Working from home: Building healthy habits during COVID-19
Some people are finding it hard to get good healthy habit while working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many office workers have dreamed for years about working from home. After all, it’s common to get burned out by a long commute, hours of sitting behind a desk, running back and forth between meetings and eating grab-and-go meals (aka junk food!).
In this guide, we’ll take a look at some poor work-from-home habits, their consequences and solutions to help you feel strong and healthy each day.
6 bad habits you’ve got while working from home
Research shows that employee productivity is on the rise during the pandemic – even though people are working in isolated environments. (Source: Business News Daily)
While the productivity rise is good news for employers, employees need to be careful about letting poor health habits creep into their routines. These are some of the most common habits to watch out for:
- Working long hours: Putting in your 9-5 is easy in an office environment because that space is dedicated to one task, which is work. At home, you may work, but you also sleep, rest, play and relax. If you aren’t keeping an eye on the clock at home, you might get carried away with working long hours that aren’t necessary.
- No breaks: Taking frequent mental and physical breaks is important in any environment. At home, you might be tempted to plow through uncomfortable feelings because you’re in a cozy environment – but this isn’t the best approach for your well-being.
- Not eating or drinking enough: Your home fridge may be better stocked than your work fridge, but having access to food and drinks isn’t enough – you need to regularly eat healthy foods and drink water throughout the day.
- Not exercising: When working at an office, we often exercise without even realising it. We walk between offices, walk to and from our vehicles for breaks and stand up from time to time. But at home, you may go for hours without moving.
- Making excuses: Even while working from home, you’re probably quite busy. But being busy isn’t a good reason to let your health suffer if you aren’t feeling well.
- Bad posture: At home, you might log on to the computer from the sofa or even from bed. These habits may be convenient, but they can negatively impact your posture if you aren’t careful.
Working from home and the consequences of bad habits
Bad habits will eventually wear everyone down, even those who are young and healthy. You’ll start to feel physically and mentally uncomfortable if you don’t make an effort to correct poor practices. Some of the consequences of the health habits above include:
- Chronic tiredness
- Putting on weight
- Tight muscles
- Muscle pain or tension
- Feeling unhappy
- Stress on family or romantic relationships
- Poor time management
- Feeling stressed or overwhelmed
- Poor or inconsistent sleeping habits
How to find a better work-life balance
Even if your work-from-home lifestyle has impacted your health, it isn’t too late to make adjustments. There are many actionable ways to reverse poor routines and to replace them with things that help you thrive physically and mentally. If you’re trying to find ways to improve your daily habits, try these tips:
- Stretch before starting work: Stretching is simple, but it’s a huge difference maker. Avoid stiff, sore muscles with gentle stretches right after you wake up.
- Eat a nutritious breakfast: It’s common to skip breakfast, especially if you get absorbed in an early-morning work project. To keep your energy up and perform at your best, eat a nutritious breakfast before starting the workday.
- Keep water nearby: Many of us fail to drink enough water unless we’re outside in the heat or exercising regularly – but our bodies need about two liters of water per day. Keep water at your workstation and drink regularly to stay hydrated.
- Take regular breaks: Breaks are essential for a sharp mind and strong body. If you have trouble remembering to slow down, try the Pomodoro technique – a time management system that separates work into short time periods with breaks in between – for better results.
- Work normal hours: If you have a 9-5 job, don’t work in the wee hours of the morning or force yourself to burn the midnight oil. Work within your scheduled hours and enjoy the rest of your day.
- Interact with others: Social interaction happens organically at work when you bump into a colleague, but at home, you’re often isolated. Interact with others through a video call or in-person meetup to keep your spirits high.
- Exercise each day: Even a 20-minute walk can have a positive impact on your mindset and physical health. Move frequently to keep your body in shape and build an exercise routine that you can stick to.
What to do when you need extra support
If you’re dealing with aches and pains or suffering from chronic tension, there’s no need to live uncomfortably – osteopathy can help.
This gentle hands-on practice is designed to release musculoskeletal tension and to help all parts of your body feel revitalised and healthy. Regular Osteopathy visits can help you feel your best, especially when paired with gentle Trauma Release Exercises (TRE).
We help people feel their best with our patient-centered approach. Try our Personalised Covid-19 Wellness Package today?
Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.