According to the UK’s Office for National Statistics, the number of people working from home increased by a quarter of a million in the last decade.
Data collected by April 2020 revealed that at least 49.9% of the population worked at home, understandably because of the social distancing protocols and coronavirus prevention measures.
But as many people admit, they love working from home more than in the office although they wouldn’t mind making an occasional trip to the office when necessary.
Working from home means you don’t have to worry about transport, waking up early to be at the office on time, or dressing up every day. You also spend more time with family, work in a relaxed atmosphere, and have more control over your schedule. And you save a lot because you don’t incur fuel or transport costs, don’t invest in office outfits and food.
You may lead a more sedentary lifestyle, gain some weight, become untidy and less groomed.
Working from home can be fulfilling, but you have to take care of yourself and your work environment.
How do you do it?
Create a Conducive Home Office
When you have a home office that’s functional, attractive and ideal to your work needs, you tend to be more productive, calmer and happier.
You will want to spend more time in your home office doing what you love. Because you probably spend a lot of time working, get ergonomic furniture that protects your back, ensures you move about more often and promotes productivity.
Apart from a comfortable chair, make enough room for the desk and have a storage area. Choose a spot with enough lighting, fresh air, calming colours, fewer distractions and a great outside view.
Make sure the office space is neat, clutter-free and attractive. Sometimes you may have to remove stuff you no longer need or get rid of appliances that take a lot of unnecessary space such as large dormant fridges or damaged equipment.
A fridge disposal service can assist you in decluttering your home to create room for an office. Personalize your home office to make it comfortable, welcoming, and private. You will be spending a considerable amount of your time in your home office; therefore, make it meet your needs and preferences.
Create a Schedule
Create a schedule that works for your needs. Are you more productive in the morning or late night hours? Plan your work schedule well to avoid burnout or conflict with family time.
For instance, make sure you don’t have to attend to work duties unless it’s an emergency during a family meal or bonding time. Make sure to let your family know when you will be working to reduce disturbance and interruptions. How do you stay fit while working from home?
Get an Exercise Routine
Working from home can be challenging. There is the temptation to sit on the couch and enjoy a tv program or snack after work rather than work out.
To avoid this, get a work out plan that ensures you work out even if it’s just indoors. It doesn’t matter if it’s an early morning jog or an after-work run or time on the treadmill. As long as you stay active and make it a routine, it will go a long way to ensure you stay fit.
Stand Up Every Hour
Sitting down for long hours can lead to health complications. You will strain your back, and hurt your waistline. Make sure to stand and walk about for at least five minutes every hour you sit down. If possible, alternate between sitting and standing when working, ensuring blood flows smoothly to all body parts.
Also, if there are tasks you can handle while walking, do so. These include receiving phone calls, replying to texts or checking emails on a mobile device. Make sure to use every opportunity you have to stand and walk around.
Change Your Workstation Often
It’s not just about taking care of your physical fitness but also your mental and emotional wellbeing. Working from the same spot can be boring leading to slowed productivity. To avoid this, change your workstation position every time you feel bored or unproductive.
You can even work from a coffee shop, a park or the balcony of your house as you enjoy the view. Go for whatever set up that makes you feel good about the work arrangement and boosts productivity.
Have a Social Life
It’s tempting to stay indoors and only interact with the people within. Most people who work from home don’t look forward to dressing up and going out.
They would rather stay indoors, lazy on the couch as they watch their favourite show. It’s essential to go out with family and friends or just alone and meet new people. The change of environment is relaxing and energizing.
It gives you a break from work and indoor monotony which is necessary to keep you productive and avoid burnout. Make sure to stay in touch with your friends and plan date nights or weekend getaways.
Have Some Me Time
Sometimes it can be hectic trying to balance work and family time. There is always someone who needs your attention every minute you step out of your workstation.
As much as it feels good to work around your family members, it can sometimes be draining. Every day, set some time alone to meditate, and relax.
It can be after work or when everyone has gone to bed. The calmness and quiet will rejuvenate, energize and help you unwind after a long day, which is vital for your mental health.
It also pays to take good care of your physical looks. Just because you work from home doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dress up, go for a haircut, take care of your nails or apply makeup.
Before work, take a shower, groom yourself and wear comfortable attire. The preparation puts you in a work mode which boosts productivity. When you feel good about yourself, you are happier and motivated to work more.
Once in a while, dress up, go out for dinner, change your hairstyle, buy something fancy or reward yourself. You have been working hard, and you deserve some reward.
Watch What You Eat
Two things can happen when working remotely, you either indulge on unhealthy foods or forget to eat anything. You may get caught up with work and forget to prepare a meal, and before you know, it’s late, you’re too tired and want to curl up in bed and sleep.
If this becomes a habit, it can lead to dietary problems. Make sure you eat healthy meals every day.
Stock up your fridge and larder with enough healthy foods such as vegetables, whole-grain cereals and fruits. Make sure there are enough healthy snacks or foods to prepare when you feel hungry. You will not have to order a meal or snack on junk.
Eating healthy foods keeps you fit and energized, makes you happy and promotes your physical fitness goals.
Build Strong Family Ties
Family time is therapeutic. Create time every day when you can share meals, talk or play with young kids. It will help you relax and leave you happier.
Your family will also be glad you are creating time to spend with them. They will not resent your work but will respect your work time. It’s all about creating a balance.
As much as you have to meet work deadlines, your family wants to spend time with you, and you also need to rest and sleep. Having a plan for the day’s activities will ensure you have enough time for every scheduled activity, including family.
It’s also important to schedule time when you can enjoy family outdoor activities such as visiting a park, swimming, shopping and visiting friends. When your family is happy, you will be motivated to work more to make sure they are comfortable.
Get Several Work Out Techniques You Love
Walking, jogging or time on the treadmill can be monotonous and lead to boredom but if you have several techniques you can interchange, it makes working out enjoyable.
Sometimes you may not even have the time or energy to go out for a jog, but yoga, weight lifting, or just ordinary home chores like scrubbing the floor can keep you going.
It’s also enjoyable when you involve the entire family in your workouts or just your partner. You will not only have someone to motivate you but an accountability partner to make sure you don’t slack.
You can also go digital. Learn new workout techniques, join online work out groups and even create an online schedule with interested family and friends.
It’ll be fun, and you will learn what works best for your fitness goals and ability. There’s always something for everyone no matter where you are in your fitness journey.
Working from home requires a lot of discipline, setting boundaries and letting everyone know the importance of respecting your work schedule. Despite the challenges, it is enjoyable and fulfilling.