Over these past two years, the number of people working from home has grown exponentially due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. And while the idea of working from home may have had you pretty excited at first because of all the perks, you might also be discovering now that it is not without its challenges.
When the line between home and work gets blurred, you may actually feel deprived, wondering where all your down time went. When there’s no balance and your day doesn’t seem to have enough hours in it, the question becomes: What can you do to change this?
If you’re overwhelmed by the day’s news and a growing workload and you feel like the walls are closing in on you, it’s time for a reset. These are some tips to create some space, practice self care, and bring some work-life balance back to your day.
1. Designate an Office Space
Set up a separate corner or nook in your home dedicated to working. This is not the place to take breaks, watch funny videos or eat snacks – it is only for work. This takes some discipline, but creating this boundary ensures that you should only be working when you are in this space.
2. Get a Good Night’s Rest
The importance of getting a good night’s rest really cannot be overstated. If you have difficulty sleeping for any reason, consider downloading an app to track your sleep schedule, or purchase devices that can actually help you fall asleep more easily.
3. Create Your Own Personalized Schedule
Work-wise, making a schedule will allow you enough time for meetings, presentations, and hitting important deadlines. And by creating a personal schedule, you can make time to do all the things that you need to get done on a daily basis. It will ensure that your home life doesn’t fall apart and you remember to take care of all of your personal tasks as well, such as grocery shopping.
Prioritizing your home needs and personal needs will give you a psychological cue to take a deep breath and relax a little bit as well.
4. Take Regular Breaks
With a lack of structure working from home, a lot of people are forgetting to take a break. This will only compound any stress that you are feeling about getting your job done right. Remember that looking away from the computer, stretching your legs, and breathing fresh air are all essential to your spiritual, mental, and physical health.
Be sure to take lunch and snack breaks, and create diversions like reading a magazine or book so you feel more focused when you return. Even just 5 to 10 minute breaks each hour can really help your productivity too.
5. Maintain a Healthy Daily Diet
What you put into your body will help it function in specific ways. If you give your body junk food, you’re going to feel sluggish. If you eat healthy snacks, fruits, vegetables, and proper meals three times a day, you’ll feel like a superhero. And don’t forget to hydrate with non-caffeinated beverages like water, energy drinks, juices or herbal teas.
6. Practice Mindfulness
When you practice mindfulness, you are being consciously aware of your environment, the people, and your current situation. It will help you learn to be less reactive to anything that is going on in your work or home environment. Remember that you may not have control over what happens, but you can control how you respond to it.
At the end of the day, we need to make a living, but we also need to take care of ourselves. Remember to give yourself a break and acknowledge that you are getting through a difficult situation as best you can. Things may not always go perfectly, but when you intentionally create a plan to make your at-home work life more balanced, you will succeed without compromising your health and well-being.