More and more companies are transforming their operations to consist of 100% remote work. Setting up a home office is becoming a trend, with social distancing due to the pandemic driving a shift, with work activities now taking place in employees homes.
Some other companies are gradually returning to the office, having implemented social distancing measures and strict biosecurity protocols. However, many of these companies have kept the home office as a workable alternative. Due to the pandemic, they have discovered the great benefits of remote working with improved efficiency and performance of staff.
The opinion of employees and collaborators play a very important role when evaluating the home office. Many claim to experience greater comfort and value of being able to more flexibly manage their home life whilst still being able to work.
However, this working style has a high risk of causing emotional conditions that affect psychological health, such as stress, depression, anxiety, insomnia, trouble concentrating, changes in appetite, irritability, and even the development of burnout syndrome.
Burnout syndrome has been recognized by the WHO (World Health Organization) as a health disorder caused by chronic stress.
Therefore, home working has to be looked at carefully and requires the deployment of strategies by the company to take care of the mental health of its employees.
Working in the place that used to be your rest space, where you found tranquility and calm as an escape from work can activate a feeling of the "work is not never done”, triggering increased tensions that affect your mental well-being.
Considering the stress and general discomfort which can occur from working at home we want to provide some tips and tricks to make the transition easier, putting your mental health first.
Separate physical spaces
It is important to structure your mindset by spatially partitioning your work life from your home life. Separating the working and relaxing areas will help to keep your life balanced.
For example, even if you usually eat at the same table where you work you can put on a tablecloth, which indicates it is time to eat and remove everything that involves work.
Set a schedule
Visible schedules are an excellent way to accomplish routines.
It is recommended to set a time to get up and go to bed. Try to schedule in your work times and allow for rests and active breaks. We also recommend you use alarms to help you manage your time.
It is necessary that you have a work start and end time that you comply to with precision. By no longer reading messages or emails you can fully relax and engage with some fun activities.
Pro tip: use DailyBot to automate morning routines, where you reflect and write down the plans for your day. Try it now.
During breaks, try to pick activities which will allow you to recover from exhaustion and reduce tension and stress. A few minutes out in the open-air, can be valuable, try having a glass of water, or eat a small snack. It is important to incorporate mindfulness into everything you do, helping you with some deep inhalations and exhalations, connecting with you, with your body and its feeling and give way to what you will do with total presence.
Try this by breathing in and out, shifting awareness to the present. Try to connect your consciousness, your body and the external world.
A few minutes will be enough to restore your energy and return with a new attitude to get on with work. It might seem like a cliché, but once you make it part of your routine, you realize that these pauses do not waste your time. By taking five minutes out you can ultimately save time by more efficiently completing a task due to a refreshed mindset
Take care of your body
Taking part in physical exercise or yoga can help you release body tension. This is important because emotions manifest in the body and can lead to concentrated areas of pain, stiffness, and even affect eating.
Therefore, improving the body will help the mind, with just a few minutes of exercise making a huge difference
Your body needs to receive the necessary nutrition to stay healthy and keep energy levels high. Skipping lunch to work more could lead to reduced productivity and eventually getting less work done overall.
Nourish your mind with your breath
Installed in your daily routine, we recommend a special time when you connect with your breath. Breathing is an involuntary and automatic activity, but when we make it conscious and use it to our benefit, it can contribute to the general emotional and psychological well-being.
A valuable way to do this is through meditation practices, incorporating a few minutes at the beginning or the end of your daily routine.
You can find apps like Calm, Headspace, and Bambú (for the Spanish-speaking public) with many mindfulness exercises and special content to introduce active breaks and meditation in your life.
Give yourself time to do ANYTHING
Yes, as you read it, giving yourself time to "not do" is valuable. A moment of rest without using screens can give your brain and body a good recharge.
When finishing your work or during breaks, give yourself leisure time
Reading a book, reviewing a magazine, watching television, listening to music or chatting with friends and family can help contribute to your peace of mind.
Avoid watching channels that show news that can stress or sadden you and try to take the time to inform yourself from serious sources. A few minutes to be aware will be enough, and try to do it in the day.
Pro tip: Use your own Personal wellness check-in question template on DailyBot.
Stimulate your creativity
Painting, knitting, drawing, playing a musical instrument, writing, or singing are not exclusively for artists. By expressing your creativity you can help your brain to unwind and release tension. Variety is often undervalued and can have a wide range of benefits.
Share gathering time
Talking has more healing powers than you can imagine. Choose a time to chat and express your feelings. It could be a person from your family or a friend or colleague who you trust. If time does not facilitate a meeting, you can do it through a video call. If there are restrictions in place which stop you being able to meet in person, have a video call instead.
You are not alone so just reach out to people around you. Make sure to give your attention and consciously listen to the person, We are sure they will be appreciative.
Ask for help
It is human to ask for help when stress or emotions overwhelm you. It is ok to seek professional guidance and view mental problems as seriously as physical illnesses.
Take care of yourself, because you are the center of your world.
Home office and remote work are the current trend, and for many people it represents a completely new way to work. Any change requires an adaptation that takes time and effort.
“Why is remote a good thing?” – Read the article
Choosing the best times of the day for activities that demand more concentration, taking breaks, and taking care of your physical and mental well-being must be your priority.
Include breaks in your daily routines to rest, meditate, and relax. Giver attention to your breathing to relieve stress and increase your focus and productivity.
Live in the present, incorporating mindfulness into everything you do.