Working from home is now routine for many of us. Running from meeting to meeting in the office has been replaced with back-to-back video calls. The daily commute has changed from fighting traffic to get across town to simply going down your stairs.
This adjustment can be a challenging one as our professional and personal worlds become one. During this time of change, it is very important to keep both your mental and physical health top of mind.
Check out the following tips for working from home during the COVID-19 outbreak. They will help you stay healthy and productive throughout your work day.
Stay on a schedule
Your new schedule might look different, but it is still important to have one. Schedules and routines provide a sense of normalcy in our days which is good for our mental health. Sleep should be a big focus of your new schedule. Sleep keeps our immune system strong and helps us stay mentally sharp. Go to bed and wake up at decent hours. Also, don’t get in a habit of taking long naps during the day.
Even though you are working from home, still get ready each morning. This will help you mentally transition into your work day. Wash your face, brush your teeth and change out of your pajamas. Also, try to wake up an hour or so before starting work to make breakfast, spend time with family or have some quiet time alone.
Implement start and stop times
With your new daily schedule, be sure to include start and stop times for your work day. Having them will help you avoid work burn out and set healthy boundaries. It will also give you time to practice self-care and enjoy some hobbies during your day.
After you put your work away for the day, do something that makes you happy. Catch up with friends and family via video chat. You could also read a good book, cook, journal or watch a favorite show. Whatever brings you joy, make time to do it every day.
Decide on a work space
Find an area of your home to use as your home office. It should be a place you can concentrate with few distractions. This could be a low-traffic area of your house or a room where you can be alone. Avoid laying in bed, though. Be sure to keep your bed for sleeping only.
Your home office should have a chair that you can practice good posture in and sit up straight. Also, add some décor to your work space with items that will bring you joy throughout your day.
Having issues with background noise? Try a pair of noise-cancelling head phones. Natural sounds and soft music work best for concentration.
Take active breaks and spend time outdoors
Take time throughout your day to stretch and do a couple push-ups or a few yoga poses. Even in small bursts, physical activity can improve your overall mood and productivity. It is important for both your mental and physical health to avoid staying stationary for too long.
If the weather is nice, take a quick break to go on a walk or run. You can also absorb some vitamin D by working outside on your porch or patio. Research shows that spending time outdoors lowers stress and promotes relaxation.
Don’t skip meals and eat healthy
It is critical to fuel your body throughout your work day, and not with endless cups of coffee. While it can be easy to lose track of time, don’t skip meals, especially lunch, during your work day. Taking a break for lunch also gives you a quick mental break from your computer screen.
Healthy food options such as fruits, proteins and vegetables will help give you the energy you need as well as help boost your immune system. Also, be sure to drink water throughout the day to keep your body hydrated. Limit your snacking and avoid eating lots of processed foods.
Check in with your coworkers
Don’t let social distancing put a pause on office friendships! Be sure to still check in with your coworkers regularly. Ask them how their kids are doing or about any fun activities they are trying with this extra time at home. Share with them any personal or professional tips that have been helping you during this time. If you don’t regularly do video chats, set one up with your team so you can all see each other’s faces.
These moments help us keep up with the social aspects of our work lives and boost everyone’s mental health.
Stay updated on what Bon Secours is doing related to COVID-19.