Tuesday, July 23

How to Prioritize Wellness and Self-Care When Working From Home

Everyone takes self-care for granted, but it becomes even more important when you work from home. It can be easy to blur the lines between work and personal time, so it’s essential to have a clear routine to prioritize wellness and self-care.

Some self-care activities have a physical aspect while others are mental, such as journaling or reading. The key is to find activities that are a natural part of your daily routine.

1. Get a good night’s sleep

As anyone who’s struggled with poor sleep can attest, it impacts more than just our mood and energy levels. The immune system, hormones, and cognitive functions are all impacted by the amount and quality of sleep we get each night.

One of the reasons why getting a good night’s sleep is so important is because our bodies are hard-wired to need and want to sleep at night. Shift work, which is when people are required to be awake and active during the night, and other irregular hours can disrupt our circadian rhythms, which is essential for good health.

Working from home can be an opportunity to improve your sleep habits and develop better sleep hygiene. Having regular daily habits, such as sleeping at the same time each night and not consuming caffeine after a certain point in the day, can help keep your circadian rhythm on track.

Additionally, separating work and play by not using your bed for both activities can help establish healthy boundaries and encourage restful sleep. Finally, limiting your exposure to blue light, like the kind that comes from the screens of smartphones, tablets, computers, and external monitors before you go to bed, can also be helpful.

2. Drink lots of water

While many of us are hunkering down in our homes to avoid COVID-19 germs, it’s a great time to implement work from home wellness and self-care habits. It may be easier to get distracted when working from home and neglect to take care of ourselves, but this isn’t good for our mental and physical health.

One of the best ways to stay healthy while working from home is to drink plenty of water. The old standard of eight 8-oz glasses of water per day is still a good guideline, but you can also find fun ways to incorporate more fluids into your diet. Try adding fruits and veggies to smoothies or making frozen fruit popsicles – they’re yummy, easy, and full of healthy vitamins and minerals.

It’s also important to create boundaries and set clear expectations with family members, roommates, and colleagues when working from home. Setting a clear work-life balance is essential to avoiding burnout. For instance, it’s a good idea to keep your work space separate from the rest of the house and turn off Slack notifications after work hours. And don’t forget to invest in ergonomic work tools like a cushioned mouse pad and a desk chair that provides proper support for your back and neck.

3. Eat healthy snacks

Working from home often means a new routine and access to different food options. It’s easy to fall into a pattern of mindless snacking that isn’t good for your body or your focus.

Taking the time to prepare healthy snacks and eat them mindfully will help you feel more satisfied throughout the day. This can improve your mood and prevent you from overeating later.

Carrots with hummus or a bowl of whole-grain cereal with milk are both low-calorie choices that are filling and nutritious. Fruits are another good choice, especially berries, apples and mangos. Try adding them to smoothies or eating them as a dessert with a spoon.

Eating these types of healthy snacks will keep your energy levels high and your brain sharp so you can work well. Avoid relying on unhealthy foods, such as burgers, pizza or delivery, that will only make it harder to get through the day. Instead, use a flexible job search to find an exciting new opportunity that will allow you to eat better and stay healthy while you work from home. It’s the best way to achieve the ultimate flexible remote career!

4. Exercise

Working from home has its perks, but it can also take a toll on physical health. In fact, for many, the transition from a busy office to working at home has resulted in reduced exercise levels, which can lead to obesity, high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol, as well as weakening muscles in the back, hip flexors, hamstrings and calves.

It is also easy to fall into a lazy routine and spend all day working from the comfort of your couch or office chair. The easiest way to stay fit while working from home is to use a standing desk or find other ways to get on your feet and move. This could be as simple as incorporating a few short 10-minute bodyweight workouts into your daily work break routine or trying to get out for walks during lunch and after the day is over. You can check out bettertools.io for additional techniques and tricks.

It is important to choose an exercise that you enjoy so that it is easier to stick with. Try to pair exercise with something you already enjoy, like watching a favorite show on Netflix or drinking a glass of wine after completing your workday. This will help you to see exercise as an integral part of your workday rather than just a chore on your to-do list.

5. Take a bath or shower

Whether it’s in the morning or after an afternoon workout, showering regularly is a great way to feel energized and ready for your day. It’s also a way to wash away toxins that can build up throughout the day, which can improve your skin’s texture and appearance.

However, some people choose to bathe rather than shower. In fact, some studies suggest that a bath may be better for your health than a shower. Here’s why:

While showering, the partials of dirt that were on your body rinse off and go directly down the drain, but when you’re bathing, you could be soaking in some of those dirty bits. This is because the water in a tub often contains a film of bacterial residue known as a biofilm, and these can stick to your skin or hair as you soak.

The lukewarm water in your tub can also stimulate blood flow, which can improve the look of your skin and give you that healthy glow. In fact, one study comparing the effects of immersion bathing and showering showed that the former had a better impact on subjective well-being than the latter. This is because bathing provides a sense of relaxation, eases fatigue, and reduces stress hormones.

6. Get some fresh air

In a time when more people work from home than ever before thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s essential that they take steps to prioritize wellness and self-care. Whether you were already a WFH employee before the pandemic or are new to it, setting boundaries and creating routines is critical.

Having a designated workspace at home (even if it’s just the corner of your kitchen table) helps to create a mental separation between your work life and your home life. It’s also important to set and adhere to a schedule throughout the day, so your brain knows when it is time to focus.

It is also important to get some fresh air so that you can breathe in some oxygen and clear your head. This can help you feel more energized and ready to focus on your tasks at hand. Additionally, getting some sunlight can be good for both your mood and your skin. And finally, don’t forget to exercise! Even just 30 minutes of walking can help keep your mood up and increase your energy levels. It can be hard to make time for these things when working from home, but they’re worth it.

7. Meditate

Meditation is a common self-care practice for many people, and it’s also been linked to improved focus, emotional regulation and reduced stress. In fact, many successful business people like Mark Cuban, Jack Dorsey and Oprah swear by it as a regular part of their daily routines.

Meditation involves quieting the mind and focusing attention, either on one thing (like an object, image or word), or on the rhythm of breathing or a mantra. It can help improve cognitive performance, and it also produces positive effects on brain function, as shown by modern diagnostic and imaging techniques such as electroencephalography and magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).

The term “meditation” derives from the Latin meditatio, meaning to think deeply or contemplate. The practice is sometimes referred to as mindfulness, which refers more to an overall attitude of awareness and acceptance, rather than just a particular technique.

To practice mindfulness, you can sit in a chair or in a cross-legged position, and you can do it with your eyes open or closed. Focus on the sensation of the breath as it comes in and out, and if your mind wanders, don’t berate yourself; simply bring it back to noticing the sensation of your breathing.