How to Beat Isolation and Loneliness When Working from Home
While the benefits of remote work often outweigh the negatives, there can certainly be challenges to remote work—one of which is isolation and loneliness. Remote workers tend to work longer hours than their in-office counterparts, thanks in part to saved time from no commute and fewer distractions than an office building.
And depending on how often an employee works from home, and the proximity of other coworkers, a remote worker will typically spend the majority of those long work hours alone. Combining all these aspects together can lead to feelings of isolation for some remote workers.
Remote.co surveyed 36 remote workers and 137 remote teams about a variety of topics related to working remotely to get their best practices. We’ve culled together some of their best answers on how to cope with feeling lonely and how to stay engaged in your work.
These insights on beating isolation and loneliness provide some great tips to help remote workers:
- Get out of the house and work at a coffee shop, coworking space, or library.
- Use social media to find other remote workers: Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, or meetup.com all provide ways to do so.
- Volunteer: perhaps at your kids’ school or a local nonprofit or company that needs help.
- Make an extra effort to see friends after work or on the weekends.
- Seek out others with a nontraditional schedule to get together for a coffee break or lunch.
- Get a pet. Having a furry friend as an office buddy can beat the blues and provide a good reason to get out for some exercise.
- Implement a “social hour” meeting time with coworkers via phone or video chat, making it a time to chit-chat and get to know each other.
- Understand your professional goals and where you fit into the mission of the company. It can help you feel connected and needed.
- Use company communication tools to reach out to coworkers more, even just to chat.
- Encourage your team or company to have occasional in-person retreats or meetings.
- Travel! A perk of working remotely is that you can often take your work with you. Seek out a new environment or go visit a friend.
These tips from real remote workers and companies can go a long way in deterring isolation and loneliness. Overall, a remote worker who takes initiative and makes an effort to bring socialization into their workday will likely find themselves much happier and content to work alone from their home office.
Photo Credit: bigstockphoto.com
By Rachel Jay | Categories: Work Remotely
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Chanell Alexander on May 07, 2018 at 11:49 am
I have found that meeting up with other people that have a similar schedule is really beneficial. Going to a coffee shop to experience other remote workers doing their thing is not only inspiring but motivating. I make a practice of meeting up with a friend to co-work at least once a month. Still getting to the volunteer idea (which I think is an awesome one!)