Seven Tips For Staying Healthy When Working At Home
For a rapidly increasing number of UK workers, the daily commute may be as simple as walking down the hall to their home-office. Even before the effect of the Coronavirus, approximately six million UK workers were working flexibly and this will increase very rapidly over the coming weeks.
However, working from home brings its own health challenges, which range from typing and making calls while slumped on the sofa to over-indulging in the contents of the fridge, all of which have a detrimental effect on your health.
Here’s how to combat the most common challenges and stay healthy while working at home.
1. Make sure you’re sitting – or standing – comfortably
It’s critical to select a suitable, ergonomic chair and corresponding desk height when spending any length of time in the seated position. Or, for a change, why not try working while standing?
2. Make time for exercise
Make a real effort to do some exercise every day – you can break it into multiple, shorter sessions if you prefer – and don’t let home or work-based distractions get in the way of your routine. For added discipline, try online exercise programmes which boost your motivation.
3. Recognise the benefits of a short break every hour or so
When focusing hard, it’s easy to forget to allow yourself a short break to refresh the mental muscle and be able to return to the task in hand with a refreshed and reinvigorated mind.
4. Separate work time from leisure time
While it’s tempting to start work later than normal and let it extend into the evening, it’s not helpful to your goal of staying healthy while working from home. Set reasonable time objectives for the working day and stick to them when realistic to do so.
5. Make healthy food choices easily available and banish the junk
Keep good food choices easily to hand in the kitchen and minimise temptation by avoiding the presence of over-processed foods. It’s also a virtuous circle – eating well makes you feel better and be more inclined to maintain a healthy approach to working at home.
6. Do make sure your do a little socialising over the phone or your conferencing facility
The lack of person-to-person contact when working at home can lead to a sense of isolation which can hinder productivity. Even if it’s a strictly work-related conversation, talking with a fellow worker for a few minutes can restore motivation.
7. Maintain a soothing, peaceful environment
Consider placing pictures, artwork, flowers or anything which appeals to you around your home-office environment, or if you have an attractive view from the window, set up your desk to take maximum advantage of it. Having a calm work environment is highly conducive to staying healthy while working at home.
Doubtless there are many other approaches to staying healthy while working at home, but the seven tips above are a good starting point, especially if you’re new to home working or even if you’ve been working at home for years.