A Swiss-based company, IWG, ran a study back in 2018 and discovered that 70% of people globally work remotely at least once a week. It also found that 53% percent of that same group works remotely for at least half of the week. The remote worker trend does not seem to be fading away anytime soon and it’s predicted by some that 50% of the U.S workforce will soon be remote too.
As someone who has been a remote worker for over a year, I have discovered a few things have helped me. Here are a few tips for people who are beginning their new remote lifestyle and even if you have been a remote worker for years, I think some of these tips can help.
- Create Your Work Space: Just because you are not in an office does not mean you can’t create your own “work space”. Even if it just means setting up a small desk with a chair and a few pieces of office supplies, you will be doing yourself a massive favor. A lot of people end up plopping down on their couch in front of their TV and work from their ottoman or coffee table. Not only is this horrible for your posture and will cause you back pain (trust me on this one), but you will inevitably turn on the TV and then you might as well call it a day. Set up a nice clean and quiet space and you will set yourself up for success.
- Establish Relationships with your Colleagues: When you work remotely it sometimes can feel like you are on a desert island with very little contact to your home office. You miss out on fun events and the office culture, but most importantly you miss out on human interaction. Humans are very social creatures and we tend to do better mentally when we have someone to talk to. Take the initiative and call people when you need help. It’s so easy to just send an email and remain hidden in the digital world. It will do wonders for you to talk to someone on the phone and establish a report with them. This helps you build relationships and understand people’s personalities better, which also allows you to work with them more effectively. Not only that, but I guarantee they will be more likely to help you in the future after you have had a few calls with them.
- Physical Health: Human interaction and mental health are important, but you can’t forget about your body. Working in an office means you will eventually get up and walk across the office for a meeting, go to the restroom, or to the break room for coffee. In an office you are getting steps in all day without even realizing it. While that alone is not enough, it can be much more than most remote workers get. When you work remote in an NYC apartment like I do, you will be lucky to hit 1,000 steps while skyping into meetings from your desk and maybe walking about 10 feet to use the restroom. Make sure you go for a long walk during your lunch break and go to the gym at least 4 times a week before or after work. This may seem like a lot, but trust me, your body needs it. The remote life can be very sedentary, so get up and move!
Of course, there are obvious tips for anyone with a job like stay organized, create and maintain an up to date calendar and above all, remain professional. All that being said, my tips above are arguably just as important and will make a big difference if you apply them to your remote lifestyle.
Do you work remotely? What are some of your tips to set yourself up for success? Share your thoughts in the comments.