Unlike most people who currently access via the coronavirus pandemic, I worked at home for a long time.
Like in two decades.
Between full-time work, which allowed me to do this (one of them started back in 2000), and freelance, while I was raising two children, I really appreciated the benefits that come with this agreement – the biggest opportunity to wear sweatpants every day, if i feel like this
In fact, my luck is not lost to me. However, there are also problems and considerations that workers – and their employers – who are new to teleworking, might want to think about based on my many years of work at home.
Almost 70% of employees still work remotely all or part of the time, according to recent gallup poll,
If you are among them, you have probably already heard about how important it is to position your workplace away from distractions and to be sure that you should take breaks. I would say that all this is true. And it will be interesting to see how companies solve problems such as injuries received while working remotely (in connection with compensation to employees), and, as a rule, how to better monitor the habits and behavior of employees when they work around the clock.
Here are some other aspects of telework that my experience shows are key to understanding, as telework is becoming a more standard part of life for part of the workforce.
Of course, you don’t need to drive a car or public transport to work, pay for parking or perhaps maintain a professional wardrobe. And perhaps you spend less on lunch, coffee, or snacks.
At the same time, you could see other expenses are rising, Standard utility bills – heating, cooling, water – may increase, like products, Internet access and office supplies (i.e., printer ink, pens, paper, etc., depending on your job) .
Some employers provide remote workers with “allowances” for their home office so that their employees can set up their workspaces correctly without paying bills.
If your company does not, and you work full time, these days you will not receive a federal tax deduction for these additional costs. Due to changes in tax laws in force from 2018 to 2025, you cannot deduct these unpaid work-related expenses from your federal tax return. However, several states allow such deductions for their respective taxpayers.
Independent contractors, on the other hand, can deduct all the costs of work because they are self-employed.
Also, keep in mind that if you are currently working in a state other than the one you are used to using in your watch, there may be problems with state taxation.
Power and / or Internet connections sometimes fail. Where I live, one or the other probably happens every few months or so. Sometimes the shutdown lasted several minutes; In other cases, it was a watch.
Depending on your situation and how much you rely on a connection to do your job, it might be wise to have a backup plan.
For example, I pay through my plan for the ability to set up a secure personal WiFi access point on my iPhone. And if this method fails – or if the power goes out for a long time – I could find electricity or WiFi elsewhere.
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From there, I could log in to CNBC through the company’s virtual private network or VPN. It basically encrypts any data that you send over the Internet, including through public WiFi. Otherwise, hackers could potentially gain access to everything you do online.
The bottom line is that technology is good when it works, and is the main cause of stress when it is not, especially when you do not have an IT department, like in an office.
Your mental health
It took several weeks of stress in a pandemic to push me to the edge.
I found that I needed some time to recharge, and my editors were great at providing this.
Therefore, make sure that you do everything that, as you know, intellectually, is good for you – eat healthy food, exercise (or exercise regularly), take time to relax, take time without electronics and go outside to breathe fresh By air or by the sun, Even when you don’t think what you need.
You can sit on a laptop when reading this. In the long run, this can be detrimental.
Although I think that my workplace is now ergonomically correct – based on the research that I conducted, and the fact that I do not experience any strange pain – this has not always been the case.
Before I worked at CNBC, when I did not spend 40 hours a week mainly at the computer, I usually sat on the floor with a curved back in an arc, tilting my neck to my laptop to do freelance work. Or I would lie back on the couch.
In other cases, I at least sat at the table, but hunched over my laptop, straining my neck and causing daily pain. As soon as I made adjustments to where I worked and how my workplace was set up, pain in my neck became a thing of the past.
I am not an expert in ergonomics, so I will not try to give specific advice. But the risk of pain at best — and trauma at worst — is real. Therefore, make sure that all your settings – the chair in which you are sitting, the level of the computer screen, where your mouse is located, etc. – are ergonomically correct in order to avoid both.