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Author: Dr. Sejal Desai

Working from home can have its challenges, especially when it comes to maintaining healthy habits.

Due to social distancing measures put into place by the COVID-19 outbreak, many of us find ourselves working from home for an indefinite amount of time. With added stressors such as closed schools and gyms, not being able to see family and friends, and having to cancel most travel plans, this can present a unique set of challenges when it comes to staying on track with your health.

To maintain a healthy work-life balance, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  1. Stick to a regular routine. Set your alarm to wake up early, have a dedicated workspace, schedule breaks for snacks and lunch, and log off when you normally would at work.
  2. Don’t eat lunch and snack at the same place you work. Go to your dining room or kitchen so you can take a break from your computer or workstation. Focus on your food and give your mind a mental break from work.
  3. Drink at least 64 oz of water per day. Dehydration can make you feel sluggish and cause headaches, which may make you less productive. You can keep track with apps like Hydro Coach or WaterMinder.
  4. Avoid buying junk food and sodas or sugary drinks. Having these in your home will make you crave them more.
  5. Limit caffeine to 1-2 cups in the morning only. Excessive caffeine can lead to palpitations, headaches, insomnia and anxiety.
  6. Focus on eating balanced, nutritious foods that will help you think clearly and concentrate while working from home. Foods like plant-based proteins and fibers help you feel fuller longer.
  7. Get up and move. It can be tempting to work for hours at a time but recognize that your body needs a break too. Set a timer for every hour to remind yourself to get up and stretch. Get a standing desk or an under desk elliptical to keep you moving. After work, go for a walk outside to clear your mind and breathe some fresh air.
  8. Prior to bed, do 10 minutes of guided sleep meditation. Studies show that meditation can help you fall asleep and stay asleep longer.
  9. Get at least 7-8 hours of continuous sleep every night. Restful sleep can help you fight fatigue and symptoms of depression.
  10. Finally, make sure you are practicing good self-care. Do things regularly that make you feel happy and relaxed. Take a long bath, read a book, learn a new hobby, or connect with your family and friends.

It is now more important than ever to prioritize your mental and physical health. Not only will it impact your mood and energy level, but it will help boost your immunity as well. Remember, the ultimate goal is to stay healthy while still being productive.