We have now spent over a year dealing with the pandemic and with time, we are getting accustomed to the changes it has brought along. We barely have a social life now and have to stay indoors for most of our days.
And that’s the best thing to do in the current scenario, Except, this new routine is hard to adjust with and can be overwhelming at times, especially for working professionals.
Whether you are a teacher who has to teach through online classes or someone who has been working from home for the past year, self-care is an essential part of fitting in this new normal.
Today, we answer questions about the importance of self-care and bring you the best self-care practices to help you unwind and be productive as you work from home.
Why is self-care important during the COVID-19 pandemic?
It has always been vital to take care of your physical and mental health. But the need to do this has increased significantly today as we try to live a normal life amidst a pandemic.
Working from home has inter-twined the personal with the professional, making it hard to focus on both these aspects of life.
While the situation can sometimes be overwhelming, it is a relief that the solution to all these issues can be found in something as simple as self-care.
With good self-care practices, you can find time to get all the work done without burdening yourself too much. If you are still not convinced, here are some reasons why you should focus on developing a self-care routine:
- A suitable self-care routine allows you to feel happy, relaxed, and laid-back
- It provides space for mental and physical rest
- The feeling to do something for yourself is wholesome and adds a sense of accomplishment
- It helps segregate personal life from professional space
- Having a good self-care routine benefits physical and mental well-being, manages stress, and helps you excel professionally
Finding time to take care of yourself right now may seem difficult. But, it is important to realize that while there are many upsides to following a self-care routine while working from home, there are also certain downsides of not having one in place.
The lack of a self-care routine may lead to excessive tiredness, burn-out, and reduced motivation, all of which can hamper your productivity.
So, take the easy road and avoid work from home stress with these simple, yet effective tricks.
Best Self Care Tips for Working from Home
1. Keep a check on your sleeping habits
Do you stay awake to binge-watch that last episode? Do you wake up just in time to log in? Or Do you often find yourself sleeping during your office hours?
We don’t blame you for any of it! Staying at home throughout the day can blur the lines between morning, evening, and night. But if the answer to any of these questions is yes, you need to set a sleep routine.
Sleeping at odd hours takes away your energy from the working hours, resulting in lethargy and tiredness, both of which can hamper your health.
So, the first thing you need to do is set up a sleep chart and note the time you sleep and wake up and make changes accordingly. Also, make sure that you don’t compromise on your sleeping hours and get at least 7 hours of sleep at night.
2. Dress up for work
Not having to dress up for work is one of the most exciting things about working from home. But did you know what we wear affects our mood and work performance?
You may have noticed it yourself! Working in informal clothing can make you feel lazy and more than often, you would find yourself wanting to crawl back in bed.
On the other hand, dressing up formally boosts confidence and gives a sense of responsibility.
This has a direct impact on your psychological behavior and performance. So, follow the experts and dress up for work even at home!
Just to help you a little more, here are some suggestions for what you can wear while working from home:
- Replace your pajamas with pants or trousers
- Avoid home slippers, opt for comfortable footwear fit for a workplace
- Opt for ironed shirt, t-shirt, or kurta- anything that is formal enough to wear to work
3. Take a break when you need it
Taking a break is essential as you can not keep working constantly and still focus. The idea is to take as many breaks as you need to get through the day, but if not executed carefully, this can backfire.
Since it is important to have some ground rules for this, here are a few ways that can help you:
Follow the 90-20 rule, which implies that you work for 90 minutes and take a 20 minutes-break before resuming work for 90 minutes again. With this rule, you can manage time well and get ample breaks throughout the day
Divide your work in sets and establish milestones for the same. Take a break every time you accomplish one
Start early in case you need more intervals during the day
4. Use your breaks to workout and hydrate
Everyone emphasizes the need to take breaks between work. But the real question is, what do you do in this time frame?
If your answer is to check your phone or play a round of video games, think again!
This break period is best utilized if you use it as a breather to unwind and blow off steam. Consider stretching your body, chasing your Fitbit steps goal, or hydrating in your breaks.
This will keep you on your toes and help your mind and body relax simultaneously.
You can also opt for more stationary exercises like meditation, deep breathing, taking a power nap, etc.
5. Make snacking a part of your routine
Hunger can distract you for a better part of your work hours without you even realizing it. Working with a full stomach can be a focus booster for you, and no one can deny the fun of snacking while at work.
Since snacking is such an integral part of working from home, it can be the perfect excuse to consume nutritional and healthy food.
While most people associate snacking with consuming chips, cookies, aerated drinks, etc., the idea is to ditch unhealthy eating habits while working and replacing them with healthy food alternatives like dry fruits, chia seeds, fruits, juices, etc.
6. Start your day with a morning routine
How you start your morning sets the tone for the rest of the day, making it crucial to have an effective and refreshing self-care routine.
You can start your mornings with a brief exercise routine, yoga, meditation, a cup of coffee out in nature, or by walking your dog. You can include anything that helps you relax in your morning self-care routine.
This brings us to our next self-care tip.
7. Add meditation to your self-care routine
Meditation is one of the most effective self-care tips as it allows your body and mind to be at peace with each other. There are several benefits of meditation, and the fact that it is easy to practice makes it a great choice.
With meditation in your routine, you can spend some time with yourself and pay attention to your thoughts. It provides space for self-discovery and helps improve the feeling of self-fulfillment and pleasure.
It takes care of the physical, psychological, emotional, and spiritual aspects of self-care while reducing stress levels, and bringing a sense of self-awareness, and confidence.
Meditation offers mental clarity and improves the ability to deal with everyday problems. Adding it to your self-care routine will enhance your work performance and health both at the same time.
With lines blurred in professional and personal life, finding time for self-care can be strenuous. Using free time to take care of yourself may even make you feel guilty.
But at the end of the day, your health matters the most. So, carve out a self-care routine with the ideas in this article, or add some that suit you well.
All the best!