A laptop's all you need to work from anywhere, but you likely need a few more tools to work at your best performance and not end the work day with an aching back and wrists.
Whether you've worked remotely for years, or have only just built a home office in the past few months, have you added anything to your office that made it a nicer place to work? Anything to improve your desk and workspace, or make your Zoom calls look and sound better?
I've been working from home since 2009, and I'm a bit of a contrarian:
* I sit on a wooden chair, all day long: I've had various sorts of higher-end chairs, all caused me back problems. After I threw out the last one, I considered buying a Vitra Pacific. But instead, I started using a wooden chair I had. After a couple of weeks, my back problems disappeared! I think that's because it forces me to have a better posture since there's no comfy cushion to compensate for my position, so it strengthened my back.
* I don't have a standing desk: I have a dog instead, which means I have to get out at least 30 minutes every day (and I do a brisk walk). Also, I can't stand for long periods anyway because of an injury (the dog's partially responsible for that as well :))
* I don't have external monitors: I put my MacBook Pro 16" on a Targus Portable Lightweight Chill Mat Lap, which makes the screen a bit higher
* I don't use a mouse: I used to. Around 2008 I had an aching wrist. I switched the left/right buttons, which makes you hold the mouse slightly more naturally. It worked, but then the new large touchpads appeared with a new generation of MBP, and it was even better to have it just below the keyboard.
I don't have many tricks up my sleeves, except maybe:
* don't face the wall, it's oppressing. I have my back against the wall and face the room. I consider that a tool because it's good for the mind.
* I use Hue lightbulbs for my desktop lamp, with one automation to turn off the light when I leave the house, and another one to turn it off past 1 am to remind me that it's late (sometimes I get caught in things…)
The only thing I changed recently: I use a good old ethernet cable instead of the wifi. It was frustrating to have optical fiber cable and be limited by the wifi speed. Now anytime I'm on a call, and the connection is bad, I'm quite certain it's not because of me!
Oh yeah. I use an HD camera by Logitech and a Samson Meteor Mic instead of using the built-in ones on the Mac. It makes a huge difference -- so much so that people have actually commended me on the video and sound quality during regular networking calls or interviews.
I also put in a great deal of effort to reduce the echo in my room and to make my background look nice (instead of defaulting to a virtual background) -- one more thing that is often steers the conversation into a new direction.
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