When working at home for the first time, it quickly becomes important to learn how to avoid interruptions when working. Home life and work life both require your attention, but the important step is learning to manage the two. Let's look at some tricks on how to handle the interruptions you are likely to encounter.
One of the reasons you are staying home is to look after your family. Since they are going to be around while you're working, they are bound to be a distraction. The key to handling interruptions with family is through time management. There are certain times of day when your family is going to need your time. Make sure to schedule your work hours around those times. Reversely, there will be certain times of days where you will need to be working (especially meeting with clients). Make sure that your family understands that you should not be disturbed during your work hours (unless it's an emergency).
Have one room in your house that is your office. Keep the door closed when you're working, and let the family know that when that door is shut, mom is working. If you need to meet with clients, consider meeting them outside of your home, or work out details with your family on how to act when you have clients over.
Another method of minimizing interruptions by family is to involve them in your business. Give them tasks they can handle, and pay them for their effort. This allows your family to take an interest in your business, and help them develop skills they can use in their own lives and future careers.
The telephone can be a real distraction. People call while you're working, and you're too polite to tell them that you need to get back to work. It is important to manage personal calls and home calls. Get a second line for your office. Sign up for voice mail on your home phone, or set up an answering machine. If the home phone rings while you're working, resist the urge to answer it. Let whoever calls leave a message, and get back to them when you're done. If your family is around to answer the house phone, make sure they know that you aren't to be disturbed, and train them to take a message for you.
Handling interruptions while working is all about setting priorities. Know when you're likely to be needed at home and at work, and schedule your commitments accordingly.