Working remotely doesn’t just mean working from home. Amazingly, working remotely means working from anywhere (well, anywhere with good wifi…). It’s a HUGE benefit—in fact, some (like me) might argue it’s actually the biggest benefit, and a main reason why many people are seeking the remote work lifestyle. Ah, the freedom to travel without using vacation days—Hallelujah!
But if you normally work from your home office, changing scenery for a work day is something you should probably prepare for. Whether you’re going to be working from a plane, train, automobile, or even just a cafe, it’s good to first make sure you have everything necessary to get your work done easily. Wondering how?
Check out this little list of life-saving tools for the working-nomad.
A Wireless Mouse. If you’re anything like me, you probably get tired of using your laptop’s tiny mouse pad, or find it to be an ergonomic problem. Try investing in a good wireless mouse. This list of the best wireless mice out there from TheWireCutter can help you compare and decide which is best for you. No matter which type you decide to go with, you’ll be glad you have the extra control, and without the hassle of dealing with wires and cables.
A WiFi Hotspot. Fortunately for remote workers everywhere, many airports, planes, cafes and trains offer free wifi. However, as you may very well know from experience, getting stuck somewhere without good wifi while trying to work can be an utter disaster. So, it might be worth it to you to get yourself a portable wifi hotspot. This list from PC Mag compares some of the best ones on the market so you can compare features. A lot of smartphones also have personal hotspots built-in that you can access from your settings (I love using my iPhone’s personal hotspot while working in the car!). However, be sure to check with your phone service provider about the usage charges for this feature.
LogMeIn Pro. Have you ever been working from your laptop somewhere and realize you need a really important document from your home computer? Don’t fear. LogMeIn Pro can quickly and easily solve your problem. LogMeIn Pro is a remote access program that can easily get you logged into your other devices from afar. The app has some other really cool features as well, such as remote printing, complimentary password management and file storage.
Good Headphones. Nothing can break your concentration like working from a noisy environment. That’s why we love a pair of good noise cancelling headphones (even great for the home office if you have kids or guests!) TechRadar came out with this list of the best noise cancelling headphones if you’d like to check some out.
A Great Laptop Bag. When you’re lugging a laptop around from place to place, it’s helpful to have a well-designed, protective laptop case to be sure your ever-important mobile office stays safe. This list from LapTop Mag will give you some options and ideas. I particularly like the idea of a backpack laptop carrying case, to keep your hands free for other important items, like coffee…
And just a few more tips to keep you on track with work while traveling: set some expectations about your schedule with those you interact with most. If your hours will be different from normal, sending a simple heads up can go a long way in avoiding confusion.
Also, if you are used to peace and quiet working at home it may take some practice and adjustment to find a public location that works best—maybe it’s a cafe, maybe it’s a public library etc. Before setting off on a big trip, try doing a few practice dry runs to the local Starbucks or to another city close by, just somewhere that challenges your usual status quo. Test out your setup and see if anything needs to be refined. A test run will let you know what works for you, before you need to do it for real on the road.
So what are you waiting for? Get out of your home office and get inspired in a new place and space! It’s doable, and it’s wonderful with the right portable-office arsenal. Working remotely gives you a chance to see the world, and it would be a shame to waste that opportunity!
photo credit: BigStockPhoto.com