Working from home is a dream come true for many. However, when you are working from home you will still need to take care of your mental health as you would if you were working in an office. Working from home requires that you have greater self-control. When you are in an office your boss is usually there to keep you in check. When you work from home it can be easier to procrastinate and then end up feeling overwhelmed and you still have to meet deadlines.
If you have kids and pets at home, you may still find yourself feeling overwhelmed. To avoid this, you need to set boundaries and create a certain level of self-discipline to eliminate mental stress.
Learn How to Switch Off
One of the keys to replenishing your mental energy is the learn how to detach and segment your life even while working at home. You must have a designated time for work and a time to manage your whole just as you would if you were working in a physical space.
When you work in a physical office, leaving the physical space is enough to create detachment for most people. However, when you work at home it can be a bit more difficult to create this essential balance between work hours and time for yourself.
You must create a schedule and stick to it. Designate a certain amount of time in your day for office work and another specific time for your personal life. Failure to do this means that your mental health will soon suffer.
Setting Up a Workspace
A few decades ago, no one knew what a virtual office space was. Fast forward into the present decade and this is fast becoming the reality for many office workers.
The fact that you are working in a virtual workspace doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t set up a dedicated space in your home for work. As much as possible try not to work in your bedroom or even on your living room couch.
Set up a workspace in a room with a table and a chair. This is one of the best ways to put yourself mentally in work mode. Make sure that your space is free of distractions. Distractions are the enemy of time and it will frustrate you and affect your mental health.
Organize Email Communication
Answering emails is one of the key ways in which virtual workers communicate. However, if you’re not careful writing emails and responding to emails can wear you out.
You must reserve a time in your schedule for responding to your emails. Many people find it useful to set aside a specific amount of time. Set up a timer, once the timer goes off stop answering your emails. If you usually get a lot of emails you can use more than one time of the day to answer them. Taking a break will ensure that you come back with a renewed mind. This will make you more productive in the long run.
When you work from home it can be difficult to set boundaries but to preserve your mental health there is no way around it. Once you stop working you should refrain from any work-related communication. If possible separate your work phone from your personal phone. This simple act can make a world of difference. Once work is over turn off your work phone. It means that you will no longer be able to receive calls or even check a work-related email.
Do What You Love
Once you have taken yourself out of the work zone, make sure you involve yourself in activities that are absorbing and will get your mind off work.
These activities may be cooking, spending time with your children and your pets, or exercising to name a few. Remember that self-control is key.
It can be tempting to just continue working nonstop while you’re at home. However, creating a balance is more important than ever when you work from home.
Take Care of Yourself
The key takeaway from all of this is that you should take care of yourself. Only you can assess your stress levels and know what will break you.
Once you do an honest evaluation, you will be able to realistically set up your schedule and create boundaries. That will help you to balance your work and personal life.
Failure to separate work and private time will take a toll on your mental health while working from home. All of this can be avoided by simply having the discipline to compartmentalize your life.