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Staying Healthy While Working From Home - How to Manage It

29 January 2023

Working from home is something that everyone in the workforce now has experienced at least for some time. When COVID hit full force, it forced many of us into WFH. Some of us did transition back to in-office settings, while others stayed fully remote.

Staying healthy while working from home can be a challenge. There are a number of physical, mental, and social issues that are raised when you are permanently working from home. However, there are ways to get around these problems.

Let's look at some of the ways you can stay healthy while working from home.

Staying Healthy During WFH

Have a Morning Routine

When you have to actually leave the house to get to work, you have a routine. You wash up and shower, get dressed, do your hair, put on your makeup, eat your breakfast, and then make the commute to work. Maybe you read a little while you're on the way, or check your messages.

When working from home, it's very tempting to forgo all of this and just sit in front of the computer as soon as you wake up. This is a bad idea!

Having a morning routine can help you get into the working mindset, so you don't feel like you're going to doze off any second when you're at your computer. Following the morning routine, get dressed for work and put yourself in "work mode" before you start working.

It may seem pointless, but it's actually very important for your mental health to give yourself a routine. Otherwise, you may end up merging your home life with your work life, and this can trigger feelings of depression and listlessness.

Eat Healthy

It's important that you eat healthy, whether you're working from home or not. But when working from home, the environment you're in is significantly more relaxed than it is at work, and that means that the exhaustion from the day is not quite the same. Not to mention, you always have junk food lying around to snack on, which can make you want to forego meals altogether.

It's also a bad idea to skip breakfast, which most of us tend to do when working from home, just so we can get an extra hour of sleep. Eating healthy means to have a lot of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy in our diet. Proteins like eggs, beans, fish, and nuts are also vital.

You may also find that you're more aware of your hunger when you're at home than when you're at the workplace. Don't snack on chips and cookies - go for healthier food like fruits or nuts.

Also, try to take your lunch break away from your computer. It's very important for your mental health to take an actual break where you're not thinking about work. Focus on what you're eating, instead of the computer screen!

Work-Life Balance

When working from home, it's very common for the lines between personal and professional life to start blurring. This is especially true when you start fitting your work routine into your home routine, rather than keep the two separate.

The best way to do this is to establish physical boundaries. As an example, keep your workspace separate from your home space - ideally with a door that you can shut when the workday is over. There is a sense of finality in closing a door, which can help you get out of the work mindset at the end of the day.

It's a good idea to have a separate room dedicated to work (and if possible, separate equipment as well!) but it's also important to have time boundaries as well. Don't just end the day whenever it ends - you should time yourself properly to make sure you're only spending as much time on your work as you need to.

To do this, you can also establish boundaries by following a work schedule. This should include your breaks: a lunch break, 15 minutes in the morning, and 15 minutes in the afternoon. Clock in and out on time, and don't let your work bleed into your personal time. If you allow the two to blend together, it can have a severe impact on your mental health.

Set Up Your Home Office

One of the things that affect people who work from home the most is the fact that they do not have the right equipment to maintain good posture. In fact, many people who transitioned to remote working simply started working at their dinner tables.

This is not just bad for the separation of work and home life, as mentioned earlier, but it's also not good for your back. You need to have good equipment that will help you maintain good posture so you can avoid problems like back and shoulder pain, or even severe injuries.

According to the CDC, a good office chair should have a height that allows you to keep your feet on the floor and should have lumbar support and armrests. Your desk should also be at a height where your hands don't have to bend more than 90 degrees. Your computer monitor should be about an arm's length away, and at a height that you don't have to bend your neck up or down to see the screen.

Look at your home setup: does it follow these guidelines? If not, you may be putting yourself at risk of long-term injuries. Many remote workers find themselves suffering from injuries and pains which can hinder other aspects of their lives. Not only is this bad for their physical health, but also their mental health!

If you can't invest in new furniture for your workspace, try and use other items to make up for it. This could be a footstool to keep your feet flat or seat cushions that could help you adjust for your height.

Social Connections

Remote work means that it becomes a lot more difficult to interact with your co-workers at a more personal level. When you share the same space, this interaction comes more naturally. When working from home, you tend to be on your own most of the time, and socialization gets diminished. This can be bad for your mental health, especially as more time passes and you feel somewhat isolated.

Make up for it by spending time with your friends and family wherever possible, and take time out for them. Nowadays, catching up with old friends is no big deal - everyone is just a text or call away! While you should try to meet them often, this is also a good enough way to keep in touch.

Daily Exercise

Exercise has both physical and mental benefits. When you spend a lot of time in the same spot, your muscles get tense because they are not getting enough movement. This is especially true in workplaces where you don't have a lot of opportunities to move around, but remote work does allow you to get enough exercise during the day!

You can do this by putting up reminders to do a few pushups, or by deliberately walking around while you take phone calls. You can also use a standing desk instead of a sitting desk to make sure you get some exercise while you work!

Exercise also makes your body release serotonin and dopamine, which are hormones responsible for making you feel happier. This helps you work more productively, with more focus.

Flexispot All In One Desk Bike

The Flexispot All-in-One Desk Bike is great for making sure you get enough exercise while you work. With this, even when you're performing a task that is otherwise sedentary, you can keep your legs going and get a little workout in that time.

The bike comes with a pneumatic adjustment lever so you can adjust the seat to your desired height. The integrated digital display also shows workout times, the number of calories you burned, and the speed at which you pedaled. This is good for keeping track of how much exercise you were able to get in while you were working.

The bike also has 8 resistance levels to make the workout more or less intense, as you prefer it. You might want a less intense workout while you're doing something that requires some focus, and then increase it as you do idle tasks.

The cycle itself is also very quiet - it is smooth and has low noise levels, so you don't end up disturbing anyone in the room with you (or yourself!) while working.

The seat for this bike is very comfortable, and the desktop is spacious enough to hold your things. The bike comes with lockable gravity casters, so you can move it easily to the spot you need and then lock them so it doesn't move around while you're sitting on it.

By getting in some exercise, not only do you manage to keep your muscles healthy, but also maintain good mental health, focus, and productivity.