3 do's and don'ts when working remotely

September 23, 2021

Remote work is something new for many people, the reason why building a healthy routine is important if you want to keep your productivity high and enjoy this lifestyle for a longer period of time. It brings on the table many advantages, but it also comes with some risks that are being better considered and eliminated as soon as possible.

Do's when working remotely

Do you know already what you can and cannot do when you work remotely? Here are some of the things that I do and learned after being a remote worker for quite a while. Some of them did not come naturally to me, but nowadays they are my core as a remote worker.

Work on a schedule

Everyone thinks that having the chance to work from anywhere means there is no need for a schedule or a routine. It is totally wrong and unsustainable in the long run because you will feel constantly under pressure and there will always be something to finish before turning off the laptop. It is important to stay flexible with your schedule, but try to set up some hours between which you are happy working and avoid, as much as possible, jumping directly from bed in front of the computer. Even if there is no need to spend time on your way to the office, it is still recommended to do things in the morning that you enjoy and make you feel better.

Disconnect from work

Checkin your emails was always something you were tempted to do during weekends, right? Now that your office is 5 steps away, you might also be tempted to check your laptop on Saturday morning or work during your holidays. Please do not do this! Even if it is convenient and also you might hear a lot of people around you doing it, it is a habit that will make you feel like you are always working. In order to avoid a prominent burnout, try to take a real break from your work, exactly like you used to do when you had an office 2 hours away from your home.

Connect with your work colleagues

Even if you do not have coffee breaks anymore and you never hang out after work, try to get to know your colleagues. When I first started working remotely, I had a half an hour social call, when I was trying to meet people I worked with: what they like, what they did not like, how the culture is, and what are the things we can do in common. However, there is much more than you should and can do, in order to get to know the people you spend so many hours with, even if it is virtually. Out of all of them, the most important for me was to understand where my colleagues come from because based on that I could understand much easier the way they were and also how to better collaborate with them (Check out the book "The culture map").

Don'ts when working remotely

These ones were difficult to accept and I had to learn them the hard way. I learned that it is important not to do some things when working remotely after I did them for quite a while and I could not enjoy anymore this chance I had.

Procrastination

Working remotely gives sometimes a feeling of "there is still time", a lot more flexibility. I could say that it is exactly the opposite. The more accountable you stay with your projects and tasks, the happier and more fulfilled you will feel with your job because remote working comes with fewer chances of having someone who can observe what you do on your screen or how much time you allocate to your breaks. Everything is a choice that you make, but all the minutes you procrastinate will come back to you and, trust me, it is not nice.

Remote working distractions

Do you work with your WhatsApp open? Do you check Facebook every now and then? These are all distractions that decrease your productivity and make it harder for you to stay focus in the long term. Try to minimize them as much as possible and maybe, if you find it hard to simply give up on them try to block some time when you check up on the distractions that you have.

Work office

Even if you work from your home or you change location often, it is important to choose a place that is your (temporarily) office, such that you can easily associate it with your working time and you do not feel uncomfortable spending many hours there. After working from different sofas, from bed and even from public transportation, nowadays my work office has always a table, where I can properly keep my elbows and a comfortable chair where my back position is correct. Think of the things that are important in your own office and make sure you also have them in your new remote working one.

These are just some of the lessons that I got while working remotely. I experimented and experienced a lot and I am staying always open. Working remotely is a continuous process, where you need to listen to your needs and set up your own priorities.

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