Starting Up A Business As A Stay At Home Dad. Part 7

Dealing with Loneliness of a stay at home worker.

I started this blog a few weeks ago, in the PRE CORONA days do you remember those days? Started writing about the issues around the loneliness that can affect the work from home, and now it looks like LOTS more, like LOTS more of you may be working from home for a while.

If so this one is for you. If you’re not used to being on your own for long periods of time during the day lets look at the best ways I’ve found over the years for dealing with it.

Importantly this is NOT a manual on how to survive SARS or prevent infection etc, just a chat about what helps.

1.Use technology to stay in touch

Hopefully, you will still be communicating with people, just maybe not in the same way as you’re used to. I’ve noticed that people who are very used to an office environment have to think twice before choosing to use Skype, WhatsApp or Zoom for their meetings. Maybe they don’t need to, but if you’re working from home the platforms mentioned above are great. We’ll discuss these in a different post some time. Do yourself a favor, install these apps on your phone on your PC by all means but don’t let them control your life. We’re going to write a piece very shortly about how to tame your android phone. Let YOU call the shots for a change 🙂

2.Get a dog-they’ve great company

Pets make such great childhood pals

A couple of years ago Lil started asking if we could have a dog, she is totally crazy about them. Mum gave her a book with hundreds of photos of dogs in and she literally knows most of the breeds there are about.

I’d been brought up with dogs all my life but had had absolutely no ambition to own one until now. It wasn’t for me it was for Lilia, and Rose was up for it it turned out.  The decision had been made. I LOVED having dogs as friends when i was a kid and it was suddenly something I really wanted for Lil to experience.

It took me a while after Gracie appeared to realize that I had been a bit lonely before she took up residence. We all love her as part of the family. I’m saying this because I’ve had a number of chats over the years with parents of small children. Face it, buying a mutt is a serious commitment. As a family, we’re so glad we made it.

3.Tooling up

The loneliness of working from home only really started to hit me when Lil spent more time away from me that with me if you know what I mean? At first, it was great to be able to give loads of time and effort to build the business up. You can work in a cafe, a library and they’re all options. Which then raises the question about hardware and what you need to run a business.

I generally find myself upgrading once a year, and in many ways, my purchase decisions are based upon the premise that there are things around the corner that I just don’t know about yet. I don’t know EXACTLY where the business is heading, because things happen, like Coronavirus that can throw things out. Or you find you’re suddenly running a massive database or something that you hadn’t allowed for.

2 years ago I purchased a Surface Pro and it was a great piece of hardware IMHO, but 4 months down the road I was running some big databases and the surface pro just wasn’t up to the job. I sadly, after a year of struggling, gave it to my wife Rose who thinks it’s great also. It does everything she needs as a postgrad, running Microsoft Office and web apps.

I meanwhile went and brought a workhorse to run big software, and they don’t come better values than the pc specialists . Their laptops are quite big, but they’re powerful and an excellent price. Check them out.

This week I purchased the Surface Pro 7 you see above. The spec on this machine is as low as I would want to go for my requirements. The only component I saved money on was the size of the SSD card, if I’m every storing more than 256GB of data on my SSD then I’ve got a problem. Store stuff in the cloud and if you lose or get your stolen/broken you won’t lose your business. By the way, you get loads of cloud storage when you get a subscription for Office 365. If you haven’t got one you should think about it.. PLEASE PLEASE don’t buy a ‘cheap’ version from eBay or such like, buy it from Microsoft and you know it will actually work and be legal.

The i7 processor matched with a decent enough SSD to mean Windows and apps load nice and fast. I hate waiting for computers, its part of the reason why I specialize in making them run as fast as they can to do a job, we call it Automation of Microsoft Office mostly. The main reason though buying the Surface was for the Pen…

I’m going to write about this now in the next part of this blog. See you then I hope.