In the pre-COVID era, the perks of having the option to work remotely was high up on every employee’s checklist. And now, all of a sudden, it has become the new normal. Tech giants like Google and Facebook have already given their workers the option to work remotely as long as they like, and practically every other organization is now realizing the benefits of high productivity and lowered costs.
Ground Report News Desk | New Delhi
For those who have always worked remotely owing to their job requirements, they already know how it can also give rise to a lot of mental health challenges. And while we don’t know yet if this is going to be a temporary change or a more long-term transformation, it is crucial to learn how to stay mentally healthy while getting your work done.
Wellness coach and mental health practitioner, Professor Sreystha Beppari, says that social distancing, prolonged lockdown and house arrest have moved people into a sort of ‘emotional despair’. “However, try not to be over-critical of your situation. Keep your morale high, and don’t indulge in speculations about how bad the economy may become and whether or not you may hold or lose a job. These speculations may create unnecessary stress at the moment.”
One of the other essentials of stable mental health is creating a routine. Prema Dutta, Senior Communication Professional, says, “To maintain one’s sanity it is very important to have a routine. Dedicated time to work, family and self is important to manage time and maintain a balance. A lot of people have complained about problems with their sleep cycles because there is no real demarcation between personal time and office time. I feel having a set pattern to follow with tasks clearly marked out goes a long way in ensuring equilibrium while working remotely.”
One of the better ways to maintain your mental health while working from home is to break up your daily schedule. It’s best to take short bursts of breaks, especially with some sort of movement, like walking or jumping. Prof. Beparri suggests that eating healthy and exercising regularly, along with meditation will keep you physically and emotionally strong to withstand your current situation. “Also remember that there is a strong connection between look-good and feel-good. You can always groom yourself at home so that every time you look yourself in the mirror, you feel good about what you see,” she says.
According to Nirupama Subramanian, writer and co-founder at GLOW, she advises three ways to work effectively from home. “ Make a daily checklist of priorities, maintain healthy boundaries between the zones of work and home, and meditate or do a mindfulness practice daily for mental and emotional wellbeing.”
Communication professionals across the country suggest keeping the focus on self-care, amongst other things. Gargi Bhardwaj, a communication professional, says, “The key is to maintain a routine, take breaks and find time for yourself. The shop never closes; it is the shopkeeper who has to pull down the shutter.” Brand marketing professional Neha Yadav, advises having something lined up post-work to look forward to. “It could be a movie on Netflix or a PlayStation game, or maybe even a dish you wanted to bake. This will help you get through the whole day.”
Also, remember to keep in touch with your friends and family, because staying connected in times like these can be extremely helpful when you are unable to leave home and have no other social interaction whatsoever.
As Prof. Beppari advises, “Take it as a golden opportunity to work on your intimate relationships. This lockdown is not only about remote working, low morale, negativity and stress. It can also be about self- reflection, creativity, developing a new passion/hobby, bonding with family and rediscovering you. Do not let your intelligence misguide you into misery, and constantly remind yourself that this too shall pass.”