Today, we are diving into 5 ways you can practice self-care when you work from home. Self-care is always important, but I think it is especially so when you work from home.
I don’t know about you, but even though I love working from home, I am starting to see some problems with it as well. With Covid- 19 still going strong, I definitely feel a lot safer and more comfortable working from home.
However, working from home becomes very easy to start blurring the lines of personal and business time. Your room quickly becomes your office; you are not moving around, you get distracted by your home-life and sometimes end up working odd hours because now you can do other things during the day.
Here are some of the things that I am working on incorporating more into my life so that I can have a better work-life balance.
1. Set boundaries
First, you need to set boundaries with your clients. Tell them your usual working hours. This will depend on you and your schedule. One of the main things that I struggle with is following these boundaries myself.
I have clients that will send me messages all night and say that they don’t expect me to work on them, but they just don’t want to forget it. Personally, I hate having unfinished tasks, so it has been hard for me to ignore the work until the morning. Sometimes, I’ll work on it and then I use the Google schedule feature so that the email goes out in the morning and my clients don’t think I work at night.
The above leads me to the next part of setting boundaries. Do not work all the way into the night or on the weekends unless you want to, or this is the time you normally work. When I first started my entrepreneurial journey, I also worked a day job, so I made sure clients knew I wasn’t typically available in the day.
Say no to work that you don’t have time for or hate doing. It’s so easy to keep saying yes because you don’t want to disappoint clients or for financial reasons. But if you keep saying yes eventually, you run out of the capacity to do everything well. When you overload yourself, it is impossible to put your all into your work, and you end up making mistakes, as well as having no time for yourself and putting unnecessary demands and stress on yourself.
2. Pamper yourself
Give yourself a spa day or night. Self-care is about taking the time whenever you need it. Put on a face mask (not that kind! One for your skin), run a relaxing bath, grab a glass (or bottle) of wine. Sit down and watch some movies or binge-watch your favourite reality show. Whatever your thing is that you like to do to relax, actually make time for it. I would even suggest scheduling it into your calendar if that works for you.
If you don’t take care of yourself, it will eventually catch up to you. Even doing something once a month, like getting a facial, getting your nails done, or getting your hair done. These things make more of a difference than you think because you’re showing yourself how you deserve to be treated.
3. Exercise or move around
I know you are thinking: I don’t have time for that! I have to take care of my family; I have too much work to do; I have to clean the house. Whatever it is, it’s just an excuse, because you don’t want to do it! Working out and exercising is one of the best forms of self-care and one of the best things you can do for your work productivity as well. So, the time you think you are taking away from getting things done will help you get your work done faster.
Since I have exclusively been working from home, I take a lot fewer steps, and I have been noticing my weight starting to creep up. Sometimes hours will go by, and I have only taken 100 steps.
Take 30 mins every day to do something physical. Put on 2 15 min YouTube videos, walk around the block for 30 mins, get up for 10 mins at a time, and do something. My favourite activities are walking or going for a jog but since the weather in Alberta is so unpredictable, I have been using Youtube videos a lot to get me moving lately.
4. Meal prep and eat healthy
It’s so easy to forget to eat, snack all day, or grab something fast because you’re busy. If you take one or two days a week to prepare all your meals, then you don’t have to worry about what you’re going to eat. And you don’t end up eating junk as much because you know you have food that’s ready to go. Eating healthier also helps you work better because it keeps you feeling energized.
5. Take a day off
Remember, most of us became entrepreneurs to have the flexibility to enjoy life if we want to.
Literally: Do not work for a whole day at least. I know you’ll probably still think about work but resist the urge to do anything. Turn off notifications, put someone else in charge for the day, and take a mental break from it and enjoy your life.
Even take a vacation. I know right now, a lot of us aren’t able to take the vacation we want, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t travel within your region or take a staycation to recharge.
You don’t have to do all these things at once, but try to slowly incorporate them into your life and build up healthy habits because self-care is important, and you matter too! You deserve to take care of yourself and live your life the best way that you can.