Working from home is still a relatively new experience for some people but not for me. I have been working remotely for close to 20 years. Along the way, I have learned some things to help make this experience not only enjoyable but also help me stay balanced and set boundaries. Here are some of the work from home essentials that make my remote office experience really work.
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Work From Home Essentials
One of the things to remember when you are working from home is that you are really ‘working’. This is not the chance to spend all day sitting on your couch watching movies, cooking elaborate dinners or keeping the house spotless. Remote employees still have meetings, deadlines and full time work responsibilities. Being able to juggle the demands of a family while also balancing a full time work load is difficult for some but can be manageable and very rewarding.
One of the problems that some remote employees face is remembering to turn off the computer and walk away from work at the end of the day. It can be tempting to check one last email or spend 15 more minutes after supper working on a project. But setting boundaries is as important when you work from home as it is when you work in an office building.
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Get Up and Stretch
When you work in an office, you regularly get up and move. You may have to go upstairs for a meeting or walk to a coworkers desk. You even have the opportunity to go to the coffee shop or vending machine for snacks. It’s equally important to get up and move when you are working from home.
I wear a Fitbit and never miss my 10,000 steps each day. By watching my steps I am reminded to take regular breaks and move.
A few years ago I received a DeskCycle that sits beside my kitchen counter. I can select the resistance and burn some calories while I work on my computer during the day. This is a simple way to sneak in extra movement even when I’m on a client call.
Another way I stay healthy while working from home is doing work from my treadmill. Almost 10 years ago I purchased a SurfShelf Treadmill Desk that easily attaches to my treadmill. This simple polycarbonate desk is strong enough to hold my laptop while I walk and get my steps in each day. If you prefer to watch a movie on your ipad or phone, the desk will hold it safely in place while you walk. This is the best $40.00 I have ever spent toward my personal health.
When you work from home, you may find yourself sititng on the couch at some point during the day. Since many laptop computers will run hot after a while, you might want to purchase a simple lap desk. I purchased this Targus Desk about 8 years ago and still use it every day. It makes it much more comfortable to balance my laptop on this desk instead of straight on my legs.
Wherever you choose to work, make sure you have a comfortable chair so you can guard your posture and give yourself back support.
If you find that you are getting headaches or experiencing eye strain, you may want to explore blue light blocking glasses.
Working from home is a great solution for many companies and employees but take the steps you need to keep a good work life balance. If you are working from home, what are some essentials that make your home office environment work for you?