How to have a healthy remote work-life balance, you ask? Wear pants. Seriously. You’re going to feel so much better. Oh, and other things, too.
The world is shifting into working remotely more than ever.
The pandemic unexpectedly required us to work remotely, which inevitably threw the majority–if not all of us–off our groove. Suddenly, rushing out the door, bopping our heads during a morning commute, and dealing with the end of the day traffic rush became a thing of the past for an online marketing company.
We can all agree that the honeymoon phase of remote working has been significant: you can spend your whole shift in bed, check emails from your phone, and be utterly relaxed in your pajamas. But after the novelty of doing so passes, you begin to feel the effects of working remotely.
It’s more challenging to draw the line between when you should step away from your computer; you feel compelled to check one more email, or maybe you feel so burnt out from sitting in the same space for eight hours or more.
But hey. There’s a way to find balance. Our team can speak from personal experience and we rounded up our recommendations to help you.
Here are seven tips on how to have a healthy remote work-life balance:
Establish work-life boundaries off the bat
There are clear separations between the life you live outside of the work and your life during it. If you don’t set boundaries, it will be more difficult to distinguish where that needs to end and begin further down the road. Boundaries limit our capacity to engage in specific actions and thoughts for our well-being. Why? So we can preserve our sanity and health.
Commit to a routine and schedule
Give yourself something to look forward to before you clock in! That could be anything from exercising, making yourself a yummy breakfast, brewing tea, or preparing a cup of coffee for yourself. It sucks having to drag yourself out of bed to start the day; why not invest a moment in doing something you love? These little things may not seem like much, but they’re the moments that add up to improving the quality of both your day and life.
Get out. No, really. Go outside or walk away from your desk.
One of the worst traps of remote working is feeling that you need to chain yourself to your desk for the whole day. Plot twist: you do not. As long as you’re keeping up to date with emails, completing tasks–like getting the details right on a web design collateral, showing up on time, and being prepared for meetings, allowing yourself the chance to exist as a person outside of a work context is necessary–and helps you from burning out much more quickly. Plus, your eyes will thank you for not staring at a screen all day. Therefore, if you got a dog, walk that cute little puppy or old bean around the block, stretch your legs, and smell some fresh air with them. Regular breaks are crucial! I like to sit on the couch to read and drink three cups of tea next to an open window.
Dress up like you’re going to the office–now and again.
I’m the queen of wearing hoodies and gym leggings to work. When you’re eternally cold and eager to work out during a lunch break like me, this is the OG combo of my days. While the comfiness is a luxury, it’s easy to default to it–to the point where you might even neglect your self-image and personal hygiene. Gross, I know. But when you’re in your own space where you don’t need to meet anyone face to face, you feel compelled to let yourself go for a bit. You can’t lie to me OR YOURSELF. In all seriousness, even though you may not interact with another human in person during the workday, dressing up and getting ready like you’re about to strut into the office will only uplift your mood. If you’re feeling good and looking good, that translates into your attitude for the workday.
Plan to have fun after work!
Don’t forget that you have a life outside of the office! Hang out with loved ones, invest time in your hobbies, and, honestly, chill out in whatever way is satisfying. Throughout the long remote workday, you hyperfocus on the finishing tasks before the day ends. Give yourself a fun activity or reward to look forward to after all your hard work! The incentive keeps you excited throughout the day and prevents you from feeling that the week will be endless; the week is not endless. If you can schedule time for work, you can schedule time for yourself. Utilize those time management skills in a personal context! Our team recommends rewarding yourself with a new episode of your favorite show or a delicious meal.
Create an office space solely dedicated to work AND ONLY WORK
Not only should you create a mental space for yourself to work, but you should have a physical work environment or office at the ready too. That absolute separation will do wonders for your mental health because you can walk away from it and not have to think about it until the next day or Monday. Essential tip: make your office space an enjoyable place to work in! Sit in a comfy, ergonomic chair, create cozy vibes with decorations, and keep everything organized and clean. What’s more, having your workspace can help you practice self-control with distractions!
Set aside time every week to reflect on your progress and well-being
Don’t neglect the opportunity for some necessary introspection. It’s natural to get caught up in the hustle and grind of a busy workweek and focus on what’s next for the future. Instead, take it easy and come back to the present moment! Sit in your space to reflect on the week, schedule check-in meetings with your manager, and allow yourself to breathe.