Working from home can give employees a lot of flexibility, but at the same time high-achieving workers can easily fall into the pitfalls that can affect their mental health:
- Never taking breaks during the day
- Not getting enough sleep
- Not keeping in touch with friends and family
- Checking work email & notifications frequently outside of work hours
- Working through lunch (and even dinner)
- Spending too much time getting distracted or on breaks
And many more!
Here are some common WFH bad habits and how to fix them.
1, Not separating work from home life
This is a pretty common problem for many remote workers. Checking work emails many times a day outside of work hours, taking calls and meetings when you already finish work, or just working in the bedroom and getting distracted by your bed or TV. This is not a hard problem to fix. Simply try to schedule your workday and let your colleagues know your regular working hours. Try to keep all your work-related calls and meetings in your work hours too. If you get distracted by your bedroom, try to work outside of your room (maybe move to the dining room?).
2, Expect yourself to achieve high standard work every day
It’s so easy to feel guilty when you have an unproductive day! And we’re here to tell you that’s OK. It’s totally normal that you get super productive some days or weeks, and then not get as much work done other days. We all have the same experience. Our advice for this is: accept the fact that you have ups and downs – some super productive days and some “off” days. Take time to recharge, or be distracted, try to see what you can learn from these “off” days, and move on! Your mental health will thank you.
3, Allow yourself too much flexibility
Sometimes, when you work from home, you may come up with ideas like: “I’ll take a break now and come back to finish work later in the evening” or “I will just take a break for fifteen minutes” but then turn out taking a whole 3-hour break. If you do this, chances are you will only get extra stress later and your work-life balance will probably be ruined. The answer to this is simple: create a structured schedule for work and stick to it! For example, if you decide to work 9-5, clearly mark it on your calendar and actually work 9-5. If you want to take a break for thirty minutes, set a timer and strictly get back to work when the thirty-minute break is over.
It is extremely important to take care of your mental health because it affects many aspects of your life: work performance, relationships, marriage, parenting, and so on. This doesn’t only affect yourself; it also helps people around you: family, friends, colleagues etc. You will also ensure your colleagues feel comfortable doing the same as well.
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