The Challenges and Gifts of a Home-Based Business

Spiritual Business Success With Rev. Dr. Ahriana Platten

I ran a home-based business long before Covid made it cool.

My kids were little, and I needed the flexibility to drop them off, pick them up, and attend school events, so I opened an ad agency from what would have otherwise been my formal living room. For more than twenty years, I officed at home, even bringing in extra desks for employees who worked side-by-side with me.

To say it can be challenging is an understatement – but it’s also remarkably convenient as long as you can stay focused on your work rather than the laundry waiting in the dryer to be folded.

One of the most significant advantages of running a business from home is flexibility. Imagine managing your daily tasks around your personal schedule. Need to take a break for a yoga session? You are the boss, and your office is just a room away. This flexibility allows you to create work-life balance that suits your personal and family needs, making it possible to juggle multiple roles without stepping out of your slippers!

However, you’ll need to treat your business like a business.

With great flexibility comes the challenge of setting boundaries. When your home is your office, the lines between personal life and work can blur. It's easy to find yourself checking emails during family movie night or drafting proposals during dinner. And “home is where the heart is” -- but it’s also where the distractions are. From laundry piling up to the dishes in the sink, it's easy to get sidetracked. Not to mention, if you have kids or pets, expect the unexpected. Managing these distractions requires a good dose of discipline and a well-structured daily planner. Prioritize tasks and maybe even implement a system—like the Pomodoro Technique (—to keep you on track.

Operating from home cuts down on many costs associated with traditional business venues. There’s no lease to sign, limited office furniture to buy, and your commute is as short as the walk to your desk. This reduction in overhead allows you to allocate funds to other areas like marketing, product development, professional support people, or even a little training to sharpen your entrepreneurial skills.

You’ll need to keep in mind that working from home means you might miss the camaraderie and networking opportunities that come with a bustling office environment. Professional isolation can be a real challenge, leading to feelings of loneliness and disconnectedness. Combat this by reaching out to virtual networks, participating in online forums, or joining local business groups. Remember, networking is vital, even from a distance.

One of the things I love most is that my workspace can be as unique as my business. Love plants? Turn your office into a botanical garden. Adore bright colors? Paint your walls in hues that inspire creativity. In a home office, you’re free to design a space that truly reflects your personality and enhances your productivity. This customization is not just fun; it’s a boost to your mental well-being and business efficiency.

Running a home-based business is a unique blend of challenges and gifts. It requires adaptability, discipline, and a sprinkle of creativity. But the rewards—flexibility, reduced costs, and a personalized workspace—can make this entrepreneurial journey deeply fulfilling.

Remember, every home-based business owner's path is different. Embrace your unique journey with all its ups and downs. After all, it's not just about building a business; it's about crafting a lifestyle that brings joy and fulfillment. Keep it light, keep it fun, and keep it uniquely yours.

Happy entrepreneuring!

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