, Ohio right now… YUCK) that would be my dream.

Jan
Jan
14 years ago

This is actually very real for me because I have a lot of changes to look forward to in the next year. I am retiring in the spring after twenty years of being a school librarian and am young enough (56 is looking younger and younger to me)to really accomplish what I would like to do – write more. I have a dream of doing a lot of freelance writing (already doing some), expanding my two blogs (making one pay, hopefully) and creating a travel blog which would also make money. We’ll see. I am excited about it all.

eve
eve
14 years ago

I feel adrift in my job, and I’m here full-time. It’s a great job with a great company, but my heart’s not in it. So, I’m just about to start my second CFP (certified financial planner) course, although the idea of actually advising people about their finances kind of terrifies me. What if I’m wrong? I’m also hoping to reduce my hours slightly when my son starts kindergarten next fall so I can be there to pick him up right when school lets out.

Erin
14 years ago

I relate to everything you said here. I would love but also fear the ability to work from home. I’m afraid I don’t trust myself enough to do a good job at it.

My career ambitions are to, um. Hmmm. You know, I need to GET some career ambitions. I guess I’ve been in survival mode for so long, I’ve forgetten to have a long-term picture in my head of where I’m going.

Stephanie
14 years ago

I have grand dreams of opening my own bakery. So a month or so ago I sat in Panera, wrote down a list of goals. I broke them down into 3 and 6 month increments for almost three years. The hardest part is that my husband is getting his PhD right now, so it kind of slides to the back burner. But, I am doing what I can now. I just started my food blog a bit ago. I am posting as a food contributor to Blissfully Domestic and I keep plugging away at that list.

Christina
14 years ago

Hm, I think there is “something in the water.” I have been in this place all week and your blog is the 2nd today to talk about this.
I dont know what I want or need right now. My boy is about to turn 1 and Im home, and I am bored. Is this another phase or something to deal with? I thought we would be close to trying for #2 and I’m not ready, so now what? I need to decide. I need more than crawling after, picking up cheerios, wiping ass, peek-a-boo- but do I have the pair to admit it? That this life I was waiting for and wanted so badly is making me crazy.
Thanks for asking me to think about it.

EB
EB
14 years ago

I work from home on a contractual basis and it rocks. My goal for the next year is to start my own business. I want to keep my current job and put my business idea into practice on a part time basis, hopefully having it become a huge success to where I can eventually do it full time.

All Adither
14 years ago

To get my novel published by a major house. Or die trying.

JennB
JennB
14 years ago

Bring my money-cow invention to life… although I’m in pretty much the same boat you are with time and work and kids and commutes, etc, that I just don’t see where I’ll find any kind of time to put toward development. Oh well.

trackback

[…] busy. Me too. September 11, 2008 Posted by allstarme in Blogging goodness, contemplation. trackback Hits have remained about the same but commenting is at a lull. I know we’re all pretty busyand I myself go through phases of feeling like and absolutely not wanting to comment AT ALL. Though I read many good posts in a day from some of my most favorite sites, I just don’t express an opinion. I try to keep up because I know that commenting helps bring readers to my site, which – I hope – makes some kind of difference in this realm of the blogosphere. […]

Thursday
14 years ago

Pass the horticulure exam I’m due to take next June which I’ve just started studying for and be in a part-time, three day a week ‘proper’, office-based job which requires a certain amount of making myself look presentable. This is in comparison to the current state of affairs whereby I airily state I do freelance work within the book publishing industry which I occasionally cast my eye over in between drinking tea, cruising Ebay, blogs and getting dirt under my fingernails in the garden and looking like I was dragged through a hedge backwards.

Kelsey
14 years ago

If I could create a world in which the consequences only applied to me and did not negatively impact the lives of others I would wish for the part time professional librarian to retire from her job at the school where I used to teach. I would start that part time job next fall, when my daughter would be old enough to start attending the school. My mother-in-law would also be thrilled to watch our littlest one while I worked my part time job. And I would flawlessly manage to run the house and be successful at work. Or at least manage it without totally losing my mind.

Felicia
Felicia
14 years ago

Promote my childbirth classes… get the word out there more. If I can fill each class then I might be able to think about giving up my second job as an editor (work from home) which I HATE. Not because I hate the work, but because I get no love from the company or the boss. Including turning down the 3% inflation raise I asked for, after I’ve been working for them for 1.5 years and got a 100% outstanding performance review. AAARGH.

I may have to quit it anyway when baby #2 arrives, but we’ll see.

jonniker
14 years ago

I work from home freelance. I’m busy as shit, especially now that I’m sick most of the time and can’t focus the way I used to, but I mostly enjoy it. I will say that I save a TON of money, because I don’t eat out for lunch anymore, and I’m not spending $6 a day on lattes.

However. I miss people. I hate conference calls, and just once, I’d like to attend a meeting in person, in a cute outfit and get it done in half the time that a conference call takes. I also miss the structure of a real job — of a defined start and end time, and of a day that doesn’t feel that my laptop is surgically attached to my pelvis.

In 2009, I want to take more time to work on my personal writing projects, figure out how to accurately juggle freelancing with a baby, take a self-imposed maternity leave and get used to my new life. Career, in all of that, is sort of last, because at the beginning of ’09, I’m getting dealt a totally different hand. I’ll probably have a better answer to this question in ’10.

Aunt Linda
14 years ago

I would like to have the courage to actually retire instead of talk about it for year on end. I would also like to publish this damn book that keeps me from ever blogging again. And before you consider working at home, you might want to consider the size of your Auntie’s ass.

SART
14 years ago

Sadly, I don’t know what I want. I’ll be 30 next year and hopefully pregnant with our second child. I work in a very specialized field, litigation technology, and I know that I could find a decent job working from home. But part of what I love about my career is traveling to do trials, going to conferences and whatnot. If I worked from home, I’d be losing a lot of that part of my job, and that makes me hesitate. Factor in that we live in a small city in South Carolina, and that I’m paid well enough that I’ve priced myself out of the market, and well… it doesn’t seem like I have much of a choice. I’d LOVE to start my own consulting business but I can’t see doing that for at least 3-5 more years and that will be totally dependent on the economy. So my 2009 goals are to stay where I am and make the best of what I have.

Gaby
14 years ago

Oh, Linda, what a timely topic. Just last night, I was in tears on my couch because I just hate my job so much. It’s my first job out of grad school (actually, the same degree kdiddy’s working towards–hello, fellow mapw!), and yes, I’m happy to have the job and the benefits in today’s economy but damn, it’s sucking my will to live. I thought I could deal with the world of IT, I’m dorky in my own right, but I work with people that are truly anti-social, introverted individuals, and I am a “people person”(bleh, I hate that phrase). I sit in my office for 8 hours a day, trying to muster the energy to do my work, and I rarely even *speak* to anyone! I get home completely exhausted by the lack of social interaction and mental stimulation, and my husband wonders what he can do to make me happy. Ugh. Sucks.

It’s crazy–I’m 25, and I feel like I’ve totally settled for my first job, and even though I’m completely unhappy here, I’m terrified to jump into something new. sigh.

Lately, I’ve been trying to figure out how to dive into the world of freelancing
(editing and copy writing or simply creating content) because I’d like more autonomy, but I really don’t know how/where to start. Any suggestions? Anyone? Please.

E!
E!
14 years ago

I work in an office where I answer the phone and input data full time as I slowly creep towards graduation. My plans for the next year involve getting OUT of the office and finally doing what my degree calls for!!

Leticia
Leticia
14 years ago

Funny. I JUST started working from home one day a week and yesterday was my first day. It felt so GOOD to not have to get up and leave. I COULD work earlier and later and still get a load of laundry in during the middle.

I’m not yet sure about next year. Hubby just started his own business and I didn’t realize how much of a toll it would take on me (selfish much?). Now in addition to my job, and cooking and cleaning, and teh whole routine thing with the 18 month and 4 year old, I have invoicing and deposit drops and all that with his business. Its really, really stressful and I need to carve out time for me. I hope next year all that will calm down some and we’ll be into a groove.

Jessa
Jessa
14 years ago

I would give anything to be able to work from home, as I presently drive about 1 hour each way to and from work and it’s really wearing on me. There are a few members of our team that have the privilege to work from home but unfortunately they haven’t extended that to everyone. I’ll admit it has caused a lot of resentment. Especially when they tell you they are working in their pajamas…

Alex
Alex
14 years ago

To get one. A career, that is.

whoorl
14 years ago

I want to continue freelance writing from home, but with the help of a nanny one day a week because hoo boy, my deadlines AND taking care of Wito 24/7 is taking a major toll on my sanity.

Ashleas
Ashleas
14 years ago

Lets see.. Career Goals for 2009.

Get a Job.

Yup. That’s about it. You see, I’m a Senior Digital Arts Student who hasn’t even had her first show yet. *crickets* Who wants to be an illustrator. *crickets* Who doesn’t like to model or animate. *crickets*

Yeah. I’m gonna have fun with this..

AndreAnna
14 years ago

I am lucky enough that I do work from home three days a week and have the enjoyment of going into the office in real clothes (With Button! And zippers!) and talk to other adults, have someone make ME lunch two days a week. I also have a horrid commute, over 53 miles, but I try and view that as a way to pump myself up for the day or decompress after it.

Working from home on a continual basis has it’s drawbacks though. You’re never done. You can never walk out of your office and away for the day. Something always needs to be done. Someone always needs something of you.

I wouldn’t trade it for anything because I get to be home for my kids or close to their dayhome, but it’s rough being pulled in 97 different directions at once. Whereas in the office, I’m just the one me.

emily
emily
14 years ago

Interesting timing for this question. This has been at the forefront of my mind for several months now. I want the same. To be able to keep my current job that I have worked very hard at to build rapport with over 1,000 stakeholders and get the Program to a point where it effectively and efficiently runs, but do it from home (I have a hellish commute also). I too would be more productive, I know it. However, I work for the government, and although we are in a “crisis” at the moment because over half of state employees in my state will retire in the next 5-10 years and our governor is seeking ideas to attract and keep younger employees, telecommuting is not an option. WTF? Unfortunately I have sort of a niche position in my field and there are not other positions similar to this in the whole damn state. I am now battling starting some sort of new business from my home and leaping into unstableness or completely changing careers. My goal is to have this figured out by the time I am done with maternity leave in February 2009. Sorry for the novel…

Amy
Amy
14 years ago

I live on a mini-farm, and if I could find a way to actually make a living sitting on my ass on the farm, or doing the putzy little things I do there with the cows, and chickens, I totally would.

That, however, is unlikely. Very unlikely.

So…having just moved into the country five months ago, and still commuting 110 miles a day back to my software job in Gig Harbor (I must be insane)…I’d love to find work closer to home – say, Olympia – doing something that helps me feel like I’m contributing to my community, rather than making money for someone else.

Her Ladyship
14 years ago

I’d like to finish my book and start a new one.

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