Working from home comes with a range of benefits, from keeping your dress code relaxed to entirely avoiding your commute. However, there are sometimes drawbacks associated with your mental and physical wellbeing that can add up if you stay in the house all day. If you’re concerned about staying healthy while working from home, there are many things you can do to improve both your workstation and your routines. A new schedule, better habits, or even a treadmill desk might make all the difference in helping you avoid a sedentary lifestyle.
To begin improving your work-from-home habits and routines, you’ll first need to identify what you want to change. Maybe you’re spending all of your time sitting in one position and need to arrange a more active lifestyle. Or perhaps you’re finding it all too easy to avoid regular meal times and snack throughout the day. Finding a work-life balance, avoiding burnout, and reducing the impact of nearby distractions are normal, everyday challenges of working from home.
Regardless of how you’re currently operating while working from home, it usually comes down to altering the small details to see the most significant changes. Here are a few ways you may want to consider upgrading your work habits and home office space to improve your overall health. In many cases, these changes can also help increase your overall productivity.
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Standardize Your Sleep Routine
When you’re working from home, it’s all too easy to justify staying up late because you don’t have to go anywhere. To begin standardizing your routine and improving your health habits, you’ll want to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day. This allows some breathing room in your morning routine and helps to ensure that you aren’t waking up and immediately beginning your workday without the other aspects of your morning ritual that you might follow if you were heading into the office. Quality sleep goes a long way in improving your overall health and wellness.
Make Time for Meals
Setting aside time to eat a quality breakfast and lunch helps keep your food habits healthy. A healthy diet that prioritizes fruits, vegetables, proteins, and healthy fats improves your concentration, lowers your risk of long-term health concerns such as heart disease, and makes it less likely that you’ll reach for unhealthy snacks throughout the day. Limiting processed goods, red meat, and saturated fats can also help make your meals healthier. Though it might seem easier to eat while you’re working, you might find that you can actually get more done by stepping away from your work in the middle of the day.
Add Exercise to Your Calendar
Beginning a physical fitness routine is never an easy task, but it’s an essential part of staying healthy when you’re working from home. Instead of filling the time where you’d normally be commuting to and from work with TV or further work, consider exercising instead. Weightlifting and strength training helps keep your muscles in shape, while cardio, such as running and biking, helps improve agility and heart health. Other more relaxed exercises, such as yoga, can help to lower your blood pressure and improve your balance and flexibility.
Improve Your Posture
If you’re sitting at your desk all day and are experiencing any pain or discomfort in your joints, back, or neck, it’s probably time to review the ergonomics of your home office. A new desk chair, keyboard, or computer monitor can prove to be a substantial benefit for your joints and muscles. If you’re looking down at your screen, you should consider propping up the monitor so that it’s close to eye level. Optimal ergonomics can help to reduce stress, increase your productivity, and minimize discomfort in your musculoskeletal system.
While you’re working from home, everything from your family to the nearby street noise can take you away from your work and make it tough to concentrate. To minimize the impact and frequency of these distractions, it’s essential to set boundaries, both with the people around you and in relation to your surrounding environment.
Establish times when your office door is open and when you shouldn’t be disturbed. Consider acoustic foam or felt panels for optimizing the sound within your space and avoiding nearby the sounds of nearby neighbors. Avoid accessing social media during the middle parts of this day- this can take you away from your work for more time than you might initially think. Be mindful of the people who share your space if you don’t have the luxury of a private home office.
Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you should isolate yourself from your co-workers. When you’re working in the office, there’s always plenty of chances to connect with people and form meaningful business relationships. However, it’s essential that you maintain your social habits when you’re working from home, even if you have to use video calls or other chat platforms. These social connections can help to improve your mental health and avoid feelings of isolation.
Standing Desks and Bike Treadmills
Exercise equipment for your home office space allows you to balance your work routine with your health-related habits. Bike desks allow you to continue working while getting your cardio in. A desk treadmill can do much the same, and while you’re working, you won’t even notice as the miles add up. Standing desks, along with an accompanying floor mat, can help to improve your circulation and concentration. And because you probably don’t want to stand for the entire day, you can usually adjust this desk down to a more normal level. Fitness machines for your home office ultimately help reduce stress and improve your mood while promoting a healthy body weight and increasing your focus.