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Book of the Week: Solo: How to Work Alone (And Not Lose Your Mind)

Solo: How to Work Alone (And Not Lose Your Mind), by Rebecca Seal

A friend of mine steered me towards this, and it was a book I didn’t know I needed! Focused on how to not lose your mind while working alone in today’s society, it was very thoughtful and considered both the obvious challenges like having a proper workplace setup, balanced work vs personal hours and the need to interact with other brings AND many more little-known factors.

It was an awakening for me to hear about the little things, like a need for nature breaks for psychological stress relief, the importance of outsourcing and asking for help instead of taking on every burden yourself and combating poor, convenient-heavy eating habits.

That last one super resonated with me—let’s not even talk about the food court my kitchen can turn into.

And of course, I have the habit of thinking I do have to everything all by myself, and there are much better ways (and people) who could actually make that process better if I would just give some thought and research into it.

Other cool insights included the concepts of identity precariousness (am I truly a writer if I’m not a hired one?), how productivity hacks are not the same as ineffectual “multitasking”, the benefits of compartmentalizing workspace at home or find healthy co-working spaces.

I felt validated in my introverted-ness while understanding that there are scenarios out there where I can interact with other people in the right environment for me; again, it comes down to research.

A big take away was establishing workable routines that force administration vs project work delineation, encourage regular peer lunches for socialization and implementation of email cutoff times to minimize the work-obsessed lifestyle from creeping into personal life. Though I did already know and establish a number of these suggestions through trial and error, there were countless insights that I’ve gleaned from this book to make my independent consulting lifestyle more fulfilling, sustainable and effective.

Great read for anyone who does any kind of work from home, even partially.

To learn more about this week’s author and her book, you can find her here:

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