4 Easy Ways to Make Working from Home Less Lonely

Working from home may seem like it’s living the dream, and in many ways, it is. But teleworking can also be lonely. Here are some tricks long-time teleworkers use to beat the work-from-home blues.

Before we get to the tips, though, let’s talk about why working at home is the best. I don’t want to make it seem like people working from home spend the day pining for company. A work-at-home situation has some great perks, too! You can throw in a load of laundry in between tasks, spend the whole day in pajamas, and our workday is free from office distractions. As a work-at-home mom, I also love the flexibility to do some of my work in the evenings, so I can spend more time with my kid after school.

The upsides are pretty sweet, but sometimes working at home can feel isolating. When loneliness strikes, these are some of the tricks that I and other teleworkers I know use to get some good ol’ human contact.

Tricks for Working from Home without Feeling Lonely

1. Seek Out Online Groups

Connecting with other people who work at home can be really helpful. Sometimes, you need a space to complain about work-specific stuff that your friends and family may just not understand. Or maybe you need somewhere to kick around and fine-tune ideas.

I’m in a couple of private Facebook groups with fellow food bloggers, for example, and the people in those groups are my rocks. We share gripes and support. We spitball ideas. It’s like having a virtual office break room, where we can connect with the best coworkers ever.

If a group like this doesn’t already exist for your industry, you can start one very easily! It’s similar to creating an online accountability group. Facebook, group text, or Slack are all great places to start a group. Just message or email a few people who do what you do, pick a platform, and boom! Instant support group.

Working from a coffee shop can help you feel less lonely when you don't work at an office.

Working from a coffee shop can help you feel less lonely when you don’t work at an office.

2. Work at a Coffee Shop

Getting out of the house can definitely help with work-at-home-induced loneliness. Plus, that change of scenery can be rejuvenating! Freelance writer Andrea Bertoli says that for her, just talking to a barista can make a big difference in her loneliness level.

If you need more interaction, invite a fellow teleworkers to meet you at a coffee shop to work. Nothing beats the blues like hanging with a friend over lattes, even if you are both on your laptops for a good part of the time.

One note about working at coffee shops and restaurants: it’s important to be mindful. If you’re going to spend hours taking up a table while you nurse a latte, leave your server a super sweet tip and respect that you’re at a place of business. That means that if the restaurant where you’re working is packed, don’t camp out for hours with a cup of tea. Order some food, or let them turn over that table.

3. Hit a Coworking Space

Andrea also recommends checking out local coworking spaces. A coworking space is basically a physical workspace, where freelancers can rent a work area for a few hours. This is a great way to get out of the house to work and network with other teleworkers in your area.

Coworking spaces are usually more than a desk with a power outlet. They have other amenities that are great for freelancers. In a piece about coworking spaces, Andrea wrote, “Shared workspaces of various sizes and capacities offer the benefits of a traditional office: a physical place to work, access to printers and a coffeemaker, but also the connection to a community that you can find in a ‘regular’ office. This factor is often missing from the freelance life or ‘gig economy.’”

It’s true! Working on the couch in my PJs is pretty much the best 90 percent of the time, but once in awhile, I do miss that office vibe. If you do, too, look into local coworking spaces as a potential solution.

Sometimes, just taking a break can help break up the day and make you feel less lonely when working from home.

Sometimes, just taking a break can help break up the day and make you feel less lonely when working from home.

4. Take a Break

When you freelance, it’s easy to work through lunch and skip breaks, because chances are, you’re working on something you’re passionate about. But you deserve a little self-care during the workday. Take a break, and phone a friend. Health coach and food blogger Dianne Wenz says, “Sometimes I’ll schedule lunches with friends who aren’t working or are off from work for the day.”

Your break doesn’t even have to be long and scheduled. Food bloggers Mary Ellen Valverde and Melanie McDonald both use walking the dogs as a chance to get out of the house. Melanie told me, “When I start going stir crazy after staring at my computer screen for too long, I head to the dog park with my dog. Get some fresh air, stretch my legs and chat with the other dog walkers while our dogs play. Then when we get home I’m refreshed and ready to start work again!”

You don’t need the dogs for an excuse to take a walk, though.  Throw on those sneakers, and take a stroll around the block or walk to a nearby shop. Chances are, you’ll be surprised at how many neighbors you see. You can beat that work-from-home loneliness and connect with your community at the same time. A win-win!


Copyright © 2015 Care2.com Inc. All rights reserved. http://www.Care2.com


Comments are closed.