Lessons learned from working remotely for 3 years or how to save your bacon and sanity

    You must find out your work-life balance because without that you will burn out. It happens because work is like gas. If you don't control it then work fill all available time little by little. I.e. I used to work 11 hours per day from home. Hopefully, I understood that it had been a bad idea. Let me share some pieces of advice:

    1. Find out a work-life balance.
    2. Do exercises.
    3. Eat healthy food.
    4. Create a schedule & follow it.
    5. Improve microclimate at home.

    1. Find out work-life balance

    First of all, you should split your work & home activities. Your brain should understand if it is working time or home time. There are some simple examples:

    • Don't eat in front of the laptop. Do it in a dining room.
    • Create a workspace: a comfortable chair, table, lamp, etc.
    • Walk alongside your block before work.
    • Walk during lunch.

    The main idea is to create a trigger. You have to switch your mind from home mode to work mode and back. I use life hack for that: slippers. Let me clarify:

    • If I put on sleepers it means that I'm in the office.
    • If I take off sleepers it means I'm at home.

    It's my trigger. It helps me to switch between home and work modes.

    2. Do exercises

    There is a basal metabolic rate. It means the number of spent calories per day if you do nothing. Usually, the rate is about 1500 kilocalories. However, if you eat a chocolate bar you gain approx 500 kilocalories. As a result, there is a problem.

    • You work from home.
    • You move less than usual.
    • You eat the same amount of food.
    • You gain weight.

    My weight was 120kg. However, during remote work, I lost 50kg. In short, It's a long tedious journey. My advice is to avoid situations like that. Hopefully, there are a lot of online services or videos on youtube, as a result, you can create your fitness program without heavies and use your weight.

    Fitness program

    I use fitness workout tabata program: (20 sec exercises + 10 sec rest) х 8 + 60 sec rest

    My fitness program:

    1. Push-ups.
    2. Squats.
    3. Pull-ups.
    4. Crabwise with a rub.
    5. Dynamic planks.
    6. Lunges.
    7. Toe touches.
    8. Elbow lifts.
    9. Supermans.
    10. Leg lifts.

    3. Eat healthy food

    I've written the article. In short: reduce sugar and fat; increase vegetables, not fat meat & porridge.

    4. Create a schedule & follow it

    You shouldn’t spend all time working. If you work from home you have 3 additional hours: 2 commute hours & 1 hour for lunch. It's extremely easy to waste that time like a couch potato. Unfortunately, in the future, it will be hard to rid of bad habits. It’s better to prevent it. You can invest free time into something fundamental: learn a foreign language, gain six-pack abs, create old school PC from scratch, read a book, create a pet project. You should plan time for that activity & make some preparations:

    1. Move everything out of your mind.
    2. Create contexts.
    3. Write down everything.
    4. Use a calendar.
    5. Create habits, not goals.

    That simple advice can help you, there is the article Time management in real life.

    5. Improve microclimate at home

    It was funny to realize that mind activity & ability to solve problems depends on the amount of CO2 in room air. If there are too many CO2 you feel exhausted and out of color. The cheapest way to solve it is to open a window from time to time or mount a fresh air valve.

    6. Children

    It's an extremely hard question. From my experience, your workmates usually stay calm if children cry during a meeting. You have to minimize situations like that. You should sync time inside the family just to avoid the situation that nobody looks after the children. Also, it might be a good idea to learn with children: 'father at a meeting please stay calm'. It might be a good idea to use a headset with active noise cancellation.


    There is no silver bullet, but at least you can try because a journey of a thousand li starts with a single step©


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    Comments 4

      Thank you for your advice on slippers.
      For a week now I have been tormented by the problem of feeling bad after working hours end.
      The problem is that, due to the specifics of the work, I can not take breaks longer than 5 minutes every few hours. It is exhausting.

        I've nether been in situations like that. Ages ago, I used to track my activity for each 15min. However, I was ok to do some activities i.e pull UPs

        It's trouble when between your working place and fridge are only a few meters. Always is the inner urge to have some snacks. I think I should take your advice and make a kitchen scale my best friend. Stay safe you all.

          Frankly the scale is not the solution, it's only the tool. If you want to control, then the only one thing you need is change your habits. unfortunately, it's not a picnic. It requires immense amount of patience & continual tracking of incoming food.

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