How to Stay Healthy While Working from Home

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1. Get in nature 1–2 times a day

Going out for a morning walk and a mid-afternoon stretch can be very refreshing and stimulating for your body. According to the Yale School of Environment, nature can “lower blood pressure and stress hormone levels, reduce nervous system arousal, enhance immune system function, increase self-esteem, reduce anxiety, and improve mood.” This is vital, especially at times where we are constantly on the computer and staring at screens all day. In another recent study, psychiatric unit researchers found that being in nature reduced feelings of isolation, promoted calm, and lifted mood among patients.

2. Digital Detox 30 minutes — 1 hour before you start work

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We know it can be difficult. The first thing you do when you wake up is shut off your alarm (which is your phone). Then, you end up mindlessly strolling through Instagram and Facebook and the news and your messages. Before you know it, the clock has reached an hour and you still don’t feel energized. This is likely due to our digital overuse. In fact, a fifth of U.S. adults (around 18%) cited technology use as a significant source of stress in their life (Stress in America).

Starting your day, one hour without strolling through social media can give you a period of peace and remind you to be in the present moment.

3. Set 90 minute blocks during peak work performance times

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By now, you should have figured out your peak performance times and when you start to slip in the work day.

If you find that you are more productive in the morning, set 90 minute blocks to work with 15 minute breaks in between. This is a great method to help you zone into your work while giving yourself a break when needed. You are not a machine, where your Google Calendar should just be blocks of work and blocks of rest. Find out what’s comfortable and what works for you, and be realistic.

4. Allow time for social interaction (outside of work)

We are all wired for connection. In fact, it is key to our survival and longevity. According to Harvard Health, social relationships “help relieve harmful levels of stress, which can adversely affect coronary arteries, gut function, insulin regulation, and the immune system.” This means that talking to other human beings is not only important to keeping you mentally sane, but it is also vital for your physical health.

5. Get moving

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At 9Dot Education Solutions, the team has implemented over 10+ online yoga and workout sessions during the pandemic to provide a virtual space for employees to stay fit and get together. This helps the company stay connected and feel like they are working together on a common goal — it’s also a wonderful way to get moving as opposed to sitting at the desk all day. Read more from Harvard Health on How Much Exercise You Really Need (based on your work).

6. Take your lunch break

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We don’t know who needs to hear this, but take your lunch break. By law in California, “You cannot employ someone for a work period of more than five hours without providing an unpaid, off-duty meal period of at least 30 minutes.” Although this varies per state, it’s important to recognize that you need to take care of yourself while working at home. Although it may feel like everything is urgent online, not everything is.

Overall, the steps can be quite simple. Take time to eat, nourish your body, take breaks, and know your productivity. While it may be difficult to stay focused, your health should be a top priority in your life.

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Sources:

Thrive

We specialize in providing back-office services for businesses, charter schools and nonprofit organizations. https://www.hello9dot.com/