Work From Home Gift Guide

Lifestyle Upgrades

Philips SmartSleep Wake-Up Light

In our first newsletter, I shared how I no longer use an alarm clock to wake up and why you should consider doing the same. If you’re looking to make the transition, this sunrise alarm clock can be a huge help. It simulates the sunrise and sunset and offers more calming nature sounds if you feel like you still need something audible.

Philips Hue Bulbs

Another option is to use smart bulbs in your current lights. I use these Hue bulbs for sunrise alarms and set the lighting for different working modes. Bright for focus mode, moodier lighting for creative work, and fun colors for chill mode. I think lighting is an untapped mental trigger.

MeUndies Modal Joggers

We all know how important comfortable clothes are when working from home. The loungewear from MeUndies is high quality and cozy. Both my husband and I are addicted to the Modal Joggers (men’s and women’s versions). They are our absolute favorite comfy pants. Use my link for 20% off your first order.

Elizabeth & Clarke All Hours Collection

For women searching for comfortable and stylish clothing, the Work from Home line from Elizabeth & Clarke is the perfect fit. If you see me looking professional on a Zoom call, it’s most likely because I’m sitting (incredibly comfortably) in these clothes.

Em Cosmetics Lip Cushion

Zoom lighting can wash out my lips, which doesn’t look great, plus makes it harder for people to read what I’m saying. Regular lipstick can be drying, uncomfortable, and way too thick for this use case. Instead, I like to use these lip tints, which provide beautiful color, fade nicely, and moisturize. Faded Clementine is my favorite shade. Use this link for $10 off an $80+ first order.

Tools

Grammarly

Grammarly is a writing assistant that helps to improve your communications. I can’t tell you how often I’ve been writing a quick email, and this tool has found a critical error. I also use it for all my long-form newsletter issues to help make editing so much easier. Highly recommend it to anyone working remotely because effective written communication is crucial.

Todoist

Between email, Slack, project management tools, and more, it’s easy for your to-do items to get scattered. This leaves you stressed and usually working on the wrong thing. Therefore, it’s important to consolidate all of your asks into one place. For me, that one place is Todoist. Their UI is clean and effective. Use this link to try 2 months free for the Pro plan.

DayOne

I’ve shared before how I’ve been logging one memory a day for over 3 years. This is great for a number of reasons, but one of them is that it keeps me from getting stuck in a rut. When working from home, it’s easy to start doing the same thing every single day. Knowing that I’ll be logging to DayOne encourages me to try new things and create memories with people I love.

Ridwell

This service is the one I started using most recently. Ridwell makes recycling difficult items like batteries, lightbulbs, clothes, and plastic bags easy. In my house, these items pile up and clutter the house. Big fan of this service so far, and I highly recommend trying them if they’re in your area. Use my link for a free month trial.

Learning Resources

When by Daniel Pink

A big mistake a lot of people working from home make is to focus on time management instead of energy management. Not all hours are equal, though. For example, working 1 hour in peak energy mode is a lot better than working 1 hour in low energy mode. Understanding this means less time working while getting more done. Knowing where your time is going is helpful, but tracking your energy levels is an even more significant game-changer. This book is an excellent intro to this topic.

Think Again by Adam Grant

Unlearning many deeply ingrained office habits is an essential part of an effective remote work experience. Yet, the skill of unlearning isn’t something most of us have. Think Again by Adam Grant provides an important introduction to this skill. This was one of the best books I read in 2021.

Out of Office by Charlie Warzel and Anne Helen Petersen

I was lucky enough to get an early copy of this book. It talks about remote work in a way that I rarely see discussed — Not only focusing on the work experience but also how it can change your life. Check this book out if you want to reshape your relationship with work.

Mastering Remote Leadership Course

Thriving in a manager role on a remote team requires an entirely different skillset than in-person. By the end of my Mastering Remote Leadership course, you’ll have developed a working system that allows you to lead a distributed team to communicate, collaborate, and thrive together successfully. Many of you requested I add a fully recorded option for when live sessions aren’t available. I’ve been hard at work on this lately. Make sure you’re signed up for the waiting list, so you’re notified when this version is released!

Small Items, Big Impact

Mug Warmer

You know that moment when you brew a fresh cup of coffee but then get stuck in a long Zoom meeting, and it’s cold by the end? This mug warmer helps you avoid that. It helps keep your warm beverage at the perfect temperature for as long as you want. I prefer this one over the ones built into the coffee cup because this warmer works with all of your favorite mugs.

S’well Water Bottle

I live in a super dry climate and find I stay better hydrated when I have easy access to cold water. These bottles are triple-layered, vacuum-insulated to keep your water cold for a lot longer. I use my 17 oz. bottle every single day.

Archer & Olive Notebook

The Leuchtturm1917 used to be my old favorite journal. However, lately, I’ve been reaching more for my Archer & Olive journals due to the thicker paper. I love their acrylograph and calliograph pens too.

Muji Pens

Muji pens are the best pens. The finest tip, glides smoothly, super black, and lasts a long time.

Ink + Volt Planner

I’ve shared my excessive planning routine in the past. If I were forced to limit it to one planner, I would choose this Ink+Volt one. I’ve been using it for years. It’s a beautiful planner that lays flat and keeps the goal planning process actionable and straightforward. I already have my 2022 one ready to go.

House of Wise Sleep Gummies

Last week, I did my first live audio fireside chat with Reddit. Even though I’ve done a bunch of talks, interviews, and podcasts this year, they still make me nervous. As a result, I’m usually an anxious mess the night before. Luckily, I have these CBD sleep gummies from House of Wise. They help me get a lovely night of rest despite my nerves so that I can be at my very best the next day. If you’re facing an upcoming big day that you really want to be well-rested for, highly recommend trying out these gummies.

Office Upgrades

Lifeform Executive Chair

Yes, this is a major investment. But it’s also worth it. There are many areas that I don’t think require the splurge, but this is one where I encourage it. The Lifeform Executive chair is the most ergonomic chair I’ve ever seen. The cushions are incredibly comfortable, and you can customize the fabric to match your office. I bought mine in 2017 and still love it.

Herman Miller Embody Gaming Chair

For a slightly less expensive option, check out the Herman Miller Embody. This is the one my husband uses. He saw a massive improvement in his back pain when he upgraded from a Costco office chair last year.

Footrest

A cheaper way to upgrade your ergonomic set-up is simply getting a footrest. This helps keep your legs from hanging and at the optimal 90-degree angle. I have the Lifeform Executive Footrest to match my chair, but this is an area you don’t have to splurge, and there are lots of other options like this one.

Laptop Stand

If your eyes have to look down at your laptop, this encourages slouching and tech neck. Raising your screen to eye level is another simple ergonomic fix that makes a big difference. This is the laptop stand that I use. It’s sturdy and takes up minimum space.

Ring Light

95% of people don’t need expensive lighting. Most can get away with a well-placed window or a basic ring light. I have fancy lighting, yet I use this lighting for most of my meetings because it’s so much easier.

HyperX Headset

I can’t stand in-ear headphones. I find them uncomfortable, especially for longer meeting days. Secret pro-tip: Check out gaming headsets. They are high quality and made to be comfortably worn for long periods. I’m a big fan of these from HyperX.

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