Transitioning from working to an office to working at home can be overwhelming, and you may be finding that you’ve been neglecting yourself as you settle into your new work situation. With all the distractions and difficulties that come from working at home, it can end up negatively impacting your health. Taking care of yourself should be a priority — self-care shouldn’t be a luxury! — as it’s an essential part of becoming a happy and productive worker. Here are some of the best tips to stay healthy while working from home, so that you can avoid the possible pitfalls of neglecting yourself while on your daily grind.
For maintaining not just your mental health but also your physical health, it’s important to set time for you to rest and recuperate from the day. Nowadays there’s no real distinct end to the workday (such as clocking out and driving home), which can cause you to blur the lines between professional and personal time. Most days, it can feel so easy for you to lose track of time and overextend your hours, so you have to take care in setting distinct boundaries when it comes to your daily routine.
Block offset times to do tasks, chores, meals, and other necessities and set reminders for yourself to stick to this schedule. Reach out to your colleagues and other associates and let them know that you won’t be doing tasks or replying to their emails past a certain hour. Taking this time away from staring at your screen will also decrease your exposure to blue light and give your eyes some much-needed rest (it can also promote better sleep quality!). Keep yourself accountable and try not to let your professional obligations take over time that you can spend taking care of yourself.
Create a space in your home designated solely for work. As tempting as it can be to stay in a comfy bed, you shouldn’t be working in the bedroom or bringing in work materials with you. Doing so can interfere with your sleep later in the day, and lacking sleep has negative effects on your long-term health. Even doing your job on the couch can cause your mind to stay preoccupied with professional obligations when you’re lounging after work hours.
Try your best to set up away from spaces where you would normally sleep or relax to separate the professional from the personal. Also, give yourself a real work chair! Sitting properly while on the job does wonders for your posture, attention, and energy. Having a designated space to work in helps give you a certain feeling of focus as well as a sense of caring for your wellbeing.
A common problem that comes from working at home is snacking, which can be quite unhealthy if you’ve got plenty of junk food at home. The issue looms when you start feeling stressed and grab something to munch on, which wouldn’t be that big of a deal if the options you have on hand are good for you. Another problem is remembering to stay hydrated, which can often slip your mind when you’re staring at a screen all day.
If you’re particularly challenged by this, don’t fret. This can be easily solved by keeping healthy options close by — food like apples and grapes, or drinks like Bonavita’s 8-in-1 coffee — can help keep you well-fed and hydrated throughout a busy day. Having your diet in mind will help you keep energized and in good shape even when tackling your assigned tasks for the week.
Mindfulness can increase a person’s productivity as well as help with the long-term effects of stress. This is because the practice involves paying extra attention to what is happening in the present moment and how you are responding to it, without placing judgment on yourself about the situation. You practice noticing your negative thought patterns and learn how to process them without getting too caught up in your feelings.
This is a form of self-care where you find healthy ways to comfort yourself as well while still allowing you to stay focused on your goals and priorities. There’s no denying that stress build-up is one of the main sources of physical ailments, but practicing mindfulness can give you that much-needed reflection and allow you to regain control over what previously caused you stress.
One good way to start practicing mindfulness is to sit with your thoughts when your assignments get too rough. Simply sit with your drink of choice and allow your thoughts to pass. You can return to the task at hand when you feel more settled and can keep at it without getting distracted.
While there may be no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to how often you should do this per day, make sure to remind yourself to stand up and stretch out your back and limbs during work hours. Additionally, you may feel better if you give yourself at least five to eight minutes doing this. Pinpoint where you’re holding the most tension (this is most likely in your lower back and neck) and focus on releasing that tension before sitting back down.
If you’re able to, taking a short walk would also be great for your health! Having a few active minutes throughout your day will help with blood circulation, muscle health, and overall mood. Whether you’re able to take a walk outside or just walking around your home, these movements will end up making you feel a whole lot better.
Working at home may have its perks, but many are finding out that there are problems that you may not experience in the office environment. This unique set of challenges can end up affecting your health. A remote job might be difficult to get used to, but you can take the steps to prevent possible issues and take care of your physical and mental wellbeing. You can work hard on your tasks while also working hard to protect your health. Use these five best tips to stay healthy while working from home!
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