7 BEST WORK FROM HOME TIPS
Learn how to successfully intergrate work into your home
Since the coronavirus outbreak many employees have started working from home, with this arrangement possibly continuing well into 2021. Indeed, some experts believe working from home may well become the new norm.
If this is you, it’s important for your mental health to establish and maintain clear boundaries between your professional and personal life.
Here are our 7 Best Work From Home tips to help you “leave work at the door” when you’re not actually using the door.
1. Create your dedicated office space
If possible, have an area in your home designated only for work use. When you are finished, shut the door and keep it closed until you start work again. If your home environment does not allow for this, put everything work related away when you are finished and leave your computer for a while before sitting down again for personal use.
Ensure all the other people in your home are aware of, and respect your working times. It’s important you are not constantly interrupted with household chores or parenting duties.
Your work environment also needs to be well set up ergonomically and you need to maintain regular stretch breaks while working.
Read our blog on Office Ergonomics for additional information which may be of interest to you.
2. Create a work schedule
To maintain work-life balance you need to create a schedule that suits you. Have clear guidelines for when to work and when to stop. You can do 9 to 5 or you can start early, finish late, work around kids nap times, whatever works best for you. Once you have your schedule stick to it!!!!! (most of the time).
Make sure you have specific break times during your work schedule. Set an alarm on your phone and make sure you take your schedule time. While on your break move away from your desk; move, stretch, whatever suits you, just get your muscles working and your brain oxygenated.
3. Have a start work routine
Once you have your start time, create a routine to prepare for your work day. Make a cup of tea or coffee, go for a walk to a nearby park, do some stretches, whatever you choose just do the same activity before commencing work every day.
Put on your work clothes, or at least something you only wear when working (a hat, shirt, whatever you want). This routine actually replaces your commute to work. It’s telling your brain it is time to switch into work mode and is more powerful than a clock.
4. Have a stop work routine
When you finish work, have a routine to finish your work day. Change out of your work clothes (or hat), walk the dog, exercise, have a wine, just create a habit as a signal to your brain work is done for the day. Turn off your computer and do not touch anything to do with work again until your next shift starts.
Turning your brain from work mode to home mode is extremely important for your mental health and your quality of life with your family and friends.
5. Leave your home
Your body needs to move, so leave the building at least twice a day. Take a walk, weed the garden, exercise in the park… you get the picture. Fresh air and natural light are necessary for both your physical and mental health.
6. Socialise with colleagues
Loneliness, disconnection, and isolation are common problems associated with working from home, especially for extroverts. Use technology such as facetime and zoom to create regular communications with both your fellow employees and supervisors. Make sure you keep these contacts going on a regular basis. Being proactive about nurturing work relationships will keep you feel connected and included, and is essential to your mental health.
7. Look after your spine
As chiropractors, we are seeing a large increase in patients with low back pain, neck or arm pain and headaches caused by working from home in poor home office setups.
It is vital your home-work environment is correctly set up. Your desk, chair and monitor should all be situated ergonomically, and that you maintain good posture.
Firstly, have your chair and desk at the right height and setup so it supports your spine properly. Your phone, computer, keyboard, mouse and monitor also need to be situated correctly to minimise stress on your body.
Secondly, change your work position frequently and keep moving. Have a regular stretching routine to do while you are sitting at your desk to keep your body active and your blood circulating properly.
Read our blog on reducing back and neck pain in Easy Ways to Keep Active at Work for additional information which may be helpful.
In summary, it is vital you maintain clear boundaries between your work and personal life to avoid burnout in the long run. You will need to experiment with your own personal structure to find the work from home balance that is sustainable for you long term.
We hope you have found this blog helpful. Please leave a comment below and tell us how this blog has helped you.