We’re seeing another rise in COVID-19 cases across the nation as we head into the colder months of the year. As a result, many businesses are sending their employees home to work remotely in an effort to keep them safe. While there may be some people who had to work from home back in March, there are others who may be working from home for the very first time. Regardless of whether you’ve been working remotely for a while or this is your first time, it’s never a bad idea to refresh yourself on some ways to maintain your mental health.
Working from home, especially during a pandemic, can take a toll on your mental health, so if you’re looking for a little extra support during this trying time, look no further than Long Island Counseling. We offer a variety of individual counseling services to help you better manage your mental health and live a happier life. Explore our website to learn more about the individual counseling services we offer, and continue reading below for a few tips on how you can improve your mental health by creating a work/life balance while you work from home.
Establish a Routine
Now that you’re working from home, the idea of waking up right when work starts and working in your pajamas from your bed can seem tempting, but it may not be the best decision for your mental health. It’s important to have a work/life balance, even when you’re working from home, and one way to do that is to establish a routine. Consider getting up around the same time you would normally wake up when you go to the office, brush your teeth, shower, have breakfast, and change your clothes before you start your day. Creating and sticking to a routine will help you get in the work mindset, as well as help you establish boundaries for your work life and your home life.
Create a Work Space
As mentioned earlier, you don’t want to start working from your bed or even your living room sofa. Instead, it’s better to create a work space for yourself that is separate from where you spend most of your time in your home. For example, if you have a spare bedroom, consider setting up a desk and your computer so you can use that room as an office. If you don’t have an empty room in your home, you can also set up your work space wherever you keep your desk, or even just a table, as long as you make a promise to yourself that once the workday is over, you leave that spot and don’t return until work starts again the next day.
When you’re working in the office, there’s a good chance that you find time during the day to take a few breaks. You may get up every once in a while to use the bathroom, get a snack, or talk to a coworker. These breaks in your day are essential, as they give your brain time to rest before getting back to work. For this reason, it’s important to schedule breaks in your day while you work from home. You may not be able to get up and walk around the office or speak directly with your coworkers, but you should still schedule time to get up from your desk, walk around a bit, and give your brain a rest. If you’re having trouble taking these breaks naturally, consider setting alarms on your phone so that you don’t forget.
Stay Social (From a Distance)
One of the biggest differences between working from home and working at the office is the lack of people. When you work in an office setting, you’re constantly surrounded by people, even if you don’t communicate with them directly. Being away from the people you work with can get lonely at times, especially if you live alone, which is why we recommend trying to stay social with your coworkers virtually. Consider breaking up your day with scheduled video or phone calls to catch up with coworkers, or you can plan a weekly meeting or happy hour where you meet with a group of people over video chat to catch up and socialize.
Being trapped inside all day every day for the foreseeable future isn’t great for your mental health, which is why we recommend making time to go outside at least once every day. Even with stay-at-home procedures in place, you can still go outside and go for a walk as long as you take the necessary precautions. However, if you’re isolating yourself, instead of going for a walk in a public park or around your neighborhood, consider taking a walk down your driveway or even sitting on your porch in the sunshine with a cup of coffee and a good book.
Let Us Help You Prioritize Your Mental Health
Taking care of your mental health can be difficult, especially when you’re working remotely during a pandemic. If you think that you or someone you know could benefit from a little extra support, Long Island Counseling can help. We offer individual counseling services for a variety of mental health conditions, and we also offer virtual sessions, allowing you to speak to our licensed psychoanalyst from the comfort of your own home. Ready to get started? Give us a call to request an appointment today!