Finding the right technology to stay connected with clients and co-workers is the biggest concern many remote workers have, but you probably haven’t considered how working from home affects your own health. Even the most dedicated and iron-willed remote workers have been tempted by TV, social media, junk food and the desire to stay in their PJs all day and work from a laptop in bed. These habits may seem fun at first, but they can damage your health as well as your productivity rates. Check out the following ways to stay healthy while working at home.
Even if you’re tempted to work from the couch or the bed, you’ll spend most of the time sitting at a desk, so it’s important to buy a sturdy, comfortable chair. An ergonomic office chair will support your lower back and prevent spine problems.
If your kitchen is usually stocked with potato chips, cookies, and candy, make some room for fresh fruits, unsalted peanuts, yogurt, and other nutritious snacks. Drink filtered water and green or herbal tea instead of endless cups of coffee.
Conserve your energy and brain power by getting up for a few minutes every hour to stretch, listen to a favorite song, or talk to a family member, neighbor, or roommate. When you return to your desk, you’ll feel refreshed. Even if you’re on a deadline, remember to go outside to walk and get some fresh air at least once a day.
You don’t necessarily need a 9-5 (or 8-to 4) schedule like in an office, but find the start and end times that work best for you and stick to them. Wake up at the same time and go to sleep at the same time on work days, just like you would when working onsite. A disjointed schedule harms your sleep, your body-clock and ultimately your health and productivity.
There’s no dress code for working at home, but it’s a good idea to get out of your sweats or pajamas. One study showed that how we dress affects our self-perception and sense of authority. And what if a potential client calls you for an impromptu, face-to-face business meeting, and you’re still in your sweats? You don’t need to dress up to work at home, just don’t dress too far down. It may subconsciously affect your self-esteem.
By Jenny Holt