Since I began working for myself, I have many people ask me what exactly is it that I do, how I started my own business, how I find clients, and I hear a lot of common misconceptions about being self-employed.
You get to stay home all day relaxing, watching TV, and eating bonbons. I can tell you first hand this is totally not the case. In fact, working from home can sometimes be more difficult than working outside the home.
How so, you ask?
Well, being that there are so very many distractions, there can be times when working from home proves difficult, for some. It is super important you have a space laid out for just – you guessed it – working. When I started working from home I ensured that I had a special space for me to work so as not to be distracted.
I have put a “do not disturb” sign on my front door on occasion as I do have a neighbor or two who love to come by and visit my chickens and want to chat. So, when I need to get high-level work done, and really need to focus, on goes the sign.
To be completely honest with you, in my nearly six years as a virtual entrepreneur, I have only twice taken time out of my workday to watch a tv program and relax. I do have the ability to remain completely focused while working, which tends to be when my daughter is at school. And if there are any bonbons to be had, they are at my desk – while I work.
Myth #2 – Pants Are Optional.
I suppose this depends on who you ask. For many, working from home means they can ease out of bed and slide into their desk. For me, however, I do have the school drop-off before I work, and I also take time to walk our dogs and feed the chickens, so PJ’s don’t really go well in those situations.
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Not only that, I tend to feel more put together and professional if I am dressed and ready for the day. I am ready to meet with a client online or run out to do errands if need be. It’s all about mindset. PJ’s say I am ready for hanging out on the couch reading a book or taking in a good movie.
Myth #3 – It’s lonely working from home
I completely disagree. While I am working from home, most of the time I am alone, but I am not lonely. First of all, it totally helps to be completely comfortable in your own skin, and not need to have company all the time to function. I love my own company and get along with myself quite well.
Having said that, I do make time to socialize, whether outside the home or while online. I walk my dogs in the morning and often run into a neighbor or two and chat, I see parents at the school when dropping off or picking up my daughter, and I make time to meet up with friends for coffee.
I also have a lot of online friends with who I chat with her and there throughout the day. To be honest, I would not work any other way. When I was in an office, I found it quite distracting and difficult to work. People would stop by my desk all day long and chat, and I would rather be in charge of when I want to socialize.
Myth # 4 – There is no job stability
When was the last time someone told you that your full-time gig was going to be there forever? I doubt it has ever happened! Now, when I was at the last job I was, in fact, told that I would have a job there pretty much forever if I wanted it, but I have to say I could not see myself being there forever.
Don’t get me wrong, the boss was pretty great, and the pay was not bad, but the commute, and not seeing my kid as much as I wanted to made me look for a change. Being self-employed means, you are in control of how many clients you have and when and where you work. If your niche is going south, you change things up and adapt. When you are the boss, you have a job forever.
Myth #5 – It’s too risky
So here comes the cliché – life is risky. You take a risk whenever you do anything but sit there. You go for a drive, you take a risk. You walk across the street, you take a risk. There is nothing in life guaranteed and I would rather look back and think I am glad that I took the risk than to sit there and wish I had.
I am loving my life. I have freedom and flexibility that I never had before. And I can guarantee my current “job” is way less risky than anyone who goes to the 9-5 grind daily. Businesses close, people get fired or laid off. Might I lose a client? Sure. But then guess what? I replace them with another one.
What are the myths you have heard of when it comes to being self-employed? Not sure if you are ready for taking a “risk”? Want to know more about being a virtual entrepreneur?
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