To achieve work-life balance lots and lots of people are opting for work from home careers. It offers several benefits like flexibility in work schedules, working at your own pace and reducing commute hours; however, there’s a flip-side to the story too. We asked several successful people who work from home to share with us the contraposition on work from home. While they would not give up their work from home careers what they had to say about the challenges was eye-opening. What was even more interesting was how they faced those issues and worked out solutions.

  1. Loneliness:Loneliness in work from home job

    The most common challenge which these work-from-home professionals faced was loneliness. While this should surprise office regulars remember we are social people. We like to interact and enjoy office gossip. Admitting to loneliness when others think that we have the best of both worlds is embarrassing.

    We received overwhelming responses from people who work from home and how they found ways to overcome loneliness.

    As Darko Jacimovic from Whattobecome admitted,

    “I would say the biggest challenge for me while I was working from home was loneliness. You’re cut from your colleagues, and you can quickly become depressed by the lack of human interaction.”

    The Way Out:

    However, I successfully solved this problem by opting to spend a couple of hours outside my home, in a coffee shop, and to work from time to time in co-working spaces. Being around people helped me, and I was happier with my work. Also, I joined some digital nomads and freelancer groups, and I was able to organize meetups where we would work on our projects together.

    Maria Wendt from Maria Wendt Inc. says ,

    “Many work from home experts do not talk about the challenge of loneliness. Usually, it's because we feel some embarrassment and shame. We think, Oh I must be the only one who is lonely”

    The Way Out:

    I would tell you that it's okay to feel lonely. Though, the key is to take action to overcome this challenge. I love going to my local co-working space when I am feeling like I need some company. I chat with other entrepreneurs, get reconnected to my visions and my dreams. Having even an hour or two of good conversation helps me feel rejuvenated and I head back home, happy and recharged.

    Emma Gallimore from Emma G Writer says,

    “The biggest challenge I face is loneliness. My partner works full-time and is out of the house for up to 12 hours a day. If I don't make the effort to get out and see people, I can go whole days without really talking to anyone"

    The Way Out:

    According to Emma, having a dog helps. He forces me to go outside occasionally. I've also joined several meet-up groups and networking groups. The events give me something to look forward to and help me build social networks despite not having coworkers.

    Dane Kolbaba from Watchdog Pest Control says,

    “Working from home is great, but one of the challenges of doing so that I don't think people talk about often is how lonely it can get. A big part of the average adult's social life is in the workplace -- so if you leave your traditional office setup, what you'll have is just your computer and perhaps chat rooms with colleagues”

    The Way Out:

    According to Dane, if you work from home and find yourself getting lonely, try to make regularly recurring plans with friends and family to see them every once in a while. Maybe even join a hobby or sports group so you have like-minded people to share your thoughts and ideas with.

    Logan Allec from Money Done Right has this to say,

    “ One thing I noticed when I started working from home was how lonely I got. I’m a strong extrovert and enjoy meeting and speaking with people around the office, but at home, I didn’t get that benefit and I absolutely felt lonely”

    The Way Out:

    I decided to do most of my work from a coffee shop. Just being around other people helped me feel like I was engaged and part of a larger ecosystem.

    So remember especially if you are working from home it’s important to meet people. Join a hobby class, get a pet to interact with owners and make sure your daily routine ensures some sort of human interaction.

  2. Work-Life Balance:work-life balance in work from home job

    It is paradoxical to find that you left your full-time job to maintain work-life balance and now find that work-life balance is an issue. You are not alone. When you are working from home separating family and work-life becomes difficult, especially if you are a mom. You need to set your priorities. It needs a lot of self-discipline. You have to set boundaries.

    Nicole Durham from Struggle Today Strength Tomorrow, says,

    “My biggest challenges with working from home have been separating work from home life, while encompassed by the home life, dividing my time evenly among my family and work, and getting other people take my work seriously and giving me my space”

    The Way Out:

    According to Nicole, drawing a line, and setting a time schedule saying that you work from 9 am until 3 pm and nothing is to distract you until then is beneficial in setting the proper boundaries. Your family won't feel neglected and you won't feel like you've neglected your work. Also, make your family understand that you need to run out the clock before you can switch gears, it will help them realize that it's better to have a fully dedicated version of you instead of one that has their mind divided.

    Dane Kolbabafrom Watchdog Pest Control, adds,

    “another thing that can be challenging for a lot of people working from home is that it may become more difficult to separate your work life from your personal life. I mean, hey, you get up from bed, take a few steps and poof, you're at work".

    The Way Out:

    According to Dane, make sure you set clear, physical boundaries -- that is, you want your bedroom to be a work-free-zone. You want to lie down in your own bed and not be tempted to check your work email, and that's easier to do if you train yourself not to do anything work-related while you're in the sanctity of your own personal space.

  3. Time Management: 

    Until we can manage time, we can manage nothing else.--Peter F. DruckerTime Management as a challenge in work from home job

    Tess Thompson from Money Done Right, says,

    “The biggest challenges I have faced since starting this job has been time management and communication. The time management aspect was especially hard when I first started because it was difficult for me to get in the full 40 hours. I would stop working and go have fun so I'd only get in about 5 hours a day which led to me working on the weekends. This was a dangerous cycle”.  

    The Way Out:

    I changed this by forcing myself to wake up early and not hangout with people until I did 8 hours a day. I would advise those going into remote work to section off a piece of your house where you can sit down quietly and with as little distractions as possible. Put in a good amount of hours and then reward yourself with either a certain snack you love, watching one episode of your favorite show, going on social media for a bit, (whatever it is you want) and then get back to work and finish strong.

    Jovana Subic from Run Repeat says,

    “I used to have a lack of focus and messy schedule, only because I didn't have a strict time frame for work and a different time box for my private life and occasional freelance gigs. This means I would usually mix and match them, which would lead to having to work on weekends”.

    The Way Out:

    I finally put my work on one side and my private life on the other side, I felt liberated and things have fallen into their place. My focus was back, work/life balance was back on track. I used to get tired of my room because it served as a bedroom, workroom, library, exercise room - all into one. But now I finally have a separate workroom, which I use only for work, during work hours, and my motivation has skyrocketed.

  4. Motivation, Productivity, and Focus:Motivation in work from home job

    At the office you feel accountable. Your boss might step in and ask for a status. Your colleague might require an urgent response. The lack of human interaction makes us feel unaccountable more so because there is no instant gratification in terms of appreciation.

    According to Derek Hales from Modern Castle,

    “There are 3 major challenges that I feel most individuals and teams who work from home face; communication, productivity, and focus. When you're working remotely it can be easy to feel disconnected from the larger team”.

    The Way Out:

    Easy ways to communicate are important. My team uses GChat messaging and video calling on a daily basis. This lets us easily connect, whether it's for extended meetings or just a quick question (like you would in a normal office environment).

    Again, technology and software can help bridge the productivity gap. A collaborative workspace can help multiple people work on the same projects without worrying about crossing wires. Google Drive is great for managing documents and spreadsheets, as multiple people can have them open at the same time.

    Focus can be a real challenge, but if you have an office that has a physical door you can close, that's ideal. Most importantly those who work from home need to be able to recognize when they are distracted and what's distracting and then do everything they can to minimize the distractions.

    As Ciara Hautau from Fueled says,

    “I think the biggest challenges I'm currently facing is motivation and setting boundaries. I'm someone who gets energy from having people around me. Being in an office setting really helps me to focus and stay motivated on the tasks I'm completing. But as I've worked from home longer I've found it to be hard to stay energized/motivated while working at home”.

    The Way Out:

    It's super important to maintain the work-life balance even though you're at home. I suggest carving out an area of your home that's dedicated to the workspace. If you can designate a room that has a proper desk/computer setup that's even better as it can replicate the experience of going into an office. If you don't have that capability I recommend changing up your space by going to local cafes or coworking space so you can maintain motivation/energy.

    According to Kuri Khailo from EliteNutrition,

    “Because I am in marketing, I am able to work from home when it’s necessary, because all I need is internet and a laptop. One of the biggest challenges from working from home is getting too comfortable in your own house”.

    The Way Out:

    When I work from home, I try to get dressed as if I am going into the office, and get my morning together. Most people tend to think that they will stay in their pajamas, but I think that makes you more comfortable, and that you won't take your work seriously since no one can see you at home! When I work from home, I always call the office and my co-workers to make sure everything is in place.

  5. Ergonomics:Ergonomics is a challenge in work from home job

    Planning to work from your couch? Drop the idea like hot potatoes unless you want persistent lower backache. When you work from home you feel relaxed and as a result sit on the comfortable couch with your work. That strains your back as it is not an ideal position to work.

    Nicola Knobel from My Inner Creative Echos us when she says,


    “one of the biggest things I found for myself and friends of mine that have started working from home has been ergonomics. I know! It sounds ridiculous! But many of us working at home, often share the dining room table, work from bed, sit on the couch, or even just cobble together a desk set up to have something to use”.

    The Way Out:

    When people tell me they are working from home, I ask them to assess the set-up they have to work from. Is there enough space between your arms and the keyboard. Is the chair supporting your lower back? Can you raise your laptop screen up a little so that the screen is eye level? by not addressing these simple things early, you can set yourself up for back pain and eye strain. If working from home is going to be a permanent thing, then you absolutely need to consider a good setup for your workspace!

    Jovana Subic from Run Repeat says,

    “You think you can work on your sofa or hammock? Don't fall into that trap. I did. Your back will suffer. Your lower back will be in pain.”

    The Way Out:

    Invest in a good chair, or use a pilates ball. Make sure your table height is appropriate. Use the advantage of working from home and don't forget to take short breaks and stretch.


Working from home comes with its own share of challenges for most in the beginning; however, what is heartening to note is that it is POSSIBLE to overcome them using your motivation and by reworking the set priorities in your work and life for better productivity and a healthier work-life balance.