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Even before a global pandemic redefined our entire lives, working remotely was exploding in popularity. Millions of workers and companies were giving up long commutes and expensive office spaces for the flexibility and comfort to work remotely. But any seasoned remote employee knows that it takes more than just a computer, desk, and internet connection to successfully work at home, especially now that many of us are juggling kids, roommates, spouses, and significant others also working at home. The struggle has never been more real. That’s why we’ve gathered these tips to help you find your dream remote job and learn how to work remotely from home!
How to Work Remotely From Home: 10 Pro Tips
1. Know the Rules
Before starting any work, make sure you understand your employer’s work-from-home policy. Do you need to be available during certain hours? What systems do you use to communicate? Is video required during Zoom meetings? Some employers may have very clear rules that must be followed, while others are more relaxed. Set yourself up for success by knowing the expectations.
2. Set a Schedule
Schedules are game-changing when it comes to remote work. Not only does it help your team members know exactly when you’ll be online and available, but it helps establish boundaries for those at home with you. You may also need to accommodate clients or team members in other time zones. Set time aside to nail down what your work hours are and then make it publicly available to everyone around you.
Check out this guide where we help you design the best work from home schedule.
3. Set Aside Dedicated, Functional Space
The most common mistake for first-timers is that they think it’s okay to just work at a kitchen table or on the couch. Trust us when we say that you’re going to hate that decision very quickly. You don’t need to have an entire room of your house set aside as an office, but you should have a private, quiet space so you can focus.
Want a work-life balance top tip? Avoid mixing your work space and your personal space. If your spaces are physically separated, it’s easier to mentally separate your work too!
4. Get Enough Internet Speed
If you have multiple people at home using Zoom, Netflix, FaceTime, Xbox, or any other data-sucking device, then you will need reliable, fast internet. You don’t want to be ready to do a big presentation over Zoom and be fighting with everyone in the house for bandwidth. We recommend using speedtest.net to see how fast your internet is and determine if you need to upgrade your service.
5. Schedule Breaks and Take Them
When we work from home, it’s so easy to get tunnel vision when it comes to work. Especially since we tend to get up from our computers for a break then immediately pick up our phones.
Schedule breaks for yourself and make sure you are using that time intentionally. Whether you decide to take the dog for a quick walk, spend a few minutes with the kids, or even blow off some steam by watching TikTok, just make sure you are truly giving yourself a break from work-related activities.
6. Minimize Distractions
Kids, roommates, spouses, pets — all of these can quickly become major distractions. Setting up a schedule can be helpful in mitigating some of these distractions. But you may need to work with your roommate or spouse to coordinate schedules. For noisy kids or pets, consider a good pair of noise-canceling headphones or talk to your boss about working flexible hours (early morning or evening hours, for instance).
7. Over-Communicate with Your Team
When you start working remotely you’ll quickly find that communication skills are super important. Get in the habit of communicating when you finish a project or task, when you need help, and when you’re available (or not). This minimizes confusion within remote teams and helps everyone feel aligned.
8. Don’t Be Afraid to Take Sick or Mental Health Days
Just because you work remotely from home doesn’t mean you can’t take a sick day. If your company offers mental health days, take those too! It can be tempting when we’re sitting at home nursing a cold to check our emails, but remember that we all deserve to rest. Your boss should support time off too, as a well-rested, healthy worker is a much more productive worker.
9. Plan Your Personal Schedule Too
When we’re working remotely, it’s very easy for the days to blend together and quickly lose a sense of normal “home life.” That’s why you need to plan your personal life too. Schedule a FaceTime date with your friends, sign-up for online exercise classes, or plan family time every evening. You need to make sure you have things you look forward to at home. It will keep your spirits up!
10. Be Positive and Know That You Can Do This
Whether you chose to work at home or you had to suddenly transition into this new normal, remember that you’re doing a great job. Learning how to work remotely from home is a skill that takes practice. Over time you will learn what works for you and what doesn’t.
Over time, each day will start to feel easier than the previous day. So when you’re feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and just want to escape, take a deep breath and remember that you’ve got this.
How to Get the Remote Job of Your Dreams
Whether you’re still looking for a long-term remote job or want to switch to a new one, it’s essential to know where to look. Fortunately, there are endless opportunities for remote jobs thanks to communication and project management tools like Zoom, Slack, Asana, and Google Drive. Use one of these sites to find a full-time remote job with benefits or a freelance project in your target industry.
WeWorkRemotely.com primarily features full-time, salaried roles in a wide-range of industries and business sizes. They offer roles in accounting, marketing, design, finance, copywriting, devops, and much more.
With jobs posted from all around the world, JustRemote posts hundreds of positions for recruiting, sales, HR, project management, sales, and much more. With a global network of job postings, it’s easy to find roles in time zones that can best accommodate your schedule.
While Remote.com does not post hundreds of new jobs a day, they post jobs to reputable companies and some pretty big names. As a huge bonus, you actually get to see compensation before you apply, something that can be hard to come by when applying for remote work.
FlexJobs is a well-known database of remote work. With hundreds of part-time, full-time, and seasonal remote work being listed every day, it would be hard not to find a posting that interests you.
However this platform does require a paid membership, but with it you’ll get access to every job posting, a personalized portfolio, email alerts, expert tips, and much more. Also since employers are required to pay for job postings, you can rest easy that the quality of the listings are high.
As one of the most popular sites for freelancing, Upwork used to feature only freelance and temporary projects but has recently become a reliable source of more long-term or full-time work. Jobs are posted constantly which means you always have new opportunities arriving.
Still Can’t Find Something?
Just like a regular office job, it takes time to find the perfect remote job. Fortunately, there are tons of resources out there to help you. For a little extra motivation, check out these articles:
- How to Jumpstart Your Remote Job Search in 2020
- 17 Most Useful Websites to Find a 100% Remote Job
- 29 Work From Home Companies with Incredible Employee Benefits
Once you’ve found the remote job of your dreams, you’ll need to set yourself up for success. Use our tried and true methods for how to work remotely from home so you can crush it day after day.