By jhedlund33 on March 18, 2010
A few days ago I read this post over at Writing Roads, which suggests that you should "dress" for work even if you work from home. Just because you can be in your pajamas all day doesn't mean you should. Why? Among other reasons, the article asserts that you can't really take your work (including writing) seriously if you come to it looking, and probably smelling, like a homeless person.
I thought about that post for a long time because I am guilty as charged. There are days when I find myself showering at 5:00 only to put on another pair of pajamas afterward. Clean ones at least! I realize this may not be sending the universe the correct message about how serious I am about this writing business. But I must say I love being comfy. What are the benefits of working from home if not to wear pants with an elastic waistband? Likewise, I'm not entirely convinced that strapping 'the girls' into a push-up bra just to be home alone all day is going to dramatically increase my chances of success with my writing. And yet...
I may not be ready to do away with the slouchy clothes, but I did tackle a similar problem - my workspace. Or lack thereof. I have a perfectly serviceable desk in the family room, but it was so cluttered, inside and out and even on the floor, that until recently I spent most of my writing time on the sofa in the living room with my feet propped up on an ottoman. Probably more conducive to napping than writing. So in the spirit of that article, I set about clearing the desk and creating a, dare I say, 'sacred' space for writing (pic below). I must admit I feel way more official now. I have a nice view out the window. I have all of my favorite books on writing in front of me for inspiration. I have my tools of the trade - dictionary, thesaurus, style guides, etc. - at my fingertips at all times. Most importantly, I have created a way to separate myself from 'the house' at large. Having a dedicated (and pleasant) work space really does help with productivity.
In fact, I'm so impressed by how much of a difference my desk makes that I am contemplating a compromise on the wardrobe front. I think leggings and shirts with built-in shelf bras might be a happy medium...
For my fellow work-at-homers, what's your take on being 'dressed' and in a dedicated space for work? For selfish reasons, I'd love to hear success stories from people who are religious about working in their pajamas! :-)
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