Your daily commute is nonexistent. Business casual has taken on a whole new meaning, and your new officemates might need a lot of help with their distance-learning homework. Or, they might be of the four-legged variety and intent on dragging you away from your computer for a belly rub. No matter your situation, working from home is the new normal for many of us, and it presents a new set of challenges for mental and physical wellness.
Olivia Curtis is a certified personal trainer, nutritionist, and wellness expert for G&A Partners. She’s helping others manage their work from home stress through operating G&A’s full-service Evolve wellness program, and she has several tips to keep physical and mental wellness top of mind.
Move your body.
According to Curtis, you should set aside time to move your body 20-30 minutes per day. Completing a YouTube workout video during lunch, taking an afternoon walk or bike ride—anything to get your heart pumping—will work. “Not only will this improve physical health, but it can also get your endorphins going and improve your focus throughout the day,” she says.
Eat healthy meals and snacks.
“Eat regular meals and snacks. Plan your healthy lunches and snacks just like you would if you were heading into the office,” Curtis says. “Be sure to focus on lean protein, whole grains, healthy fats, and lots of fruits and vegetables.”
“Make time for self-care—this can have the biggest effect on health in general, and it doesn’t have to be complicated,” says the wellness expert. Regular meditation, as well as enough water and sleep, are all important aspects of self-care.
Set work-from-home boundaries.
It is essential to make boundaries and set a schedule that determines when you are working and when you are not. “When you are not working, leave your workspace and disconnect just as you would if you were leaving the office for the day,” Curtis says.
Create a home office.
“Create an inspiring (and separate) workspace in your home that encourages creativity, productivity, and happiness,” Curtis says. “Even if you do not have a lot of space in your home or apartment, it’s important that you set aside a corner that is just for work. A distinct space makes it easier to separate work life from home life.”
Keep in touch with your office besties.
According to Curtis, you will feel more engaged and productive if you keep your office relationships going. “Continue communicating with your coworkers through email, video conferencing (video lunch dates can be fun!), and chatting applications,” she says.