Struggling to Manage Two Remote Jobs? Here’s How to Do It

working two remote jobs

Do you remember Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde suddenly switching identities to become someone completely different? Sometimes, you get the same feeling when working two remote jobs  – hoping that your side job isn’t as a professional killer. 

I have been working two jobs for some time. Juggling two positions in two different companies means jumping from one mindset to another. And without a solid daily routine, it’s hard to keep up with everything. 

Tasks start to overlap, the house is a mess, and you have been eating McDonald’s for a week. You start wondering if having two remote jobs at the same time is a good idea.

Tips To Handle Working Two Remote Jobs 

Having two jobs is a good idea for several reasons. However, I have learned that the real question isn’t ‘can you have two full-time jobs?.’ Of course, you can! 

The real deal is to organize your day to make your schedule work overtime – without going to a psychiatrist. Here are a few pieces of advice I would have loved to hear before starting my Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde adventure: 

having two remote jobs at the same time

1. Get Prepared For Working Two Remote Jobs

Unlike freelancers working with different clients, working two jobs means dealing with different work schedules. So, first, make sure to apply for realistic positions with flexible working hours or a monthly schedule you can combine. If you have to log in at 8 am for both jobs until 5 pm, you can’t really build a healthy schedule – unless you don’t create a clone. 

After that, it’s time to plan how to include a second remote job:

  • Weekly total hours. How many hours do you want to dedicate to the second remote job? Depending on the nature of the first employment, you can range between 5 and 15 hours. However, if your first role requires over 40 hours for a stressful position, perhaps getting a side job isn’t the best choice.
  • Set your availability. Have an overview of your current commitments and identify when you can be available for your second job. If the second role doesn’t require synchronized work, you can pick the time that suits you better. When you find a job that requires weekly meetings, save the day to set your availability. 
  • Take care of yourself. Plan the week, don’t take out time from your hobbies or leisure activities. When you get busy at work, you will need your time off to avoid burning out.
  • Draft a schedule. Before starting the interview process, schedule into your calendar. When you talk with your future employer, you can give a realistic overview of your availability.

2. Prepare The Tools You Need

The first thing, you must get your tech ready for the job. Research which tools you will need to use working two remote jobs and try the company’s platforms. With a tight schedule, you can’t waste time with weak Wi-Fi or low-quality devices. Cheap tools will negatively impact your performance and, in the long run, your motivation.

For example, when I started my remote career, I had a very old laptop. Each night, I was doing a full backup to avoid losing my data. And it wasn’t even the worse part. My laptop could barely handle the WordPress interface, and any task took double of time because of it. 

Thankfully, it happened in the middle of lockdown. So, working from home was the only allowed activity. But I wouldn’t have survived a week working two jobs with that laptop – especially now that we are allowed to have a life again! 

So, if you relate to this situation, here are a few laptops to consider if you are getting a second job: 

  • MacBook Pro – It’s one of the most expensive models, but it incorporates everything you need. 
  • Dell XPS 13 Inch or HP Spectre x360 – These are two options if you prefer Windows over iOS. 
  • Acer Aspire 5 – Acer is one of the most affordable options if you are new to remote work and need to understand which system works best for you. 

3. Make A Routine

Setting up a routine is the mantra for all of us working remotely. It doesn’t matter how many jobs you are on. You need a schedule and a routine. Plan the work a week ahead and stick with the plan. If extra tasks come in, you know if you can keep up with them and speak about them with your team. You can use apps and to-do lists to organize the work and have reminders. Just follow the working schedule you give yourself. 

4. Don’t Plan Overworking 

Ok, this tip sounds weird. This article is all about advice to optimize your time working two remote jobs. But one thing is optimizing time management. Another thing is planning tasks when you should do something else. Don’t plan to overwork or complete more tasks at the same time.

None can do two things at the same time. For example, as a writer, it’s very hard to jump from one topic to another, hoping I will finish two articles at the same. From my experience, you will end up being late on both jobs, delivering low-quality outcomes. And catching up with two jobs is more demanding than one! 

5. Plan Meals and Washing Up

While working two jobs, other areas of your life might suffer. Your laundry piles up, dust everywhere, and you need to go out shopping. We have all been there. 

If you dedicate more time to work, it is essential to save time for other things. When you do your shopping and cook, try to think for all week. You can make salads, cold pasta, and veggies that can stay in the fridge for a few days. You will have a healthy and ready meal that requires just easy additions like eggs or cheese. Likewise, rather than wasting your day off cleaning around, you can leave sometime after lunch to clean a small house area every day. 

6. Remember You Have Friends And Family 

This tip doesn’t need much explanation. When you struggle with two remote jobs, the first sacrifice is the loved ones. It sounds like a smart choice in the beginning. Deadlines will end, and you will catch up with tasks, in the end. That’s never true. Jobs add up, you have other commitments, and your friends have a life too. Don’t neglect your friends. Time off and socialization energize the spirit and give you more motivation when going back to work.

7. Don’t Neglect Yourself

In the same vein, you need to take care of yourself. Now that life is slowly starting again, book a concert or an outdoor activity. Don’t skip your exercise or painting course. When you plan your week to include a second job, you can’t take time away from your free time. You can wake up earlier or sleep later to work. But save time off in your calendar for yourself.

PS. This is the most important advice to remember, wherever you are doing one, two or three jobs at the same time.  

8. Remember Your Goals When Working Two Remote Jobs

After a while, working two remote jobs gets tiring, even with the best routine. Sometimes motivation goes down, and you start wondering why you are doing this to yourself. When this moment happens, take a deep breath and remember your goals. You wanted more financial security, improve your skills, or save extra money for the next holiday. Bad times are always there, but the benefits of two remote jobs are worth the effort.

Benefits of Working Multiple Jobs

When you started looking for a second job, the idea was to add an extra income to be more stable. After a few months, working two remote jobs can be stressful.

You spend extra money on babysitting or activities for your children. Without time for cooking, you start spending more money on deliveries. Finally, to cope with stress, you become a compulsive online buyer – or start eating pizza every day. 

Even with challenges, two remote jobs can be very beneficial. Once you find doable side jobs and plan your schedule and expenses, the benefits of working multiple remote jobs are more valuable than the challenges. 

So, here are some benefits of having two full-time jobs for the hard days: 

1. Networking 

While spending months at home in isolation, we also realized that it is a small world after all. As a remote worker, you can grow your network with part-time or temporary collaborations. And perhaps, one of these collaborations will turn into a dream job. Getting a second remote job is a great way to expand your network and connections in your industry. 

2. Training And Skills

A second job can give another great opportunity in terms of training and acquiring new skills. 

If you are thinking of changing careers, a side job can be a test for new options. Or, if you are waiting to find a full-time position, you can look for two jobs that will allow you to improve the skills you will need. Managing two jobs is a battleground to develop transferable and time management skills that will enhance your performance in the future. 

3. Extra Money

Last but not least, money. Two remote jobs give you more financial freedom and security to pay off debts and invest in yourself. In addition, working two jobs ensures you an income in case you lose one of them.

FAQs: Things To Consider When Working Two Remote Jobs From Home

1. Do I need to speak with my manager about having a second job?

Not necessarily. However, honesty is often the best option. 

You can speak with your manager and be honest about why you are looking for a second job and what type of role you want. Remote jobs usually allow more flexibility. If you have a part-time position, most likely, your manager will understand and help you plan your tasks accordingly. 

Keep in mind the scale of the company you are working for and what type of flexibility they can guarantee you. Being honest with your manager and team will help set up a realistic workload without impacting the rest of the team. 

2. Can you have two full time jobs legally?

You can, but always check the business and legal implications of having two remote jobs. There are some tax restrictions or limitations when it comes to getting a second job. For example, working for a competitor is never allowed. In addition, you can’t disclose information about current projects or the Intellectual Property of the company. Or solicit current customers or vendors from the employer.

If you don’t respect the terms of employment on the contract, you might be subject to liability. 

To Conclude About Working Two Jobs

That was it. Working two jobs is challenging, but it’s also worth it. Once you move on from the initial tiredness, you will see how much your skills are improving. New opportunities will open for you, and you will be able to do things you wouldn’t ever dream of – I promise! 

The most important thing about working two remote jobs is motivation. Always remember where you want to be in the next few years, and write down a schedule to follow. And, always look at your bank account at the end of the month. You will see your effort materialized in numbers, that you can spend on all the fun activities you want. 

Good Luck! 

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