As a junior developer working remotely for a company headquartered in another country, I've been enjoying the flexibility and autonomy of working from home for the past 4 months. However, there are certain drawbacks to remote work that I've been experiencing.
Difficulty in communication with colleagues
As a junior developer, it's important for me to receive guidance from my colleagues. However, working from home makes it more challenging to communicate effectively, especially through chat. This can make it difficult to understand new tasks and can lead to delays in getting answers to my questions. Even when I do ask questions, I sometimes don't get the answers right away and this can cause frustration. I often find myself waiting for hours for a response which can be disheartening. It is important as a junior developer to have a clear understanding of the tasks given, but it seems that working remotely is making that a bit harder.
Even when I do receive answers to my questions, I sometimes realize that my approach or assumptions about a task were incorrect. This can be frustrating, especially when I feel like my ideas aren't being taken into consideration. This is not only frustrating for me, but it can also lead to wasted time and effort. I understand that as a junior developer, I may not have all the answers, but I believe that my ideas and approach should be taken into account as well.
Lack of social interaction
Another big drawback of working from home is the lack of social interaction. I don't have anyone to talk to during breaks or have a coffee with, which can make work feel lonely and isolating. This is something that I did not expect to be a problem, but it is definitely something that I am feeling now that I have been working remotely for a few months. I am an introverted person and I enjoy working alone, but I never imagined how lonely it would be to work from home all day. I miss the social interaction that I had when I was working in an office, the small talk and the coffee breaks.
Because I don't have the same social distractions as I would in an office, I find myself becoming absorbed in my work and losing track of time. I'm afraid this could lead to burnout if I don't take steps to change it. I am guilty of staying in front of my computer for hours, sometimes even forgetting to take a break, and this is not healthy for anyone. I have noticed that I have been working way harder and more than I should be, and I am afraid that this will lead to a burnout soon.
Negative impact on mental and physical health
The lack of breaks and overworking is also taking a toll on my mental and physical health. I'm experiencing back and leg pain, and I can't stop thinking about work even when I'm not on the clock. This is something that I never expected to happen, but it is happening, and it's not good. I have been neglecting my physical and mental health, and that is not something that I want to continue doing.
Working remotely has its advantages, but it also has its drawbacks. As a junior developer, I am still trying to navigate through this new way of working and it can be challenging at times.
I would greatly appreciate any advice on how to force myself to take breaks and work in a more relaxed way before I burn out.
Top comments (2)
Know you feel.
I can help on some of those items above (but not others) as someone who has worked from home over 20 years (in non-IT roles).
It can be isolating and also if you are operating in an asynchronous way with others (mismatching timezones), or just a low contact environment, it can play havoc with you. You can burn yourself out, so you are right to be wary of it.
Its easy to sink yourself too far into what you are working on without distractions.
Suggestion: Create some distractions as a pattern interrupt.
5. Negative impact on mental and physical health
Yep, that can happen too. Anxiety, depression, isolation, seen it with a team I have worked with and managed fully remote as well.
Suggestion: Work Set Hours.
Suggestion: Do physical stuff, get out of your head & away from keyboard.
Basically, your work structures have disappeared. You have to engineer your own structures to support you. It's not about personal discipline, it about your environment.
Hope this helps.
Thank you for your detailed and helpful suggestions. I appreciate your experience working from home for over 20 years and understand the challenges that come with it. Your tips on creating distractions, setting work hours, and taking care of mental and physical health are valuable and I will definitely consider implementing them. I will use timers and alarms to break up my work time. I will also make sure to take mini breaks to do physical tasks and get out of the house, and find hobbies or social activities that will take me away from the keyboard after work. I agree that it's important to engineer your own structures to support yourself in a remote work environment, and I will work on doing that. Thank you for your support and advice.