Initially, the idea of working remotely can sound privileged and glamorous. Working location-independent has an allure that a stuffy office with dim, fluorescent lighting just can’t compete with. However, as anyone who has worked remotely for a long stretch of time knows, this arrangement has unexpected downsides. Setting boundaries, changing into “real” clothes for the day, and being able to fully “switch off” are just a few of the challenges that can arise.
Whether you’ve been working at home for one month or for one year, Grace Allison has five expert tips that you can use to feel your best.
Free yourself of distractions
The first significant challenge that almost every remote worker encounters is distraction. From kids yelling and crying while you’re finishing up an important report to dogs barking during your Zoom meeting, distractions are a natural part of working outside of the office. Even if you work from a coffee shop for the day, music and people talking loudly can derail your productivity.
Start by accepting that, at some level, you will always face distractions when working remotely. Thankfully, this doesn’t mean that there are no steps you can take to free yourself of many of them. Consider investing in tech accessories (such as noise-canceling headphones) to block out sound. If you find yourself checking your social media feeds more often than you should, delete these apps off of your phone for the day. Do whatever you can to reduce noise and other distractions that you wouldn’t have in the office.
Support your mental health
Regular in-person social interactions are essential for having good mental health. Socializing can decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety, reduce your risk of cognitive decline, and extend your lifespan. When working remotely, you do not have daily interactions with co-workers. Depending on your circumstances, this may lead to you not seeing anyone in person for days on end.
For this reason alone, it is critical that remote workers do everything possible to support their mental health. If you are struggling with depression, for example, seek professional help to develop a treatment plan. Also, schedule regular gatherings with close family and friends to guarantee that you’ll socialize with others each week.
Make your workspace look and feel good
One advantage of working from home is being able to create the workspace of your dreams. You can fully customize your home office with any decor that you desire. Being surrounded by objects, colors, patterns, aromas, and sounds that are pleasing to you will further boost your mental health. Make your workspace look and feel good by adding things that you enjoy, such as an essential oil diffuser, a record player, a favorite work of art, or comfy pillows.
Stock your fridge and pantry with healthy foods
The temptation to snack on unhealthy foods is strong when your house is stocked with junk food. Clear your pantry of chips, candy, and soda. Replace all unhealthy snacks and lunch items with nutrient-dense choices that are quick and easy to make.
Set boundaries to achieve a healthy work-life balance
Among all of the obstacles you can face as a remote worker, one of the most difficult to overcome is setting healthy work-life boundaries. Most people underestimate how valuable the physical transition from work to home is when working in an office. Without this transition, it becomes easy to blur the lines between work and home. To preserve your health and well-being, set firm boundaries for checking your email, answering work calls/texts, and working on projects after-hours.
Once you get into the swing of working remotely, the pros can undoubtedly outweigh the cons. Following the tips above can help you develop healthy work habits that keep you feeling your best.
Grace Allison is an award-winning author and modern Christian mystic. Through her work, she has helped thousands of individuals find spiritual wisdom that helps them work through life’s challenges. Visit her blog to learn more.
Article written by: