Remote work increases productivity and job satisfaction and lowers stress among employees. However, it also has its downside: remote workers typically take fewer breaks and sick days (continuing to work even if they’d be too sick to go into the office) and work overtime 18% more often. Staying active and taking care of your physical health is therefore essential for remote workers to stay happy, healthy, and productive.
It’s easy to neglect ergonomics like the position of your equipment or lighting when working from home. However, bad ergonomics causes poor posture and muscle strain, which over time can lead to musculoskeletal disorders like carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and tension neck syndrome.
In contrast, improving ergonomics allows you to work comfortably without resulting pain or health issues. For example, a standing desk lets you stand up comfortably as you work. The height can also be adjusted, so you can switch between sitting and standing throughout the day.
Standing desks have been found to improve back pain by 32% after several weeks of use — a common complaint associated with prolonged sitting.
Make time for exercise
Achieving a healthy work-life balance can be tough when working and especially when working from home. However, scheduling time for regular exercise is a great way to snap out of a midday funk or bad mood and help you return to your computer screen feeling refreshed and reenergized.
Regular exercise also offers health benefits like increased immune function. Even simply getting up and moving around for 10-15 minutes can help lift your mood and come back with a fresh, clearer mind. You may also want to join a gym or fitness class for an added social component.
Working remotely typically leads to continual grazing throughout the day. Especially if you’re feeling stressed and under pressure, it’s all too easy to reach for junk food. However, making healthy food choices is an important component of self-care that keeps your energy levels up and nourishes your body and mind.
If you struggle to eat right, prepare your healthy snacks and lunches ahead of time — just as you would if you were going into the office.
Working remotely can be a challenging adjustment for any employee. By improving ergonomics, scheduling time for exercise, and eating healthy, you can stay happy, productive, and healthy while working from home.
By Jennifer Jackman
Image from Pexels