As remote work becomes more common, many of us find ourselves struggling to achieve a healthy balance between work and life when our home doubles as an office. While working from home (WFH) has many benefits – such as increased flexibility and autonomy – without a healthy lifestyle, it can lead to more serious consequences such as depression and burnout.
Therefore, it’s essential to create and implement wellbeing practices that help you stay healthy and balanced, both mentally and physically. If you’re a remote worker or considering WFH, here are some of the best wellbeing practices to help you achieve better balance:
- Establish a Routine
One of the best things about WFH is that you have more control over your daily schedule. However, this doesn’t mean that you should toss your daily routine out of the window. Establish a routine that’s similar to your everyday office schedule. Wake up at the same time each day, shower, and get dressed for work, even if you don’t intend to go out. This can help you get into the right mindset, making it easier to shift from personal to professional modes.
- Create a Comfortable Workspace
Ensure that you have a designated workspace, whether it be a whole room or a table in your living room. Make it comfortable and ergonomic, to promote physical wellbeing and reduce discomfort or injury. Invest in a good chair and desk to avoid back and neck pain, and take frequent breaks to stretch or walk around.
- Connect with People
Working remotely doesn’t mean that you should isolate yourself from the world. Keep in touch with colleagues, friends, and family. Organize virtual watercooler moments or arrange phone or Zoom calls. Social interactions can combat loneliness and help increase motivation, productivity, and creativity.
- Move Your Body
Sitting all day is harmful to both your body and mind. Take regular breaks to move your body by doing some stretches or taking short walks. Exercise has many benefits, and even a 2-minute walk outside can improve your mood, energy levels, and cognitive function. Make time for a workout session, or find a workout buddy you can interact with remotely.
- Set Boundaries
Working from home can easily blur the lines between work and personal life, leading to stress and burnout. Set boundaries such as work hours, break times, and monitor usage of digital devices. Try to avoid checking emails or answering calls outside work hours to avoid burnout and ensure that you have a dedicated time to recharge.
- Stay Focused
Working from home can be distracting, so find ways to stay focused. Use the Pomodoro technique by setting 25-minute work intervals, followed by a five-minute break, or block off-time to work on critical tasks. Use tools like noise-cancelling headphones or set your phone to silent, to minimize disruptions and create an environment that enables productivity.
- Find Time for Yourself
While working from home, it’s crucial to find time for hobbies, relaxation, and self-care. Engage in activities that help you relax and recharge, such as reading, practicing yoga or meditation, or listening to music. If possible, plan outdoor activities to get some fresh air and sunshine.
- Eat Well
It’s easy to snack on unhealthy food or forget to eat when working from home, but this can impact your productivity and wellbeing. Plan ahead and meal prep to ensure that you have healthy, balanced meals. Take breaks to prepare nourishing snacks such as fruits, nuts, or vegetable sticks, and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
- Embrace the Opportunity
Working from home is a unique opportunity. Embrace the benefits, such as having more time to spend with loved ones, achieving better work-life balance, or enjoying a quieter work environment. Use your freedom to your advantage by taking advantage of your flexibility and opportunities to grow and learn. Incorporate new learning activities and pursue professional development to enhance your career prospects.
- Be Mindful of Your Mental Health
Working from home can be isolating at times, which may lead to feelings of anxiety, sadness, and depression. Take care of your mental health by seeking support from a therapist or practicing mindfulness meditation. Also, take small steps to address the problems that contribute to your stress, such as delegating more responsibilities to your team. Lastly, don’t hesitate to seek help when you need it.
In conclusion, while working from home can lead to greater freedom and flexibility, it’s essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle. By setting routines, establishing boundaries, staying connected with people, incorporating regular exercise, taking breaks, engaging in hobbies, eating well, embracing opportunities, and prioritizing your mental health, you will thrive in the remote work lifestyle.
Remember, achieving a healthy balance between work and life is not about perfection. It’s about setting achievable goals and finding ways to make small but significant improvements. Incorporate these wellbeing practices into your daily routine, and you will reap the benefits of a happier, healthier, and more successful work-life balance.