Working from home can be great in so many ways. You can put a wash on, get your life admin done and work to your own schedule.
There’s no waiting until the clock hits 5pm even though you’re mentally done for the day, which is a definite bonus for your mental health.
But as more and more companies realise that most people are not only more productive, but happier working remotely, there is a downside.
It can be lonely and when most of your interaction with colleagues is through online messages, things can get lost in translation, which can cause a lot of unnecessary stress.
So here are our top tips for boosting your mental health whilst WFH:
1) Go for a morning walk
A bit of fresh air and exercise before you start your day is good for your mind and body.
Even if it’s just 10 minutes, it can make a difference. It’s also a great chance to plan out your day and gather your thoughts before you switch on your laptop.
2) Make the most of your lunch hour
Call a friend, go for a long walk or do a gym class. Doing something you enjoy will help to break up the day.
It can be tempting to work through lunch if you’re busy but making time to give yourself a break will make you more productive in the long run.
3) Meet up in person regularly
It’s so important for everyone’s mental health and for team morale to organise regular meet-ups in person.
his can be anything from a fun activity, a meal or a brainstorm.
It allows everyone to get away from their desks and get to know each other more.
4) Change up your location
Try working in a coffee shop or your local library.
Sometimes a change of scenery can be a great mood booster, especially if you need to tackle a task that you’ve been putting off.
5) Move, move, move!
Make sure you’re moving around.
Take regular breaks away from your screen – do some stretches, a yoga video, walk around while you're on a work call or just do a different task for ten minutes – put away your washing, tidy up the kitchen or make a drink. Just make sure it’s not scrolling on Tiktok!
6) Pick up the phone more
When you’re constantly communicating with messages and emails, often things can get lost in translation, particularly difficult conversations or criticisms.
If someone has upset you at work, pick up the phone rather than firing off a message.
Just hearing someone’s voice on the other end of the phone can be a reminder that we are all human and everyone is doing their best.
7) Take the time to chat
Take the time to chat to your colleagues. When you’re busy, it can be easy to just focus all your conversations on work.
At the start of every video call, set aside a few minutes to chat. Ask your team about their weekends and really listen to their answers, remember things they’ve said and ask them about it.
When you remember things about their personal lives, it makes them feel valued and helps build your working relationships.
8) Keep work & home life separate
When you work from home, it can be hard to switch off. Set up your workspace away from where you relax in the evening.
Make sure you set boundaries with your boss (and yourself!) – just because you work from home doesn’t mean you are at work constantly.
Switch off your notifications and don’t reply to emails outside of working hours if you can.
9) Trust your colleagues & your team
When you work from home, there must be an element of trust. When you’re in an office, you can see everyone sat at their desks, but when you’re working remotely, it’s a little different.
If you feel like your team aren’t pulling their weight or like your manager is constantly monitoring what you’re doing, make sure you talk about it.
Communication is vital when you’re working remotely as it’s so hard to gage how other people are feeling.
Respect that when people work from home, sometimes interruptions happen that are out of people's control.
10) Don't work from home
Working from home doesn’t work for everyone. Some people need to be around others and find it difficult working alone.
If working from home is really impacting your mental health, make sure you’re honest with yourself. Talk to your boss about it and see if there’s a solution that works for you both.