Home Based Business? Better Limber Up!
Jack Be Nimble is great advice to anyone considering working from home. Those of us who’ve done it quickly discover that nimbleness is as vital to succeeding as talent and determination.
You learn to answer phones, work the printer, copy and fax machines, do your own filing, invoicing, shredding and hoisting.
Here you are, your own microcosmic IBM. Every so often, you remember exactly what you’re in business for. This usually occurs somewhere between re-starting the modem and realizing that the fax machine is jammed.
Contrary to what you may think, I am not suggesting that you avoid having a home-based business. The statistics are in our favor!
1. According to IDC, a top research firm, there are approximately 35 million home office households in the U.S.
2. Entrepreneur magazine estimates that home-based businesses generate (hold onto your hat or visor) $427 billion. They apparently forgot to include people like me who generate, oh, a zillion zeroes less than that.
3. Income earned by Home Business owners is estimated between $63,000 to over $1 million (yet again, I must’ve been out when they called.)
I, on the other hand, have a sneaking suspicion that what’s really risen is the number of chiropractic and orthopedic visits for us Home Basers. Here’s where the Limber Part separates the men from the boys, the women from the girls, the aches from the pains. As our editor, Barbara McClure, and I have laughed and cried about together, many is the day when we’re on our hands and knees, crawling, extending and convoluting in what I call the “Techno Twist.” You won’t see it on Dancing With the Stars. You’ll only see it on Dancing with Home-Based Business People.
It goes like this: your computer freezes; you remember your tech guy (the one who is never available when you need him) telling you to unplug everything. Here’s where the crawl part starts. All the plugs and wires, modems and jacks are somewhere under your desk or behind shelves. You crouch, like so, turn your neck into a newly-unnatural position to find the plugs and un-do the cables, and – if you’re me under my desk – you hit your head on its underside as you are re-emerging.
Do you think it’s any accident that my medicine cabinet now carries more ligament creams than Walgreen’s?
Here’s the way Barbara described her own recent Human Pretzel-ing to me: “Suddenly, I couldn't get my computer to turn on. I went crazy and finally reached AppleCare. They walked me through it, instructing me to re-start it by putting my fingers on four different keys at the same time. I’m not sure Liberace had a finger span like this. Now my hand
Lest you think the Techno Twist is purely computer and internet-related, let me twist the record back to 1973. During the Watergate investigation, President Nixon’s secretary, Rosemary Woods, was asked to replicate the position she took which – according to her testimony – caused her to erase a crucial 18-minutes from an Oval Office tape. She demonstrated it. There she was, seated at her desk, reaching far back over her left shoulder for a telephone as her foot simultaneously applied pressure to the pedal controlling the transcription machine. Huh????
The resulting backward over-the-shoulder acrobatic twist was the picture heard round the world.
Frankly, I’m no longer sure it didn’t happen precisely the way she said. Just yesterday, I found myself in that very same position.
Oops, have to go. The chiropractor can see me now.
™With permission to The Desert Woman September 2007