At BriteCore, we know working remotely can affect our wellness and productivity. We can all enjoy its benefits while remaining alert to some of the challenges remote work can pose.
To make the most of remote work, here are some tips for staying happy and healthy when working remotely.
Loneliness and isolation are common issues even during “normal” times for remote workers, not only during social distancing. Some people require more interaction than others, but we all need social connections.
Nurture relationships with friends, family, and/or people you don’t regularly socialize with, based on what makes sense for your own emotional needs. When you can’t meet people in person, get on the phone or use FaceTime. At work, have regular face-to-face time with your colleagues that aren't just meetings, such as virtual coffee breaks or happy hours. Get to know the people you work with. Make time to talk about everyday life and common interests—not just the news.
Avoid remote work guilt.
You don’t have to stay glued to your computer all day. Work in sprints. Plan time when you can get away from your computer for a few minutes to move around. Give yourself screen-free time too. Don’t be afraid to stop and take a lunch hour, even if you don’t leave home.
Have a life. Your life matters, and you need to have one outside of work. Setting boundaries and protecting your time (work and otherwise) requires planning, effort, and intentionality. You don’t need to be glued to Slack, email, or any other messaging platform your company uses. It’s okay to set snooze hours for notifications. Don’t check your device at the movies, during dinner, on a date, or, most apt for the current times, during “home” time. If you’re single, your time isn’t less valuable or more expendable than your colleagues with families. Respect your need for time away from work in the same way as your partnered co-workers.
Maintain regular hours and create a morning routine.
While remote work affords great flexibility, designate work hours that accommodate your own schedule and the expectations for your position. Give your brain time to work and rest. Additionally, setting a morning routine, whether it’s making coffee, exercise, or reading, can help center and ready your mind for the day ahead.
Resist the urge to stay sedentary—get regular exercise or activity in. Sitting in a chair all day stiffens your muscles. Try some stretches or a dance video on YouTube. Daily exercise, even just for a few minutes, boosts endorphins and serotonin.
There are many ways to optimize your health and well-being as a remote worker; take time to explore the options that work best for you.