Many of us have recently begun working from home due to COVID-19 while others have been doing it for years. No matter your reasoning or experience, there are many enjoyable benefits of remote work: no commute, comfortable clothes, your pets nearby, and working from your furnished condo.
But like many things, there are challenges as well. Isolation can lead to loneliness, a disrupted and different routine can make the work-life balance even more difficult than usual.
So how do you protect your mental health while working from home?
According to the experts at working from home, the simple answer is to stay on schedule and stay connected. Let’s break this down.
Stay on Schedule
One of the easiest and most important actions for you to take is to create a schedule and stick to it as much as possible. If you have the flexibility, set your schedule around your most productive hours.
Create a Morning Routine
It is good to have a normal routine similar to when you went into the office. Take a shower, if that’s what you usually did, and give yourself time for a healthy breakfast. Sit down with your breakfast and coffee (or drink of choice), giving yourself a moment to fully wake up and mentally prepare for the day.
Get out of Pajamas
Putting on a set of clothes for the day, comfortable but different than your pajamas, will have an impressive impact on your mindset for the workday. Your brain will separate sleep/snuggle time from work time and know that the day has started.
Take Breaks Away From Desk
As part of your daily schedule, you should have a few breaks that are around 15 minutes long. When you do take these breaks, move away from your desk. If possible, try going to a different room. This will help with minimizing screen time and clearing your mind. Doing this will also prevent burnout from hours of focusing on one task or staring at one screen.
End Your Work Day
Your schedule should also have a set time off. This time might change from day to day because of your flexibility or needs but whatever time you decide on, end your workday at that time. Shut the laptop, close the notebook, walk away from the desk. The rest of your day is for you and your home life. This is very necessary to protect the boundary between work life and home life. Working from home and not doing this will make it feel like your workday never ends.
To resist those feelings of isolation while working from home, staying connected with colleagues, family members, and friends is incredibly important. Luckily, in today’s digitally interconnected world, this is easier than ever.
Conversing with Colleagues
When you work in an office, interactions with your colleagues can play a huge part in your daily activities. From collaborations over a project to gossiping in the break room, many of us have so many conversations within the office. Working from home, you should try keeping these conversations going as much as possible. Most companies will have some form of recommended messaging service so keep a few of these windows open. Keep chatting with your friends, collaborating with your peers, and asking questions when needed.
Use Video Calls
Whenever possible, use video calling with colleagues to actually see their faces. This will more replicate the in-person interactions from the office and can also be a more productive form of communication. Facial expressions play a large role in conversations and are lost with messaging. A video call or meeting will help with each person’s focus and involvement in the conversation at hand.
Don’t Forget Friends and Family
Outside of work, video calls with friends and family will be very helpful. If you had a group of friends going to happy hour on a particular day of the week, keep this going digitally! Having a few group chats and individual chats going throughout the day will keep you connected to your loved ones, no matter their location or the current restrictions.
Mental Health Support
For some, the struggles of working from home might be deeper and more difficult than the recommendations above can help with. If you are feeling depressed or isolated and need to talk to someone, Crisis Services Canada provides local resources and support, no matter where you live.
- Are not feeling yourself
- Are experiencing a crisis
- Have emotional pain
- Have thoughts of suicide
- Know someone who needs help
Visit Crisis Services Canada for the distress centres and crisis organizations nearest you. You can access many of these services virtually from your furnished condo.
Looking for a Change of Scenery? DelSuites Can Help
Sometimes a change of scenery can make all the difference in your work routine. Here at DelSuites, we have fully furnished condos available throughout Toronto and the GTA.
Get in touch with our team today to explore our wide selection of short-term rentals.