For many of us, shifting from being in the office to working from home is a big change. It can have a significant impact on our mental and physical wellbeing as well as our work habits.

Here’s 5 easy tips to help maintain balance while working from home

1. Create a work zone

Create some physical distance between your work and living spaces by setting aside a separate area, a spare room or the dining table, to be your designated work zone. Avoid working from your bed or the couch to prevent health issues such as back problems or poor sleep quality.

2. Establish a routine

Start your day as though you’re going into the office by getting dressed and adding some ‘commute time’ between your morning routine and starting work.

Make a schedule for your working day and stick to it. Make sure it includes breaks for meals, playtime or just to take a walk. Be mindful to take that break in full.

Share your schedule with the people in your house and with your team at work to help set clear boundaries between work time and home time. Then at the end of your day, you can log off and switch off.

3. Keep moving

Changes in your routine can quickly affect your fitness habits but it’s important to stay active for both your physical and mental health. Try planning time to work out, turning a phone conversation into a walking meeting, or scheduling a 5 minute yoga break.

Remember, sitting for too long may have negative effects on your health and fitness so get up and stretch often. Alternating between standing and sitting may also help you avoid neck or back strain.

If you need some extra motivation, some health insurance providers reward you for participating in healthy activities. For example, if you have Health Insurance with AIA Vitality, you’re rewarded for making healthier lifestyle choices every day.

4. Change it up

If you can, try working from another part of the house or in the garden for the day. Alternatively, head to the park or work from your local coffee shop. If you’re changing location, remember to make sure your new workspace is safe and comfortable and you’re able to follow physical distancing guidelines.

5. Stay connected

Working in isolation can have a big impact on your mental health so it’s important to stay connected with your colleagues and support networks. Organise regular catch-ups with your team to maintain positive relationships and check in with each other. Try having meetings with your camera on to see each other’s faces, or organise a coffee catch up with colleagues in your area.

It’s always ok to ask for more support and you may want to consider seeking help from a professional. Many employers have counselling services available. You can also speak to your GP about a making a mental health plan or try services like Beyond Blue or Lifeline.

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This information is current as at the date of this communication and may change. It is general information only and is not intended in any way to be financial, legal, tax, health, medical, nutritional or other advice. You should consider your own personal circumstances and needs and view the relevant product documents, fact sheets, fund rules and terms and conditions before making a decision to acquire such products. If necessary you should obtain professional advice from a financial, tax, medical or health professional.

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