Working from home is convenient and can be a true lifesaver for all of us busy people. In an increasingly wired world, people are running out of reasons to spend a ton of time and energy on rush hour commutes when the same tasks can be accomplished from the comfort of their homes. Working from home has done wonders for overall productivity, not just for work, but for every day life as well.
However, it’s your office, you get to call the shots. Start with setting up an entire corner, if not a whole room, for work purposes. Only furnish it with things you absolutely need. Apart from the basics such as computers, printers, etc., here are some suggestions of items that can boost your health in addition to productivity.
Apparently, sitting is the new smoking. Even if that is an exaggeration, it isn’t difficult to see that remaining in one position for long hours at a stretch is hardly conducive to good posture or overall health. This means sitting AND standing. Ideally, you want to be able to switch between the two.
Go for a desk whose height you can adjust or pull a chair alongside a fixed standing desk/mounted on a wall so that you are able to give your feet rest from time to time.
Make sure the desk is of the proper height for you so as not to put a strain on your lower back as you stand.
Standing doesn’t mean staying still. You are going to move a bit even if that movement is restricted to the area where you are standing. With a standing mat, you can make the process easier as well as more effective.
Also known as anti-fatigue mats, standing mats are made of material that is neither hard but nor too soft. It keeps your legs and feet engaged as you shift your weight from one leg to another. You can raise your calves for a deep stretch as well in order to keep some movement going as you stand. Take off your shoes and dig your feet into the material to feel it push them back.
Creative desk chairs
People use all sorts of things in lieu of chairs. Some even sit on hammocks! Nothing wrong with sitting if you can remember to get up every 30 minutes and walk around for five minutes or so. Also helps with taking a break from the laptop screen – staring for more than half an hour straight is hardly helpful for your eyes.
Not everyone is fond of standing. However, as long as you will be sitting, you need a chair that supports your back and can be adjusted to the right level so as to prevent neck and/or back pain. Cervical spondylosis is now affecting younger people as well and a lot of that has to do with the way people sit in front of their computers for long hours.
Better yet, sit on a gym ball. Will keep your core engaged, the back straight, and there is no chance you would be able to slouch (or you will fall off) or get so comfortable that you forget to get up every now and then and get a good stretch.
For those who want to keep their desks of all clutter and are not a fan of loads of drawers on each side of the desk (which could especially be the case with standing desks), storage space can get a trick area.
Minimalist shelves mounted on the wall right next to the desk can be a savior. They can keep your work organized, hardly take up any space, and would be at an arm’s reach for convenience. If you sit, you might have to get up each time you need to fetch something from the shelves, which is also an excellent way of ensuring that you do stand up at regular intervals.
Desk exercise equipment
So you don’t have the time to work out after a full day of running business, looking after kids and getting the house in order? It’s unfortunate that exercise always seems to be the task that gets knocked off the to-do list!
Luckily, there are products that can transform your time at your workstation into something other than mere sitting/standing sessions. A few examples:
- Ankle weights. Strap them to your ankles and get used to moving around in them. They will require you to exert extra force as you walk or stand.
- Resistance bands. There are a number of exercises you can do in your home office space with the help of resistance bands. Just half an hour of this workout and you should feel pumped!
- Treadmill desks. Walk on the treadmill as you type out a report. Not everyone can pull this off though as it requires multitasking and can also prove to be more distracting than helpful. But you can put the typing on hold as you squeeze in 5 to 10-minute intervals of running on the treadmill. Structure a schedule to bring the best out of it. These can be costly, however. A cost-effective way to get similar results – perform a few jumping jacks (or skip rope) right where you stand every hour or so as you take small much-needed breaks from the laptop. Push-ups or holding the plank pose can help, too!
Make sure your health does not get left behind as you race towards making your entrepreneurial dreams a reality. Which are some of the gear in your home office that you cannot live without? How has it helped your productivity and enhanced your health? Please comment and let us know!
Images: ”A vector illustration of day in life of modern man/Shutterstock.com“
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