Now that the pandemic is mostly in the rear-view mirror, lots of people are headed back into their offices, but many have embraced the work-from-home lifestyle and are never going back. If you are one of the millions who is living the pajama revolution, it’s time to take your makeshift “office” under the stairs/in the garage/at the dining table to the next level.
Get comfortable (ergonomically speaking) – Short-term, posting up at the kitchen table is fine, but if you’re committed to long-term WFH, you’ll need a good chair and a table or desk set to the proper height. Try to find an adjustable chair with good lumbar support and try it out in the store rather than buying on-line. Likewise, find an adjustable desk (or a standing desk!) where your forearms are parallel to the ground and your wrists aren’t bent while typing or using your mouse.
Lighten up – A bright monitor in a dark room is a recipe for eye strain and headaches. Give yourself some good overhead lighting, pull a translucent shade over windows (to get some natural light without the glare), and ensure your monitor’s brightness is set to slightly brighter than the light in the room.
Stay connected – Make sure both your equipment and your internet service support your needs. WiFi is convenient but if fool-proof connectivity is a must (during Zoom calls, for example) you may want to hardwire in using an ethernet cord. Talk to us about the number of devices and type of communications you need and we’ll help ensure you are on an internet plan with the speed to accommodate your needs.
Back it up
– When working on a company network, we take for granted the security and storage provided. When you’re on your own, make sure to keep your anti-virus software up to date and do regular back-ups of your files.
Get up and get moving – With no trips to the watercooler or the cafeteria, it’s easy to get sucked into work and forget to take breaks. Consider setting a timer or getting an app that reminds you to stand (at least) once an hour. Stretch, roll your neck, bend at the hips and do a few “good mornings” to keep your back and hips loose, and get out for a few laps around the block at lunch. Work is important, but so is fresh air and staying connected to your neighbors!
If working from home really is your long-term strategy, create a space that is comfortable and supports your focus and creativity. And, before you buy anything—especially tech like monitors, docking stations, or printers—check with your company to see if they will contribute to building your home office. Afterall, you’re saving them on office space and free coffee. The least they can do is supply you with a really comfy chair!