9 Things Every Remote Worker Needs
As a remote worker, there are a few things you will need in order to stay productive, get your work done, and feel comfortable in non-traditional office environments. Since I have been working remotely from locations around the world for the past 2 years, I’ve discovered which things I can’t live without – no matter where I am!
Obviously, you will need a laptop and your phone (so I’m not even going to include those). Assuming you’ve got those basics covered, I want to share this list of the other things every remote worker needs to get the job done!
#1 A good planner
Keeping yourself organized and productive is an essential part of being able to thrive as a remote worker. With no one to supervise you but yourself, staying on top of your tasks can be difficult if you’re not a natural self-starter. These are two of my FAVORITE productivity planners that help me complete my tasks each day and plan for future assignments.
Panda Planner: The panda planner cuts out everything you don’t need and leaves only the most important elements that will give you the best results in the shortest amount of time. I personally love how Panda Planner breaks down productivity into months, weeks, and then days. It also has a variety of prompts and sections that make planning fun and easy! The best part – there are no dates in the panda planner, you write them in yourself! So just in case you miss a day, there is no paper wasted!
Productivity Planner: The Productivity Planner is based on historical leading Productivity Principles and Supported Goals Research that are proven to increase productivity. Similar to Panda Planner, this doesn’t have dates printed out but allows you to fill in the date. It also has prompts, inspirational quotes, and a great system for helping you stay on task. The greatest part about the Productivity Planner is that it focuses on getting you to accomplish your most important task of the day (and then the two second most important).
#2 Wireless headphones
I never knew just how good wireless headphones would be until I got some for myself. I’ve heard multiple people say AirPods are life-changing, and I can’t help but agree! Even if you don’t want to splurge on AirPods, there are a variety of other wireless headphone options that will help you stay focused, take calls from anywhere, and travel with ease!
Here are some options:
#3 A Coworking space
When you make the transition from working in an office to working remotely, there are a few things you’ll miss about having a place to go and focus every day (along with a LOT that you won’t miss!) But I find the best things about working in an office can be found in the growing trend of coworking spaces around the globe.
Miss your coworkers? These spaces help you to build a community, often times hosting happy hours, events, workshops, and more!
Sick of spending money at a coffee shop every day? Most coworking spaces offer free coffee, snacks, water, tea, etc! You’ll also find the basic office necessities like printing, a dedicated desk or work area, and meeting rooms in these shared office spaces!
So how do you find a great coworking space? Since they are becoming more an more popular, a simple Google search for “coworking space in [insert your city here]” will probably populate with some results that you can research and check out for yourself.
If you work remotely in any of these citys: Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, San Francisco, Denver, Boston, Miami & DC, there’s an amazing app/website called Deskpass that gives you access to hundreds of wonderful, diverse coworking spaces and conference rooms.
I personally used Deskpass when I lived in Los Angeles and I was able to try out a ton of different spaces around the city! It was an awesome plan and helped me get tons of work done instead of just staying in my apartment.
If you work remotely and are often found in cities around the world, CoPass might be a better option for you! Similar to Deskpass, this offers plans to use coworking spaces in over 950 locations around the world! Just check out their map below:
Regus & WeWork
Perhaps some of the more popular coworking spaces right now, both WeWork and Regus have thousands of locations around the world that provide members with dedicated desks, hot desks, entire offices, meeting rooms and more. I’ve used WeWork many times in New York, Los Angeles, Austin, Paris, London, etc. and I’ve found each of the spaces to be unique, full of great amenities, and fun community events! I’ve never used Regus, but I’ve heard good things as well, so these are worth checking out if you’re a more dedicated remote worker and don’t need the flexibility of the other two (going to the same office space over 3x per week).
#4 Wireless mouse
A good wireless mouse is extremely helpful when you’re working from your laptop all day. I’m not exactly sure why, but I enjoy working from a laptop more when I have the ease of a mouse. Especially when editing videos, working with Photoshop, switching between many projects on the monitor, etc. a mouse is a necessity!
Here are some options:
#5 This map of airport wifi passwords around the world
One of the best parts about working remotely is well, working remotely! When you have the ability to work from anywhere in the world, airports will start to become a familiar place. Especially if you take full advantage of the location independent lifestyle. That’s why it’s necessary to have this map handy so even while you’re traveling you can stay connected to your job if you need to!
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been caught with an uncharged laptop or phone (just as my boss, Nomadic Matt!) This is an especially frustrating thing when you’re working from a coffee shop, library, or anywhere that doesn’t have wall plugs! Cue portable charger and this will never be a problem again – just make sure at least that IS charged at all times!
#7 WiFi Hotspot
There have been many times during my remote work life where WiFi has not been available. But I’ve been able to access the internet in some pretty crazy places (even Madagascar!) thanks to SkyRoam! It’s a portable WiFi hotspot that gives you data in over 130+ countries around the world for as little as $9 a day. They have a ton of different options in terms of plans and pricing. You can even rent a device if you don’t need to invest in buying one. Check them out and ensure you can access the web wherever you go!
No matter what kind of work you do, it’s always important to have it backed up. Your laptop could crash at any moment, and having all of your files and photos elsewhere can be a lifesaver – especially when you’re working from a different place that you’re unfamiliar with and don’t know how to get technical help! An external hard drive is also just a great option to store any extra files to keep your computer clear of clutter. I linked my favorite one here (I use it to back up all of my photos and videos!)
#9 The perfect carry-on bag/backpack
I always try to travel carry-on only. Sometimes that means just a backpack. People have called me crazy, but it honestly makes traveling so much less stressful. As a remote worker, most of the time all I need are a few outfits and my laptop + electronics! I use one carry-on backpack that works and is FREE on any airline (even the budget ones)!
It was important for my backpack to have lots of compartments for my laptop, camera, planner, pens, passport, and other essentials. These two linked below are some of my favorite options!
- Smaller backpack (fits on planes for FREE even Spirit!)
- Larger carry-on backpack for longer trips & when you need a little more space
No matter where you’re working from, or whether you’re a “digital nomad” or “remote worker” these things are sure to help you get the job done. I love all of these products and services and find myself using them daily! If you have any other suggestions for products that help with productivity when working remotely, I’d love to know!