Even if you never thought you’d fall into a WFH lifestyle, the realities of 2020 may have you referring to your couch as “my office.” Though it may be more comfortable, working from home has its own set of challenges. So how can you make the transition easier?
Fortunately, you have increased freedom to indulge your quirkiness without your colleagues rolling their eyes. Here are five ideas for how to make your WFH routine more exciting!
1. Schedule an AM Exercise Adventure
Depending on your telecommuting arrangement, you may have more flexibility in terms of your start time. Why not use this freedom to begin your morning by getting the blood flowing to your trusty old neurons?
Make your morning exercise an adventure, not a chore. If you run, experiment with a new route now and then. Switch up your stroll around the high school track for a hike at a nearby nature center, or, if you’re more into mind-body workouts, start the day with a vinyasa yoga flow. You can always experiment with the year’s trendiest fitness fads — maybe you’ll spark a new passion.
2. Up Your Meal Prep Game
Telecommuting means no more relying on the drive-thru for meals, right? Now it means eating semi-stale cereal directly from the box at breaktime.
By now, you know that working from home doesn’t mean taking a luxurious 3-martini lunch, but you can step up your meal prep game. Who said that all the work has to take place indoors, anyway? You won’t consider it to be “slaving away in the kitchen” when you’re standing on your deck, reverse-searing a steak to the perfect temperature before letting it rest and slicing it for weekday salads.
Don’t stop there — you can make anything from jalapeño poppers to cornbread on your grill. Portion your meals and freeze them so that you have something to grab-and-go before your next Zoom meeting.
3. Connect Virtually
One of the strains of telecommuting is the isolation many folks feel. If you are lonely, learn how to connect virtually to make yourself feel less alone.
Many organizations use communication software like Slack. If your organization doesn’t have a channel dedicated to interests and social groups, urge them to adopt such outlets. At the very least, you need a virtual “water cooler” — make sure you keep all conversations workplace appropriate.
Don’t be shy about looking outside of your organization. If you enjoy flexible hours with your telecommuting lifestyle, what’s to stop you from hitting a support group meeting while you eat lunch? If it’s a stressful day and you feel triggered, making such a choice could lead to better decisions later if you struggle with substance abuse or other mental health issues.
4. Include Some Game Day Fun
Did your supervisor ixnay the foosball table installation in your break room? Guess what? Your home is still your castle — nothing can stop you from mounting a basketball hoop above your trash can now, you rebel, you.
Give yourself active things to do when you get stuck and need a break. You can find tabletop mind games that can distract you from that unbalanced budget report long enough to help you see why the numbers won’t add up. Go ahead and order a miniature putting green for your office floor — a little physical movement during the workday eases back pain and stress.
5. Make Your Workspace Cozy
You probably spend anywhere from 4 to 12 hours in your home office daily. Getting comfortable isn’t a matter of not being tough enough to hack long days — it’s vital to preserving your physical and mental health.
If your chair or monitor sits at the wrong height, you could get “tech-neck.” Fully 30% of Americans complain of chronic neck and back stress. Make sure you can clearly see your screen without leaning or bending, and make a comfortable, ergonomic chair an investment priority. You might consider a variable-height desk or an exercise ball as alternatives.
Blue light from your screen can mess with your circadian rhythms and cause excruciating headaches from eye strain. Learn how to turn on your twilight settings or invest in specialty glasses to decrease your exposure to this wavelength.
Finally — remember, your home is your castle. There are no negative Nancies to complain about your aromatherapy mister, so fragrance your office with scents that uplift you. Indulge in an ottoman if you like occasionally kicking up your feet and invest in a cozy Sherpa-style robe or blanket if your home office sits above the garage and never gets warm in winter.
Make Your Work-From-Home Routine More Exciting with These Tips
If you want to know how to make your work-from-home routine more exciting, the five tips above will make you love this arrangement. Give them a try today and enjoy the telecommuting life.