Tips and Tricks for Working Remotely
This article was written by Dartmouth College Sophomore Anyoko Sewavi. Anyoko interned with the Launch gURLs Marketing and Communications team this summer and was pivotal in launching our brand!
Nowadays, everything is remote to make sure everyone stays safe, but work still gets done. We understand that it’s not the most ideal, but we still have to manage and make the most of it. Whether it is for school, a job, an internship, a volunteer opportunity, or anything else that requires you to pay attention and turn tasks in online, remote work is not as easy as it sounds. If you feel like working remotely is more difficult than working in person, you’re not alone.
Everyone feels the pressure of having to complete tasks while dealing with at home circumstances. We understand getting really tired of staring at a screen for extended periods of time and know what it’s like to feel really unproductive at the beginning of the day. To help you face some hardships, we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks for working remotely.
Don’t Do Work in Bed
This seems like an obvious and simple tip for working anywhere, but it’s very important when working remotely. Staring at a computer for hours at a time can make you feel tired and frustrated, and having the easy option to just lay down will make it so that you never get work done. Every time you get tired and frustrated, you will simply lay down and turn a quick break into an hour. While you shouldn’t work in bed, that doesn’t mean you can only work at your desk/table. Which brings us to our next tip/trick…
Switch Up Where You Work
Designate a few areas around your room or living space where you can work and still be productive. This could be a comfy chair with a foldable table, in the backyard, in someone else’s room, at the dining room table, anywhere that gives you a change of scenery. Sitting at the same desk in the same room staring at the same wall is boring and will make your remote work experience even more tedious than it already is. If you’re allowed to, you can also go to a cafe and just make sure you follow all distancing rules. When you give yourself the change of space, you will have renewed energy to power through.
Never Underestimate a Glass of Water
As we’ve mentioned many times already, staring at a screen will make anyone tired and that’s where a fresh cup of water comes in. Staying hydrated keeps you alert, energized and focused. That doesn’t mean you only have to drink water, but as long as you keep water a staple drink near your work area, you’re good. Being hydrated doesn’t solve all your problems, but it eliminates the issues that come from dehydration.
Give Yourself a Break…or a Few
You might be used to working for hours on end normally, but life isn’t normal right now and routines are expected to change. Schedule 5-10 minute breaks throughout the day so that you don’t overwork yourself and crash. When working remotely, just an hour of work can feel like three so plan more breaks than usual. No one expects you to bulldoze through 4 hours of work nonstop, neither should you. Seriously, take breaks for both your physical and mental health.
Communicate More Than Usual
When you’re working with others remotely, ideas and questions that are typically communicated through body language or in person conversation are lost. To make up for it, stay in constant contact even if it’s for a relatively small task/issue. You will feel like you’re blowing up their email and phone, but it’s better than not knowing what to do.
Turn Your Camera Off For Better Connection
If you’re on a video call and have a bad or unstable internet connection, turn off your camera. You will be able to hear better and when you’re speaking it won’t lag for others. When this happens, let the group know through chat that you’re having internet problems and that way you’re still being polite. Everyone has internet problems so others will be understanding of your predicament.
Give Your Eyes a Break Too
It’s not a secret that light from technology screens can agitate your eyes over time, so what can you do about it? A couple of things actually. You can adjust the brightness of your computer and the lighting in your room so that your eyes aren’t strained or working too much to focus on a screen. For example, don’t work on a computer in a dark room and don’t have your brightness very low in a well-lit room. Another trick is to enlarge the content on your screen, so that it’s easier to read even if it’s only for one day. Your eyes are consistently working, the least we can do is give them a break.
Talk To Your Friends
This tip seems off topic from remote work, but they’re actually related. When you’ve been on a screen all day by yourself, even your work/school interactions through zoom feel like more work. After your workday, talk to your friends to destress and make using technology fun again. Online interactions with your friends are less forced than those at work and school, and so it won’t feel as tiring.
Even though we only included 7 tips, there are many more. If you have any you want to share or try, let us know in the comments.