There are people who are under the impression that those of us who are being forced to work from home during this time are sitting on our bottoms doing nothing all day. I mean it must be relaxing, right? Working from home isn’t real work? Well that’s a whole load of nonsense. I have been working longer hours and am more exhausted than I ever thought possible!
I find it difficult to relax after work sometimes because my environment is the same. I’m not leaving the work environment behind me at the end of each day, I’m just changing what I do. Today I thought that I would share some ideas of ways that you can relax even if you’re working from home.
Change Your Environment
If you are lucky enough to have a room in your house where you can work from that’s the dream. However if you don’t then just change the place you actually work. For example: I do all of my work at a table in my lounge area and then after work I move to the couch. It might seem silly, but it gives me a change. This means that I know when I am on the couch I can relax and not have to think about work. It’s a small change but it makes a big difference.
Take a Lunch Break
This one is so important. When working from home it is so tempting to just work straight through your lunch break. I did this for the first few weeks. I would make a quick lunch and eat it while I was working. This was a bad idea. You need to take half an hour, at least, and just eat without having to worry about anything to do with work. When I started taking a bit of time for lunch I felt so much better. It jut gave me a chance to clear my mind before I got back to work.
Get Away From the Screen
I am a teacher so I am not used to spending 8+ hours in front of a screen every day. I find now that my eyes are getting so tired and my body is not used to sitting in one place for so long. Once work is over find things to do that don’t involve a screen (unfortunately this means no Netflix or Amazon Prime for a while!) There are so many things that can be done without a screen. Some great examples are: puzzles, word searches, crosswords, reading, colouring in, baking, board games, card games… The list goes on. Even if you only switch your computer off for a couple of hours after work each day.
Get Outside Where Possible
Every single person who knows me and is reading this is either laughing or rolling their eyes at this one right now. Probably because I am not a huge fan of the outdoors and, during this time I have only left my apartment once in eight weeks. However, getting outside is really good for you. If you have a balcony that is even fine – you don’t have to go for a walk. You can literally just go to your balcony/garden. If you don’t have either of these then try and go for a short walk every day, if the restrictions in your country allow it. It will get you out of your house and get you some fresh air.
Finish Your Work Day at a Respectable Time
When you are working from home it is so tempting to work longer hours. You work longer hours because you’re already at home in your comfortable space. However you need to be strict with yourself. Don’t burn out by working 12+ hours every day if you’re only used to working 8/9. At the beginning it might make you feel more productive but you need to look after yourself and your health. Don’t overdo it.
Have a Bath
Now I shouldn’t actually have to say this next part but I’m going to. Obviously I don’t mean have a bath during work hours, but baths are so relaxing. If you have one take full advantage. The best way for me to have a bath is to listen to music. I take my phone and put it on silent and then I listen to music. I don’t watch series or read while I am in the bath because I feel like that’s still doing something. I like to do nothing at all. This means that for however long it takes you to have a bath you can relax and switch your mind off. If you like candles, reading, watching series while you bath then by all means take those in with you. Whatever will help you to relax.
Have a Routine
If your job normally requires you to have a daily routine then sticking to one during this time is also helpful. Even though the routine might change it still helps. If you wake up and go to sleep at the same time every day that is already a good start. If you have lunch at a certain time each day try and stick to that where possible. Eating breakfast before your work day starts, instead of while you’re replying to emails, will also give you a calm start to the day. Every little thing helps!
This is such a crucial one for me. I need things to be organised otherwise I cannot work properly. Everyone is different and I know that for some people they can function just fine without it. However even just doing small things can help. Clean your work space at the end of each work day, this will allow you to come back to a clean space the next day. You’ll thank yourself. Making a to-do list each day also helps. If you have things that you need to do, write them down and keep them in a highly visible place to remind you – check things off once you have done them and everything you do will feel like an achievement (rightly so).
I have been working from home for the past 10 weeks now and I will actually be going back to work on Monday. Wish me luck!
Are you working from home? What other things have you been doing to relax during this time? Let me know in the comments below!