"I was fortunate to know a group of women who had left careers in the hotel industry, retail, and teaching to raise their children. We were all trying to figure out together [how to work and stay home]," she says. "Being an at-home parent is so challenging in lots of ways. Until I went back to part-time teaching and had conversations outside my home about my passion for cooking, I didn't realize how much I'd missed that. I knew that I had to find a way to work that let me remain committed to my family."
Listening to Tory Johnson on "Good Morning America" from a new home in Wisconsin, Cooper found a perfect opportunity, in ChefsLine, a company that hires chefs to give on-demand cooking advice to clients.
"When I called, I found that they were looking for people with culinary and customer-service skills, so I began working on the Chefs Hotline and doing consulting about twenty hours a week. This job gave me the flexibility I needed to work and stay home with my daughter," says Cooper.
After meeting owner Jennifer Beisser at a conference, Cooper also became the national director for marketing and sales for the company, a job that lets her use her cooking and business skills at home. "I'm using my brain again and have a renewed sense of faith in myself," says Cooper.
As much as she cherished the time with her daughter, Cooper felt like a part of her life was missing. "This is exactly the kind of thing I wanted to be doing. It's giving us some breathing room financially, and I can take the job with me if we move again. I feel so fortunate to have found this balance. I count my blessings every day."
Is the office grind killing your creativity? You're stifled working at a desk during the day. Your creative juices start flowing at 2:00 in the morning, not 2:00 in the afternoon. You need larger blocks of time to write, design or plan, time that isn't interrupted by meetings, office politics or coworkers. Home is the working environment you need.
On the other hand, if you're a stay-at-home mom, interruptions by other adults may be exactly what you're missing. A part-time job at home could provide welcome mental stimulation, and ease the stresses of a one-budget household. Imagine dinners out, a luxury vacation, college savings, or more money to spend on gifts for the holidays.
If you're a student, we know you need cash. The trouble is that you already have a full schedule of classes and study, a schedule that fluctuates. What if you could earn money with your computer from your dorm room or at home in the summer? No more begging the fast-food boss to let you off for your family vacation or to volunteer at the hospital.
Cash, career, convenience, necessity. No matter what your situation, background or monetary goals, "Will Work from Home" can be your solution.
We could list all the different jobs you could do or businesses you could start from home, but that wouldn't be a guide. It would be a doorstop!
Instead, we're going to show you four proven paths that can lead you home to work. You'll be able to adapt one of these paths to your own situation, especially as we're going to give you the advice, resources, inspirational stories, and checklists you'll need for the journey.
First Path: ASK THE BOSS