Humans thrive off of social interaction. The typical human brain can make inferences and judgments based on cues from its environment. Gestures, body language, and facial expressions give the unspoken information needed to process the world around you.

Remote work, while rewarding in some aspects, can also provide challenges to an individual’s mental health. When properly managed, stressors and triggers can be kept at bay. Big environmental changes, when introduced suddenly, on the other, can prove difficult to handle.

Working-from-home

Remote work gives you the freedom to work from anywhere. If you have a home office, your travel time decreases significantly. You’re no longer subjected to the stress caused by your usual commute to work, which might mean sitting in traffic for hours. You control the work environment from start to finish.  

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Loneliness and isolation

Remote work often means working in isolation. Video conferencing software has helped teams and companies stay informed, but it can never replace the real deal of in-person human interaction. And every kind of person, introverted or not, thrives off of human connections and interactions

Without this necessary connection that most people thought they could do without entirely, many experience deep feelings of loneliness and isolation. While video conferencing certainly has connected the world in meaningful ways, it cannot supplement the need to experience the natural chemistry of being around others.

Burnout

Contrary to what you might assume, people don’t work less when they’re out of the office. Working remotely means that the traditional boundaries of work and home or work and your favorite coffee shop are considerably blurred. What many find is that they’re working from their breakfast nook while eating breakfast. 

People tend to work more or push themselves to work for longer hours when they don’t have to consider things like traveling to work and knocking off to be home on-time. 

While you may not need to be told to take a break, it’s much easier to do when you’re around others who might do the same. Remote work distances colleagues from one another and you may enforce different, more stringent rules when you’re alone. 

Stress and anxiety

Several factors may increase stress levels and anxiety. Certainly, readjusting to a new work environment is one. Most people may be thoroughly pleased by the idea of working in their own space as opposed to an office cubicle, but this is not true for everyone.

Your home life may look and feel completely different from that of your colleague. They have three kids and consider work a necessary break from home life. There are various distractions and stressors in the non-traditional work environment that place a strain on productivity. That may lead to work-related stress and anxiety

Depression

Ultimately, humans are social beings. Whether socializing happens with friends or at work, however simple the interaction, it can be an important part of your life that reduces feelings of loneliness and the disconnect that happens when you spend long periods on your own. While alone time may not threaten your mental well-being now and then, prolonged isolation can be damaging.

Depression can develop as a result of this. Feelings of loneliness in normal circumstances may increase when a person transitions into a remote work environment. There are fewer social interactions to balance out the prolonged periods of isolation, leading to a higher level of disconnect, distrust, and loneliness overall. 

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