Are Home Workers Naturally Isolationist? 5 Top Tips To Beat Cabin Fever
Working from home has many undeniable advantages, but it also poses the potential for social isolation. Especially for the introverts among us, taking active precautions against feelings of loneliness and depression is crucial. With our top 5 tips you’ll always look on the bright side of life when working from home!
Join a forum with like-minded people
Ideally you’ll find a forum or other online community that ties into your area of work. You can exchange tips and advice with other members, learn about new tools, bounce off ideas and sometimes simply gossip or let off steam.
The best forums have a friendly, success-focused “help and be helped” atmosphere. Being part of such an online community feels like a “home away from home.” Not only does it benefit you professionally, it also allows you to make friends from across the globe.
Join or start a local entrepreneur group
Business or entrepreneur groups are perfect for facilitating cooperation and exchange. Often times they have regular meetings to discuss and cooperate on common initiatives. These groups are a great way to share resources and build strong long term relationships with like-minded people. Strong personal relationships, even if primarily business oriented, are important to preventing social isolation. Interacting with other entrepreneurs in your industry also helps you keep up with social standards, from appropriate attire to etiquette. While sharing your unique perspective and ideas with the group, you can reinforce your self-esteem and social skills.
Use daytime breaks to work out
Make the most of your flexible work-from-home schedule! Rather than going to the gym when everyone else does, use daytime breaks to work out during off peak hours. Most gyms offer a variety of morning and afternoon classes for all fitness levels. Whether you prefer yoga, pilates, zumba or latin dance rhythms, the regular exercise within a group keeps you physically active and allows you to meet new people.
Being in good physical shape not only increases your self-esteem and endorphin levels, it also gives you the chance to make friends outside of your professional circle.
Move your workspace to public venues
Who says you always have to work from home? Pack your laptop and head to the nearest Café or public library with Internet access. Even if you don’t strike up deep conversations with other guests, you still experience a change in environment and are exposed to social interactions.
In some cities you can take this concept one step further with so-called “coworking spaces.” These are places specifically designed for freelancers and other “homeworkers.” Rather than working isolated from their own homes, they share a common work area.
Use modern video communication technology for face-to-face meetings
Modern technology like Skype and Google Hangouts make it super easy and cheap to have video meetings instead of just doing phone calls. This deeper social interaction not only allows you to better judge the reactions of others but also builds stronger relationships.
Non-verbal communication, such as facial movements, gestures and body language, is very important for our well-being. It has a major impact on our interpretation of spoken words and is a key component of human social interaction.
As you can see, there are many things you can do to prevent social isolation when working from home. The key to staying healthy and happy while working from home is to build strong relationships, both online and offline. What do you do to prevent social isolation? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.