So, you scored a remote position and are stoked about the flexibility that comes with it. Who wouldn’t swap going into the office for being able to roll out of bed 5 minutes before work, stay in your pajamas all day, and even throw on a little TV for background noise.
While it may seem like you hit the jackpot, none of these things are good for your mental health or your productivity. It’s important to note the practices of self-care you can implement for your remote job.
The first step in taking care of yourself in a remote position is to set healthy boundaries. It’s easy to fall into a mental rut when you’re working in your pjs everyday. Start your day off with a routine of getting dressed, making your bed, and enjoying a cup of tea or coffee to get you motivated and ready to take on the day.
Now that you’re dressed and caffeinated, it’s time to get to work. During your workday, it's crucial to limit outside distractions so you can stay productive. Aim to conduct yourself as you would if your boss was sitting next to you in the office. Turn the TV off, put your phone away, and be respectful of company time. Professionalism should still be a priority while working remotely, and it will only improve your work relationships and habits.
We get it, comfort is everything. But as easy as it is to stay in bed or flop onto the couch in the morning, try your best to avoid it. When the line between work and personal life starts to overlap, it’s very hard to mentally separate the two. Not only is this bad for your productivity, but for your body and posture as well.
To combat the negative effects on your neck and back, make sure to set up at a desk or table where you can sit up straight with your feet on the ground. This will keep you upright, properly stacked, and keep your posture corrected.
Recently, standing desks have also joined the conversation with benefits to productivity and ergonomics. Standing while you work reduces your chances to slouch, improves blood flow, and helps you stay focused. Whether you are working from your house or choose to go to a local coffee shop, consider spending a portion of your day on your feet.
Time to give “keep your chin up” another meaning. Having your screen below eye level is not doing your neck any favors. A great investment for either a sitting or standing desk is a monitor riser. Bringing your screen to eye level is a great way to correct your posture, which can help you make the most out of your work day and mitigate pesky back and neck problems
Staring at a screen all day can be a real eyesore...literally.Make sure to be aware of when you need to take a step back from the screen and give your body a rest.
If you are experiencing dry eyes, headaches or fatigue, it’s time to troubleshoot. Especially if you're wearing contact lenses or a dated prescription, it may be time to look into a new pair of daily glasses. Eyeglasses provide an added barrier between your screen and your eyes, acting as an ideal option while you work remotely. You can also choose to add blue light filtering lenses for added screen protection on those long virtual days.
Aside from trying new glasses, something as easy as getting up and getting active is also beneficial throughout the day. It could be a brisk morning run, early gym workout, or taking the dog for a walk during lunch. These little breaks will allow you to mentally recoup, while also giving your eyes time to rest.
Overall, remote positions can be incredibly convenient if you go about your day the right way. Take care of yourself, be mindful of your body, and enjoy the newfound flexibility of working from home!