Updated: 1 day ago
The rise of remote work and its impact on loneliness
The average global adult spends 6 hours and 43 minutes per day using screens according to Datareportal.
There are a number of audiences that work from home and tend to feel lonely. These include:
Newcomers to remote work: People who are new to working from home may find it difficult to adjust to the lack of social interaction. They may miss the camaraderie of working in an office, and they may feel isolated and alone.
Introverts: Introverts are typically more comfortable in small groups or alone, so they may not feel as lonely as extroverts when working from home. However, even introverts can feel lonely if they don't have enough social interaction.
People with social anxiety: People with social anxiety may find it difficult to interact with others, even online. This can make it difficult for them to build relationships with coworkers and feel connected to their team.
People who live alone: People who live alone may be more likely to feel lonely, even if they have a strong social network. This is because they don't have the same level of in-person interaction as people who live with others.
People who work long hours: People who work long hours may not have enough time to socialize outside of work. This can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness.
In 2022, 36.2 million Americans worked remotely, and this number is expected to reach 52.2 million by 2025.
The pain of loneliness is very real for many remote workers. A study by Buffer found that 42% of remote workers feel lonely at least sometimes, and 17% feel lonely all the time. This is a significant problem, as loneliness can lead to a number of negative consequences, including decreased productivity, increased stress, and even physical health problems.
The importance of remote work communities for support and connection
Remote work communities are online or offline groups of people who work remotely. They provide a way for remote workers to connect with each other, share resources, and get support.
If you're thinking about creating a remote work community, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
Create a sense of community. This means providing opportunities for members to connect with each other, both online and offline. You can do this by organizing events, offering meetups, or simply creating a space where people feel comfortable interacting with each other.
Make sure to focus on the needs of your target audience. What are the things that remote workers are looking for in a community? What kind of content and resources would be most helpful to them?
Provide value. Your remote work community should offer something that people can't get anywhere else. This could be access to exclusive content, networking opportunities, or learning resources.
Provide a variety of content and resources that meet the needs of your members.
Create a sense of community by organizing events, meetups, and online forums.
As more and more people work remotely, there is a growing need for these communities to provide support, networking opportunities, and learning resources.
Here are some statistics and sources that highlight the positive effects of social interactions on well-being and productivity:
Improved Well-Being and Happiness: A study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies found that individuals who reported higher levels of social interaction and social support were more likely to experience greater well-being and happiness.
Stress Reduction: According to research by the American Psychological Association, social support can help buffer the effects of stress on individuals, leading to lower levels of perceived stress and improved emotional well-being.
Enhanced Cognitive Function: A study conducted at the University of Michigan found that socializing can positively impact cognitive function and memory retention in older adults. Social interactions were associated with a 70% reduction in cognitive decline over a 12-year period.
Increased Productivity in the Workplace: Research conducted by Gallup found that employees who have strong social connections at work are more engaged and productive. Those with a best friend at work were found to be 43% more likely to report having received recognition or praise for their work.
Positive Impact on Physical Health: A meta-analysis published in the journal PLOS Medicine concluded that social relationships have a significant and positive effect on various aspects of physical health. Strong social ties were associated with a 50% increased likelihood of survival over a given time period.
Resilience to Mental Health Challenges: Research published in JAMA Psychiatry found that social connectedness can act as a protective factor against the development of depressive symptoms and anxiety disorders.
Remote work communities can play a crucial role in addressing the various well-being and productivity issues associated with remote work by providing a supportive and engaging environment. By coming together as a virtual community, remote workers can find solidarity, encouragement, and solutions to help in their remote work journey.
Addressing the Challenges of Remote Work
Remote work sounds promising, but it's not all rainbows and unicorns. Here are some probs that remote workers face:
Balancing Work and Chill Time: It's tricky to know when to work and when to chill when your home is your office.
Hard to Talk with Teammates: When your teammates are in different time zones or you only talk online, it can be tough to understand each other.
Staying Motivated: Without the office vibe, it's easy to get lazy and lose motivation.
Feeling Lonely: Working from home can make you feel like a lone wolf, missing your teammates.
Burnout: Sometimes, you end up working non-stop, and it's exhausting.
Benefits of Creating a Remote Work Community
There are many benefits to creating a remote work community. For example, you can:
Network with other remote workers: This can help you find new job opportunities, learn new skills, and get advice from experienced remote workers.
Body doubling: Body doubling is a productivity technique where you work alongside someone else, even if you're not working on the same thing. This can help you stay focused and motivated, and it can also be a great way to socialize with other remote workers.
Get support: Remote work communities can provide a sense of community and support, which can be especially important when you're working remotely.
Services Offered by Remote Work Communities
Here are some of the services you can provide:
Access to a community of experienced experts.
One-on-one coaching: personalized advice and support from experienced remote workers.
Group coaching sessions on various topics, such as productivity, time management, and stress management.
Learning resources to help you develop your skills and knowledge with the help of the Remoters Club.
Opportunities to attend meetups, conferences, and hackathons with other Remoters Club members.
Where you can look for inspiration
Create The Rules
Create The Rules is a special club for people who run businesses and want to make a positive impact in the world. The concept is that you join a virtual room that looks like a real one. By joining there, you have a bare sensation that you are inside a hair salon. That kind of social atmosphere where women can chat with their hairstylists and other clients. It’s an excellent opportunity to catch up on the latest trends, exchange tips, or simply engage in friendly conversation.
And that’s how they found differentiation. Many agencies provide digital services, but they don’t have a live real time community to nourish the clients at any time of the day as Create the Rules offer.
They also have different "rooms" where you can go to get help with specific things you need, like making plans for your business or learning how to do marketing. Each room has something special to offer. The community's super smart curator and creator, Marissa Loewen, received a diagnosis of autism. Instead of letting it stop her, she turned it into her superpower. She excelled in online marketing, business planning and public relations. However, she encountered a recurring theme in her annual reviews: "You ask too many questions and you question authority too much." Instead of letting this deter her, Marissa saw it as an opportunity for growth and started her community to help small business owners.
Get Noticed With Video
Get Noticed With Video is a community for people who are passionate about video marketing. Tanya Smith, the owner, creates personalized ways for each business to get more popular, have a good business mindset, use useful digital tools, be real and authentic. Her mission is to help businesses, especially women coaches and creators, be seen and heard by everyone, no matter where they come from.
One of their unique offerings is the Creator Cafe, a virtual co-working space that encourages creativity and productivity. Imagine you're working on your projects, and right there with you are other entrepreneurs doing their stuff too. You can talk to them, share your ideas, and they'll do the same. It's like a team of creative minds supporting each other. The best part is that the Creator Cafe sets up different rooms for different purposes. Some rooms have background music that helps you stay focused, while others are perfect for deep, uninterrupted work time. It's designed to fit whatever kind of work vibe you need.
After working as corporate analyst, instructional designer, and social media marketing manager, Tanya found out that she could use her geek tech savvy expertise to help her clients and community members to provide valuable answers and guidance.
LocalWerx is a community that understands that marketing can be tough and confusing, especially the target is local customers.
They offer a special program called the Marketing Mastermind. It's like a group where you and other business owners meet every Monday. Together, they focus on building a strong marketing plan to attract customers and make more sales. It's a different way to get expert advice, support from peers, and stay on track with your marketing goals.
Karen Estrin, founded LocalWerx because she saw that many small businesses didn't have the same resources as big companies. She wanted to level the playing field and provide affordable solutions for small businesses to succeed.
Using GoBrunch as a platform to build a community space
GoBrunch is like a customized online clubhouse where everyone can hang out together. The difference is that nobody needs to start a session, since the session is open 24/7. And because GoBrunch mimics a real office, you can create different environments for each occasion.
1. If you’re planning an event, you can create a virtual auditorium with vibrant colors.
2. For a one-to-one-meeting, you can create a place that reminds you of a comfy living room.
3. For a group mentoring session, how about a lounge with chairs and bean bags?
4. For chilling moments, create a yoga studio with music and videos.
Imagine you have a place on your computer where you can meet and talk to other people who are also doing their work. This special place can help you feel less lonely because you can meet and chat with other people like you who are also working remotely, with different problems. Inspirations like Create The Rules, Get Noticed with Video and LocalWerx demonstrate the power of virtual spaces to build a strong sense of community and offer unique services to their members.
Additional Collaboration Tools
Miro it's a virtual whiteboard where you and your community members can write down ideas, draw pictures, and organize everything visually. You can all add your thoughts at the same time, even if you're not in the same place. It's perfect for planning projects or coming up with cool ideas together.
In addition to the main stand-alone features, you can use Canva to collaborate in real-time on the design. You'll see your team members on the screen, and any changes they make will appear instantly. Then it’s possible to leave comments and give feedback on specific elements to make the design even better.
Remote work has become more popular, but it brings some problems, like loneliness for people who work from home. When you work in an office, you can talk and feel the energy of people around you, but that's missing while you’re at home.
To fix this, remote work communities started to offer private clubs where remote members can join and feel like they belong. They can make friends, help each other with work, and get useful things to make remote work easier.
Studies show that being social leverages our self-esteem. So, having these remote work communities is essential, especially because more people are working from home.
Some interesting examples of these communities are Create The Rules, LocalWerx and Get Noticed With Video. They have special places online where members can meet and receive nourishment. Platforms like GoBrunch, Miro, and Canva also help remote workers work together easily.
Having a remote work community is like having a virtual family. It helps you feel like you're not alone and gives you a place where you can grow and be supported while working from home.
FAQs about Remote Work Communities
What is a remote work community?
A remote work community is a group of people who work remotely and come together online or offline to connect, support each other, and share resources.
Who can benefit from joining a remote work community?
Anyone who works remotely, whether they are new to remote work, introverted, have social anxiety, live alone, or work long hours, can benefit from joining a remote work community.
How can I create a remote work community?
To create a remote work community, focus on building a sense of community, offer valuable content and resources, and make sure it's easy to use and navigate.
Why is a remote work community important?
Remote work communities provide support and connections for remote workers, which can help combat loneliness, boost productivity, and improve overall well-being.
What are some benefits of joining a remote work community?
Joining a remote work community can help you network with other remote workers, find job opportunities, get support, and even improve your productivity through body doubling.
How can remote work communities improve well-being and productivity?
Research shows that social interactions in remote work communities can lead to increased happiness, reduced stress, enhanced cognitive function, and improved physical health.
What are some examples of successful remote work communities?
Three inspiring examples of remote work communities are Create The Rules, LocalWerx and Get Noticed With Video, which offer unique services and virtual spaces for their members.
What collaboration tools are available in remote work communities?
Remote work communities may use collaboration tools like Miro, a virtual whiteboard for visual brainstorming, Canva, a platform for real-time design collaboration and GoBrunch for building virtual spaces.
How can I make remote work less lonely and more enjoyable?
Joining a remote work community can provide a sense of belonging and support, making remote work feel less lonely and more enjoyable.
How do I know if a remote work community is right for me?
Consider your needs and what the community offers. If it aligns with your interests and provides the support you're looking for, it could be the right fit for you.