Things We Wish We Knew When Starting To Work From Home…

By: The Unsettled Community 

The Unsettled community has always been full of remote workers and digital nomads, but now more than ever before people are adapting to the #WFH lifestyle whether they want to or not. Some of us have been working from the road or from home for over 10 years, while others have found themselves experimenting with this new lifestyle within the last few months. 

We asked a few of Unsettled’s alumni to share one piece of advice they wished they had, or would like to give, to a newly remote worker. Their answers were as diverse as the community itself! 

These words of wisdom may be exactly what you need to take on the new day. 

“Take productivity breaks during the day, go for walks and remember to eat lunch! 🙂 Starting your day with yoga or a run helps break up your home also being an office. Also if you have a space to utilize and sit outside, use it often!” – Taylor Floeck 

“Read ‘Hyperfocus’ by Chris Bailey – it’s a life changer!” – Donna Williams 

“Find your style and honor it. For example, I decided two years ago I would start my mornings slow. I meditate, enjoy my expresso (with all the calm in the world), keep silent. I don’t schedule any appointment before 9:00 AM.” – Olga Gonzalez

“Remote working is not better, it’s just different…. better is some ways and not in others. I think it’s important to understand that so you are not discouraged when it takes some effort to get set up. For example – Working remotely while also working with a team has shown me the importance of extra communication – like going above and beyond to loop people in, designing smooth handoff touchpoints on projects, and putting info in central places so someone starting their day in a different time zone can find what they need to get stuff done!” – Lala Franklin-Apted

“Don’t miss out on any chance of socializing (as much as the circumstances allow). We all loved the morning coffee with our colleagues and the office banter. Passing from a lively work environment to a very quiet home office can be quite a change so use your spare hours to chit chat with friends, go for a walk, get out of the house. Zoom can’t replace that human feeling :)” – Stefania Min 

“SCHEDULE EVERYTHING 🙂 including ‘walk to groceries’ or ‘workout’. If it’s not in my Google calendar it won’t happen and it also helps you avoid sitting in front of your computer for hours on end.” – Carolina Ramirez Herrera

“Working for someone in a different time zone (no more than 6 hours difference) can be a good solution in order to have a good work-life balance. It gives you the possibility to match work duties and touristic needs without too many difficulties! ;)” – Laura Marchini 

“Depending on your natural style and time of work, it’s still good to design clear boundaries between work & other times, be it leisure, romance, sport, etc. It’s so easy to think you have all this freedom, but I’ve sometimes ended up working much much more, and neglecting other aspects. Designing rituals for clear starts and ends are one way to do it!” – Suvarchala Narayanan 

“I wish I had known/decided to keep my office/project notes more digital. I left hard copies of notes at the office and I’m not going to be able to access them remotely. Well, maybe I am not missing much!” – Tania Lowery

“I try to not make commitments before 11am! But then I often work until at least 7. It’s hard to fight your chronotype!” – Gwendolyn Billett

“Organize your work space like you would in an office – comfy chair, good desk etc. Whatever works best for you.” – Raf Kosmider

“I try to find a way to move my body and drop into my physical space everyday. Whether it is a walk around the block, an online yoga class, or just some stretches, I have found that getting my body moving is incredibly important to feel grounded in the present moment. (And turn up a favorite song every once in a while).” – Naomi Matlow 

“Create a routine and double-check how your country manages taxes or business finances for a location independent business, to avoid conflict situations. (My country doesn’t even know those concepts, for example.)” – Spela Tezak

“Be open to new concepts for payment to leverage your expertise. Don’t just accept a salary when you add value. Take a portion of that value for a win win arrangement.” – Richard Warburg 

“Force yourself to get dressed in the morning 🙂 And go for walks!” – Lindsey Scott

“Like every new lifestyle or habit that we want to create or adopt, we need to give it time and test it out. So be open to experiment before committing and take a curious and learning approach. Take stock every week of what worked, what didn’t and adapt as needed.” – Clari Mastronardi

If you are looking to redesign your lifestyle and career to find better balance, check out our one month Virtual Retreat — the Unsettled Lifestyle Incubator

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