Prior to expanding our offices downtown, I had worked out of my house full-time for six years. We're about a month in to our new space, and working out of a dedicated office has brought with it some exciting changes, along with a few downsides. Here are the pros and cons I've found so far.
Pro: It makes me appreciate our home and neighborhood more.
When I was always home, I lacked any perspective of being able to appreciate it. When I walk in the door now, I notice things I wasn't seeing before, like the way the light streams in in the late afternoon and the fresh air that comes through our bedroom window. I'm that much more aware of our sweet little neighborhood and our place in it, and waking up on Saturday morning feels like I'm in my home.
Pro: It helps with the balancing act.
Working in an office place segments the different parts of my life so it's easier to balance motherhood with work (and feel like I'm doing a better job at both). At the office, I'm in work zone; and at home I'm in full family mode. It was a lot harder to balance my roles when I could hear my baby doing things in the next room while I was trying to write a post.
Pro: I am more productive.
Because I'm so focused on what's in front of me throughout the day, I'm far more efficient and able to tackle more in the same amount of hours.
Con: Family FOMO is real.
The con to the previous pros is that while I'm more productive and balanced, I did love being able to pop into Sloan's room for a quick kiss or have Luna on my lap while I worked. It's extremely hard to say goodbye to her in the morning and be away from her all day, and I do feel like I'm missing out on things.
Pro: I take great pride in the office.
When Sloan came into the mix, the office was almost an afterthought. We turned it into the nursery and then temporarily relocated the office to our tiny guest house in the back yard. The office we're in now is a loft with great potential, and I've been taking pride in making sure it's a fun space that feels inspiring, pretty, and somewhere we're excited to come in to every day. The process has been really fulfilling and I can't wait to show you our progress along the way.
Pro: Downtown Los Angeles is an amazing place to work.
Downtown L.A. is in the midst of a resurgence and it's such an exciting time to be here. It has an energy to it that pervades the area. Previously we'd gotten a bit stuck in our corner of they city, going to the same places and not exploring new pockets. Downtown there are new museums, restaurants, and fun things to discover every day.
Con: I'm spending way more on meals out.
I'm falling into the trap of eating out for almost every meal. Working from home, I would occasionally go out to lunch because it was good to get out, but I never went out for breakfast -- it was so easy to just have cereal while doing my work. These days, I'm always running late in the morning and therefore I rarely have breakfast before I come in (hi, egg sandwich with brioche from the downstairs market) or bring a lunch with me. Not only is it an added expense, but eating out for multiple meals is less than healthy.
Pro: It gives me a sense of purpose.
Coming into an office carries a sense of legitimacy with it. When I became a full-time blogger, it wasn't necessarily a career most people took seriously. In that regard I always felt the need to prove myself, and working from home/my bed didn't exactly have an elevated ring to it. Having our office space feels legitimate and gives me a newfound sense of purpose.
Pro: I love my commute.
I'm fortunate that my commute is only 20 minutes since it provides a good separation between starting or ending my work day, and home life. I use the time in the car to talk on the phone, decompress, or listen to whatever song I'm loving lately on repeat (see: Adele's 'Hello').
Con: It complicates logistics.
Working from home, if nothing else, is really convenient. After so many years of having everything at my disposal, I've had to be a lot more organized about what I bring to and from work each day.
Pro: There's room to grow.
G and I have lofty goals for our company, and working in a dedicated office space enables us to continue to grow our team and expand our business in new ways. I feel so fortunate that we got to work from home for so many years. Ultimately, it was our decision to get an outside work space, and though no single scenario is perfect, we're really happy with the effect that moving to an office has had on our lives.
Do you work in an office or at home? What pros/cons have you found? I'd love to know.