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One of my favourite things about running my own business from home is that I don’t actually have to be at home to get my work done! Crazy hey? You can pick up your work and take it all with you, or just the bare bones if you’d prefer, and venture off into the wonderful world.
Somedays I love the outdoors, somedays I hide away inside and somedays I even take my son with me. There’s so many options and here are my top 7 places to work from, other than my home office.
1 – Under a Big Shady Tree
There’s nothing quite like fresh air to boost your creativity. I love getting outdoors, setting myself up under a big shady tree (the sun doesn’t agree with me very much) and just taking it all in. These are usually my brainstorming or writing sessions. I take along a bit of a picnic lunch and somedays I’ll even leave my laptop at home and just use pen and paper.
2 – My Favourite Cafe
A comfy chair, free wifi and coffee on tap. Could you ask for anything more? I’ll oven head down to my favourite cafe for a few hours of focused work. I find that if I know I’ve got 3 hours to sit down and work, I don’t need to prepare myself lunch or coffee, then I have no excuses for distractions and I am super productive.
3 – My Favourite Cafe (with a kids play area)
For the days when I’m unable to venture out on my own, I take my son with me to our local cafe which has a great little kids play area. We sit down and have our ‘babycino’s’ and some lunch first, then he is off playing while I get to work. The play area is easy to see so I can keep an eye on him and he loves the time to play and explore. And you know… coffee on tap again…
4 – The Library
Prefer to work somewhere quiet? Most libraries have free wifi and power points for your laptop as well as providing you with a whole heap of resources. I find the library a great place to go when I need to concentrate a lot on what I am doing and need to stay focussed. There’s little distraction from people and noise and our library even has separate work rooms you can go and be on your own. Love it.
5 – The Shopping Centre
This is one of my favourite places to go people watching. It’s a great source of inspiration and research. I usually sit at a cafe away from the food court preferably and just observe. You’d be amazing at how many great ideas you get just by watching people.
Especially if you can find people in your target market. I like observing what people are wearing, how they are interacting with others, what shops they are going into, what sort of things they are buying (by the kinds of bags they are carrying) as well as the people in the cafe, who they are meeting, if they are on their own or meeting up with other mothers. These can all be inspiration for blog posts, products, services… the possibilities are endless.
6 – The Beach
My absolute favourite place to work. Even better if I can find a good cafe overlooking the beach (can you tell how much I like cafe’s?) Unfortunately for me the nearest beach is 3 hours away so this is a rarity but one I make the absolute most of.
The beach combines the outdoorsy boost to your creativity with the people watching inspiration for a unique working environment.
7 – The Park
This is another place I love brining my son. Most of the times when we venture to the park I don’t bring my work with me, but I’ve found that there are some times when he needs to get out of the house (and so do I) but the work still needs to be done. I find myself a nice table to sit at, we bring a picnic lunch along and my son gets to run around and have a great time.
I usually try to avoid bringing ‘heavy’ work with me so I don’t have to be so intensely focused on what I am doing. This allows me to be able to keep an eye on my son playing while still getting my work done. I also usually work in ‘bursts’ so that I can stop, play with my son for a while, then go back and keep working.
There are so many options for where your ‘office’ can be. Somedays you’ll be able to pour hours into your ‘out of home office’ but other days you’ll only be able to take the few minutes here and there as the opportunity arises. The key is to find somewhere that inspires you. Somewhere you love to go and work and somewhere you are productive. Give yourself a break from the home office and change your scenery. You’d be amazed at what a difference it can make.