I’ve Been Remote Working for About 6 Years. Here’s What’s Next for You.

  1. You will refuse to do Zoom calls, work happy hours, or basically smile on camera ever, and you’ll stop pretending it’s because of technological reasons. You’ll straight up tell employers and potential employers that you don’t do Zoom calls.
  2. Your list of stipulations grows longer. You must be remote, you must be able to make your own schedule, you must be off-camera, you don’t want to be promoted, you don’t want extra hours, you don’t want to discuss career path, you do not want to be timed or monitored, and all of these are non-negotiable. You want someone to email you a list of tasks that you will do. The payment is direct deposited. You just want the fucking, no kisses, no cuddles. End of story.
  3. You’ll be able, to be honest with your boss. This will feel really weird at first, and then you’ll realize they’re just a person and you don’t really need to fear another person, because physical assault is illegal.
  4. Buying your own insurance and saving for retirement on your own no longer seem so scary and you’ll begin to wonder why you let it chain you to so many toxic environments, then you’ll seethe with rage when you realize jobs were using fear of illness and death to keep you there.
  5. You no longer care about a “career path” because you’ve been going the fuck outside. You’ll start to do things you care about.
  6. You’ll have a working name, and use your fake name for professional reasons, and your real name for your hobbies. “Smart Aliens is my work name, and Lisa Martens is my stage name.” You want to be known for what YOU do, not who you produce for.
  7. Similar to 6 — You’ll ask your company to remove you from their About page, and any photos of you. You are not your job. You don’t want your job to come up if someone Googles you. Yuck.
  8. When a job gives you the ultimatum of taking on more or be canned, or learn more just for the job or be canned, you’ll just immediately start looking for other jobs. You’re not afraid of a job anymore, because your life is outside of your job. It’s not worth being sick over. It’s usually not even worth the money. And when people call you lazy, it has no impact on you.
  9. You’re in control of your sleep and eating schedule. This brings, in itself, untold health benefits. You can take that midday nap. You can take the time to make healthy food. You listen to your rhythms. You make more decisions based on what you feel. Your body stops being an enemy, and inconvenience, a thing that must be beaten into submission so more work can be produced.
  10. The world is open. While you once thought that you lost opportunities because you simply got older and more doors began to close, you realize that is not true. You meet people of all ages who are doing amazing things and learning amazing things. You watch a professional dancer who cannot stand, and she creates something so beautiful with her arms, eyes, and torso alone that you are transfixed. You meet people who learn complex languages just for fun, and they are supportive of you doing the same. You meet people who never say you’re too old, it’s too late, or you’re just dreaming. You do things just to do them, not because you’re trying to make it a career. And you see growth is not linear, or monetary.
  11. You realize love is everywhere, wherever you look for it, wherever you want to find it. You begin to want to nest in your favorite place…not because your job is there, but because it is the place you want to be. Where you feel connected, where you want roots.
  12. You recognize immediately things that are unhealthy for you, and your power to say no grows stronger. More decisive. More fearless. More confident. You don’t know what is next, but you know what is wrong with you. Every time you say no to what’s unhealthy, you say yes to something greater.