7 mental health tips to stay healthy

Health, according to the World Health Organization, is “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity”.[1] A variety of definitions have been used for different purposes over time. Health can be promoted by encouraging healthful activities, such as regular physical exercise and adequate sleep,[2] and by reducing or avoiding unhealthful activities or situations, such as smoking or excessive stress. Some factors affecting health are due to individual choices, such as whether to engage in a high-risk behavior, while others are due to structural causes, such as whether the society is arranged in a way that makes it easier or harder for people to get necessary healthcare services. Still other factors are beyond both individual and group choices, such as genetic disorders.

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Now that we are back to the work from home scenario amid the rising Covid-19 cases, take these baby steps to keep your mental health in check.

Over the past few months, a sense of normalcy had started resuming on the work front, with hybrid work models. It was back to office, like usual pre-Covid times. Or work from home on some days. But mostly, people were getting into the groove of home-to-office and back, once more. Now with the new Covid-19 variant, we are in back gear!

In a recent development, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has urged private offices, except those engaged in essential services, to shift to work from home mode amid the surge in Covid-19 cases. By now we know what a vicious circle work from home is – at least for the ladies, isn’t it?

If sitting for prolonged hours in front of the laptop, attending long-winding meetings and trying to wrap up the day before the night wasn’t enough, there are also the pressures of managing home duties. Work-life balance really goes for a toss! When you work from home, it becomes easy to fall into the trap of overworking. It can be strenuous due to disruptive schedules, low productivity and increased screen time. And between all this, who cares about mental health. Right? But you must care about it!

Dr Vidhya Nair, psychologist, Holistic Facilitator, tells HealthShots, “Working from home has become increasingly difficult for each one of us. It has blurred the lines between relaxation and work.”

So, since it seems like it will be work from home once again for most people, we thought of bringing some tips to help you be efficient at work and also keep a check on your mental health.

How to keep mental health in check during work from home

1. Allocate a fixed workspace

It is important that you fix a workspace for yourself during office hours. It keeps you intact, keeps you in the right posture, builds concentration, and allows you to work with dedication. It is important to note that you should not work while sitting in bed, as it makes you lazy and creates an unhealthy work environment.

2. Mimic your earlier routine

Mimic your earlier routine. Pretend as if you are getting ready for work! Try to get up early, get dressed, or at least wear clean clothes to feel fresh. Try to start and end your day at the same time, to feel like you are working in an office because the comfort of home can be a great advantage. But sometimes it is also the biggest creativity killer because of its familiarity. Hence, creating an environment similar to office workspace increases your efficiency and productivity.

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Mimic your office routine, while working from home! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Virtual chai breaks with colleagues

Create a virtual chai break session or virtual breaks to create an environment similar to the office workspace. It allows you to connect to your collegues and a healthy work environment. Also, vent out your feelings to your collegues, share your experiences, problems, etc to feel better. This practice will initiate a healthy mind and stabilize your mental health.

4. Set ground rules for your family members while you work

This practice allows you to divide your attention to both work and family. It allows you to maintain your personal as well work-life balance optimally. Setting the ground rules at home allows to minimize clashes at home, reduce interruptions, and set an open expectation at home.

5. Take breaks

It is important to take breaks in between while you work. Inculcate time management techniques to ensure you do not end up creating some last-minute chaos or work non-stop with breaks. Taking breaks in between keeps your mental health in check, reduces stress and pressure. Also, it increases your efficiency in work.

5. Inculcate healthily practices

Inculcating healthy practices like exercise, meditation can help improve concentration, work efficiency and keep your mind calm. It helps in regulating a healthy mind. Also, while working from home, our physical activity reduces. Exercising, yoga, meditation keeps us fit.

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Don’t let coronavirus keep you from staying fit! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

6. Be kind and patient with yourself

Be kind and patient with yourself. You work hard and some days, it is okay to not meet the expectations and deadlines. Don’t be too hard on yourself and allow yourself some time off from work if you feel scholastic and pressurized. Make your mental health a priority.

7. Connect with your friends and family

Regularly connect with your friends and family. Covid-19 times are hard on us and our relations. It is crucial that we indulge ourselves in social interactions, share our daily experiences and calm our mind, even while working from home. Hence, connecting with our friends and family is a healthy practice for a better mental health.

Stay safe, and stay healthy!

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