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Wellbeing While Working Remote

What was once a rare perk has now become the norm for many, offering newfound flexibility and freedom. As we navigate this twists and turns of this, it's essential to consider how remote work impacts our well-being and what steps we can take to maintain balance and positivity. Let's explore the pros and cons.

smiling woman with glasses sitting on the floor in front of her laptop

The Pros of Remote Work

One of the most significant advantages of working remotely is the flexibility it offers. Employees can design their workdays to fit their personal lives better, leading to increased job satisfaction and productivity. The absence of a daily commute saves time and reduces stress, allowing more room for self-care and family time. Additionally, remote work can lead to cost savings, as there is less need for commuting expenses, work attire, and eating out.

Creating a personalized work environment is another benefit. Whether it’s a quiet home office, a cosy corner in a café, or a sunny spot in the garden, remote work allows individuals to choose a setting that boosts their productivity and comfort.

Asian woman on her laptop remote working on a balcony with a coffee next to her

The Cons of Remote Work

Despite the many benefits of working from home, this comes with its own set of challenges. One of the most significant issues is the blurring of boundaries between work and personal life. Without a clear separation, it can be difficult to switch off, leading to longer working hours and potential burnout.

Additionally, without face-to-face interactions ( I mean who doesn't miss the kitchen gossip), misunderstandings can occur more easily, and the lack of spontaneous conversations can stifle creativity and problem-solving.

Additionally, not everyone has a conducive home environment for work, which can impact productivity and well-being.

The isolation that comes with remote work can also affect mental health, and recent UK statistics highlight several concerning trends:

  1. Burnout Rates: Approximately 86% of remote workers have experienced burnout, with 67% reporting that their mental health has deteriorated due to remote work​ (ThinkRemote)​.

  2. Loneliness: The lack of social interactions typical in a traditional office environment has contributed to feelings of loneliness among 67% of remote workers​ (StandOut CV)​.

  3. Work-Life Balance: Despite the perceived benefits of remote work, many employees struggle to unplug after work hours, leading to a blurred boundary between professional and personal life. This has resulted in 51% of remote workers finding it challenging to maintain a healthy work-life balance​ (ThinkRemote)​​ (Mental Health UK)​.

  4. Employer Support: Almost half of UK workers feel their employers do not provide adequate support to manage stress and prevent burnout. A wellbeing spa voucher or wellness posters in the staff room, although well intentioned, does not suffice. A lack of creatively and strategy exacerbates the issue, making it harder for employees to cope with their workload and mental health challenges​ (Mental Health UK)​.

  5. Mental Health Impact: Mental Health UK reports that one in five employees had to take time off due to stress in the past year. Factors such as high workloads, unpaid overtime, and isolation were significant contributors to this stress​ (Mental Health UK)​.

Making Remote Work a Positive Experience

mid age professional black woman working from home  with her son looking on

To thrive in a remote work setup, it’s crucial to establish a routine and set clear boundaries. Designate a specific workspace to create a mental separation between work and personal life. Stick to regular working hours, and make sure to take breaks to avoid burnout. Using tools like Trello or Asana can help keep track of tasks and ensure productivity.

Stay connected with colleagues through regular check-ins and virtual meetings. This helps maintain a sense of community and fosters collaboration. Incorporate social interactions into your routine, whether it's a virtual coffee break or a team-building activity.

Prioritize self-care by incorporating exercise, healthy eating, and mindfulness practices into your day. Creating a nurturing home environment with elements like plants, adequate lighting, and comfortable furniture can enhance your overall well-being. It's also beneficial to minimize distractions and keep your workspace organized and clutter-free.

Five Ways to Maintain Well-Being While Working Remotely

  1. Set Boundaries: Clearly define your working hours and stick to them. Communicate these boundaries to family members or housemates.

  2. Stay Connected: Regularly check in with your team and engage in virtual social activities to combat isolation.

  3. Create a Routine: Establish a daily routine that includes regular breaks, exercise, and self-care activities.

  4. Optimize Your Workspace: Ensure your workspace is comfortable, well-lit, and free from distractions.

  5. Practice Mindfulness: Incorporate mindfulness practices such as meditation or deep-breathing exercises to manage stress.

Comprehensive Resources: HWBL's Well Being While Working (Remotely) Comprehensive Guide, which will be available soon, includes a variety of resources such as digital downloads, informational guides, and interactive tools designed to help employees manage stress, improve mental health, and enhance their overall well-being. Make sure you are signed up to receive our notifications.

About the Author

Caroline S. Asante

Caroline is the founding editor and creative director of Happy Well Being Life, specializing in media, journalism, wellness, and personal development. An award-winning former BBC broadcaster with nine years of experience, she is also a certified meditation teacher, human design reader, and astrologer. For the past two decades, Caroline has passionately explored esoteric knowledge, spiritual growth, and quantum physics. She is the Wellbeing Columnist and Contributing Editor for Velvet Magazine for the past four years and is currently pursuing a qualification in holistic health coaching.


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