Remote working is becoming more and more popular.
Many companies such as Shopify and ScheduleOnce have huge numbers of staff working entirely remotely. There is no doubt but that represents a disruptive force on the traditional way of working and living. But is it good for you? You may lose on interaction with colleagues, and building friendships. However, you can also gain a whole lot from the experience.
Here are some key benefits of working remotely:
More time for everything
Think about how long you spend travelling to and from work each day. Then multiply it by 5. And then by 48 working weeks in an average working year. That’s a lot? The primary advantage of remote working is that you save time to spend on other non-work things. So if you commute is 45 minutes each way, that works out at 360 hours a year. Or the equivalent of 9 working weeks! In that extra 9 weeks you could spend the time with your family, exercising, socialising or other hobbies. That has got to be good for your overall wellbeing!
More time with your children
If you work remotely, then you will have more tie for your children. You can ensure that you build your working day around school runs, or pick-ups. These don’t necessarily need to define your working day, and you will still get a productive days work done. Depending on the age of your children, you may not need to actually supervise them all day. Presumably your 7 or 8 years olds would be as happy playing in their rooms than having you watch over them all day. But you are there in your home, a presence and all the while you are carrying out a normal working day.
If you have older children or teenagers, working from home will allow you to greet and engage with them when they arrive home.
More time for travel
If you work remotely, then depending on the requirements of your organisation, you may have far more time for travel. Or you may be in position to work while you travel! There is an entire community of remote workers that travel for a large part of the year. They range from graphic designers, web developers, authors, bloggers, or basically any job that you do not need much hard copy paperwork or to attend meetings throughout the day.
The website Upwork has an entire community of remote workers across many different sectors. If you establish yourself as a freelancer, you can source work from anywhere in the world, and work from anywhere in the world!
The extra one hour and a half that you save, you can do other things. Other healthy things! You can build 30 or 45 minutes exercise into your daily routine, even if you do that from home also. You could take a short walk and build that into your routine. Also, being out of the normal working environment will mean that you will be less likely to pick up whatever cold or flu or other bug is going around.
Managing your time
If you work remotely, then you can plan and schedule your day as you like. This is often one of the key challenges of remote working, and why it is not for everyone. You need to be able to self-motivate and get your tasks completed despite not being “under the clock” or under supervision of a boss. Most remote workers will tell you that the first few weeks are the most important, and are often “make or break”. That is when you establish your daily routine, and show your co-workers that you are up to the task of working remotely.
Once you become accustomed to this, then being a remote worker will improve your mental health in many ways, including allowing you peace of mind to handle family needs as they come up.