Thursday, January 8, 2009

Finding Peace

Today I am feeling aggravated - and it is 6:30 in the morning.

Not a great start.

It all comes from checking email for work. I shouldn't do that anymore.

Except, I have to. For now. But I am slowly unwinding from that obligation - because yes, it does feel like an obligation. I used to love my job. I loved my job when I worked in an office. When I had co-workers, and the buzz of energy, and a hot pot of coffee, and multiple phone lines and a copier and fax.

Now, everything feels more intrusive. It's all here, in my house. Nagging at me. What I have decided is, working from home sucks. I love GOING to work. And then LEAVING WORK. Working from home when Lucy was young was wonderful. It was a blessing. It allowed me to parent AND earn some money. But the fact is, I am happier - and thus more productive - AT WORK. And I am happier at home without work intruding on my family time. This point was driven home during our family vacation over Thanksgiving. I had one client that was planning a very complicated itinerary. (Just thinking about it right now makes my stomach hurt.) And I emailed and called about this itinerary EVERY DAY OF MY VACATION. It was awful. It was intrusive. But I was obsessed, and didn't want to stop until I got it right.....In the end, the client decided that my price wasn't good enough, and my service was lacking, and they went to a different agency after the holidays. So I lost the booking anyway, despite all of the time and effort and intrusion. Bah. And then this morning, an email from one of the companies that I was working with on that booking, to tell me that all of my work was being transferred to the new agency. Thus, I am feeling aggravated. I do have one small bright spot in all of this - the destination they are headed to (with their kids) is in the news, both for malaria and for burning people at the stake. Have fun !

So. First resolution of 2009 (and I thought I wasn't going to make any !) Check work email ONCE per day. In the morning. New inquiries will be responded to ONCE a day. I will set aside one hour to deal with work-related issues. If they want to call my cell, that is fine - but email is ONCE per day.

Personal email can continue to be checked obsessively.

1 comment:

Robin said...

It can be really hard to set reasonable, family-friendly limits when you work from home.

On the other hand, there are certainly plenty of tempting opportunities to screw around during work time too ;-).