Remote Millennial https://remotemillennial.co Remote Work | Productivity | Mental Health Tue, 20 Oct 2020 05:20:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 https://i0.wp.com/remotemillennial.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/cropped-remote-millennial-logo-5.png?fit=32%2C32&ssl=1 Remote Millennial https://remotemillennial.co 32 32 184212007 5 simple ways to organize your remote job search https://remotemillennial.co/organize-remote-job-search https://remotemillennial.co/organize-remote-job-search#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 05:20:54 +0000 https://remotemillennial.co/?p=554 Job hunting doesn't have to be a pain. Learn how to keep your remote job search organized to save time and get your dream job.

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Job hunting search is nerve-wracking, isn’t it? The hours you spent, week after week, exploring job boards and LinkedIn, reading remote job search tips and emailing everyone you know. The work you’ve put out writing resumes and cover letters and recording introduction videos and answering question after question. The waiting. The uncertainty.

The good news is you can make your remote hunt search easier. Read on to learn 5 ways to save time and effort by organizing your remote job search.

1. Be more selective

The first step to get organized is to be more mindful of the applications you send.

Instead of churning out tons of applications, focus on fewer vacancies that align with your goals, skills, experience, and interests.

Before you start your remote job hunt, sit down and work out what the perfect position looks like. Ask yourself:

  • Which tasks and responsibilities would you like to have at your next job?
  • Are there any new skills you’re interested in learning?
  • What’s your salary range? To find this out, use Glassdoor to research average salaries in your industry, and make a budget with your monthly expenses to figure out how much you need.
  • Which benefits matter to you? Remote companies offer a broad variety of perks—from flexible schedules to unlimited vacation to tech and fitness allowances.
  • What does the perfect organization looks like? Company goals and values are also important to consider. If they clash with your own, it’ll make it harder for you to adapt to the team.
  • Are there any deal breakers? For example, if you’re looking for a customer support job but are not happy with working on the phone, write that down.

Answering these questions will give you better idea of what kind of positions you should focus on, reducing the list of prospective jobs and making it easy to work on one application at the time.

2. Keep records of your remote job search

Applying for a new position takes some time and research. Often, you’ll need to use several links and files to complete an application.

Instead of saving this vital information all over the place in your hard-drive or disorganized bookmarks on your browser, spend a few minutes creating a database to keep them all in one place.

It can be a spreadsheet, a Word document, or even a service like Huntr https://huntr.co.

That way, you’ll have access to all the crucial information at a glance, and will be clear on what the next step is for each application.

As a big Airtable fan, I’ve created a base to keep track of all the jobs that interest me. In this base, I record the vacancy ads, what stage of the application process it is, the links to the application form, the resume I sent, and other crucial information.

Want to give my Airtable base a try? It’s public on the Airtable website here:

3. Set up remote job alerts on Google Alerts

It takes a lof of time to get through several job boards and LinkedIn. To make things easier and find out about other offers that don’t show up on boards, the best way to go is to create Google Alerts.

It’s easy.

Log in to your Google account and go to the Alerts page.

For example, if you’re looking for a remote designer job, I suggest searching “‘designer’ remote” and then adding other search terms to refine the results.

Here, I’ve excluded internships and opportunities for students from my results. You can exclude other terms like locations or specific companies, too.

In ‘Sources’ select ‘Web’ to avoid getting results from news websites and blogs.

The ‘Deliver To’ option lets you choose where you’ll receive your results—to your Gmail account or to an RSS feed. Unless you’re job-hunting full time, it’s a good idea to reduce the frequency of the emails if you receive them via email. Daily notifications make it easy to lose track of the potential

When you’re finished, click on ‘Create alert’, and you’re done!

4. Automation

Automation is here to stay, and you don’t need to be a programmer to create simple automated processes for your remote job search. Setting up a few automated tasks will save you lots of time and keep your job hunting process consistent.

One simple way to start with automation is with Zapier, an online service that connects the apps you use and performs actions automatically.

For example, you can export your Google Alerts results to a spreadsheet by using this automated task, called ‘zap’, to export your Google Alerts RSS into a new row on your spreadsheet.

Zapier is beginner-friendly way to create automated processes with different apps, but there are other options in the market. A similar service, IFTTT, also allows you to create automated actions. However, building my own automated tasks, or applets, was much more difficult on IFTTT and I wonder if other users without programming experience will have the same experience.

Google Spreadsheet users can import their job search Google Alerts to their sheet by using the IMPORTFEED formula. You do need to run the command manually, but it still saves you some time by importing the results in seconds.

Apps like Streak help you keep out with email and schedule follow-ups.

There are tons of options to automate processes in your job search. These minor tasks add up time you can instead spend writing quality resumes and cover letters that’ll get your foot in the door.

5. Create a system that works for you

Job searching is a personal process, as it’ll depend on your industry, the positions you’re looking for, and the time you have to dedicate to it. You may spend several hours a day looking for a new job or squeeze an hour or two after work to apply to new positions.

So, it’s crucial to set up a system that works for you and adapts to your time and goals. Creating a system will keep motivated and focused on your goals, and help you avoid overwhelm.

One way of going about it is to batch your tasks. For example, if you have a job and are looking for more opportunities, it may limit your time to job hunt. So, focus on one task per day—follow up emails on Monday, browse boards on Tuesday, write resumes on Wednesday, write cover letters on Thursday, and apply on Fridays.

No system will work for everyone. Tweak yours to keep your job search manageable and prevent burnout.

Most of us can’t hire a VA to help us find a new role. Luckily, the vast amount of tools and applications at our disposal reduce the small, menial tasks of job hunting and let us focus on creating stellar applications.

Did you find these tips useful? Let us know in the comments below.

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📩 Weekly Remote Jobs Worldwide: fix these 5 common resume mistakes https://remotemillennial.co/weekly-remote-jobs-worldwide-fix-resume-mistakes https://remotemillennial.co/weekly-remote-jobs-worldwide-fix-resume-mistakes#respond Thu, 08 Oct 2020 06:18:54 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=517 Your weekly batch of international remote jobs and how to ensure the resume you'll send is on point.

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Hi there

Here’s a new batch of international remote jobs just for you. I’ve curated this list myself to ensure all these positions accept applicants worldwide. 

To make sure you don’t miss the next newsletter with fresh remote jobs and the latest insights about the future of work, please subscribe to my newsletter.


✏  REMOTE TIP OF THE WEEK

Before you hit ‘send’, make sure your resume is optimised to present you as the ideal candidate for a remote position. Check out this list of common resume mistakes and how to fix them, and give your resume a final check before applying. 


🌍 INTERNATIONAL REMOTE JOBS OF THE WEEK

Social Media

Community Manager at Mighty Bear Games 

Community Manager at Nimble Giant Entertainment 

Director of Social Media at Morning Brew

Remote Social Media Manager at Interaxis 

Video/Audio Editing

Video Editor at Escaping Reality 

Audio Editor at Chopra Global 

Video Editor Pro at OkDork

Marketing and PR

Global Media Relations Manager at WePlay! Esports 

Social Media Manager at Scorpion Internet Marketing 

Social Media Manager at Hello Alice

Freelancer Publicist at TOP Agency

Email Marketing Associate at Process Street 

Director of Marketing at PhoneBurner 

Project Manager, Content at Hubstaff 

Virtual Assistant at Diggity Marketing

Writing

Fulltime Marketing Writer at Uscreen 

Copywriter at LiveChat 

Full-Time Remote WordPress Blogger at WordCandy 

Freelance Business Writer at Fractl 

Remote Content Manager – B2B at Content Snare 

Tech & VC Writer at Animalz 

Design

Marketing Designer at ConvertKit

Designer at Basecamp 

Customer Support

Customer Success Manager at States Title 

Customer Advocate at HelpDocs 

Customer Success Manager at Heymarket 


That’s all for this week. 

I’d love to hear from you – did you apply to any of these positions? How did it go? 

Until next time. 


✏  REMOTE TIP OF THE WEEK

Before you hit ‘send’, make sure your resume is optimised to present you as the ideal candidate for a remote position. Check out this list of common resume mistakes and how to fix them, and give your resume a final check before applying. 


🌍 INTERNATIONAL REMOTE JOBS OF THE WEEK

Social Media

Community Manager at Mighty Bear Games 

Community Manager at Nimble Giant Entertainment 

Director of Social Media at Morning Brew

Remote Social Media Manager at Interaxis 

Video/Audio Editing

Video Editor at Escaping Reality 

Audio Editor at Chopra Global 

Video Editor Pro at OkDork

Marketing and PR

Global Media Relations Manager at WePlay! Esports 

Social Media Manager at Scorpion Internet Marketing 

Social Media Manager at Hello Alice

Freelancer Publicist at TOP Agency

Email Marketing Associate at Process Street 

Director of Marketing at PhoneBurner 

Project Manager, Content at Hubstaff 

Virtual Assistant at Diggity Marketing

Writing

Fulltime Marketing Writer at Uscreen 

Copywriter at LiveChat 

Full-Time Remote WordPress Blogger at WordCandy 

Freelance Business Writer at Fractl 

Remote Content Manager – B2B at Content Snare 

Tech & VC Writer at Animalz 

Design

Marketing Designer at ConvertKit

Designer at Basecamp 

Customer Support

Customer Success Manager at States Title 

Customer Advocate at HelpDocs 

Customer Success Manager at Heymarket 


That’s all for this week. 

I’d love to hear from you – did you apply to any of these positions? How did it go? 

To make sure you don’t miss the next newsletter with fresh remote jobs and the latest insights about the future of work, please subscribe to my newsletter.

Until next time. 

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5 common resume mistakes and how to fix them https://remotemillennial.co/5-common-resume-mistakes-fix-them https://remotemillennial.co/5-common-resume-mistakes-fix-them#comments Wed, 09 Sep 2020 17:18:58 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=495 Tired of going through job boards looking for international remote jobs? Subscribe to our newsletter to receive curated international remote jobs on your inbox once a week. You know you should proofread your resume, have a professional email address, and keep it under two pages long. But what other mistakes on your resume are making … Continue reading 5 common resume mistakes and how to fix them

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Tired of going through job boards looking for international remote jobs? Subscribe to our newsletter to receive curated international remote jobs on your inbox once a week.

You know you should proofread your resume, have a professional email address, and keep it under two pages long.

But what other mistakes on your resume are making recruiters pass on your application? Read on to find out about 5 common remote work resume mistakes and how to fix them.

1. Leaving remote work out of your resume

Why is this a mistake? To stand out, it’s important to show you understand what the position involves. By not mentioning remote work, it’s harder for the recruiter to see how your skills match the position. The more you show you’re ready to join a remote team, the better. 

How can you fix it? Start by mentioning any job you’ve had that didn’t require you to be in an office to complete it. Have you had any short-term freelance gigs? If you don’t have a lot of work experience, volunteering or a project for friends or family demonstrates you can get things done at home. 

What if you have no freelance experience whatsoever? Well, then focus on your teamwork and communication skills—these are vital to adapting in a distributed team. Mention which tools you used to manage your projects, share documents and communicate with your team. Chances are, you’re already familiar with a few applications the organization employs.

2. Applying without researching the company

Why is this a problem? You needs to prove you’re the right fit for the position and for the company. Do you align with the organization’s goals and values? Researching will let you decide if it’s a business you’d like to join. If you don’t share the same ideals, it may not be the right company for you.

How can you fix this? Start with the company’s website. Most businesses have sections about their story, their mission, vision, and details about their team. Look up their Glassdoor reviews—and how they handles those reviews. Check out their social media profiles. Then, use all this information on your resume. For example, if the company values teamwork and innovation, include how you worked with your teammates to complete a project, or how a novel idea you had saved your team time or money.

3. Not using templates

Why is this a problem? Although you shouldn’t send generic resumes, going to the other extreme and writing a new resume from scratch every time you send an application is inefficient. 

How can you fix it? Create a template—or a few, if you’re applying to different positions—you can tweak in a few minutes. The goal is to spend more time ensuring the text highlights your experience rather than worrying about layout details. Chances are you might even use text from other resumes to apply to a new position. Just make sure all the content relates to your current application and that it makes your skills stand out.

4. Cramming

Why is this a problem? A crammed resume is unpleasant and hard to read. Avoid sending a resume that gives the recruiter a headache. Your resume has to be a quick summary of your skills, and present your strongest skills and experience at a glance. Most applications also require a cover letter or ask additional questions—the perfect opportunity to

How can you fix it? First, ask yourself what do you want to highlight. Is it your education or your work experience? Start with the most important information. Moreover, you don’t need to describe every task, project and achievement in every previous job you’ve had. Instead, mention two or three of the achievement that align with the goals for the vacancy.

5. Leaving out links

Why is this a problem? You’re missing out on an opportunity to elaborate on your skills outside your resume and another way to support your achievements.

How can you fix it? Instead of adding too much information on your resume, keep it short and include links instead. For example, in my resume I mention I helped create advertising campaigns for brands operating in six countries, and added links materials I wrote—from social media content to radio ads.

Get your foot on the door by crafting a modern, thorough resume. By framing your earlier experience as skills transferable to remote work, researching the company, saving time by using templates with plenty of white space, and including links to support your experience, you’ll be on your way to get that interview. 

Do you have any tips to make a resume stand out? Do share in the comments below!

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10 remote jobs, and a tip to get things done https://remotemillennial.co/10-remote-jobs-and-a-tip-to-get-things-done https://remotemillennial.co/10-remote-jobs-and-a-tip-to-get-things-done#respond Mon, 07 Sep 2020 20:17:07 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=488 New international remote jobs and the latest insights about the future of work.

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Hi, and welcome to the first Remote Millennial newsletter. I’ve decided to post the first few numbers on my blog to give you an idea of what you’ll get in your inbox when you sign up.

By the way, you can sign up here.

Each week, you’ll receive remote work tips, insightful reads from across the internet, and the latest international remote work openings.

Let’s get started.


🚀 REMOTE WORK TIP OF THE WEEK 🚀

Gamify boring tasks.

It’s no secret we procrastinate boring tasks–washing dishes, vacuuming, replying to those emails left unread for days. 

But ignoring those tasks won’t make them go away.

On the contrary, procrastination makes things even worse. Those unread emails and unfinished tasks become a source of anxiety and stress the more you leave them unattended.

How to get them done? One way is to turn them into a game. 

Break them down into smaller tasks and challenge yourself to complete each one as fast as possible, with a reward if you get them done. 

I add all my boring tasks in my to-do list on Habitica, and keep my phone next to my computer so I can see the tasks easily. For each completed task, my character gains XP and some coins.

Do you have any tips to make remote work easier? Hit ‘reply’ to share them with me!

📰 LINK DUMP 📰

1. Perfectionism can sabotage you, but there’s a way out.

2. Unsurprisingly, monitoring doesn’t help remote workers be more productive. 

3. Hubstaff’s State of Remote Work After COVID-19 offers an optimistic view of remote work during and after the pandemic.

4. Is your productivity just not that great? Try time blocking.

5. Summer’s over, and life starts getting back to high speed approaching the end of the year. Let’s keep calm and prevent burnout.

🏹 JOB HUNTING RESOURCE OF THE WEEK 🏹

Are you just not getting interviews, no matter how many applications you send?

Your resume might need an intervention.

Skillcrush created this handy guide to create the perfect remote work resume.

💪 REMOTE WORK OPPORTUNITIES (WORLDWIDE) 💪

1. Marketing Video Artist at Kolibri Games

2. Product Designer at Xapo

3. Technical Writer at Cloudmersive

4. Content Marketing Manager at ReCharge

5. Marketing Designer at Readdle

6. 2D FX Artists at Flying Bark

7. Digital Producer at Modern Tribe

8. Marketing Funnel Builder at 2Marketing

9. Email Marketing Specialist for eCommerce for AdKings Agency

10. Creative Director (Maternity Cover) at The Smalls


That’s it from me for now. To make sure you don’t miss the next newsletter with fresh remote jobs and the latest insights about the future of work, please subscribe here.

Until next week.

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5 habits every remote worker should build https://remotemillennial.co/5-habits-every-remote-worker-should-build https://remotemillennial.co/5-habits-every-remote-worker-should-build#respond Wed, 22 Jul 2020 18:01:41 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=436 Although remote work may appear intuitive, you need the right equipment and to use the skills you have in creative ways. The good news is, you can develop those skills to work from home, get things done, and demonstrate you can be an asset to your prospective company.

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Looking for remote work? If so, you might have searched the web for tips or called your freelancer friends to find out how they get things done while stuck at home. 

You’re not the only one.

As the number of telecommuters increases, many were not prepared to continue with the same productivity levels from the start.

Although remote work may appear intuitive, you need the right equipment and to use the skills you have in creative ways. The good news is, you can develop those skills to work from home, get things done, and demonstrate you can be an asset to your prospective company. What are some of those skills? Read on to find out.

1. Responsiveness

Don’t make your employers and teammates chase you around. Instead, prove you’re dependable and start by replying to your messages promptly—in most cases, in one business day, except on weekends.

When you need to take care of demanding tasks or time-sensitive projects, turn notifications off and schedule times to reply to messages. Don’t forget to update your status to let other people know you’re not able to respond right away. In fact, companies like Toptal advocate for asynchronous work, or team members sharing information and replying when they can. 

Over time, you will end up joining dozens of chats with teams and individuals. Luckily, most messaging apps let you mute individual channels or conversations to make sure you only receive critical news about the projects you’re working on in that moment.

Although you want to stay on top of your messages, setting up boundaries is crucial, too. Set up business hours and stick to them. Of course, sometimes you’ll need to work overtime and be available outside your shift, but do it only for emergencies.

It may look like replying to business emails on a Saturday night proves their commitment, but in reality it just says they cannot manage their time.

Replying promptly to messages and maintaining business hours speaks volumes of your communication and time-management skills, which are among the most sought-after soft skills for remote and on-site positions. So, stay on top of your messages, but establish a healthy work-life balance.

2. Keep your equipment in good shape

Raise your hand if you’re making do at home with an old, slow computer.

For years, I was, too. 

True, a new computer is a significant investment. It takes effort to find the right choice, and even the cheaper ones come at a high price tag sacrificing quality and performance.

Unless your machine is falling apart, it’s likely you need not buy a new one. Instead, keep your current equipment in top condition. You won’t be ready to work from home if your machine freezes every half an hour or is too slow for video calls.

With only a few simple steps—like keeping your computer clean, updating the software and deleting useless files and apps, running frequent backups, and taking it for repairs and hardware upgrades—, you can breathe new life into your old machine and make it work better for longer.

Take proper care of your home computer to save yourself the hassle and be ready to take on a new remote position.

3. Log your time

Keeping track of your time is vital to understand how your productivity changes throughout the day. After a few weeks logging your tasks, patterns will emerge—where distractions come from and when they start, which projects take you longer to complete, and how to pace yourself throughout the day. Consequently, it’ll help you create a schedule that works for you and will give you more accountability and insights about your work.

If you’re not working from home yet, track the time you spend on hobbies or personal projects. So, when you get a new remote job, you’ll have a system in place to log and report your hours and set up the right schedule for you.

One way to go about this is the Pomodoro technique,  which organizes your time in 25-minute intervals with 5-10 minute breaks in between. After four 25-minute blocks, you can rest for a little longer. The goal is to help you concentrate and give your brain a chance to assimilate new information before the next batch of work. I find 25-minute blocks too short, especially when I need few minutes at the beginning to focus, so I work in 35-minute intervals instead.

Log how many blocks you work every day and how you use them, and over time you’ll start seeing progress. There are, of course, plenty of apps for that—I like Forest)—or keep a journal.

Or, use a time tracker to log tasks automatically while working on your computer. The one I’ve been using is TopTracker, a free program created by the freelance agency Toptal to help freelancers and clients log time spent in projects. 

By learning how to manage your time, you’ll be one step ahead in the remote work job hunt and will be ready to tackle the challenges of your new position.

4. Upgrade your skills

In the year of our Lord 2020, it’s not enough to put “Advanced Microsoft Office skills” on your resume. 

Remote teams use a stack of tools to manage projects, so it’s vital to become familiar with them to show iniciative and adaptability. The quicker you learn new software, the faster you’ll adapt to your new position.

Keep your skills updated and stand out on your application by signing up for online courses. To find out which classes to take next, pay attention to the requirements on the job descriptions of the positions that interest you. Do they require skills you don’t have yet? Take note and start looking for courses.

Educational platforms like Coursera, EdX, and Alison offer a wide variety of topics, and many SaaS companies have courses specific to their services. For example, if you’re keen to learn online marketing, HubSpot offers courses not just on how to use their platform, but also on marketing and sales.

Create alerts on your Google account to keep up with news and trends on your industry and relevant tools, and don’t forget to share the knowledge with friends and colleagues at your new company.

5. Disconnect

When the physical division between work and personal time becomes the few steps separating your dinner table from your bedroom, it’s easy to work for too long or to get distracted. So, you need to bring some divisions back.

Working overtime for lengthy periods is detrimental for your physical and mental health—from stress and burnout to the negative effects of sitting around for extended periods.

Luckily, disconnecting is not as difficult as you may think. Start with designating one dedicated space to work—your home office, your dinner table, your balcony, a desk inside your bedroom, somewhere you can sit comfortably and focus on the task at hand. If possible, however, avoid working in bed.

If you’re using a personal computer, create a new, password-protected session just for work-related activities. This is not only safer, but will keep all your work files in one place without getting them mixed up with your tax files and holiday photos. At the end of your workday, close the session and use another one for personal matters.

Close Slack, email, and any other business communication platforms on your phone and computer. Any notifications will make you want to check your messages and log back in. If needed, add a note on your profile on most messaging apps to let people know when they can expect to hear from you. 

Instead of spending hours browsing through social media on your time off, schedule video chats or even good old-fashioned phone calls with friends and family if you’re unable to visit in person. You’ll also benefit from pick up a hobby that requires you to step away from your devices.


Working from home means building positive habits to take care of yourself, manage your time, and continue learning the skills that’ll make you an invaluable part of your team.

Are there other skills you think are important for remote work? Let me know in the comments below!  

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I stopped trying to be productive. Here’s what happened https://remotemillennial.co/i-stopped-trying-to-be-productive https://remotemillennial.co/i-stopped-trying-to-be-productive#respond Sat, 27 Jun 2020 12:58:43 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=422 What about the productivity hacks to work from home effectively, the productivity apps, the to-do lists, and the routines? After the pandemic, none of them worked.

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Spoiler alert: it made me more productive.

I used to love reading—and writing—about productivity. The thought of achieving a balance between success and happiness was indeed alluring, and I was determined to find the right tools, refine the perfect system. Moreover, I wanted to help others do the same.

Then, COVID-19 happened.

My already declining mental health worsened. I was always tired, struggled to focus and dreaded the start of my workday. No matter how long I worked, I was not getting much done and had no energy to spend time on the personal projects that mattered to me.

What about the productivity hacks, the apps, the lists, and the routines?

None of them worked.

My morning routine consisted of me staying in bed for two hours after the alarm went off, groggy and anxious, only to rush to the kitchen to eat my breakfast in a hurry before work.

The planner I lovingly bought last year became a source of anxiety and guilt as unfinished tasks piled up and rolled over day after day, for weeks.

Blocking distractions meant that instead of getting distracted with YouTube videos, I stared at my screen in paralyzing fear, second-guessing every word of my emails and social media messages to my clients’ customers.

I used to love remote work—it gave me the chance to work with people from all over the world and companies in different industries and provided me with experiences and skills. But now, it was making me miserable.

However, I was missing the obvious: remote work was never the problem. The situations created by the pandemic were

You see, working from home meant flexible schedules and not being tied to an office. More importantly, it was meant to be voluntary.

It never meant not leaving your home at all for two months, unable to meet with friends and relatives, forced to work without the right space and equipment, perhaps worrying about your health and financial stability while a worldwide pandemic wreaked havoc in society as we know it and killed hundreds of thousands of people. In the right conditions, we know remote work benefits companies and employees alike.

Work after the pandemic is an unknown world with new rules. To me, it seemed like the system I created to keep me focused and productive collapsed over my head and it left me trying to build a new one while nursing my wounds. 

Have I found an alternative system? Not yet, but I’m getting closer. Here are some steps I’m taking to get back on track.

Forget about to-do lists

For some, lists are still the way to go to get things done. Others take more existential approaches to keep them focused on their goals.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work for me anymore. 

I already know what I have to do—on top of doing client work I have to finish this blog post, update my portfolio and write short stories for my newsletter. These tasks are always on the back of my head, looming over me as I do yoga right out of bed or take 20 minutes to have lunch away from the computer.

So I no longer structure my time based on which tasks I will do that day. Instead, I block out time to work on any personal project, giving me the flexibility to pick what I want to do on in that moment depending on my energy levels and mental health. This was, I still get some things done without pushing myself beyond my means.

I have also stopped planning every single hour of my day. If I take longer to make lunch or prefer to spend more time writing than scheduling social media posts, or if I’m too fatigued and can’t get anything done no matter how hard I stare at my screen, then I have the freedom to go easy that day without feeling guilty about messing up my carefully planned schedule.

Be realistic

Sometimes I still wish I had the strength and willpower to work from 7 am to 11 pm. To run on 4 hours of sleep, caffeine and ambition and remain sharp, efficient, laser-focused on my tasks.

In reality, if I sleep less than seven hours I’m useless the next day. A cup of regular coffee will take me to the brink of an anxiety attack. All attempts to work for long periods without breaks have only made me miserable, rendered me unable to make progress and enjoy whatever success I’ve achieved.

Clearly, living to work, well, didn’t work. It affected my psychological health to the point I was not just unhappy, but I wasn’t getting anything done.  Something had to give.

Now I dedicate two hours each weekday and four to five hours on weekends to personal projects. This is enough for me to see some progress without neglecting my health, my relationships, and the cleanliness of my living space. 

Of course, it may be different for you. Maybe you’d rather get up at 4 am on weekdays to work on your personal project and have the weekends off to spend time with your kids. Or maybe you’re fine with working 14 hours on a Sunday and take it easy the rest of the week. Whatever it is, instead of trying to mold your life according to someone else’s routine, create your own. 

Use rewards, not punishments

I used a few habits tracking apps before, but none worked until I tried Habitica.

Habitica is a gamified habit building app in which the health and progress of your RPG character depends on your real-life habits. If you complete whatever habits and daily tasks you’ve created, your character gains coins, experience, and even random items. If you don’t, it takes a hit. If it loses all its health, it dies. 

After starting using this app I noticed that I work much better with positive reinforcement rather than with penalties for bad habits. While punishments make me more anxious, and thus more likely to put off the task, rewards turn an intimidating task into an enjoyable one. If I want to level up my character or buy extra equipment for it, I’ve got to finish my tasks first. Focusing on rewards rather than punishments may work for other people with anxiety.

Also, the social aspect of the app helps with accountability and provides with much needed moral support and tips. Habitica has hundreds of groups, called guilds, of users gathered around a common interest or goal, and many challenges require you to check in with your guild and share your progress. 

Celebrate all achievements

One habit Habitica has helped me reinforce is to celebrate victories, big and small. Finishing a short story gets a pat on the back just as cooking a meal or getting out of my pyjamas and into regular clothes in the morning. 

This helps combat negative self-talk. If you haven’t experienced it, let me tell you it can be debilitating. If all you can say to yourself is all the ways you’re messing up, it’s difficult to continue working, evaluate your growth objectively and be proud of your accomplishments. 

Now that I have my negative self-talk the new job of focusing on my achievements instead of my mistakes and insecurities, I can look back at my day and understand the progress I’ve made and what I need to do next.

Is this new, less structured approach to productivity working? Well, for me it is. Since then my negative self-talk and anxiety have decreased, and I went from getting nothing done to starting my flash fiction newsletter, sending proposals to clients, and writing posts for my remote work blog again.

If there’s something the pandemic has taught me about productivity is that it shouldn’t be only the number of hours you work or the income it generates or your weekly KPIs. They do matter, but not as much as your mental health, your well-being, and the fulfilment you get from work.

Slowing down and focusing less on results and more on the small steps has done more for my productivity and mental health than any hack, fancy to-do list app or beautiful daily planner. Instead of dreading getting up in the morning only to leave half-my tasks unchecked, I feel good about getting down to work and do my best, whatever that means that day. Some days I finish a short story in one sitting. Other, I struggle to write 100 words. Both are fine. Both are progress. 

Do you have any tips not mentioned in the post? Let me know in the comments below!

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The mental health cost of working from home https://remotemillennial.co/mental-health-cost-working-from-home https://remotemillennial.co/mental-health-cost-working-from-home#respond Thu, 23 Apr 2020 04:22:07 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=384 Remote work can affect your mental health in different ways, but there are ways to cope.

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When it comes to remote work, there seem to be two different camps: those who swear by it, and those who’d rather pass.

Its proponents see it as a way to avoid long commutes and reduce pollution levels, as well as open spaces for people with disabilities and working parents,

On the other hand, others express concerns about staying productive at home or the costs of making employees responsible for some operative costs, such as internet connections and software, online security, home offices or co-working spaces. 

Although some large companies do cover some of these costs, it many cases it’s still up to each person to deal with them.

One of the most important challenges, however, are the effects of remote work on people’s mental health. 

Luckily, there are things we can do to minimise the impact of working on your own and stay happy and healthy. The first step is to understand what aspects of remote work may affect workers.

Isolation

One of the main selling points of remote work is to avoid long commutes and crowded, noisy offices to be more productive. Although many options are available for those who still want to work outside their home, 84% of respondents to Buffer’s State of Remote Work 2019 claimed they work from home most of the time.

Unsurprisingly, and according to the report, many remote workers feel lonely and isolated.

Making friends as an adult can be difficult, so offices are an important way for people to socialize–from after-hour drinks to the extended network of people you can meet through coworkers and clients. Staying home alone most of the day doesn’t help to make new connections or maintaining old ones. And that’s not great for your mental health.

Lack of work-life balance

Working from home has more implications than difficulties making new friends.

Usually, going to an office every day means designating a time and a space to work separate from your personal life. The division, however, is harder to draw when any space in your home can be a place to sit with your laptop and work.

This lack of separation between work and rest often results on people working during their days off and on holidays. In fact, 20% of remote workers took no time off in the last year.

Needless to say, the lack of personal time to rest, nurture relationships with family and friends, and pursue other interests is detrimental to mental health.

Excessive screen time

Remote work relies heavily on technology, and computers are employees’ main tools. So, most remote workers spend the majority of their day looking at screens, which is unhealthy in different ways.

For starters, long periods of screen time without adequate rest are plain bad for the eyesight, as it may cause eye strain and worsen dry eye syndrome.

Lack of exercise is also a big concern. At the office, even those small moments like getting up from your desk to get coffee in the kitchen help you stretch your legs. Also, many companies invest in equipment like ergonomic chairs, desks and large monitors. At home, it’s up to you to equip your office, assuming you have enough space. 

Without ergonomic equipment, daily exercise and plenty of breaks to stand up and stretch your back and shoulders will definitely feel it. I know I did.

When I quit my office job and started working from home, all I had was an old desk that was too tall for me and one of the chairs from my dining table. Unsurprisingly, after a couple of days, the back pain was so bad I couldn’t work there for more than an hour at the time.

Even today, without a proper ergonomic chair and a stand for my laptop, I start getting back pain again if I go a few days without exercise.

It’s easy to see how these situations affect your physical and mental health. But what do they cause, exactly? Let’s have a look.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Depression

Many aspects of remote work make people more susceptible to developing depression. 

First of all, working alone makes people feel isolated and disconnected from their companies, as well as their friends and families.

Job safety and financial concerns also play a part in developing mental health conditions over time. Many remote workers are freelancers who rely on themselves to keep a steady flow of projects. Others work in part-time or seasonal positions that don’t provide enough financial stability. 

This uncertainty causes a catch-22 in which depression affects productivity and efficiency, which in turn reduces their feeling of self-worth.

Burnout

Remote workers, and freelancers specifically, take on many extra responsibilities on top of producing work, including promoting themselves, securing more projects, and upgrading their skills. All these added pressure leads to burnout.

In very small amounts, stress is not negative to our physical and mental health. It keeps us on our toes and gives us that extra push to complete a project. Stress, however, is not meant to be permanent. 

When that happens, it can have the opposite effect. Instead of giving us that extra push, it drags us down, makes us feel unfocused and apathetic, doubt our skills and abilities, changes our sleep patterns, and even depend on food or substances to feel better.

That’s what burnout looks like, and it can be a catalyst for other mental health issues, like depression and anxiety.

Anxiety

The idyllic image of remote workers chilling on the beach is not always true. For many, it’s plagued with uncertainty.

Working in distributed teams can make it difficult for members to see their progress and feel part of a team that’s accomplishing tangible goals. In turn, we may feel left out of the company’s achievements and have unrealistic views about our skills and performance.

Anxiety disorders (including phobias, social anxiety and panic disorders) are among the most common mental health conditions. In the United States alone, over 31% of adults experience an anxiety disorder at any point in their lives. 

It’s important to understand the difference between healthy amounts of stress and anxiety and an anxiety disorder. The latter is persistent and gets in the way of everyday life activities, and it can manifest in different ways: from restlessness and trouble concentrating and falling asleep to feeling faint and shortness of breath.

What can we do?

Although the picture looks bleak, remote work is not all doom and gloom. Far from it! With an individualized strategy, it’s possible to prevent mental health issues and stay happy, healthy and productive while working on your own. 

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution, though. To find what works for our personal situation, we’ll need the self-awareness to recognize unhealthy habits and what you can do to improve.

Some of the steps you can take to keep good mental health while working remotely are:

  • Keep a separate space to work. It can be a home office, a co-working space, or a coffee shop you like. Even if you work in your bedroom, avoid working from bed as much as possible. 
  • Build a strong support network. Staying in touch with friends, family, and coworkers is vital to stay grounded and healthy. 
  • Communicate with coworkers. Many remote companies pride themselves in their flexibility and relaxed hierarchy. Make connections with coworkers who may offer friendship or, at least, a helping hand when work gets hard.
  • Work out. Although exercise alone cannot cure a mental health condition, it has been proven time and time again to boost your mood and bring some relief. 
  • Get a hobby. Having interests outside work keeps your mind sharp and your mood high. If possible, try out a hobby that lets you step away from the computer for a while—reading, gardening, cooking or playing a musical instrument are some popular options.
  • Set up business hours. Just because you’re working remotely it doesn’t mean you should be available 24/7. Set up your business hours and set clear expectations with your coworkers and clients to give yourself a break.
  • Block distractions. Being distracted constantly can affect your mental health by making you more anxious and less productive. Mindfulness, meditation, blocking distractions, and working on one task at the time may help.

Although remote work is not a novelty anymore, its growing prevalence brings into attention potential effects in mental health, time management, and productivity. The good news is, it’s possible to find ways to maintain good mental health while working on your own. With some planning, self-awareness and the right strategies, you can get everything done and achieve your goals. 

Are there any other aspects of mental health for remote workers we didn’t cover in this blog post? Let me know!

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6 genius apps that are boosting my productivity in 2020 https://remotemillennial.co/6-genius-apps-productivity-2020 https://remotemillennial.co/6-genius-apps-productivity-2020#respond Wed, 19 Feb 2020 22:10:23 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=349 As a freelancer or remote worker, your computer is your main work tool. So, I’ve put together a list with the 6 most useful productivity apps I’ve been using so far, along with an alternative for you to try out.

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As a freelancer or remote worker, your computer is your main work tool. So, the apps you choose can make a difference in your productivity and how enjoyable you find work.

Nobody wants to waste an afternoon struggling with apps that don’t work or don’t have the right features.

Your needs change with your goals and career. Luckily, with so many options in the market nowadays, finding the right apps for your projects is easier than ever. 

I’ve written about productivity apps before, but since then I’ve upgraded my equipment and discovered new, better options for my current work. So, I’ve put together a list with the 6 most useful productivity apps I’ve been using so far, along with an alternative for you to try out.

Agenda

I’ve tried several note-taking, project management and writing apps over the years, but none included exactly what I needed. Then I came across Agenda.

Agenda is a powerful note-taking app for MacOS with plenty of features to help you run your projects in one place. Its robust text editor supports formatted text and attachments, and allows you to organise your notes in different ways. 

Agenda is free to use with most of its most essential features, but the paid subscription gives you even more flexibility.

How does it help me stay productive?

What I like the most about Agenda is its integration with my calendar and the ability to create events, link notes to those events, and create reminders. 

For example, every new blog post is an event scheduled in my calendar, with a note containing the blog post linked to it. When I’ve finished writing the post, I mark the task as finished and remove it from my agenda. 

Yes, I use dark mode for everything.

About Agenda:

Available for macOS, iOS.

Free with basic functionality, $25 to upgrade to premium features.  Their subscription model lets you keep the unlocked premium features even if you don’t renew it. A subscription gives you access to any new features released during that year.

Alternative: Evernote

ContentStudio

It takes time and effort to keep your social media up and running, but the right app and planning can make this task easier.

In my case, I came across one app that has everything I need, and more.

I bought the lifetime version of ContentStudio a few years ago, and I have no regrets. ContentStudio is a powerful social media management and content marketing tool to help you take control of your social media and content in one place. It doesn’t just let you schedule social media posts for different platforms, it also helps curate and share external content, promote your blog posts, track your analytics and even generate reports.

How does it help me stay productive?

I admit I don’t use Contentstudio to its full potential. What I like the most about this app is its publishing features, which helps share customised content in different platforms.

After all, you wouldn’t post the same copy on Instagram and Twitter, right?

Furthermore, its Discovery feature allows me to curate content without time-consuming Google searches. 

About ContentStudio:

Available as a web app and for Android.

Alternative: Buffer

Airtable

Excel gives you nightmares? Try Airtable, instead.

Airtable is an online collaboration tool that combines spreadsheets with database features to manage all kinds of projects, from content calendars to personal budgets. You can customize every column with a different type, like check boxes, dates, or drop-down lists.

It organises your projects in bases, each one with as many spreadsheets as you need. Start a new base from scratch or choose among several templates available, both from Airtable and other users. More interestingly, although the spreadsheet is the default view, you can also switch to a calendar or a Kanban view.

How does it help me stay productive?

I use Airtable to keep track of my business-related projects, from my budget and finances to my job-hunting process and my editorial calendars. It’s flexible enough to let me edit the bases as I go along without getting too complicated. 

About Airtable:

Available for web, Android, iOS, Windows, macOS.

Free with basic functionality, $20/month to upgrade to premium features. 

Alternative: Google Spreadsheets

Workona

Credit: Workona

How many bookmarks do you have? And how many of those have you used again? My guess is, way too many.

This is where workspaces come into play.

With Workona, a Chrome extension, you can create workspaces on your browser to keep important links handy and save tabs when it’s time to switch to a different project.

How does it help me stay productive?

I’ve created workspaces for every project I’m working on, and for personal time online. This helps me work with fewer distractions, keep useful links at hand, and return to pending tasks faster.

About Workona:

Available for Chrome

Free with limited features, $6 per month for the Pro version, including unlimited workspaces and priority support.

Alternative: Toby

Qbserve

Credit: Qbserve

Tracking your time is one of the best ways to use it more efficiently. Automated tracking does the heavy lifting for you and generates enough data to help you optimise your day.

Qbserve is one of the many apps on the market that does that, but it offers plenty more functionality to make it an excellent tool for freelancers. For example, it includes automatic project tracking, invoice generation, and in-depth performance reports.

How does it help me stay productive?

The most useful feature for me is the timesheet, which shows how I’ve spent my time on the computer. It helps me find patterns of productivity and distraction and gives me an idea of how long I take to complete a project.

About Qbserve:

Available for macOS

Free trial, 1 payment of 27 euros for all premium features.

Alternatives: RescueTime

Audible

It’s not all about the hustle, right?

I used to be sceptical of audiobooks until I listened to ‘The heart’s invisible furies’ by John Boyne, a few months ago. I would have finished it in two months instead of two weeks if it wasn’t for the audiobook. Since then, I’ve started listening to more audiobooks to speed up my reading. 

Although it’s not the only audiobook service on the market, Audible is the most popular. And with its large selection of titles and original productions, you’ll have plenty of options to beef up your listening queue and keep you entertained.

How does it help me stay productive?

I’ve found that music is distracting sometimes. After all, it’s hard to edit a blog post if I’m head-banging to Arctic Monkeys’ b-sides. So, listening to an audiobook for a few hours helps me get in the zone and keeps work entertaining. 

But productivity is not all that matters. With audiobooks, I’ve started making progress on books I had been reading for months, so I no longer feel guilty about taking so long to finish one book. In turn, this keeps me motivated and ready to start the next one.

About Audible:

Available for iOS, Windows, Android, and web player.

1 month free trial, then $14.99 per month with one free book.

Alternative: Libby

As your projects and tasks change, you might find you have to explore other apps that fit those needs. But with so many options, the problem will be deciding on one. Hopefully, this list will give you a few ideas.

Have you discovered a new app in 2020 that boosted your productivity and made your life easier? Let us know in the comments below?

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Need the perfect morning routine? Ask yourself these 4 questions first https://remotemillennial.co/perfect-morning-routine-4-questions https://remotemillennial.co/perfect-morning-routine-4-questions#respond Wed, 15 Jan 2020 19:03:46 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=321 You don't have to wake up at 5 AM to be productive. Ask yourself these four questions to create a morning routine that works for you.

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I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about morning routines: from the CEO who runs 10 km at 5 AM to celebrities who swear by cold showers.

What do all these routines have in common?

They work well for that person, but they might not work for everyone else.

The truth is, you don’t have to wake up at 5 AM. You don’t have to work out first thing in the morning or shiver under a cold shower.

That hasn’t worked for me, and it may not work for you, either.

Creating a morning routine that works for you is a matter of trial and error, but you can save time by answering a few simple questions.

What does an average day look like to you?

Let’s start by creating a better picture of your day.

To do this, make a list of all the things you do in a week. Include everyday tasks like work, cooking, and exercising, to those you do once or twice a week, like doing laundry or grocery shopping.

When you put all your tasks on paper, it’s easier to get a quick but comprehensive view of what you need to get done. In turn, it’ll help you see what you need from your morning routine.

For example, if you’re physically active throughout the day, make a healthy breakfast and light exercise an essential part of your routine. Or, if you spend most of your day sitting on a desk, intensive workouts and meditation will keep you energized and productive.

Are you an early bird or a night owl?

Believe it or not, your genes may be playing a big part in your sleep cycle and preferences.

And even though you can train your body to wake up at a different time, it will take time and effort, which you could use to create other productivity habits.

In the end, good sleep is the foundation of a productive day. Waking up early doesn’t matter as much as getting enough sleep and waking up at the right time for you.

So, if you’re a night owl but try to wake up at 5 AM every day, you’ll find you wake up groggy and tired. That, in turn, makes it less likely for you to stick with your plans for the morning.

If you don’t have a reason that forces you to wake up at an hour that’s not natural for your body, consider working with what you have, set up a waking up time that suits your lifestyle, and use your energy on creating healthy sleep habits.

When do you feel your most energized and productive?

Photo by Cathryn Lavery on Unsplash

According to this survey, 11 AM is the most productive hour of the day, and we’re only productive about three hours every day.

So, with such a small window of productivity, we do need to make the most out of it. 

Think about how you feel in the morning and what your energy levels are. Do you wake up well-rested and ready for the day? Does it take you a long time to shake off the grogginess?

If you get out of bed invigorated and ready for the day, think of what could help you maintain those high energy levels throughout the day. It could be light exercise, like yoga or going for a walk, a healthy breakfast, or meditation.

Alternatively, if it takes you a long time to feel alert and awake in the morning, ditch coffee and go for green tea instead. A cup of green tea has a lot less caffeine than a cup of coffee and contains L-theanine, an amino acid that combines with caffeine to boost your alertness and focus.

What are your goals?

Before you start planning your morning routine, consider what your short- and long-term goals are. They will determine what you need to get out of the first few hours of the day.

For example, if you have a deadline coming up, meditation or journaling may help keep you relaxed and focused on your tasks. 

To keep your eyes on the prize, starting a journal can help you keep them in mind and motivate you to continue working on them. Start a gratitude journal to help you remember the good things in life or morning pages to clear your head.

Or, if you have a big, scary assignment you’ve been putting off for some time, consider getting it done first. Delaying essential tasks will not only set you back on your goals but will also make you feel guilty and unproductive. For example, I’ve made it a goal not to check social media before 1 PM. First of all, it’s easy to spend a lot more time than planned scrolling through feeds, and the content may put me in the wrong mood for the day. 

So, getting priority tasks done first will clear up the rest of the day for less demanding projects. 

Now, what?

With all that information, you have what you need to come up with the morning routine that works best for you.

For example, my morning routine as a freelancer looks like this.

  • The night before, I write down my schedule for the following day, and usually, I go to bed at about 11 PM. 
  • Wake up at 6 AM. 
  • Stretch, drink water.
  • Write fiction for 1 hour
  • Write or edit my blog post for 1 hour.

To me, writing is the most important tasks of my day, so I’ve added it to my morning routine to get it done even before I start doing client work. I hardly ever write at night when I’m tired and watching Netflix is more appealing.

But let’s see how the rest of my morning goes:

  • Breakfast. Wait, I work before having breakfast? Yes, for a couple of reasons. First, I’m often not hungry right after getting out of bed. Also, I’ve noticed that getting out of bed gives me some momentum I can use to get some writing done. Making breakfast right after getting out of bed wastes that momentum.
  • Start working on client projects. Now that I’ve spent some time working on my projects, I can concentrate on client work for the rest of the day.

I don’t work out early in the morning, as I’m often too groggy to make the most out of my workout routine. I prefer going to the gym right before lunch or going to yoga or for a run after work.

As you can see, I’ve adapted my morning routine to my needs and priorities, even though it doesn’t look like other routines you’ve seen online.

If done right, your morning routine will keep you healthy, happy, and productive. By answering a few simple questions, you can start creating a morning routine that suits your lifestyle, goals, and preferences. 

Do you have more tips about creating the perfect morning routine? Let me know in the comments below!

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6 reasons why remote work might not be right for you https://remotemillennial.co/6-reasons-why-remote-work-is-not-right-for-you https://remotemillennial.co/6-reasons-why-remote-work-is-not-right-for-you#respond Mon, 14 Oct 2019 14:15:53 +0000 http://remotemillennial.co/?p=274 Do you think you're ready to say goodbye to your office and start working remotely? Read this first to find out if remote work is the right fit for you.

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Let’s face it—in many countries, remote work is not precisely a novelty anymore. In the United States alone, 43% of employees are telecommuting at least some of the time.

Professionals are options to work remotely for many different reasons.
For example, people who work from home some or all the time report higher levels of job and life satisfaction.

However, the advantages do not mean it’s the right type of work for everyone.

If you’re still working in an office, chances are you’ve wondered if remote work is for you. After all, it offers benefits such as schedule flexibility and eliminating commutes. These perks are ideal for working parents and people who work far away from their homes.

Are these benefits enough to keep you going after you’ve started working remotely?

Getting quality work done on time requires a different mindset and skills, and it might not be the right fit for some.

Do you think you’re ready to say goodbye to your office? Read this first to find out if remote work is the right fit for you.

1. You like working with people

Let’s face it. Being in an office gives you plenty of opportunities to interact with others, and some jobs require you to socialize with dozens of new people every day. From coworkers to clients, many jobs are an opportunity to stand out in a crowd.

Is that something you’d miss?

Loneliness is a common problem among remote workers. In fact, 21% of participants in Buffer’s State of Remote Work Survey 2018 mentioned that it’s their primary concern.

And while some welcome their alone time finding it to be beneficial to their well-being and productivity, for others, it may lead to feelings of loneliness and disconnectedness.

Of course, there are ways around that.

Many freelancers and remote workers use co-working spaces or get work done from cafés. However, that’s an additional expense that many companies do not cover for you.

Others choose to attend the office a few times a week to have some interaction and catch up with their coworkers. But if your team is fully remote or if you’re working from overseas, this will not be an option for you.

It is possible to find chances to work with other people without spending too much money. For example, use Meetup and Facebook events to find co-working and networking events in your area—many of them for free.

2. You need a clear separation between work and personal life

When you work at an office, the routine of getting dressed in the morning and leaving home to go to an office and then checking out at the end of the day acts as a barrier between work and personal time.

Although sometimes office workers also take work home or end up putting on hours during breaks or holidays, it’s easier for them to separate work time at the office and relax time at home.

This separation is harder to achieve when you work from your living room or a desk in your bedroom.

Even worse—many remote workers find themselves checking their Slack messages before bed to catch up with coworkers from overseas or replying to emails on holiday to reassure a client.

If you’d rather not use a co-working space, create a dedicated office space in your home. Preferably with plenty of natural light and away from distractions like televisions, video game consoles, or your bed.

Of course, setting up a home office will require some effort. You’ll probably have to buy extra furniture and spend some time putting it together. Is this something appealing to you?

Another alternative to get you out of the house without paying for a co-working space or spending money on coffee is working from a public library. In many countries, public libraries offer free WiFi and a quiet space to focus on your work.

3. You don’t enjoy working with technology

Photo by Julia Joppien on Unsplash

Have you ever heard of Slack?

Are you just nostalgic about going to the cubicle next to you to deliver an actual document to a coworker?

Are you not in the know about the latest collaboration tools?

Many remote positions require at least working knowledge of several tools. Also, companies are always looking for the best solutions for their processes and may change applications or add new services that you’ll have to learn to use very quickly.

If you’re not confident with technology or don’t enjoy learning about the latest collaboration tools, you won’t have the best time working remotely.

4. You need external conditions to keep you accountable

Just imagine.

You see photos of the fantastic HQ Christmas dinner on their Slack channel while you sit at home, alone, in your pajamas.

Would that make you feel left out?

For many remote workers, not having their team around is a challenge because social interaction helps them feel involved and committed to the goals and the company.

Sometimes, the perks of remote work and loyalty to the company might not be enough motivation to keep you going. When you feel left out or unmotivated, Slack chats won’t necessarily be enough pressure to get you working as much as having your boss in the corner office or your coworkers keeping tabs on your progress from the desks next to yours.

As always, every company has different ways to help their coworkers stay motivatedfrom keeping communication channels open to creating water-cooler moments online. But none of those efforts will work if it doesn’t come from you.

5. You prefer close collaboration and management rather than working independently

Often, remote work feels like it’s you and your laptop against the world.

Don’t get me wrong. Being responsible for your results gives you much creative freedom, especially when you’re away from constant supervision from bosses or nosy coworkers.

Distributed teams are a different beast to traditional, onsite teams. Usually, they’re based on independence, self-motivation, and accountability, with managers preferring to give their team members more freedom to operate as long as they meet results. That’s what gives remote positions the flexibility they offer.

But this is not the best approach for everyone. Closer management makes some people more focused and efficient, as it provides accountability.

Would you be happy and productive operating mainly on your own, with only a chat room as a way to collaborate with your team or getting in touch with a team leader that might not supervise your work closely?

If the answer is ‘no,’ you might struggle getting things done or having a sense of direction at work. If this is a concern for you while applying to remote jobs, research the company beforehand. Look it up on Glassdoor and LinkedIn—or better yet, get it touch with someone working there—to get a better idea of their company culture and management style.

Some of the questions you need to ask yourself while researching the company are:

  • What are the complains employees or former employees have about this company?
  • What values does the company highlight in its About page?
  • Do those values match your own?
  • Do they share stories about their teams on LinkedIn?
  • If you are reading a job description, is it detailed and well-written?
  • How does the company describe itself and its team in the job post?
  • What values does the company highlight in its About page?

6. You hate sitting still for too long

“I’d never be able to do your job,” someone at my previous job used to tell me. “Sitting around all day in front of a computer? Not for me! I need to move around.”

As you can imagine, remote work means spending most of your business hours sitting in front of a computer.
For many people, that’s perfectly fine. As time goes by, independent workers learn to establish boundaries and give themselves plenty of rest and time for physical activity.

However, if you’re used to having jobs that involve more physical activity, working with your hands to create physical products, or moving to different places, then you might have a hard time adjusting to remote work.

Luckily, you can do something about it. One thing you can do is keeping healthy boundaries between work and personal time. Make sure you spend time being creative, interacting with people, and burning all that extra energy.

While I believe that the vast majority of people can adjust to a remote work successfully, it may take more time and effort for you if you’re used to working differently. If you’re thinking about transitioning to a remote position, keep the aspects above in mind to help you plan your next career move.

Do you have more tips or suggestions for people thinking about transitioning to a remote position? Do share them in the comments below!

The post 6 reasons why remote work might not be right for you appeared first on Remote Millennial.

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