It can be difficult separating our professional and personal lives when working from home. Just ask Kathy! She talks us through the ups and downs of moving the office back to Bentleigh.

By Kathy Lane

Founder and Director, FireWorks PR & Events

Have things slowed down for you? I can honestly say that my Inbox seems much quieter whilst my junk folder is overflowing with special offers and retail bargains! Tempting …… who doesn’t love a parcel delivery? Huh?

After packing up our office and moving home, it felt like the foot had come off the pedal just a little. As a team, we thought that the slower pace would give us some time to think. Think about our business, how to market ourselves better, keep in touch with clients, potential clients, colleagues and friends and generally stay afloat. One of the ideas, aside from poring over spreadsheets, was to write a regular blog post about what’s happening in this new reality.

And whilst it’s important to stay professional at all times, I seem to be challenged by the melding of my professional life at home and my home life. And whilst I like the change of routine, there seems to be much less distinction between when I’m working and when I’m not.

Like, when I’m cooking dinner and I hear the ding of an email arriving. Almost impossible not to run over to the desk and take a look. After all, it’s only 15 steps away from the stove!

So reflecting on this new situation, there are a number of things I have noticed about my new work life and my old personal life. And whilst I should be keeping it all professional, in line with my new reality, I’m going to throw everything in together, authentically and real.

What I’m loving:
• Being home for my poor VCE kids – I haven’t been a ‘stay at home mum’ since they were 6 months old so I’m really loving that. The biggest and most heartwarming plus.
• Not having to get up as early to race out the door and get the kids to school on time.
• Time to do yoga or a dog walk in the morning and still be at the desk on time.
• Regular zoom calls with clients – I love how people have adapted.
• Virtual drinks on a Thursday arvo with my team – they’re awesome.
• Welcoming a new client to the portfolio and continuing to drive new business – there are opportunities out there.
• Being able to pay my staff and bills every week. After 17 years in business and so much carnage around us, I am really very grateful I have been able to hold on. We’re not going anywhere – I’m determined.
• A bit more time to ‘think’. That’s important in business and we rarely give it enough attention.
• Time still seems to fly by! And I’m still not watching much TV!
• Connecting with old friends. I have had a number of really beautiful and meaningful phone calls which have filled my heart.
• My dog at my feet whilst I work. Gorgeous.
• Beautiful autumn days observed from my new home office – I love big windows, seeing the trees and feeling the breeze.
• Listening to more music and reading. What’s not to love about that?

What I’m not loving:
• The human isolation of working from home. Didn’t love it before and don’t love it now but it goes on …
• Not being able to go out for lunch. God knows I love a good lunch!
• Watching my gorgeous VCE kids struggle with online learning. They’re not alone, of course, but I don’t like seeing them upset and sometimes defeated. Keep Calm and Carry On. Easy in theory, not in practice.
• IT challenges and shifting to new systems. They do my head in but I think we’re there now……fingers crossed.
• Increased cleaning given we’re all home! And the dog’s fur is everywhere!

What I’m looking forward to:
• Being able to go out for lunch and catch up with mates for a drink. Obviously.
• A brave new world where we are all aware of what’s important. Let’s hope this time has given us all the chance to reflect and change, not just drop back in to where we were.
• Keeping the pace manageable and not manic. Let’s learn something peeps.
• My kids being able to go back to school, learn, catch up and feel like VCE wasn’t a waste of time.
• Putting on heels and glamming up for a night on the town.
• Embracing life with gusto and courage. It’s fleeting.


Let’s be the change we want to see. I’m determined to change things that no longer serve me. Are you?