Dr. Megan Johnson McCullough – After the Covid-19 pandemic, more people have shifted to working remotely. The days of driving to work have changed for many, and now it’s just a few steps to the home office or living room to get the workday started. For some, the alarm goes off and they check their emails while still lying in bed. It’s an interesting dynamic when you consider technology, attire, social interaction, and performance.
Reduction in stress is a major benefit of working from home. Less time in traffic and stressful commute situations being pressed for time. You can ease into your day a little. You also have time to stick a load of laundry in the washer, do the dishes, and get little tasks done that piled up when you were gone all day at work. Now your ten-minute breaks are used productively to allow you to feel life being more balanced. Improved mental health is good all around. You are also less likely to get sick with common colds and viruses that spread in public spaces that you are sharing with your co-workers. Less shaking hands, less touching shared surfaces, and using your own bathroom, all add up to less spread of germs.
The work-home environment can have its pros and cons for your health. Less time for travel could mean extra time for your health if directed properly. You spend less money on gas, which means this could go towards the cost of physical activity like joining a gym, getting a personal trainer, or for other exercise related expenses. Now you have the time and some resources to workout. That extra hour can be used to get moving.
On the other hand, you may have more time to get the proper amount of sleep you need. The time that got cut short before in order to get ready and commute, can now mean setting the alarm for a little later. More rest can be good if you were lacking it and this can help with less stress, more focus, and more energy.
Another benefit is the ability to prepare and eat your food at home. The task of packing food to go is eliminated so you can grab better options and keep better options in stock. The chances of eating out are less, which means more money in your pocket too. Again, this money can be directed towards physical activity and maybe even using a food service that delivers healthy options you just need to warm up. Having more time means you can get to the supermarket to shop for healthier, fresher foods. You don’t have to worry about Tupperware, just eat it at home.
There can be some down sides as well. Some people complain of muscle pain in the low back and neck because they don’t have the proper work-office set up that their employer provided. This can be resolved of course, and now having a standing desk is an option. The set up can be catered to exactly how you want it now but sitting on the couch, in bed, or in the recliner to work would eventually cause improper posture.
Many enjoy the benefits of working from home. We all have preferences, and our circumstances are different. Being around others and getting out of the house has its perks too. The hybrid options are also used by many companies to keep a balance between remote and in-person for everyone. We live in a world where we can connect with anyone, anywhere, anytime, so the luxury of being at home to do this certainly is an advancement that was once never even possible. As life changes, we still must make time for our health. Working remote does give us that ability slightly more so than when faced with the hustle and bustle with a schedule of getting to work each day.