How to Look After Yourself If You’re Still Working from Home


Working from home is still a hugely popular option for many of the UK’s working population, as some remain worried about the spread of the novel coronavirus while others see tangible benefits from spending more time with family, and less money on transport. Unfortunately, working from home presents its own unique difficulties with regard to worker health: difficulties which this piece hopes to address.

The Art of Setting Boundaries

The most important way to look after yourself while working remotely is to set boundaries between your work life and your home life. Even before the coronavirus pandemic, these lines were getting blurred by the creep of work emails onto personal devices like smartphones, seeing employees responding to emails and carrying out administrative tasks on their sofas late at night, let alone on their commute home.

For the sake of your mental health, drawing a line in the sand is absolutely key – though it is also easier said than done. Rather than permitting yourself to work past the end of your usual work day, do your best to create a rigid structure to your working day; this will enable you to switch off your work computer at your usual finishing time, thus removing you from the possibility of further work. The next step is to remove work communications from your phone. Either be sure to receive everything through your desktop, or request a work phone for work correspondence. This way, your phone is returned to your complete personal ownership, letting you use it without fear of being reminded about work out-of-hours.

Rules to Set for Home-Working

Unfortunately, you might not be able to adequately take care of yourself without addressing your day-to-day productivity. By creating and adhering to a remote-working schedule, you can remain in control of your day, and make sure that come the end of your working day, you can switch off completely. Setting rules to this effect can help, especially if you are prone to procrastination: no news or entertainment sites during work hours; tea breaks only after x amount of work is completed; email responses and busy-work only to be addressed between certain times – these can all give you structure, and ensure the completion of your work.

Staying Active at Home

At the best of times, it can be difficult to incorporate exercise into your home-working routine, especially where you are prone to getting carried away with tasks – or even procrastinating. These difficulties are compounded if you’ve recently received a personal injury claim from an accident, as mobility during recovery can be difficult to navigate. However, there are ways to engage your muscles without engaging in a full-on workout, and without tearing you too far away from your desk.

A surprising form of inspiration comes from Japanese working culture – namely, “Rajio taiso”, or radio calisthenics. This is a guided stretching and mobility exercise, so named for the national radio broadcast which guides citizens across the country to perform the exercise. This is a great source of inspiration, not just for the specific moves covered in the routine, but also for the regularity of its deployment in office environments. Scheduling regular breaks to stand from your desk and conduct some basic movement exercises can make all the difference. Notable mentions go to seating options which require poise, and engage your core, such as the yoga ball. Standing desks are also a great way to stimulate leg muscles and prevent back injury.

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