Working from home can be both a blessing and a curse, to be honest. The benefits of working from home include having personal freedom, flexibility, creating your own schedule many times, and other perks. The cons are lack of social interaction.
You may have never thought you'd be missing those morning meetings, chats around the water cooler, talking to colleagues during lunch break or celebrating coworker birthday parties, but you do!
While many people can thrive in quiet solitude, even introverts can get lonely.
Social ties are important for your emotional health. And you can lose that when you work from home.
So how do you overcome the isolation of working from home?
Check out these 10 tips to help you battle isolation and loneliness when working from home.
At least once a week, meet a friend or family for a meal. Take a break and enjoy a long lunch break or an early morning breakfast.
This shouldn't cut into your productivity too much and it'll make a big difference in your mood and how you feel.
Local meet-up groups are awesome for social interaction. You get to mix and mingle with your peers.
These can be groups that focus on marketing or small business. They can be groups revolving around parenthood, a hobby or interest, social movement or cause, etc.
This is a great way to make friends, socialize with others and even make valuable work contacts, too!
Pick one day a week and make it a Family Day!
Pick up your kids from school and go get ice cream.
Watch your kids play in their soccer game.
Take them to the park or to the zoo.
Do a movie night in with the family.
Do an outing on Saturday afternoons.
Many people start a home business to spend more time with their families and then end up doing the opposite.
Treat your appointments with your children as respectfully as you do with business associates.
Consider attending a work conference once or twice a year.
It's a way to travel, work, and write off the expenses!
More importantly, you can pick the minds of big industry professionals in your field. You'll meet people who get what you do for a living.
Get out of the office and get a little sunshine and fresh air.
This can lift your mood and free your spirit.
It's a great way to shake up the day, feel happier and more energized.
Make this a habit and you'll start to notice how much better you feel by putting a little movement into your day.
No meetups in your area?
Or, travel to a nearby town once a month and attend meetups there.
Sharing your challenges with others who are facing the same issues can be a huge stress reliever. You are not alone.
Starting to feel closed in or claustrophobic working in the same location?
Pack up your laptop and work somewhere new for the day, like a local coffee shop, the library, a coworking space, etc. You'll be surrounded by people and activity. After eavesdropping on everyone else's conversation, you'll be able to enjoy your solitude again the next day.
Use social media to your benefit and connect with loved ones.
While you have to use this with moderation sometimes, it is still a great way to keep in touch with people from all over the world.
If you struggle with going overboard with social networking, set a timer and get offline once you've reached your set amount of "play time".
You don't have to spend all day on the phone, but making a few calls daily is a good way to connect with another person on the other end of the line.
This one is about shaking up the day with some fresh air.
Visit the local park or just sit on the porch or step outside for a change of scenery.
Don't let your work suffer because you're sitting home alone feeling isolated from the world. Make a plan to get out and do something. If all else fails, use that gym membership you're still paying for but never use.
What do you think? What are you going to do to battle loneliness working from home?
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