5 Tips for Working from Home!

The last few years have brought a lot of changes to daily life, to say the least. One huge difference that affects our day-to-day routine is that a huge number of us now work from home. An Instagram poll conducted on the Mind Waves Instagram account showed that 79% of our followers work from home and 78% of that percentage enjoy it more than being on-site.

So, for those of us who do spent their working life at home, (me!) it’s important to make an effort to look after your mental health and avoid burnout. I thought I would share 5 tips that help me when I work from home.

Of course, there are lots of jobs where working from home would be impractical, and in some cases impossible! If that’s you, then these tips might not be super relevant to your life. I’d love to do a post in the future on ways to look after your mental health when you don’t work from home. If this is a subject that interests you, please get in touch! But until then, read on for some useful tips for home-working. This is quite a long blog post for us, so grab a cup of tea or a snack, and get settled in.

  1. Make space: if you’re able, make a dedicated workspace. Separate this space from your relaxing space – we all love working from bed, but this can affect your productivity and also make it difficult to wind down at the end of the day. I am lucky enough to have a small study with a desk that faces the window. It get good natural light and because I have my back to the rest of the room and flat, I feel like I’m literally turning away from the rest of my life to focus on work. Feng shui vibes.
  2. Carve out a routine: If you have a bit of flexibility in your working hours, take advantage of it! I know that I’m more productive in the morning, so I schedule my tricky tasks for earlier in the day. Some people find time-blocking really useful; writing down what you’re going to do when. Try and be realistic when you do this and don’t underestimate how long it takes you to do certain things. For example, it takes me ages to edit, so I make sure I leave myself enough time for this.
  3. Take breaks: If your job involves a lot of staring at screens like mine, taking regular breaks are essential. I know that I struggle to look at a screen for more than an hour at a time, so I make an effort to get up and make a cup of tea, or just stretch my legs and stare out the window. Sometimes, if I’m in a longer zoom meeting or class, I pretend that someone rang my buzzer so I can do a quick lap round the flat – don’t tell anyone! I would also recommend using your lunch ┬ábreak to get out for a walk if you can. Kill two birds with one stone and ring a pal for a chat, it’s easy to get lonely when you work from home.
  4. Switch off: When you finish your work day, make sure it’s really finished. Working from home means that you don’t have commuting time anymore, although this is great in a lot of ways, it means that we have to be more mindful about decompressing after work. Close that laptop, silence your business notifications and take a quick screen break. It’s getting so much lighter in the evenings, so maybe you could even fake a short commute! A quick ten minute walk is a great way to switch off those work thoughts. If the weather is minging, (like it often is here in Glasgow!) I find cooking dinner very calming! Make something simple that doesn’t take up too much brain power.
  5. Be kind to yourself: It’s easy to do things that are detrimental to your mental health when you work from home. With less routine, sometimes you might find yourself working late into the night or lying in bed stressing about your mis-steps. I think we can all agree that in the U.K there’s a pretty toxic working culture, and it’s really difficult to get out of this mindset. Try and go easy on yourself and focus on making baby steps towards a healthy work-life balance.

If your day looks wildly different from mine or you think I’ve missed out on any essential tips, please get in touch! I would love to make this a series and showcase some different ways of working. Contact me at maddy@mindwavesnews.com or send us a message on social media.

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