Sustaining Remote Happiness

The shift to remote work was a necessity during the pandemic, and while it was a fringe culture before 2020 it’s become a choice for so many in the post-pandemic world. At the moment, I work remote in all my professional roles.

For some, remote work is a blessing, for others, challenging. CEOs and managers are wrestling with the enigma of remote happiness and how to foster it in a 500+ person company or even in a smaller startup.

In this brave new world, some team members feel isolated, leading them to make seemingly irrational decisions like leaving their job or even having no job at all. This decision may seem illogical, especially when it leads to giving up substantial compensation, leaving managers and CEOs feeling puzzled and even offended.

Yet, the reasons behind this choice are actually logical.

The Connection Dilemma

Remote work may lead to a feeling of disconnection, resulting in sadness or depression. Many mistakenly believe that their disconnection comes from working in a “big company.” They hope that a smaller company would help them regain a sense of connection. However, the disconnection often stems from the manner of remote working, not the company’s size.

Breaking the Barrier

Managers often feel uncomfortable asking about an employee’s personal life or daily routines. This hesitation is a mistake. A manager’s role is akin to a coach, helping their team members to address and resolve issues, whether work-related or personal.

Should you notice signs of unhappiness or distress in a team member, ask about their home environment and daily routine. It may uncover a lack of one or more essentials:

  • Time outdoors
  • Social interaction
  • Physical exercise
  • Uninterrupted workspace

Humans require these aspects to maintain mental balance. While they could be achieved to some extent by going to the office pre-COVID, in this post-pandemic world, they can be intentionally created and even enhanced in a remote setting.

The Elements of Balance

1. Connection to Nature: Encourage daily walks, breaks outside, and a connection with the natural world to provide a sense of grounding and transition between work and personal life.

2. Connection to Tribe: Foster a community with regular in-person or virtual gatherings, creating an environment where laughter and human connection thrive.

3. Blood Flow: Simple exercises, stretching, or even short runs can invigorate the mind and body, providing peace and calm that lasts beyond the workday.

4. Uninterrupted Workspace: Support team members in creating a quiet workspace, whether at home or a co-working space, allowing for focus and productivity.

Intentional Solutions

By being proactive, managers and CEOs can recreate the elements of a physical office in a remote work setting. Here’s how:

1. Embrace Nature and Family Connections: Walks, outdoor breaks, and family interactions can help foster a connection to nature and loved ones.

2. Social Gatherings: Simple, low-effort social events can create bonds, allowing team members to connect and enjoy shared experiences.

3. Flexible Exercise Routine: Short, effective exercise routines can be incorporated into daily schedules, promoting physical well-being.

4. Support for Uninterrupted Workspaces: Whether through rent stipends for coworking spaces or a more generous remote residence, providing support for a designated workspace can enhance productivity.

5. Promote Work-Life Balance: Encourage time away from screens, weekend rejuvenation, and regular vacations.


Remote happiness isn’t an abstract concept but a tangible goal and there are too many people not taking full advantage of remote work. The strategies I mention above aren’t just solutions for a temporary problem but a new way of working, living, and finding satisfaction.

It’s not about going back to the old normal but embracing a new, more thoughtful normal that prioritizes well-being and connection. By recognizing and addressing the core human needs of our team members, we can build a more resilient, content, and thriving remote workforce.

©️ 2023 Vikrant Duggal

Top Goal Method

In the ceaseless whirlwind of life, it’s easy to be engulfed by the flames of daily tasks, losing sight of the forest for the trees. Weeks may pass, leaving you feeling like Sisyphus, rolling the same rock, never reaching a pinnacle.

The remedy is the Top Goal Method.

Schedule two hours each day, ideally early when your brain’s freshest, for your Top Goal alone. No emails, no calls. Just pure focus. If two hours seems too much, start with 30 minutes, then grow each week until you reach that optimal daily dose.

The result? A trail blazed towards amazing achievements, a path out of the fire, and towards the essential. A daily commitment to what truly matters. The promise of progress that makes not just the urgent, but the important happen.

Your Top Goal awaits. Will you answer the call?

©️ 2023 Vikrant Duggal

The Art of Meeting Well

I’ve traveled outside the U.S. three times this year already and once, about a week ago, it impacted a meeting I had. I want to create some space on meetings and more specifically respecting time.

Time Matters

We all make agreements to meet at a specific time. But what happens when we don’t? Being late isn’t just about common decency; it’s about respecting the time and productivity of the person waiting. Each tardy minute is stolen time, an action that can be seen as not only disrespectful but counterproductive.

The Unexpected: A Human Approach

Life happens. Delays occur. No one is asking you to be perfect, only thoughtful. If you’re late, tell them. Before the meeting starts. Before they’ve stopped their world to wait for you. Simple, human, right.

The Power of Presence

Beyond time, there’s presence. Being in the meeting means being in the moment. Composed, prepared, focused. No phones, no distractions, just collaboration and respect.

Meeting Duration: A Practical Strategy

Here’s a proposal: 25 and 50-minute meetings. Why this unconventional timing? It allows a buffer – five minutes every half-hour and ten minutes every hour to gather yourself. It’s a built-in mechanism to ensure you’re ready, relaxed, and can transition between meetings without rush. Google Calendar even has a setting for this, allowing the leader to set an example for the entire organization.

The Meeting Ethos

Why? Because our meetings are not mere formalities. They are interactions, partnerships, collaborations. They send messages, shape habits, and define our values as leaders.We gather talent, valuable and scarce, and our job is to make the most of it. Choose to meet well, because in the grand scheme of our daily dance with time and people, it’s not just about being on time or present.

It’s about being human, respectful, and making things happen.

©️ 2023 Vikrant Duggal

Community Service

As a high school student in the U.S., you might have been required to complete a certain number of community service hours. While this requirement still exists today, it’s important to consider the impact and benefits of continuing to volunteer in your community even after high school.

Community service offers a variety of rewards, from personal growth to a sense of purpose, to improved mental and physical health, to increased empathy and understanding. These are just a few reasons why you might consider dedicating some of your time to community service.

With this blog, I hope to shed light on important issues and provide educational and informative content that benefits you and your community. By turning on comments, I hope to foster a relationship with my readers and build a sense of community.

Not all of my posts may qualify as community service, but my intent and purpose behind the writing is to serve the needs of my community in a meaningful and impactful way. I hope you’ll join me in this endeavor.

So, is it fair to call my time spent blogging community service? I believe so, as long as my focus remains on serving the needs of my community and promoting positive change.

Welcome to my new blog and I look forward to our journey together.

©️ 2023 Vikrant Duggal