The advantages of working from home can be numerous but there are some steps you may have to take to make it even more successful.  By not following these steps, working from home may add even more stress to your life.

People who work from home know the perks: no commute, no boss, no makeup or suit.  But perks turn into pitfalls if you’re not careful. Here are some rules to make working from home work for you:

Don’t share your toys: Your space is a work-only zone. Close your door or set up some type of divider. Keep files for work and home separate. Keep your desk and computer only for business.  Get the family their own computer. If that isn’t possible and you must share, create separate accounts.

Don’t be friendly: Set regular working hours, and keep them. Treat your home business like an office job. Define business hours, and let people know that working from home does not equal goofing off.

Do leave: Spending all day cooped up at home can be isolating. Get out of the house. Network with other small-business owners, take a lunchtime walk, or have a workout.

Sometimes it’s hard to treat working from home as seriously as going to the office. But when you do, you will be more productive.