I hear it all the time:
How wonderful it must be to work for yourself. Be your own boss. Set your own schedule. Work from home.
The truth is – I HATE IT!!! I hate the solitude.
If you’ve ever met me, you know I’m an extrovert. I thrive on the presence of people, I love the sound of their voice, I’m stimulated by conversation. So no matter how great it sounds to work from home – in your pajamas and bunny slippers – it just doesn’t work for me.
So if you’re an extrovert like I am, and you struggle with the loneliness of being your own boss, what do you do? How do you deal with being alone all day, every day?
Well, here are three different ideas that have helped me:
- Schedule coffee dates. This helps me get out of the house/office and have some interaction with another human being. There’s just a couple of possible pitfalls to be aware of. First of all, make sure your coffee partner is someone who can help you or you can help in return, otherwise, you’ll become frustrated, feeling like you’ve wasted your time. Secondly, at nearly $5.00 for a latte these days, it can become a bit expensive, so be sure to budget properly.
- I love going to the local library to work. I’m surrounded by people, even if they are strangers. And the surroundings really help to keep me focused. There is no TV, no laundry, no refrigerator calling to me. Besides, the library has large tables where I can spread out, they have free wi-fi, and a bathroom. What more can a girl ask for?
- Finding nooks and crannies in nature. Living in Wisconsin with below zero temperatures right now is NOT a good time to be outside. But as soon as the weather breaks, I’ll be heading down one of the many walking trails, looking for that perfect bench overlooking a lake or river or ravine. That’s where I do a lot of my writing. I’m still in solitude, but for some reason, the natural surroundings make me feel like I’m transported to another place.
And that, my dear friends, are just three ways that I survive the loneliness of working for myself. Do you have other ideas to share? Any other tricks that can help us satisfy our craving for camaraderie?
And for those of you who do not feel that sting of loneliness, please share your thoughts on working for yourself, by yourself. I’d love to hear the other side of this story.