Advice: "I live with my parents and WFH, they keep interrupting me with chores during the work day"

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Dear Quota Team

I'm a fresh college grad, I just got my first full-time job working as an SDR and I'm fully remote. The company is great so far and I'm excited to have this opportunity. However, I'm really struggling with managing distractions. The problem is I still live with my parents so I'm working from a desk in my childhood bedroom and my parents are acting like since I'm home they can just give me chores and errands to run during the day.

Like last Monday for example, my mother asked me to bring her car to get the oil changed during my lunch break. I ended up wasting over 2 hours in the middle of the day driving back and forth and waiting for the mechanic to do the oil change while I sat in the waiting room for an hour. There's smaller stuff too, like when I'm working with my door closed, my mom will knock on the door once and just walk in to tell me something. She does this all the time and sometimes it happens while I'm on a call with prospects, she just walks in, fully on camera, and starts trying to talk to me. It's extremely embarrassing and unprofessional.

I am living under their roof rent free, and my parents pretty much cover my main living expenses (housing, food, etc.) so I don't really want to push back and tell them "no". But I do need to set some boundaries. How can I put my foot down without being ungrateful or upsetting my parents?

Distracted in Location Withheld 


Dear Distracted 

Ok, this is one we’ve never heard before. The thing is, it’s their house, and since you’re living there rent-free, you need to accept some level of discomfort, and understand that they have certain expectations for how you and they should interact. 

That being said, try having a conversation and explain (kindly) why you need privacy during the work day. Maybe you can put a sign on the door when you’re on a video call that indicates you’re not to be disturbed. Unless your parents are completely unreasonable, there’s no reason they shouldn’t give you the space you need to complete your job in a professional manner.

And if that doesn’t work, then it might be time to move. You’re in the sales world now and your earning potential is pretty much unlimited. Get your own space (maybe you can find something close to your family if they need your help), that way you can focus on getting the job done without any distractions. Good luck!

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