For most people, the summer holidays are a time to unwind, to ‘dolce far niente’ or at least, dolce far ‘what you like to do most’. Hiking, camping, mountain biking, rafting, sitting by the pool, reading and sipping cocktails. It is time spent away from our daily, heavy schedules, away from work, colleagues, clients and our regular environment and entourage.
For those who work from home however, the holidays can have a totally different meaning.
Working from home has its upside. Flexibility, a life without public transport and commuting stress, no boss breathing down your neck, no irritating colleagues. On the downside, telecommuters often spend more time alone, creating a routine in which work, office, home, family and leisure blend into one ambiguous, hazy mixture.
If my home is my office, is my office my home?
Being in charge of one’s own labour and time management, how does one maintain the right balance between toil and time-out?
I don’t have a 9 to 5, I have a ‘when I open my eyes to when I close my eyes’.
Working from home can be liberating. It can help in keeping the right focus and getting the job done. But it can, at times, be a solitary affair.
That is when holidays bring relief. Not just a change of scenery, getting out of the house and expanding your horizons, but meeting people.
I am halfway through my summer holidays and I have had the chance to connect and catch up. A daughter who lives, works and studies abroad. Old friends I have not seen or spoken to for years, new friends, friends of friends, children of friends. Their friends. I have called them, partied with them, met them at theirs, invited them at ours. We have spent time together. We have cooked together, eaten together. We have shared memories. We have spoken of the past, the future and the present. We have remade the world, laughed and cried.
The summer holidays are an excellent time to unwind and get back in touch. Leave the house, travel and talk.
Telecommuters unite! Soon enough … but no. Let’s hold off for a while.
The sun is still out!