How to Overcome the Challenges of Online Work
Updated: Aug 6
Have you recently started working online? Or you are trying to make a shift to remote work? Whatever the case may be, you need to be aware of some of the challenges you may face when working online.
Read on for tips for working an online day job while growing an online business. How to stay motivated while surrounded by distractions and how to separate work from leisure, to avoid burnout.
Divide Time Between Projects
Constantly Feeling like you’re working- Separating Work and Leisure
Change in Work Environment
Constantly Feeling Like You’re Working - Separate Work From Leisure
While working online provides you with the lifestyle flexibility of working wherever and whenever you like, it can be easy to let your work-life balance get out of kilter. It's difficult separating your online work time from relaxation time. Especially if you work remotely or online as a freelancer and are trying to create your own online business at the same time.
I’m much less effective when I do not set guidelines for work time and leisure time. If I force myself to have blocks of work and blocks of leisure I am able to get more deep work done. Giving me a more positive mindset and a better work-life balance.
Some tips to mitigate this challenge:
Prioritize daily, weekly, monthly tasks
Set clear work hours based on your priorities - the beauty of working online is that you usually have flexibility in the hours you work. Choose the hours that you know you are most productive.
Do not work in bed
Whether you work from home or as a traveling digital nomad, online work comes with unprecedented freedom that requires self-discipline and mastery to ensure productivity. It is easy to slip into bad habits and put our work off till the next day. As a freelancer or someone building an online business, you likely do not have a set work schedule. Careful here, procrastination and distraction will creep into your life. No matter what, I always feel better and more productive when I finish a piece of content, whether it's a social post, blog or completed Upwork project. As Stephen Pressfield puts it, you need to ignore your resistance and just sit down to do your work, no matter the doubts that little voice is whispering in your head.
There are many tools you can use to measure your progress to hold you accountable. You can track all kinds of metrics to motivate yourself, from time management software to analytics to your bank account.
Motivation itself is hard to measure. You can watch all the motivational videos you like but you are the only person that can motivate yourself to produce. By sitting down to do your work, you will overcome resistance and stay productive.
Alongside setting daily goals and prioritizing weekly and monthly tasks, being discipline on yourself will help to increase motivation.
Dividing Time Between Projects
It's tricky to balance the time you spend earning money in the short term, and the time spent growing an online business that hopefully provides long term passive income. If you are working full time, 8 hours a day, it can be extremely difficult to find the time to spend growing an online business. When you are building an online business, you need to be conscious that it is a longterm investment. You will not be immediately rewarded for the time you invest. But, once you do the work it is there forever, potentially paying you over and over again in the future - more than the amount of time and money you invested in the first place. This is a passive income, and by building a successful online business you can create a full-time passive income. When you work online for short term income, as an Upwork or Fiverr Freelancer, you are directly rewarded financially for the hours you work. This is ‘renting out your time,’ you only get paid for the hours you work, so you are unable to earn income passively. Obviously we need to do this short term work to make money for bills and expenses, but by also investing time into growing an online business you can create short term and long term income streams. If you want multiple streams of online income. You need to successfully divide time between projects to earn money online now and growing an online business that provides you with money in the future. Tools I Use:
Toggl - Time management software
Write Daily Tasks
Change in Work Environment
If you are accustomed to working in an office then making the shift to online work can be tricky. A good office will have a work environment that encourages hard work and productivity. If you now work from home or while you travel you won’t have an office area where you are surrounded by your colleagues. This may be a good thing… But it does provide challenges.
You don’t have anyone next to you that you can turn to when you get stuck on a problem. You could usually resolve any little issue by asking someone more experienced in your office. Now you have to message your colleagues or manager and try to explain what's going wrong.
Getting them on a video call and sharing your screen with them while they try to teach you. This is a problem you will face as a remote worker and the only real way to get around this is by being a clear communicator with everyone you work with online.
Start your online business now by building a website for free on Wix.
Earn Serious Money online as a freelancer on Fiverr.
If you want to create a passive online income, read this Guide to Setting up an Affiliate Blogging Website.