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“I work from home.”  Most people really like the sound of that, but after living the “dream” for over 10 years, I can tell you that there is definitely a dark side.  Most people probably picture me drinking wine, smoking dope and cheerfully splattering paint around my studio.  I might be listening to some classic rock while I work and taking frequent naps as desired.  They might assume I only work a few hours here and there and that I can go on vacation anytime I want to and just leave it all behind.  I am an artist, so people are always nice to me too.

The fantasy above could not be farther from the truth.  The fact is that this “working from home” career has been the absolute most challenging and stressful job I have ever had.  There are things about it that I absolutely love and wouldn’t trade for any other position.  Creating is my passion and if I could afford a team of employees, that is all I would do most of the time!  Let me break down my experience:

Pro:  I get to set my own hours.  Con:  I work all of the time.

Pro:  I can work in my jammies if I like.  Con:  All my clothes look like Ernie the paint man’s rejects.

Pro:  I get to do what I love…paint and create.  Con:  I also have to do everything else including but not limited to cleaning, purchasing, marketing, customer service, technical support, etc.

Pro:  I have no pesky coworkers mucking up my productivity or causing drama. Cons:  It is very lonely and I have no one to talk to all day.

Pro:  Since I do it all, I can always make sure everything gets done to the highest of standards. Con:  When things go wrong, there is no one to blame but myself.

Pro:  I can run to the store, do a load of laundry, exercise the dogs, fix meals, etc. during the day.  Con:  The family often expects me to do all of those things on top of my demanding job because I am “home”.

Pro:  There is no bad hair day.  Con:  Without the critical eye of female coworkers 5 days a week, I often go way too long for haircuts and pedicures often scrambling at the last minute when invited to a dinner party.

Pro:  I have running water.  Con:  My job is a very MESSY job!

Pro:  When a lot of work comes in I can make a lot of money in a short period of time.  Con: I cannot delegate or share my load so at times I get overworked and exhausted.  Also, there can be long dry spells without any work (i.e. cash flow)

Pro:  I do not have to drive, fight traffic and worry about being late.  Con:  There is no con here!

Pro:  I have been able to always be home for my daughter after school, every single day of her school life.  Con:  Again, there is no con here and ALL of the cons above are worth having been able to do this for my girl. 🙂