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Remote work has gained serious traction over the last few years. It’s led businesses to benefit financially, access a global talent pool, and retain top talent.
Remote work offers several perks to employees, too. If you work remotely, you can create a better work-life balance, increasing your engagement and productivity. In addition, when you’re more engaged in your role, your team's workflow strengthens.
As wonderful as remote work can be, it can negatively affect your mental and physical health if you aren’t proactive about caring for both. Remote work is known to drive people to isolation and burnout, among other things. Staying on top of your mental and physical health as a remote worker is much more manageable with these four tips for working from home.
Get Ready Like You’re Going Into an Office
Part of what gets us in work mode is actually getting ready for work. But, remote employees don’t necessarily have to do the things they would do to get prepared for in-office work to work remotely.
Staying in your pajamas and working in bed make it hard to get into work mode, let alone stay motivated to perform throughout the day. Instead, get ready for work like you’re going into the office. Shower, do your hair, and take care of additional hygiene needs.
Then, get dressed for the day. Your clothing and mental health are more intertwined than you may think. What you wear can set the tone for your day. An outfit that makes you feel confident, well-put-together, and dressed for success can increase productivity, connection, and creativity. Staying mentally well as a remote worker relies heavily on how you start your day, and choosing your clothing intentionally can help you get off on the right foot.
Set Intentional Work Hours
Many remote workers have difficulty clocking out of work when they’re doing it remotely. Some feel obligated to do more because they work in a comfortable setting. Others don’t manage their time well and work throughout the entire day, leaving no time for personal endeavors.
When an employee never clocks out, they burn out. And when employees burn out, their mental, physical, and emotional health decline, impacting their work performance and presence.
Setting intentional work hours is critical to maintaining mental and physical wellness. Pick a time to start and stop working each day. Get as much done as you can during this time, and leave the rest for the next day. That way, you’ll have time to rest, reset, and enjoy your personal life.
Take Regular Breaks
In addition to intentional work hours, taking regular breaks throughout your work day is essential. Even when breaks are monitored for in-office employees, ensuring breaks are taken can still be challenging. That challenge becomes even more significant with remote employees because they usually don’t take regular breaks if they take them at all.
Working for long stretches without any breaks leads to lots of stress and exhaustion. On the other hand, breaks allow you to refresh your mind and body regularly to relieve stress and enhance productivity.
It’s a good idea to work in a 15-minute break for every 90 minutes of work. Be sure to schedule a 30-minute to 1-hour lunch break. Also, refrain from working through your breaks and lunches. Completely step away from work and engage in something that resets your mind and body like:
- Working out;
- Taking a nap;
- Taking a walk;
- Going to a therapy session;
- Partaking in mindfulness activities;
- Having a meaningful conversation with a loved one.
Regular breaks will ensure you stay fresh and not overworked.
Be Diligent About Your Physical Health
According to Mckinsey & Company’s American Opportunity Survey, close to 30% of respondents who work remotely full-time report that physical health issues impact their ability to work effectively. What’s more, almost 50% of part-time remote workers said the same. Although flexible work is becoming the preferred option, it may come with physical consequences.
If you aren’t already managing any preexisting conditions and nurturing your physical health in general, that bad habit can worsen when working from home. You just aren’t moving around and getting out as much, which can lead to neglecting your physical health.
Also, when you neglect your physical health, your mental wellness and work performance suffer, too. So, it’s essential to be diligent about your physical health. You can start by building a fitness routine you can stay consistent with, whether it be a walk in the morning before work or a gym session three times a week. If you also strive to eat well, your mental health and well-being will improve along with your physical health.
Also, remote workers spend a lot of time in front of a computer screen, exposing them to harmful blue light that can cause various eye issues, like digital eye strain. Visit an eye doctor to understand the state of your eye health and determine if computer glasses can make all of your computer time less harmful to your eyes.
Moreover, remote workers often spend long hours sitting down. Most don’t pay attention to posture, which can lead to neck, back, and shoulder pains and injuries. So, consider purchasing ergonomic office furniture to maintain good posture and support for your body.
There isn’t a remote worker out there that can’t benefit from staying on top of their mental and physical wellness. Although doing so requires effort and intention, it’s worth it for the effects a healthy mind and body can have on your work performance and overall quality of life. Use the tips above to adequately nurture your mental and physical health while working remotely.https://www.percivalclo.com/pages/clothing-and-mental-health-connection