I got a really neat compliment from one of my coworkers this week. As we are all working remote, she sent me a random Skype message that said:
“I just wanted to tell you that I appreciate your positivity in the group chat (and in life). There has understandably been some negativity lately, but your positive call outs are welcome breaks from that negativity. So thank you!!”
Coming from my mentor (the person that trained me in and one of my coworkers that I look up to the most), it felt amazing to get this compliment.
The truth is, during these uncertain and challenging times, there is a lot of negativity. Not just because we are all forced to work remote, but because we simply don’t know what tomorrow is going to hold. Everybody is on edge, and that’s somewhat of a scary feeling.
Working remotely can be difficult, especially when you have grown accustomed to being in an office Monday thru Friday where you get to interact with others.
Seemingly overnight, we all had to give that up and grow accustomed to a new normal of having to work from home. As with any change, it’s not going to come easy and without some resistance.
In looking at the future, my work has said that we will be continuing to work remote until September at the earliest. Once we reach that timeframe, only then will the leadership team reexamine when they will allow people to return back to work. But they also made it clear that in seeing how efficient everyone is, they expect 50 percent of the company to stay remote.
Could this be the new normal for many of us? Could this pandemic have opened the eyes of leadership teams and given them insight as to just how much companies can save in having their employees work remote?
I will be one to say that I love working remotely. I thought I would absolutely hate it, but after two months of working remotely, I can see myself doing this permanently.
6 Tips to Help You With Staying Positive While Working Remote
Maybe you aren’t like me, though. Maybe this whole remote life has you feeling down and missing your office more than ever. Whatever the reason may be, I want to share with you some of the tips that have helped me with staying positive while working remote.
1. Socialize With Your Team
Whether it’s group chats, video meetings, or virtual happy hours, do your best to keep in touch with your team.
Personally, I work on a team of 12 individuals. Not only do we have a group chat that is devoted specifically to work-related questions, but we also have a group text messaging chat for when we aren’t at work.
On top of that, we also have live check-ins every other day where we all jump into a video meeting for an hour or so and just connect with each other. It’s a nice way to still get that “in-office” feeling even while working remotely.
We are a really close team, so being able to remain close to my teammates through all of this has definitely helped to make the transition a lot easier. If you have the ability to, connect with your coworkers while you’re working and even when you’re not. Get a group chat going, host virtual happy hours, just make it feel as though you are still at the office.
2. Take Frequent Breaks
The nice thing about this period is that all employers are understanding of the adjustment employees are having to make. If you need to take an extra 15-minute break, do so. If something bad happens, get up from your desk, go outside for a quick walk, and get some fresh air.
Nobody is expecting you to be perfect through all of this. The more you try to force your way through all of this, and the more you allow your problems to build up, the more miserable you are going to be.
3. Get Up and Move
With fewer distractions requiring your immediate attention, it’s easy to get glued to your chair when you are at home. There is nobody to talk to, the bathroom is only a few short steps away, and overall, we just move less when we are at home versus being up and about.
Whether or not you are feeling stressed, just remember to get up frequently and get your blood flowing. Even if it’s for just 15 minutes, get up, step away from your desk for a little bit, and get your body moving. Not only is it important for your physical health, but it’s just as equally as important for your mental health.
4. Prioritize The Good
This should be a focus regardless of if you are working from home or working in an office. In fact, it’s regardless of if you are working at all. If you want to stay positive, you need to prioritize the good in life.
When you prioritize the good, you will be happier. When you prioritize the bad, you will feel sad and upset. It’s really basic common sense, but it’s still not something that we do a good enough job with.
As easy as it is to focus on the negatives, especially during these difficult times, challenge yourself and focus on the positives. Maybe it means more time at home with your kids, less time traveling to and from work, or saving money as a result of more home-cooked meals. There will be a day when this is all said and over with where you will miss this, so make the most out of this opportunity while it lasts.
5. Create An At-Home Work Space
If you miss your office that much, replicate your desk and create an at-home version of it.
It’s important to separate home from work and work from home. You should have one part of your home devoted to work and the other part devoted to living. When you are working, stay in your work spot. When you are at home, don’t go near your work spot.
As foolish as it may seem, it’s important to find balance. You shouldn’t be working every waking second while you’re at home, but when you are working, it’s important to remain productive. Not only will this help with your professional life, but it will also help with your happiness and mental well-being as well.
6. Let Go Of What You Can’t Change
Ask yourself something: what good is it going to do you in allowing yourself to get worked up over circumstances in which you simply can’t change. You don’t control when companies allow employees to go back to work, when the government starts opening up states, or when this pandemic is going to end. In that being said, why would you then allow yourself to get worked up over it?
Let go of what you can’t change. The situation may not be ideal, but just remember that everybody is in the same predicament as you are right now. Life is what we make of it. You can either choose to see that glass half full, or you can choose to see it half empty. But the choice is solely up to you to make.
Before You Go
Do yourself a favor. As challenging as it may be, do your best in staying positive while working remote. Not only is it going to make work more enjoyable, but it’s also going to make life more enjoyable.
You may not be able to control all that is happening in the world, but you always have the choice of choosing how you perceive every situation you are faced with. Those who look for the good in this situation will come out on top, whereas those who focus on the negatives will only continue to live in a negative state of mind.
Be wise and do your best to stay positive.