By Adam Scott

As individuals turn their focus and endeavors from the commonplace 9 to 5 job, to the make-your-own-schedule, create-your-own-way, career, the concept of coworking space has unfolded and found a way to thrive. For those of you that are unfamiliar with the concept of coworking space, it is the idea of a space shared by several individuals or groups of individuals as they separately and independently complete daily work-related tasks. Though the occupations performed in such coworking spaces are often times completely unrelated, the idea of merging numerous entrepreneurs, freelancers, and small business employees in one space promotes ideas of synergetic motivation, innovation, and productivity.

Though the concept of coworking is ideal and perfectly fitting for these independently-working individuals, many operating their own businesses and work-related endeavors will still opt to complete their work in their home environments. However, it is important to recognize how beneficial coworking spaces can be, especially when compared with this work-from-home alternative that research says can actually be harmful and ill-fating.

According to an article in The Guardian, entitled “Work-Life Balance,” working from home can lead to persistent heightened levels of stress. Often times, individuals working from home gain the flexibility desired in their work schedules, but are unable to “turn off” when necessary. Therefore, separating work life from home life becomes difficult and sometimes impossible. In addition to the lingering worry and urgency that demonstrates itself even after the gadgets are turned off and the phone calls made, experts say there is the potential for the manifestation of other negative effects as well. Not only can working from home indirectly lead to inconsistencies in sleep habits, but levels of loneliness and isolation can also present themselves. Each of these effects can affect an individual’s health and happiness, leading to imbalances that working from home were meant to counteract in the first place.

What do I mean by that? Well, many individuals operating their own businesses or work-related endeavors outside of traditional office settings are pursuing a flexibility and work-life balance that cannot be easily accomplished by working long work hours in a strict office space. Thus, when the alternative they are employing, which is working from home in this case, is not conducive to these desires, another environment should be tried and employed.

Cue coworking spaces.

Coworking spaces, as desired by those independent business people and entrepreneurs that occupy them, allow for the flexibility that this group is searching for. In utilizing this concept, individuals can create their own working schedules while still showing up to a physical location for work activity. Clocking in at 8 am or working in the later hours of the evening are not necessary if the individual deems it as unfitting with their home-life and personal-life schedules. In addition to the flexibility, the work-life balance becomes achievable as business-people have the power to keep work-related stress away from their home environments. What’s more, the aforementioned levels of loneliness and isolation are diminished as individuals can complete and carry-out business while maintaining their independence in a productive and motivating environment.

Photo by: Matthew G.