Two years ago, the sudden popularity of remote work due to COVID-19 split people’s opinions on ideal work setups. Fast forward to today, and despite the pandemic easing up, there are still individuals who prefer to work from home. It’s mainly because they are able to accomplish their tasks and still have the time to attend to their personal needs.
However, there’s no such thing as a perfect setup. Working remotely still has its drawbacks such as its negative impact on one’s physical health and wellness. This includes poor posture, muscle tension, eye strain, and the feeling of isolation. If you’re a digital nomad currently in such a situation, here are some tips on how you can cope.
Wellness & Self-Care Tips for Remote Work
The following can do wonders for your physical and mental well-being as you do remote work:
Allotting a couple of minutes of meditation, particularly in the morning before starting your day, brings more than relaxation to the mind and body. You can find yourself being more self-aware and less stressed. While these two have positive implications, the more obvious effects of meditation include an increase in your attention span and better sleep quality. All of these contribute toward a healthier and more productive you.
Nowadays, you can find guided meditations across different platforms and on several mobile applications. Try them and see which works best for you.
Take stretch breaks
Sitting and working for hours can be draining and tense up your muscles. Stretching every once in a while can:
- Relieve stress
- Increase blood flow and energy
- Improve flexibility and posture
- Reduce pain and stiffness
- Reduce the risk of injury
- Increase mental clarity
This applies to both remote work and working at a traditional office. Set a certain amount of time for nonstop work and your stretches (Example: 2 hours of continuous work followed by 10 minutes of stretch break throughout the day). You can do a full-body stretch, but you should prioritize your neck, back, and arms.
If you’re feeling a little extra, do some yoga. It is not just about physical poses as portrayed by the media. It includes a wide range of contemplative and self-disciplinary practices. These include meditation, mantra chanting, breathwork, and more. Some of the benefits of yoga:
- Improves strength, balance, and flexibility
- Reduces inflammation
- Improves cardiovascular and brain functioning
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Boosts immunity
When done regularly, yoga can make your overall health and wellness potentially at their best as you do remote work. Like meditation guides, there are also many online resources for yoga sessions. You just have to find the right one for you.
Everyone knows water is healthy for the body. However, not everyone drinks enough water in a day. The recommended amount varies from person to person. It is safe to say, however, that one should drink about 3 to 4 liters of water daily.
When you are dehydrated, both your physical and mental performance decline. On the other hand, if you drink enough water, here are some benefits you could enjoy:
- Aids in weight loss
- Helps with constipation
- Helps stop a recurring urinary tract infection
- Decreases the risk of kidney stones
- Allows better skin hydration
If you want to keep hydrated during your remote work but don’t want to go through the hassle of keeping tabs on how much water you have taken, just check out your urine. Clear means you’re fully hydrated. If it’s yellowish, then you need to drink some more. Also, don’t forget to drink every time you’re thirsty.
Make sure to compensate for the loss of fluid when you exercise or do any strenuous activity. Regularly drink too when it’s especially hot during the day.
Walk at home
With your bed and work desk located under the same roof as you do remote work, it’s likely for you to have a sedentary lifestyle. To keep your body moving and going, try scheduling walks inside your home. You can aim for a certain number of steps, or you can simply do two rounds of going up and down the stairs. It doesn’t matter how long you walk, what’s important is you’re keeping your muscles active and your blood flowing.
Connect with peers
Remote work can make someone feel isolated, and constantly feeling it takes a heavy toll on one’s mental health. What you need to do is have regular communication with your peers for support and companionship. They sure need it too. You can help each other out during these trying times.
Make time for hobbies
Work eats up our days. So, it’s important to manage your time and squeeze that hobby of yours into your planner. Whether it’s painting, singing, leisurely reading, or annoying your pet, find the time for it! It can be a nice change of pace, which can be both refreshing and motivating.
There are health risks that come with remote work, but with proper self-care and awareness, you won’t have to worry about them much. If you follow these tips consistently, your life as a digital nomad should go smoothly.
But when you find that the present work-from-home setup isn’t working for you anymore, a change of environment can be helpful to keep you going. For this, you should consider a coworking space that will give all the benefits of a traditional office but in a more desirable setting. There, you can be surrounded by like-minded people also working toward productivity. This can just be the boost you need.
If you want to read more on remote workers’ health, particularly their mental health, click here.
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