While working from home has its pros (like wearing PJs all day), it also brings with it some very real pains. Most of our workstations are now beds and couches, but as comfortable as they sound – their lack of support has caused a lot of discomfort. An uncomfortable sitting position is just one of the many distractions you have to deal with when you work from home.
So from improving your posture to tackling blurred work-life boundaries, here are some changes you can make for a healthier and more productive WFH experience:
For the Body
Without our walks to lunch, or even from the carpark to the office, working from home has made us less active. This can lead to stiff necks and sore backs, as well as a higher risk of sedentary diseases, such as diabetes and obesity.
- Set up an ergonomic home office
A healthier body begins with a posture-friendly work desk. Sit up straight, adjust the height of your chair so your feet are on the ground (or on a footrest), and raise your laptop until the top of the screen is at eye level.
Check out this video for more tips explained by an ergonomics expert.
- Stand up and walk around
Your body needs to move to keep the blood flowing, and sitting in the same position for hours can take its toll. Schedule a reminder to stand up and move every 30-45 minutes – why not dance around your room to your favourite songs!
- Stretch and move some more
Regular stretches and exercises can help loosen tight muscles, strengthen them, and improve overall flexibility and mobility. Try following an online yoga class or these exercises for better back health.
For the Mind
If you find yourself struggling with concentration or working longer hours at home, you’re not alone. With the line between work and rest as fuzzy as can be, it’s easy for the mind to feel overwhelmed.
- Take mental breaks
Just as your body needs breaks from sitting, your brain needs regular rest from the screen too. Take a break after completing every task or try the Pomodoro Technique, which rewards you with a 5-minute rest after every 25 minutes of work. There’s even a Google Chrome extension you can install.
At the end of the work day, log off and keep your laptop hidden in a drawer to stop the temptation of replying to emails at 10PM.
- Plan your days
Write down a to-do list and estimate how much time you need to spend on each task. Having this fresh plan every morning keeps you focused and sets you up for a more productive day – it can also help you avoid the stress of rushing to meet deadlines later on.
- Remove distractions
From the comfy bed to your furry friend, distractions at home can make it hard to focus – identify what’s distracting you and remove it from your workspace. Is it your bed? Work in another room. Is your family talking a little too loud? Put on your earphones. Is it Netflix? Sign out of your account until you’re done for the day.
Share these tips with your friends who are hustling from home too!
There’s a difference between working hard and working smart? Of course!
Working hard is what work is said to look like – long hours, barely any breaks, burnouts. As millennials, we’re also faced with the pressure of hustle culture, but grinding isn’t the secret to success: alignment is. When you work smart, you’ll be able to efficiently manage your time and increase productivity. Isn’t that what we all want? It’s so much easier to thrive when you’re not trying to survive the stress of clocking in the hours, and instead are focused on how much work you can get done.
Even when it comes to working at home, where structure is hard to maintain and distractions are everywhere (my bed has never looked this comfortable) – working smart can help you fix your focus and finish your tasks for the day without tiring yourself. Here are 3 ways you can get your work done and still have enough time for self-care:
- Organise your tasks by energy level
If the underlying reason for your procrastination is actually anxiety, Dr. Courtney Tracy, better known as ‘The Truth Doctor’ on social media, shared a TikTok tip on how you can organise your tasks by how long it’ll take and how much energy it requires. This allows you to pick which task to do based on the time available, as well as your energy level.
- Follow the 4 Ds of time management
A well-known method for efficiently managing your time, your tasks are divided into four categories: do it now, delay it, delegate it and drop it. You’ll be able to focus on what’s urgent and important, and if you’re running a team – you can also offload tasks to your members to maximise productivity and optimise your work schedule.
- Try the Pomodoro Technique
The Pomodoro Technique was developed by Francesco Cirillo, and breaks down your tasks into 25 minutes of work followed by a 5 minute break. These short bursts will keep you fresh and focused knowing there’s a break coming up. Once you’ve done this four times, reward yourself with a longer 15 to 30 minute break.
Time management is the true key to productivity – by ensuring you have enough time to work and rest, you’ll have the energy to power through the day. Try these methods and let us know which works best for you!