Working from home can take all shapes and forms but I’d wager that most, if not all of the moms who do it, encounter many of the same pros and cons. Along with these similar experiences are likely going to be similar responses, which means that there are some common things that work-from-home moms say, especially when said moms happen to be grown-ass women with perspective.
For the record, I don’t always consider myself part of the “grown-ass” category, but on a good day, I know it’s possible. Alas, life is long and windy so in the meantime, I merely aspire to stay mature like the #ladybosses who say this stuff all the time. Until that day, and even though there are downsides, I must admit that I see far more good than bad when it comes to working from home. I find the flexibility, the extra family time, and the ability to get up from my desk to make coffee as much as I want (without judgment from anyone) to be among the greatest perks, and I frequently shout about them from the rooftops directly to my partner, because I don’t want to appear obnoxious to everyone else.
The cons, while far less important to me, can include the absence of human contact and lack of reasons to leave the house wearing my favorite clothes. Oh, and the ongoing search for that elusive temptress, work-life balance (that I'm still convinced is a myth). I suspect many other work-from-home moms have similar thoughts on these topics, in the form of the following:
"I Have To Work"
Working from home is like that one class you took in high school that always had homework. Even when you think you’re done and caught up, there’s typically more things to do waiting for you, staring from across the room. I’ve found the throwing everything into a closet and shutting the door can really help.
"I Need A Break "
Who else is going to say it for you? I mean, aside from those apps you can get which will literally ring a bell when it’s time for you to take a break, this is on you. Plus, and as far as I know, even those tools aren’t going to be able to measure the levels of overwhelming stress that comes from days or weeks or months of juggling everything, so that’s up to each mom.
"I Need My Kid"
Speaking of things that are up to each mom, she’ll be able to judge when some quality time with her kid or kids is going to do the trick. For me, it can depend on the day and how many hugs I got before work started.
"Can You Help Me?"
There are way too many good quotes about there about how asking for help is actually a sign of strength, so I couldn’t pick just one. Instead, I’ve opted to honor Leslie Knope instead, since she's a powerful force when working alone who also asks for help when she needs it.
"This Is So Worth It"
I suppose you’re the only person who can truly decide if it’s worth it for you. However, let’s not forget that it was Missy Elliott who asked herself that same question, then answered with, “Let me work it. I put my thing down flip it and reverse it.” So, I think that’s a yes.
"More Coffee, Please"
Coffee and working adults go together like coffee and moms. The more, the merrier, in my experience.
"I’ll Do It. Later."
The key word here is “later,” as grown-ass work-from-home moms know how to manage expectations as well as their own time. It’s one thing to agree to something, it’s another to be clear that it’s not happening anytime soon.
The firmer and much-respected cousin of “I’ll do it later,” the one-word sentence of no is the ultimate way a grown-ass work-from-home mom gets it done. The sky’s the limit when it comes to circumstances that require this answer, but one thing’s for certain, she likely says it freely and often.
"I’m Putting My Headphones On"
When a mom needs time to get things done, she’s got to take the proper steps to do so and, as we all know, a woman wearing headphones doesn’t want to be talked to. While my toddler hasn’t quite figured this out, it’s a pretty clear message to everyone else who is even minutely aware of and follows social norms.
"This Is Hard"
Not to be confused with complaining, a mom who says this may very well be simply stating facts. A great response to this statement is encouragement and offers to bring her even more coffee.
"I Need To Get Out Out Of House"
Thank goodness for laptops and wifi, and coffee shop culture that allows us to plug in and get our 'ish done, for hours and hours at a time. What's that? You need this table back? Oh. OK, to be continued, I suppose.