How to Work Alone Without Getting Lonely
It is more common now than ever before for Australian workers to work from home on a regular basis, and as of July 2016 there were nearly a million business owners operating from their home in Australia. Working from home is said to contribute to increasing employee productivity, alleviating stress, reducing staff turnover rates, and more. For home-based business owners, it can minimise expenses and let them spend more quality time with their family while working.
However, it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. It’s not uncommon for people working from home to experience loneliness after a prolonged period of being in isolation. For those who work from home full time, the daily routine of being at home alone can become rather challenging without a strategy to overcome the loneliness. If this sounds like you and you’re starting to find it difficult to keep an upbeat mindset working from home, read our suggestions below and apply them to your daily life for a happier working attitude.
1. Turn on some noise.
If you’re feeling alone in the silence of your home, mimic the office chit-chat and turn on some sounds. If you live near a school or a busy area and you’re not easily distracted by outside noises, then open up your windows and enjoy the life going on outside. However, if you tend to get a massive case of FOMO (fear of missing out), then opt for the TV, some music, radio or podcast instead and leave it on quietly in the background.
2. Take a break and go outside.
When you wake up and start working from early in the morning, eat lunch alone, then go back to work for the afternoon, it can just feel so long and draining and is likely to kill your motivation to keep going on. Close your laptop, put down your pen and paper, and take a break during the day. Get out of your home office and get some coffee or lunch at a neighbourhood café. When your day gets too routine a walk outside and talking to people can really refresh your attitude and mood.
3. Work outside.
Following from the last point, pack up your gear and work outside! Go to the local library, café or even a park and set up your temporary office wherever you are. Whether you do this every day, once a week or month, a change of scenery can give you the boost in motivation that you’ve been needing. And the quiet chit-chat going on in the background will help make you feel much less isolated.
4. Get a daytime hobby and a hobby buddy.
While employees who get to work from home regularly may not be able to do this due to the set hours they need to work, business owners have the freedom to enjoy their hobbies during the day. Isn’t it pretty much one of the biggest reasons people want to work from home anyway? If you like to work out, get a friend to join you at the gym or for a jog. If you like books, start a daytime book club! One of the best ways to kill loneliness is to keep busy, do what you enjoy, and socialise.
5. Talk about your work.
Being alone and in your thoughts all day can drive you crazy when trying to develop new ideas. You start to wonder, ‘Is this actually a good idea? Does this look okay? Does it sound right?’ It can be challenging to not have colleagues to run ideas by or meetings to keep you accountable. Try calling friends or people in a similar business and talk about your work! If you’re an employee working remotely, call your colleagues and share the progress on your work. Regular meetings and sharing your ideas, especially via video call or in person, can help get you out of your funk and keep you energised.
6. Join a business group or events.
With so many people working from home nowadays, you’re definitely not alone in feeling lonely or struggling to keep yourself motivated. Find a local business owners community and connect with like-minded individuals. Or look for an event in your local area that can help you get out and socialise, as well as network with people for your business. Even just browsing on business.gov.au, you’ll find loads of small business events ranging from webinars to seminars and conferences.
These are some of the suggestions we have for beating your loneliness working from home. The most important thing to remember is that everyone experiences this from time to time, and you’re not alone. It’s all about making it work for yourself by implementing the strategies that work for you. Is there anything you’d like to add or do you have any great tips that really work for you that you’d like to share? Comment below!