Working from home needs some adjustment, but it does not have to be a nightmare.
Coronavirus has changed the working situation completely. With new variants coming up regularly, more and more people have to adapt to the work-from-home situation. In the article, I will be discussing a few mental health tips that would increase your efficiency of working from home. This would help you be more focused on your office work when you are working and be more relaxed and devoted to your family when you are not.
THE PSYCHOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF WORKING FROM HOME
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There was a time when we could not imagine working from home. For some people, it is tough to work from home. When people are home, all they can think about is what to do, when to do the laundry, taking care of the kids, helping the kids with their homework, attending to the needs of your better half, etc. This is the reason why people go to the office to work.
The sudden and unpredicted absence of the office culture has made it very difficult for people to adjust to the work-from-home environment. However, there are many positive points to working from home as well. You can enjoy a glass of wine while working on your spreadsheet. You can be present if an emergency occurs. You save a ton on the travel costs.
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However, there are also pitfalls. You may have to work on your spreadsheet and simultaneously help your kids with their homework. You may want to be left undisturbed, but that may not be an option. Everybody’s home has a different environment. Thus, it may be easy, or it may not be easy to work from home, depending on the environment that you have.
Initially, people thought that working from home was a temporary situation. However, with the emergence of new variants, work-from-home is becoming a necessity on an almost every year basis. Almost every year, every country across the world imposes lockdown for a period of a few months. The sudden change from the office culture to work-from-home culture can be very hard to manage. You have to work from home for a few months every year.
When working from home, you have to exercise a considerable amount of self-control. Whereas, when you are in work environments like a shop, factory, or office, the brain is automatically wired to engage in work and not get distracted. With work-from-home, you also have to adapt to a different mode of communication new technologies, resist the distraction that you have from your pets and family members, and finally, keep that motivation up when you don’t feel like working. These are the factors that make it difficult to work from home efficiently.
Here are ten mental health tips to help you adjust and transition from the office culture to work from home culture and thrive at your work.
|3 tips for efficiently working from home|
Mental health tips set 1:
Work on detachment
One of the first mental health tips to efficiently work-from-home is implementing psychological detachment. As I mentioned before, when you go to the office, you can instantly switch on the office mood. The office mode is where you are focused more on your work and not bother about what is going on in your home. When you leave your office, you switch off the office mood and not think about your work-related activities and tasks. This is referred to as psychological detachment.
However, when you engage in working from home, experiencing psychological detachment can become very difficult because your workplace and home are the same. Since you are not switching places when your work is over, you may still stay in work mode when you should be focused on your family. Therefore, maintaining boundaries between your work duration and nonwork duration is crucial and needed for maintaining proper mental health.
For this mental health tip, you must manage your time. You cannot work longer hours is because you are at home. If you want, you can also maintain a physical boundary between your home environment and your work environment while working from home. Have a dedicated space that is for your work. Do not do anything else in that space except work. This way, when you go to that specific place, your work mode will get switched on.
If you can practice psychological detachment, balancing your work and home life would become pretty easy.
Mental health tips for implementing the psychological attachment
- Get yourself ready as you would if you were going to the office before you sit down for work
- Make sure that you eat your breakfast and finish her morning routine before starting work.
- Have a dedicated workspace free of distractions
- Have a schedule that involves work phases and home phases
- Have breaks in between your work schedule to focus on self-care as well.
- Reserve a specific time to respond to your work emails.
- When you work, put your phone and laptop on focus mode to not receive any distracting messages or emails.
- Establish simple yet effective routines that do not need self-control, like a coffee break or starting your routine workday with an easy task.
- Wake up every day at the same time as you would if you were commuting to the office.
- Have a specified time for work and leisure. When it is time for relaxation, do not engage in work.
- Do not set impromptu goals like, “once I complete the task at hand, I will seize my work for today” as your work deadlines.
- If possible, have an entirely separate room for work and a separate room for leisure. Avoid spending time in your workroom when it is your leisure time.
- Another crucial mental health tip that I would provide you is not working in your bedroom. Focusing on psychological detachment would become very difficult if your bedroom becomes your workroom.
- If you cannot work in another room, make sure that your bed is completely tidy, and the room is otherwise near before you start work. If your bed is messy or the blankets are strewn around, you will want to go back to sleep.
- Do not engage in any work-related communication when it is your leisure time.
Mental health tips set 2
Maintain a relationship with your colleagues
- Stay connected with your colleagues. You can have a work buddy with whom you can talk about your everyday work discussions share challenges and success.
- Keep specific time in between work for virtual coffee breaks. You can involve your colleagues and have a Facetime or Skype discussion during such times.
- Have social channels for informal and impromptu conversations. You can always meet up on social media like WhatsApp, Instagram, Telegram groups, etc. So, what if you cannot meet each other physically?
The reason staying in contact with your work colleagues is an important part of the mental health tips is because keeping in touch with your office mates and maintaining a social connection would boost your motivation. It will also keep you from feeling work-from-home burnout. It may not be possible to replicate the exact environment of your office at home, but this is the closest you can get. So, take advantage of it. The best part about this particular mental health tip is that you will not only boost your own motivation and take care of your mental health, you will also be doing the same for your colleagues and friends. These small meetings can act as group therapy sessions where you can help one another escape the difficult situation that involves working from home. You can also exchange helpful advice and tips on how to better juggle the home life and work life.
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Mental health tips: set 3
Regularly practice self-care
It is very easy to forget self-care when juggling your work and home life while staying at home. It may seem that staying at home is self-care itself. However, that cannot be further from the truth. If you are paying attention to yourself, that is not selfish. You can only care for your family members when you are at your 100%. Therefore, make sure to practice self-care regularly. Self-care is as important as your work and home life.
- One of the primary mental health tips in self-care is to make sure that you receive 7 to 9 hours of sleep daily. You must also focus on maintaining your circadian rhythm. Every night go to sleep at the same time as you would if you have to go to the office the next day. Try to wake up every day at the same time as well.
- Ensure that you are maintaining your nutrition levels throughout the day. Focus on staying hydrated. If you have difficulty maintaining hydration levels, keep a 2.5 L to 3 L bottle with you and make sure that it is empty by the end of the day.
- You may not have access to the gym, but that does not mean that you cannot maintain a certain level of physical exercise. When you go to the office, walk to your car or take public transport, you engage in a lot of physical activity. The sudden absence of this physical exercise can negatively impact your physical and mental health. A simple solution to this is to go for a walk on a daily basis. When you expose yourself to some fresh air and a change of scenery, it helps in reducing stress levels and boosting serotonin production.
- Spending time with animal companions is a very important mental health tip. If you have a dog, cat, or any animal in the house, make sure you spend some time with them as well. It is possibly the hardest for your dog to see you home and still be constantly engaged in work. Thus, you can allot one or two of your coffee breaks to playing with your pup.
A few final words
The change from the office environment to working at home is tough but manageable. You do not have to give in to your whims and make a mess of your work and home life balance. All you need is a level of organization, and all the problems can be sorted out. You may also have to sit down with your family members and discuss how the approach will work. When can they approach you if any nonemergent problem arises? What time will you be free, and how is your schedule supposed to match up with theirs? A slight adjustment here, a bit of mix and match there, and you are all set.
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How has your experience been with the work-from-home situation? How have you managed your work and home life balance? What were your difficulties, and how did you overcome them? Please share your experiences with the world in the comment section below so that others may also derive inspiration from your experience. If you have any queries regarding this block post or any other, please reach out to me on any social media channels or by mail. You can also mention your queries in the comment section below. I will be happy to help.
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