Emojis were first. Injecting tiny pictures into texts and emails provided a touch of personality and hilarity to the otherwise mundane digital conversation. And then along came the meme. Using pictures from movies, television, or social media coupled with a phrase or statement allowed people to display their feelings, emotions, or another symbolic idea. Today, the meme remains an integral part of pop culture — especially with topical work from home memes.
Not only do working from home memes describe what professional life is like in the COVID-19 era, but they provide a much-needed touch of humor. When fear and uncertainty reign, memes prove that even remote camaraderie between workers can provide a positive and uplifting moment. With that said, here are the best work from home memes of 2020.
Zoom in Reality
You may not want to wear aviators to a client meeting. But when you’re on camera, you may as well channel your GQ styling.
Wait, What Day Is It Again?
When you’re not sure what day it is and your beard is out of control, you start to realize what it means to be a remote worker. Hey, at least big beards are in style right now.
You Mean Pants Are Optional?
When pants are optional, you’ve truly hit the paramount of your professional life. Do you think Drew Carey is wearing pants in this meme? It’s one of the world’s great mysteries.
And You Wondered Why You Loved the Back-to-School Season
Kids bring joy to an otherwise meaningless existence. Or so they say — until you’re trying to make a good impression with the boss on a video conference. In this instance, working from home with kids is tantamount to career stagnation. Better break out the distractions before your next call.
Working from home provides opportunities for work-life balanced and more productivity. Unless you own a cat that demands your constant attention. Then it’s a zero-sum scenario.
Just to Reiterate
That’s right. No pants necessary.
At Least You Still Get to Work From Home
When you think you’ve been defeated in the home office, just remember. You’re not at the office during the middle of a global pandemic.
It’s Important to Hydrate
Is anything worse than suddenly having to oversee or home-school your two kids who can’t get along? That’s what makes hydration important. And even if you want to, you couldn’t get fired from the job. You’re tenured.
People who hadn’t worked from home prior to COVID-19 are in unprecedented territory. But not putting those covers on the TPS reports? You should at least attempt to look like you’re doing something. Or you might have to go in on Saturday.
It’s Really Quite Disorienting
Have you ever seen “Cloverfield“? Well if not, it’s a monster (think Godzilla) movie that uses shaky, handheld camerawork to invoke suspense and the idea that it’s being filmed through the eyes of the characters. Zoom calls with more than four people provide the same disorientation. So either you’re going to have to deal with it or slowly teach your eyes how to move in different directions. But at least the latter is a cool parlor trick or enough to gross out the kids.
It’s All Lost in Translation
They say your perception of others is how they perceive you. But philosophical debates aside, this work from home meme might be correct in all directions. It just depends on what time of day it is.
It’s Not Untrue
Okay, so maybe this work from home meme is a bit over the top. But in actuality, happy hour has never been taboo. So just start your workday at 6 a.m. and you can coast to Margaritaville by 2 p.m.
The Struggle Is Real
When you a have “flexible” remote work schedule, 6:30 a.m. seems like an unbearable burden. Unless you have young children. Then, 6:30 a.m. is called “sleeping in.”
Even the Workhorses Struggle
Working for seven hours seems like a totally attainable goal as a remote employee. But sometimes, the clock drags on. And then you realize your seven hours of “work” was merely a daydream of what life was like when you could go outside.
It’s Opposite Day
Extroverts excel when the water cooler is the chief point of conversation and contact. Introverts hide. Well, now it’s opposite day (or month or year). So for all you oppressed introverts, now is your time to shine.
You Inner Slob Lurks
Thanks to remote work, you can balance professional, personal, and social time. Or at least you thought so. But the truth is, your inner slob was always there — lurking and waiting for the opportunity to cram down two sleeves of Oreos while you answer emails. Try not to let yourself go.
Parents Just Don’t Understand
Maybe Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff got it right back in 1988; parents just don’t understand. But when that parent is your spouse who doesn’t work from home, it’s problematic. They’re always are fairly certain you can drop what you’re doing — especially if it’s watching the kids while they go about their day.
Do Not Disturb
You can’t quite tell if this hero is a student or a remote worker. Both conduct their business from home during the COVID-19 era, so it’s a moot point. Regardless of who it is, they make a valid point. Only fire, pizza, and zombies should detract from your work. That’ll make you one productive employee at the end of the day.
Hold Up. You Can Leave the House?
In the age of Amazon, food delivery, remote work, and COVID-19, you really never have to leave the house. In fact, many people are probably unaware that that’s an option anymore. The real test is to see if you’ve worn a groove into your couch. If so, you might want to take a walk or go to the driving range. Or just do something.
If there’s one thing that this work from home meme illustrates, it’s that this is finally possible. After all these years, you’ve finally cracked the code with remote work.
Let’s Play a Game
So this isn’t exactly a work from home meme. But it will give you something to do while you’re sitting in on a Zoom or Skype call. Bonus points if you actually yell out “Bingo!” during the meeting. In this regard, timing is impeccable. Either you’re going to get some wild stares, or you’re going to perfectly reiterate the points your boss was trying to make. It’s a coin toss.
Sometimes, It’s the Small Things
Most memes have a humorous discourse. But this just lets you know two things. 1) What’s a Friday? and 2) it’s the little things that you miss when they’re gone.
Remember when you used to wake up two hours before you had to get to work? Now, the two-minute commute is your standard. Thank goodness you clean up nice.
Give Thanks for Your Remote-Friendly Position
Uber is the savior of the pub crawl or a long night on the town. But with fewer people going out, the fares have dried up. Still, you have to give this person kudos for the valiant effort and determination to do remote work.
It’s All Online Now, Isn’t It?
If you had an office crush, things may have started to heat up. But then they were promptly dashed by lockdown and working from home. As a result, you may feel a bit sad. On second thought, isn’t the dating scene all online anyway? You may as well grab your phone, see if he/she is on Tinder, and start dating in the 21st century. Who needs a good romance/meeting story anyways?
At Least You Aren’t a Sheepdog
Some animals have jobs. And some love those jobs. So when you’re suddenly taken away from your work, you have to improvise.
If Diddy’s Allowed to Do It, So Am I
Working from your bed isn’t the best idea, and even science has proven it. Your brain can’t differentiate between work and sleep, so your comfy sanctuary eventually turns into a home office. That said, if Diddy’s allowed to do it, working in bed should be permissible for everyone.
Don’t Rush to Judge
With all the extra flexibility you have with remote work, you’d think you’d be able to straighten up. But with kids running around, spouses enjoying their newfound work arrangement, and an assortment of other factors, you can’t be quick to judge. Aside from the space in front of your camera, what does the rest of your house look like? Let he/she who is without sin cast the first stone.
Wait, You Mean We Can Work From Home?
Companies have been saying for years how unfeasible remote work is. But this work from home meme perfectly illustrates the thoughts of millions of workers around the globe. You can work from home. But you probably won’t become a war veteran, University of Alabama running back, or shrimp boat captain. On the flip side, you probably can buy a few shares of Apple.
With all of the distractions of working from home — kids, spouse, and social media — work from home memes provide an outlet that only takes a few seconds out of your day. Invigorated with a smile, you’ll be ready to tackle the workload at home for the foreseeable future.
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Memes and images via Canva and other sources