How Working from Home Can Be Bad for Your Health (and What You Can Do About It)
Many people dream of working from home. They want to leave the traditional office where they feel toxic, unhappy, and unproductive. They want to experience working at the comforts of their own home, minus the need to travel just to get to work.
But what most people fail to realize is that this kind of arrangement is not as easy as it looks. There’s the need to balance time wisely and avoid distractions or you will never get anything done. You are also prone to numerous physical and mental health risks if you don’t make time for a healthy lifestyle.
According to health experts, working from home can actually be bad for your health. This is not just because you are straining your eyes from looking at your screen multiple hours each day. The isolation, lack of physical activity, and the amount of workload you need to finish can be enough reasons to stress you out.
Get to know three reasons why working from home can be bad for your health and how you can deal with each one.
Working from home usually means spending many hours behind your desk, working on your computer. Lack of physical activity and prolonged sitting can be damaging not only to your back, shoulders, and legs. You can also gain weight and increase your risk of developing heart disease, cancer, and even diabetes.
It is important that you incorporate physical activity and exercise in your daily life. This way, you can develop a stronger immune system. You will also have more energy to work on your tasks after a heart-pumping workout.
Insert exercises in your daily activities by standing up, walking, and stretching every 45-55 minutes. If you can, invest in ergonomic furniture like a standing desk or get yourself an under-desk bicycle. Choose an exercise regime and do this at least twice a week.
Walk around the block, practice yoga, or sign up for recreational activities that will get your heart pumping. If you choose boxing, baseball, soccer, etc., invest in the right gear. A well-fitted mouth guard for sports is a must if you are engaging in intense activities.
Social Isolation and Depression
Most of the time, introverts thrive working from home than extroverts. If you are a people person, then it is very easy to feel sad and lonely when working from home. The lack of company can easily bring your spirits down.
As much as possible, don’t isolate yourself further by going out more often. Reach out to your loved ones, go on lunch dates, and do your grocery shopping instead of ordering food deliveries. Make time to meet with your friends, have fun, and make plans after work.
Reach out to your team and get to know each other during your break time or after work hours. Take advantage of your flexible schedule by working outside the house when you feel bored. Consider going on a vacation and change your view every now and then.
If possible and you are ready for the responsibility, adopt a pet. You can also visit shelters and be a foster pet parent. If taking care of pets is too much, you can always join a club of your interest or be a volunteer for a cause you are passionate about.
No Work and Home Life Separation
Whether you live alone or not, it can be quite difficult to separate home life from work if you are working from home. Many remote workers don’t have their own home office that is only intended for work. They either stay in bed, use their kitchen table, or work from their couches.
The amount of distraction present at home can also be overwhelming to remote workers. There are never-ending household chores, noisy neighbors, even your food deliveries and packages can take your focus away from work. If your home and work life becomes blurred, you can easily feel burned out.
It is crucial that you establish a clear line between home life and work. As much as possible, create a separate space where your roommates or family knows you are not to be disturbed when you are inside that space. Talk to them about your work hours and tell them to avoid disturbing you while you work.
Get rid of distractions and use a separate phone and computer for your work and personal use. When you are not working, avoid the urge to check your emails. If it becomes hard to focus while working from home, move to a nearby cafe or a co-working space.
These are but three things that put work-from-home workers at a health risk. The lack of home life and work separation, social isolation, and the sedentary kind of lifestyle can take a toll on your health and well-being. It is crucial that you learn how to address these issues or you will soon feel stressed and burned out.
Meta title: Work From Home: Bad Health Effects and How You Can Beat Them
meta desc: Do you plan to work from home soon? Get to know some of the negative impacts of working remotely and how you can fight each of them.