In this article, I will tell you about the problems I encountered while working remotely and will show you ways to solve them. Apart from that, I will definitely name six indisputable advantages of remote work.
So, let's start with the problems:
1. You will have communication problems
The thing most remote workers face is communication problems. There are almost no conversations about nothing with colleagues and just people on the street and in cafes. This is bad from all sides: fewer new acquaintances, fewer impressions per day, during which, apart from work, almost nothing happens.
Sometimes this gives rise to a scary feeling: I'm not really an editorial staff member, but a sociopathic stay-at-home. There is another point. If a remote worker lives with someone in the same house (parents, relatives, girlfriend), and this person does not work, you’re sunk. Firstly, it will be distracting, they will want to discuss something with you, show you something, and so on. Secondly, while communicating in this format without interruptions, you can get tired of each other. Thirdly, this is a completely non-working environment.
How to solve it: Try going to a coworking space. I started doing this and was very surprised that people actually work in coworking, and not just drink coffee and chat. If you work with someone in the same house, you need to prohibit them from interfering with your work process, but also allocate time to communicate with people.
2. You need to master self-discipline
Discipline and responsibility are the only things that stand between a remote worker and being fired. When you don't see people at the workplace every day, it is very difficult to understand what they are doing after all, especially when they don’t need to track the time they spend on tasks. Maybe they’re just sitting around doing nothing? People imagine working from home as something cool and enjoyable, like you can work at the table, or you can work on any other comfortable surface – on the couch, on the floor, etc. But I would not recommend this – productivity is lost that way.
How to solve it: I advise you to write down how much time it takes to do various things during the day throughout the week. Be honest! It will not be easy and may not work from the first try. Also, I would recommend dressing as if you were going to the office every day. It is very easy not to do this, but how you look affects how you feel.
3. You can forget about your career for a while
For remote workers, things are bad with career growth, and it happens once every hundred years. Things are only worse for freelancers – they can't have it at all. I've heard that freelancers are paid less for the same amount of work in some organizations, and full-time, but remote employees are not promoted. This is normal – it is difficult to promote a person if he/she is not involved in the office’s life.
How to solve it: Stop being a remote worker.
4. You will not learn from your colleagues
I have worked in the same position in the office and at home. And I can say with full confidence that working from the office can teach a lot and this happens unobtrusively in the background. There is an opportunity to gain new knowledge in the office and learn things that you never thought about or even knew. This is a rewarding and versatile experience. When working from home, it's easy to become a “narrow” specialist.
How to solve it: Your free time should be spent on side projects for self-development or education. That is, your curiosity should be higher than usual.
5. Your lunch will often be worse than at the office
Usually, there will be no typical lunch. If you don't prepare your lunch in advance, you'll make do with sandwiches and tea. And since this is a sedentary job, the body is unlikely to require anything significant. I cannot say that this is a healthy lifestyle.
How to solve it: Learn how to make simple, quick, and preferably hot meals. The best options are salads, stews, and soups. You can reheat semi-finished products, but they will not bring any moral satisfaction.
6. Your personal space will disappear
If your apartment does not have a separate room for an office, then get ready for the fact that personal and work spaces will mix. For example, you will stop noticing the end of the working day, since the situation will not change. When it's time to take a break from work, it is very important to stop working. No phone, no mail, no computer.
How to solve it: Either work in a coworking space, or with strict prohibitions and restrictions on yourself.
7. You will become an inactive person
Here’s a fact from the captain obvious: working from home is a sedentary job. And due to the fact that you do not waste time on empty talk and the road, your 8 working hours turn into 11 hours. This cannot but affect your body. And going out into the street in the evening, you can feel like a person who has just left virtual reality and does not understand what is happening around.
How to solve it: Run in the evenings or after actually finishing work. Allocate time without the Internet (also quite effective), take breaks with changing activities (calling a friend, yoga, reading – the main thing is to warn your colleagues that you are not available for the next 30-60 minutes).
6 amazing moments of remote work:
- You no longer need to waste time and effort and a lot of money on one of the dullest and most exhausting "delights" of city and suburban life – commuting.
- Due to the lack of commuting and formal work moments (such as gatherings in the kitchen or general meetings), you will have more time for actual work, and you will feel super comfortable if all these group meetings are like a bone in your throat.
- Again, instead of this damn hour-long bus trip to work, you can sleep longer or watch a movie.
- You can drink tea or coffee at home as much as you want, and no one will think that you are shirking from work.
- Nobody will distract you anymore and discuss 100 recipes for barbecue marinade while you are busy.
- You can loudly listen to absolutely any music without shame. Very loudly.