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work from home life

Making Your Space Work For You In 2013

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Do you ever find yourself overwhelmed by your workspace or home? If you work from home, is it sometimes difficult to focus because of everything around you? Is your workspace so cluttered and disorganized that you dislike being there?

In the New Year, not only do a create lists of goals but I also like to create themes. I want this year to be about finding comfort and peace and since I cannot control the big wide world around me, that feeling will be created in my home and my relationships. I am committed to maintaining a home and studio space that works for me, speaks to my soul and that I am proud to share with others.

Happiness to me starts in the comfort of our spaces. If you take daily steps to keeping your home/office/studio an efficient and motivating place then waking up in the morning is just that much easier. Closing your eyes at night is done with ease. Having friends or neighbors just stopping by doesn’t result in a sense of panic.  When you know where things are you don’t waste loads of time looking for things. Crazy! Without all the meaningless mind chatter that comes from clutter and overwhelm you have more space for creativity and awesome discoveries.

If you do a little organizing everyday can make this whole adventure a lot easier. Create a drop space (desk, box, etc) near your front door and go through it every evening. Go ahead and sort through the mail as soon as you take it into your space and avoid massive mail piles.

If your space is a little drab and boring, commit to making it a lively, inspiring place to be by creating mood boards and changing the artwork seasonally. What kind of feeling do you want to create in your home? Play with color and flowers to give it a little punch.

The best way to keep this practice in place is to become and stay aware of how your space affects your mood and work level. Recognize your habits and note how you feel after a few days in a tidy, motivating space. Feeling a little down or crabby? Take a look around. Is there something in your physical space that you could change?

Enlist a friend or a professional (like me!) to help if you don’t want to work on your space by yourself. Having someone to assist you in getting rid of clutter and to see your space in a new and enlightening way can be really life changing.

What wonderful changes to you want to make in your space?

Shelly Kerry — Creating Space, Mindful Living

Shelly Kerry is the founder of the program Creating Space, Mindful Living – motivating and inspiring people to run their businesses more efficiently. She helps others look at their personal and professional lives and explore what is and isn’t working. As a jewelry designer she has spent many years testing and honing the skills and discipline needed to run your own creative business while still having time for friends, family and fun. She puts her wealth of experience to use in the Creating Space service – healthy living advice to help keep you motivated and make the most out of your already busy schedule. She will help you find both the physical and emotional space so you can pursue your dreams and she’ll always insist there’s time for yourself.

Shelly writes guest posts on living your best life on well-known blogs such as Kanelstrand, Handmade Success and Awfully Grand and is pursuing a Core Strengths coaching certificate through San Francisco State University.

You can now find Creating Space on Facebook.

Link Love 7/27/12

Happy Friday! I wanted to share a couple of posts that complemented ones that we had here recently.

Kristen Kalp talked about working for home last week and that post really resonated with a lot of you so when I saw this post on Creative Market I thought you might enjoy it too – How To Stay Fresh When Working At Home.

I have been feeling a bit frazzled lately and loved Claire Hughes’ post about ways to beat burnout. Most of you could relate so I thought you might also like these 8 Tips For Moving Towards Balance on The Maven Circle.

Earlier this week Shelly Kerry shared tips for creating more time by creating more space around your house and/or studio. We all loved this post and I thought it was so perfect when Geri tweeted this post from Apartment Therapy on the same day – 10 Simple Things To Make You Happier At Home.

I hope these links, in addition to our blog, help you find the tips and inspiration you need to be at your best and to take it easy when you are not. 🙂

I am headed out of town this weekend with my family where there will be limited internet and I plan on embracing it! I will be back next Wednesday with an August desktop wallpaper for you so stay tuned!

Have a lovely weekend!


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Work From Home Without Losing Your Mind

It’s not easy to work from home, but everyone thinks it is!

Your friends with day jobs and office jobs think you spend your time lounging in pajamas and watching Bravo TV marathons. Your parents are afraid you’re dealing drugs because you make money without leaving the house. All your loved ones are slightly jealous, truth be told.

And yet, working from home is not always a walk in the park. These tips will help keep your work space and your home life divided, whether you’re wearing pj’s or not.

Designate a work space. Make sure you can close the door/zipper/curtain on it when necessary.

Since I’m an author and a business whisperer, it’s fairly easy for me to keep all my business supplies in a backpack. The backpack — which contains my laptop, notebooks, pens, power cords, notes, and a few files — comes out of the closet and is opened every morning. When I’m done working, everything is packed up, zippered up, and put back into the closet. This unpacking and repacking ritual helps me to keep my work and home life separate, even though they take place in the same space. You might do the same with remaking a closet into an office, pulling a curtain on a space that is only opened when you’re working, or even fashioning a “Bother at your own risk” sign to keep your loved ones at bay while you’re in the zone.

Mentally separating your business from your home life is crucial to working at home for the long term, and will keep your pets/kids/loved ones happy, too.

Figure out your genius time. And work during it.

Your genius time is, quite literally, the time you function at peak capacity as a human being; the time it’s easiest to channel your genius into your work.

I’m at my best between 7am and Noon, and find myself absolutely useless after those hours have passed. Sure, I can Tweet or Facebook or sort accounting bits and pieces into categories, but my best work happens before lunch. I’ve learned to schedule meetings and writing for early in the day, saving workouts, errands, cooking, cleaning, and other tasks for later.

Whether you work best at 8am or 8pm, identifying the times your brain feels clearest and/or your hands feel most inspired to make stuff will help you maximize the time you have to work. Using this tip, you’ll be a faster and more productive worker without changing anything except when you work!

♥ Get out of the house once a week for business.

It’s easy to go into working-at-home mode and refuse to leave for any reason. I’ve had groceries, books, and clothes delivered to make time for keeping my nose to the grindstone. I’ve tricked my husband into walking the dog to keep working for a while longer.

We all know that’s not the healthiest behavior on the planet, though, and getting outside to talk with other human beings on a regular basis will keep you from turning into the crazy cat lady who only talks about YouTube videos and mosaic art. Getting out for your business could mean finding a biz buddy to talk shop with over coffee, networking with local businesses, joining a meet-up group, shopping with the idea of partnering with brick and mortars in the back of your mind, or exploring new retail spaces where your work could eventually be sold.

Go on, prove that you’re not a total agoraphobe by getting into the world on a regularly scheduled basis — it’ll help you enjoy your pajama time even more than you thought possible.

If you’ve got working-from-home tips your fellow handmaders could use, please share ’em in the comments!


Kristen Kalp — Brand Camp

Kristen Kalp is a (ghost)writer who believes people should have fun being in business.  She blogs at Brand Camp for like-minded folks.


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