19 December 2019 | 14 Comments
I love working from home.
I’ve been running Stonemaier Games full time from my home office for 6 years now, and right from the start I knew it was a good fit. No distractions or interruptions (except from cats), no commute, no packing a lunch, no overhead, and the flexibility, freedom, and autonomy to work as much or as little as I need to.
My home office changed a few months ago when my girlfriend and I bought a new condo. She also works from home, so we’ve learned on the fly about working for completely different companies within close proximity to each other. It’s going great.
After writing that article, I started trying something new (some advice I found while researching for that post): To give Megan a little time to have the place to herself, I’ve been going to a local coffee shop once a week for a few hours.
That may sound like a completely normal thing for you, but it’s very new for me. I don’t drink coffee (though I’m latte-curious), I rarely feel a desire to leave the comforts of home, and I like to be by the computer while working to respond to customer needs within minutes.
That said, I’ve discovered a delightful side effect of these weekly breaks: They are fantastic for brainstorming ideas and thinking through problems.
Basically, I go to the coffee shop with pencil and paper, and I jot and sketch my way through game design. Sometimes it’s for new games; other times it’s for the next step in games that are well into the design process. I love every minute of it.
At first I did it only when I had a new idea to brainstorm or think through. But now I’ve simply made a habit of doing it once a week, and I always find a way to get a lot of value out of it. Honestly, it’s just really nice to not have my computer in front of me for a while. There’s literally nothing for me to do for those 2 hours except for think, process, and write.
These weekly brainstorming breaks could apply just as easily if I didn’t work from home, so I’m curious if you do (or have tried) anything like this. Did you find it as helpful, invigorating, and productive as I have? If you haven’t tried it, I’d highly recommend it!
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