work from home

Due to the new coronavirus ravaging most parts of the world, a lot of people are subject to working from home, therefore putting many in an unusual situation of having to convert their home to work stations, struggling with many distractions in the course of carrying out their job roles, and ultimately mindful of their health and safety.

Working from home can have psychological and physiological effects on us. Most of which are caused by the lack of physical interaction with other people, working round the clock and not taking regular breaks, poor eating habits, and boredom among others. These effects include:

• Depression

• Anxiety

• Loneliness and Isolation

• Stress

• Lack of Motivation

• Poor Posture

• Sleeping Disorder

• Eyestrain

• Fatigue

Because I’m clearly aware of this, you know I’m very much in the same situation as you. Due to this reason, I’ve decided to put together some helpful tips to help you be productive and also work, assured that your health and safety are well intact.


Below are some tips to help you stay healthy while effectively working from home:
1. Set aside a dedicated work station at home
work from home work station
You should have a dedicated space at your home where you can carry out your office-related work. Having this dedicated work station puts you in the mood for work. Your work station should be a corner in your home where you can have some serenity. Your home work station should also be rid of distractions and disturbances.

Your home work station should have a big desk to contain your computer system, keyboard, mouse, and still have enough room for your arm to protect your elbows from hanging off it. Your work station should have everything you will be needing to carry out the day’s work, including your notepad, pen, a comfortable chair, sufficient lighting, and anything else you might need.
2. Make sure your chair offers sufficient comfort

Your chair is a very important element when you are setting up your home work station. Make sure you install a chair that offers sufficient comfort so as to prevent poor posture.
work from home: ergonomic chair
Poor posture (also known as postural dysfunction) is a result of certain muscles in the body tightening up or shortening while others lengthen or become weak, which often occurs as a result of daily activities. It occurs when “our spine is positioned in unnatural positions, in which the curves are emphasized and this results in the joints, muscles, and vertebrae being in stressful positions. This prolonged poor positioning results in a build-up of pressure on these tissues.” [thephysiocompany.com]

You should use a comfortable, ergonomic chair that supports your back properly and offers armrest. Your chair should also be high enough to prevent you from having to stretch your neck or lean forward improperly.
3. Care for your eyesight by adjusting your computer screen’s brightness

Staring at the computer screen for long hours can damage the eyesight and also cause eye strain, especially when the backlight of the computer screen is either too bright or too deem.
work from home: care for eyes
“Eye problems caused by computer use fall under the heading, Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)… It includes a whole range of eye strain and discomfort. Research shows that between 50% to 90% of people who work at a computer screen have at least some symptoms.
“It occurs because your eyes follow the same path over and over. And it can get worse the longer you continue the movement.” [webmd.com]
Symptoms of CVS include blurred vision; double vision; dry red eyes; eye irritation; headaches; and neck and back pain.
4. Take regular breaks

When working from home, you should try to take regular breaks to prevent you from wearing out. Most home workers tend to work for very long periods at a stretch because of the hunger for productivity and feeling of “not doing enough” whenever they are just laying about.

It is advised that for every couple of hours you spend working, you should take some minutes of break. You can choose to take a walk around, have a chit-chat with someone, or whatever floats your boat. This makes you feel refreshed and prevents you from having mental breakdowns or the feeling of isolation or loneliness.
work from home: regular breaks
Because you tend to be on your own when working from home, compared to working at the office where you will be able to talk with colleagues and have a feeling of community, you may feel unusually tired or frustrated. You should schedule lunch breaks, tea breaks, casual breaks, and other breaks as you would if you were in a traditional working environment, and make it a vow to stick to this schedule.
5. Schedule regular workouts

To stay mentally and physically active, you should schedule regular workouts. Sitting by the computer all day can get boring and tempt you to consume loads of food and sweets, most of which might not be healthy for the body. This is why regular workouts are advised to shed the fat that may have collected in the body while you sit by the computer system.
work from home: regular workouts
Working out also helps to exercise the brain cells and keep you mentally refreshed while boosting your creativity.
6. Stock up on healthy food, beverages, and water

You really should consider doing away with all processed food, fast food, sweets, and all foods that have very high cholesterol concentration.

Because working from home is devoid of the regular hassle of going to work and returning home, food will collect in the body quicker than before. This is enough reason to invest quality food and beverages into our bodies.
work from home - stock up on food, beverages and water
You should also make sure food and beverages are within reach so you don’t have to leave your work station time after time to get them, therefore causing you to be distracted and lose your chain of concentration.

You should make sure to drink a lot of water to stay hydrated and avoid burning out. Also, because sitting at the desk may get boring and tiring, therefore forcing us to crave snacks, instead of loading up on chocolates and other sweets, you should have fruits within reach for when the cravings occur.
7. Schedule your tasks into chunks, and create time-blocks

Here is a simple, yet essential tip to help you maximize productivity. When you are about to get on the week’s work, your first task should be listing out all the tasks you hope to accomplish during the week, break them into chunks, and fixing them into time-blocks.

This is efficient because it creates a map in your head as to how you want your week to pan out, what goals you hope to achieve, and how you hope to achieve these goals. This also helps you realize which tasks take more priority more than others, and which ones you don’t want to take on at all, therefore avoiding distractions.

Try these tips and watch how your productivity and efficiency go up, as you maintain a healthy lifestyle.
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