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Remote Work: Challenges and Coping Strategies

Working in a home office is a dream come true for some professionals who dread the morning commute. However, it offers other challenges that you need to overcome if you want to have a healthy remote-based lifestyle.

1. Interruptions

One of the most common and unavoidable challenges of working at home is managing interruptions. While distractions are someone else’s problem at a traditional office, no one will fix it for you when you are working remotely. Home interruptions include noise from other occupants, deliveries, phone calls, loud conversations outside, crowing roosters, lawnmowers, barking dogs, and construction work.

Work in a no-interruption zone by building a garden room that will keep you away from disturbances and will allow you to focus on your ideas. Having a dedicated office in a separate space will free you from the noise of other home occupants. Your home office sets a boundary and gives them a signal that you are working and cannot deal with interruptions.

2. Flawed assumptions and expectations

While remote jobs are becoming popular these days, some people still don’t understand the required work, peace, and focus. Your family members might have faulty assumptions that will create a destructive conflict both to your work and your relationship. They will often assume that you are available for chores like child care, running errands, or walking the dog during the day.

Your spouse will expect you to care for your children since you are at home 24/7. Other people like your close friends or in-laws usually think that you can take a break whenever you want. So they have unannounced visits, assuming that you have the luxury of time to entertain them any time of the day.

Be polite in clearing their assumptions. Make your spouse realize that you need to pay for childcare and tell your friends that you do not have the time to chat during your business hours.

3. Isolation

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Social isolation is the biggest pitfall of remote work. It negatively impacts your motivation, work productivity, and emotional health.

Plan outdoor activities and incorporate human connection every week. Mix your alone work time with activities like working out in the gym, having lunch with friends, running errands, or meeting fellow remote workers. You are a social being, so you need to go outside your home office and surround yourself with other people.

4. Sedentary lifestyle

Your commute from your bedroom to your home office does not require much energy and movement. You have the freedom to spend your entire day on the couch, promoting inactive muscles, and unhealthy blood flow.

Always start your day with an exercise routine. It is best to go outside the house to change your environment and renew your energy. According to a report, remote employees work for longer hours and feel stressed most of the time compared to office workers. Thus, it is best to set scheduled breaks so that you can do desk stretches, 10-minute workouts, and quick meditations.

Remote work is a fantastic option to save on gas, energy, and time. But it has a share of challenges. Knowing how to deal with these problems will enable you to enjoy a satisfying remote work life.

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