The 10 Commandments of Working Remotely
Last year, I was in a pickle. Everything about my life in Boston was great—I worked with great clients and got promoted, had an amazing group of friends and lived with a roommate who cooked my every meal. Yet, on a personal level I knew that I didn’t want to stay in Boston and began planning a move back home to Connecticut. But what’s a girl to do when you love your job but want to move? That’s right, you muster up some courage and ask to continue working for your company remotely.
Somehow, I convinced Marlo to say “yes” (thanks again! 😊), and we’re still going strong one year later. During this time, I’ve learned what it takes to successfully work from home, two states away from the office. Given that every time I’m back in the office I am hit with questions about whether I work in my PJs or sleep until 8:55 AM, I thought I’d shed some light on what full time WFH life is really like.
- Thou shall get dressed every day – Gotta get dressed for the day, or else you feel like the ultimate slob. And by “get dressed” I mean “put on leggings and a different t-shirt that I didn’t sleep in.”
- Thou shall not sleep in – true life, I wake up earlier now than I did when I lived in Boston and commuted into the office. I’ve established a daily morning routine that helps me establish some “me time” and set the tone of the day. Every morning between the hours of 7:30-9 AM, you can find me on my couch drinking coffee and green juice while watching GMA.
- Thou shall have an office – this one is key, man. Without having a designated work space, where are you gonna go? Your couch? Your bed? Good luck with that. I set up a little office in my second bedroom complete with a big ‘ol desk and double screens. Obvi all the furniture is all white, too, so I can channel the vibes of the marlo office.
- Thou shall never let thy cellphone out of sight – when your office line rings to your cell phone, you become forever tethered to your iPhone, no matter the time of day or where you are. I literally carry my phone from office to kitchen, because lord knows the second I walk away is the second someone calls me and I don’t answer.
- Thou shall (attempt) to get fresh air every day – this can be especially challenging in the winter, because where TF am I going to go on a Tuesday when it’s snowing? But I know what it feels like to suddenly realize that you haven’t been outside the walls of your apartment in over 24 hours and it ain’t pretty. Never thought I’d be volunteering to take out the trash, but here I am.
- Thou shall have weird eating habits – imagine yourself snacking in the afternoon at work. Now, imagine if your desk’s snack drawer magically morphed into a full kitchen. I average about 100 “small meals” per day.
- Thou shall never wear makeup – ah, the simple joys of life.
- Thou shall learn to love silence – yeah, this one can get weird. There are times when I don’t hear my own voice for hours. To fill the void of office chatter, I just crank the tunes all day long.
- Thou shall be anxious AF when leaving the house – utilizing your lunch hour when working remotely becomes a *little stressful*. It’s not like my coworkers can just look over to my desk to see if I’m back from lunch yet, so it’s a bit of an mental shit show if I leave my apartment, but this girl’s gotta eat, too!
- Thou shall be disciplined – at the end of the day, this is what it comes down to. I’ve set boundaries and force myself to follow them. If only I could have the same mindset about the gym…
So there you have it. All of your burning questions answered. I’ll see you next time on the next episode of “Confessions of a Remote Employee.”
Posted by Tracy