Working From Home: Too Good To Be True?

My eyes were swollen from crying. It was official: I hated my job.

It was thankless; I spent my days talking to people being denied insurance coverage all day long. People that had just received horrible news about their health or the health of their spouse, people that were faced with insurmountable bills and coverage denials… My heart hurts. I was so depressed. I spent hours commuting, I never saw my new husband, and when I did, I was tired and sad and dreading the next morning. It was a vicious, unhealthy cycle.

My husband was tired of seeing me so broken down. He told me that there was no time like the present to pursue my passion. I needed to do something I enjoyed, because life was too short to be miserable. He asked me what would make me happy. Besides having babies, I realized I wanted to write. Emails, blogs, reports, website content… I loved writing.

So, I grabbed some chocolate and sat down in front of his desktop computer just a few short months after we had moved into the basement of his parent’s house to save some money, and I clicked onto Craigslist to look for my probably nonexistent dream job.

I searched.
Edit from home.
Work from home.
Write from home.
Customer service at home.

So many people ask me how I got hooked-up with my job, where they should start, and how I knew it wasn’t just a ploy to get me to give them my credit card information. I get it – it’s a scary world out there. I’m here to tell you that the opportunities you’re looking for are out there. I found myself reading all about all the telecommuting/work-from-home opportunities that I had no idea really existed. My heart was pounding from the excitement. I could totally make this happen.

I didn’t apply for many companies, but the first position I applied for had the title “Customer Service For Happy People”. The company was based in NYC and San Francisco, and was a fully-virtual office. I had reservations, but I tweaked my cover letter and submitted my resume anyway. I remember deciding to be real and fun-loving in my cover letter, so they could see I was truly the happy person they were looking for… I had it in me, right? My current job hadn’t totally broken me. Yet.

Here are some practical tips and tricks (and warnings) for finding your dream work-from-home job on the internet. Let’s be real: there are so many scams and hoaxes and many of them are very well-disguised. But if I’m being totally honest: they’re not that well disguised, people. Use common sense. Be practical. And do your research.

    Ironically, the company I work for is a marketing company, and Google is our love-language. So, it’s fitting that I tell you: the information you’re looking for is out there. When you apply, or even BEFORE you apply… find out the name of the company and Google them. Do they have a website? What’s the CEO’s name? Google him or her, too. Find all the info you can, and if anything seems fishy, write it down. You can ask them about it on your interview, do more research, or ask for a third-party opinion.
  2. BE SMART.
    If on your interview call you are hired on the spot and they ask you for your social security number or banking info for your direct deposit paycheck, it’s probably not legit. Sorry. Ask them for their employee handbook, for the contract they are offering you. Ask for paperwork so you can pour over that, next.
    If you’re talking to the CEO and his email is a Hotmail or Yahoo account, maybe ask some questions. In general, be sure that the company has company email. I feel like it’s just a good rule of thumb.
    I looked up our CEO on social media… found his blog, and his Twitter account – which had thousands and thousands of real people following and interacting with him. He posted often, but it wasn’t spammyit was genuine conversation, and that made me feel great. I also looked up my supervisor and found her LinkedIn. Some people have social media locked down, but sometimes, you can strike gold – and honestly, it’s 2015. A majority of companies have some sort of social media presence, be it Facebook or Twitter or an Instagram. It’s rare that a company will be completely missing from social media.
Of course, always proceed with caution – and there are some really, really good scammers out there… but there are also some incredible opportunities. I am living proof. But you’re never going to find something if you don’t LOOK, so just start searching and asking around.


  • Misty Blue

    I love this! Congratulations! I once worked in insurance and left for the same reasons as you – my soul was dying, I made people unhappy every day. I just got through to a second round in an interview with Shopify, working from home as customer service. It's amazing pay and the company sounds incredible, I'm really excited about the opportunity. Thank you for the tips. I am off to google!

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