What they don't tell you about going remote

Going remote is often touted as doing wonders for productivity for the firm. It saves employees time and money they would usually spend on their daily commute. It gives people time to focus on their health and well-being and spend time with their families. These are all wonderful.

But there are some things you need to know when you are thinking about going remote or being forced to by circumstances outside of your control.

Self-Management is Hard

When your schedule is overwhelmed with what needs to be done, you don’t have your colleagues on hand to help you out, and if you have looming deadlines…time management can be challenging. This disarray is caused because you don’t have a regular routine or hours to guide you.

Also, when working in an office, you have the added benefit of keeping up with other employees on the same task and motivating each other. You can’t always easily do this when going remote. That is unless you set it up intentionally through a virtual network and put it into play consistently.

Things to Help

  • Make sure your workspace is clear. A clear workspace is a clear mind which is great for productivity and not getting distracted.
  • Find a routine and cultivate it. Be consistent with your waking times, mealtimes and exercise.
  • Prioritise your work tasks by writing a list and ordering them with deadlines. You can always tackle the most challenging task or the one you have been putting off first.

Constant Distractions

There are distractions everywhere, but at home, they are multiplied. Noisy neighbours, bored children, even intrusive housemates, partners or pets. Working at 100% in the house can be difficult. There are always household chores screaming at you in the background to get done. Even for the laziest of us, when we feel the need to procrastinate, chores are a nirvana of distractions.

Things to Help

  • Have a designated workspace and low-volume music or white noise in the background.
  • Co-create hours with others in the home when chores and mealtimes will be done and clear guidelines for distraction-free work.


If you live alone, you will have the opposite of distractions. This can also be destructive to your work and mental health. When working without any interactions, you can often go for days without seeing other humans. For introverts, this is heaven, but for others, you can start to feel isolated and stuck in your head.

Things to Help

  • Ensure you have regular contact with your colleagues, friends and family. Schedule it into your work diary if you must.
  • Go outside and socialise with others or even go for a walk in the sunshine. Just being outside and seeing others can be helpful for loneliness.
  • Get out into nature. It has an incredible effect by magically dissolving feelings of anxiety that often come with loneliness.
Things to help loneliness while working from home

Go for a walk!

Tech Issues

It really does blow when you have tech issues, and you don’t have an on-site IT department that can fix the problem in minutes. Tech issues are not only frustrating, but when it is your laptop, computer or internet service that bites the dust, you have to burden the cost of getting it fixed urgently.

Things to Help

  • Always have backup plans such as a second laptop, cloud storage or hotspot.
  • Take your show on the road. Ensure you have checked out the local co-working space to know what services you can access so you don’t miss that deadline.

Dreadful Health Habits

The fridge is right there, and the cupboard is fully stocked. It is so easy to slip into horrible eating habits. On the flip side, some people are so poor at regulating their routine that they forget to take time out and eat, let alone get outside for fresh air and vitamin D.

Things to Help

  • Establish a routine and schedule it into your workday until a habit is formed.
  • Prepare your lunch while making breakfast – just like you would if you were going to an office. Then put it in the fridge so it is easy to access during the day.
  • Get a timer and set it for 55 minutes. Make sure you stand up and move around regularly. Do some back stretches or yoga poses mid-morning and mid-afternoon.
  • If you have a dog, take it for a quick walk around the block after lunch so you don’t get that afternoon slump tempting you to have a nanna nap at around 3pm.

Yes, going remote has many benefits, but there are also some consequences of this type of work. If you carefully construct your day and ensure you schedule regular time out, you can easily smash through these obstacles.

If you are working remotely don’t forget to pay attention to ergonomics. Learn more in the following article: Ergonomic recommendations for remote work