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How I Learned to Love Remote Working

I hate working remotely.

Well… at least I did. For some reason, it never clicked with me. I always found that I couldn’t focus on one task for any amount of time before I ended up on YouTube watching videos which, realistically, I have no interest in. I mean, sure, watching someone build perpetual motion machines is great every now and then but not when you’re 3 hours into a video hole putting off fixing a bug.

I’m not sure whether it was the fact I didn’t have a choice about going remote (thanks, COVID) or whether I just needed to give it a chance but I’ve found that remote working is amazing.

As with everything in life, there are upside and downsides to being a remote worker (See this great article about what can go wrong when companies move towards remote) but these are the stand-out points that make being a remote web developer right for me

The 10-second commute

I’ve not been late to work in months! Also, as long as you don’t have daily video stand-ups, then rock up in pyjamas, why not? I would get dressed at some point in the morning though or I find that it throws me all out of whack otherwise.

Saving all kinds of money 🤑💰

Working in London, and I’d assume it’s the same in most towns or cities, I got into the habit of popping into my favourite coffee shop for breakfast if I left my house in a rush, or sampling the delights of the god knows how many great restaurants in Soho. No matter what I did, it all added up.

No word of a lie, since I’ve been working remotely, I’ve managed to save more money than I’ve ever had in my account up until now. It’s an amazing feeling and it’s also allowed me to move to a house so we’re no longer in an old, pokey one-bed flat in the London commuter-belt all because of remote working. There’s that and having that little cushion behind me is a great feeling.

No Strings Attached

Tying quite neatly to my last point about moving house. You can go anywhere. You’re not tied to a certain radius around your company’s office so that you can have a reasonable commute. You’ve got the 10 second commute now, so go where you like.

Always wanted to bum around in the Mediterranean for a bit? Go for it! just make sure you have a steady internet connection and the world’s your oyster. While I run the risk of being cliché, I feel that no phrase sums it up better than the old adage: “Home is where the Wi-Fi is”.

Work on what you want

I’m a busy boy. I have PyHost, this blog, and about half a million other half-finished side-projects on the go (who doesn’t). I never had the time, or the dedicated work-space to spend on them before.

A particularly effective way of making the time, I’ve found, is starting “work” a little early to give you 40-mins to an hour to focus your projects before you have a full day doing actual work. This way you’re working on your projects when you’re most fresh and not drained from the 9-to-5.

The bonus of having more hours of the day to myself and not spent on a train is that I get to spend more time at home with my partner and seeing family. It’s the best of both worlds.

You want a long lunch?

Go for it. As long as you don’t have a call or anything then who’s going to see?

𝓣𝓻𝓮𝓪𝓽 𝔂𝓸’ 𝓼𝓮𝓵𝓯

Treat yo’ self

Micro-managing is a thing of the past

There’s no one to come and breathe down your neck and ask whether the feature is done or the bug is nearly solved or any of that off-putting stuff. Essentially, it’s liberating. I feel trusted to do good work and know that if I need to then I can reach out and ask someone but other than that, as long as I deliver, I can make the whole process as collaborative or as independent as I like. And I can spend all day on a call to a colleague just chatting shit if I like (hypothetically of course, I wouldn’t dream of it)

To sum it up

In the end, it all boils down to freedom. The freedom to work at your pace and do it on your terms makes the world of difference when it comes to work-life balance and my general attitude towards work. There are also so many fewer possible stresses. If I have a bad day, then it’s because of something at work and not just an idiot on the drive home. I feel great not having had to travel for an hour and a half each way to my office and, on the odd occasion that I work late, I’m at least not getting home at 10PM anymore.

If you’re debating working from home and think that these reasons sound good enough to you, then I wholeheartedly recommend it! Welcome to the club. We don’t have membership cards yet but I’ll get my people on it 😉

How do you find working remotely? Love it or loathe it, let me know over on twitter @allmanajD!

That’s all from me, have an awesome day. ✌️