Remote work is becoming increasingly popular as companies realize the benefits to both them and their staff. Here’s some tips for going remote and living abroad.
In today’s world, remote work is increasingly becoming an accepted norm. The global coronavirus pandemic has sent millions of employees home and it’s likely that companies will come out of all this with a more positive outlook on working remotely. Some might even make the switch altogether.
One of the best things about working remotely is that you can essentially live anywhere you want. Sure, time differences will become a problem for some, but that’s not really an issue for most of us.
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Tips for working remotely while living abroad
Remote working comes with some challenges. You’ll no longer be able to simply get up and walk over to your colleague’s desk to ask them something. Communication is key to working remotely.
When working remotely, you’ll have to make every effort to communicate with your clients and colleagues. You should schedule weekly (or however often is necessary) meetings to make sure that you’re always on the same page and that they know where you are with your work.
Invest in good tech
You need more than a good internet connection. There’s a reason that the stereotypical remote worker has a MacBook Pro and a massive pair of headphones. You want a solid working computer – it doesn’t have to be expensive. But it does have to be reliable.
You might also consider noise-canceling headphones so that you can work anywhere. Cafes are noisy, as you’ll soon discover, so canceling out the noise is key for many people. A good webcam is also useful for making you not look like a pixelated wreck during conference calls.
Find the perfect workspace
Not all of us can work from home. Personally, I find it next to impossible. I write 500 words and then begin pacing around and doing chores. I need a public place to do my work. Libraries are often great, and a quiet café where people are generally working can also be good.
Of course, a dedicated co-working space is often the best bet, and you’ll have the added benefit if being surrounded by entrepreneurs who may well need your services…
Listen to your motivation…
Do you get a spike in productivity in the evenings? Maybe it’s best that you work first thing in the morning, then enjoy your day and go back to work after dinner. Not all of us work best at 9am to 5pm. Consider when you’re most motivated and productive, and make these your working hours if you can.
… But know your limits
Just because you can work at 10pm, doesn’t mean that you should all the time. Working remotely can blur the lines between work and play. Sometimes, you feel that because you get paid by the word, it makes sense to just write all the time. Don’t fall into this trap. Make sure that you’re taking care of yourself as well. Get to the gym, do what you love. Make time for those you love. Remember why you wanted to work remotely in the first place.
See the world
You can work from anywhere – so why don’t you? Once you’re up and running, you could embrace the cultural differences (and cheaper cost of living) in different countries around the world. Why not move to Malaysia and live close to the sea? Or Hanoi to enjoy the organized chaos and abundant street food? Or Talin, where you can get the ferry to Russia or Finland any time you want? You work remotely, so why not see some of the world while you can? Maybe now isn’t the best time to be traveling due to the coronavirus outbreak, but now is the perfect time to put in those extra hours to build up a workflow and client base that you could later take with you anywhere in the world.