I'm a recent college grad who landed my dream job, but it was a remote position. I quit because I got lonely at home.

In the spring of 2020, my life was caught in a tumultuous period. As graduation neared, we received frequent reminders from professors and parents: it was time to venture into the world. Yet, this world was unlike anything previous graduates had faced—it was cloaked in the uncertainties of a pandemic. Cities were deserted, businesses were shuttering, and the prevailing advice was to stay put. As I embarked on a challenging job hunt, the concept of remote work emerged as not just an appealing alternative, but the only feasible one. Eventually, I secured what I believed was my dream job, but this remote lifestyle ultimately led to my dissatisfaction.

**Remote Work Seemed Like the Perfect Fit Initially**

On my TikTok feed, post-college life is often portrayed with scenes of quiet commutes, repetitive workdays, and solitary living—elements synonymous with the dreaded corporate grind. Remote work appeared to offer a way around this. There was no commute, no dress code, no need for dog sitters or mundane office spaces. When I landed my dream job at a prestigious magazine, it seemed ideal. I envisioned living in a quaint coastal town instead of a bustling city, enjoying jazz records, yoga breaks, and the freedom to visit family whenever I wished.

The pandemic made the transition to remote work smoother. Like everyone else, being homebound from dawn till dusk felt typical, but things shifted as pandemic restrictions eased.

**Challenges as Pandemic Rules Relaxed**

Suddenly, the novelty wore off. Pre-pandemic, my days were spent outside; now, confined indoors, I grew increasingly irritable. My job's demands escalated, often leaving me chained to my desk till after sunset. By 2022, I moved to San Francisco, enabled by my remote work arrangement. Although I cherished the flexibility, the job felt more oppressive than ever. My interaction with the city was limited, and despite having lively roommates and friends, I felt detached from the local community. My existence seemed to revolve around digital platforms like Slack, Microsoft Teams, and Google Docs, which couldn’t substitute for genuine social interaction.

**Embracing a New Lifestyle**

Driven by ambition and dedication, I have always excelled as a journalist. However, I felt I was failing to live fully as a young adult. I eventually decided to leave my job for a freelance career that promised greater life integration in San Francisco. I sought a life filled with spontaneity, allowing for unplanned encounters and a routine shaped by my surroundings rather than my email inbox. Despite the uncertainties, this shift made my life richer and more engaging. Now, my work blends remote and in-person interactions. I enjoy the freedom to work outdoors, in cafés, and connect with people during traditional work hours.

If you had told me a year ago that I would leave a stable position at a top magazine for a part-time gig at a yoga studio and a challenging freelance career, I would have been deeply concerned. Although I still harbor fears about the future, they are minor compared to the profound unease and dissatisfaction I experienced in my remote working days. I now prefer the uncertainties of "what now?" over the regrets of "what if."  

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