How to look after your physical and mental wellbeing while working from home? Try doing these five things as recommended by a yoga expert.
Wellness Coach Donna Noble, who also goes by the name ‘The Noble Yogi’ thanks to her passion and knowledge of yoga is a keen champion of Black female wellbeing. After 25 years of working as an IT Manager in the corporate world, Donna decided to throw it all in to pursue her passion for wellness and yoga.
Donna has created a body positive programme to connect with women, called ‘curvesomeyoga’, successfully running the first Black fitness festival in September (NoireFitFest), which so moved us, we named her one of the “most remarkable women who have inspired us so far in 2020”.
When the UK went into the first lockdown on 23 March, many of us were encouraged to work from home, where possible and so began months of change. The daily dash to get showered, dressed and commute to work was, for some of us, replaced with stretch, yawn, and a quick stumble to the laptop.
“If you don’t make time for wellness, you will have to make time for illness.”
Although we are about to come out of a second lockdown, many of us are still going to be working from home in the near future. Donna has noticed the negative impact on our wellness and has come up with some tips on how to stay productive and healthy while working from home.
Read on for Donna’s Five tips:
Take a holistic approach to your health
Most of us are accustomed to a work environment where you hustle hard and push through the stress. Now, many people say there is a temptation to work longer and harder which has repercussions on our wellness.
If you don’t make time for wellness, you will have to make time for illness.
It is especially important to look at wellness as a holistic endeavour. Ensure you get plenty of sleep to recharge and reset. Look at your diet to ensure you are eating well which will ensure your immune system is in the best condition. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water too. Our bodies are designed to move so ensure you’re getting up and having regular breaks away from your screen. All these factors will have a positive impact on your mood, how you interact with others and how you deal with stress.
Have healthy boundaries:
- Try to start the morning in a relaxed mood before you switch to work mode. You may choose to write in a journal to express your thoughts for the day ahead.
- Have a room that is your work room and physically shut the door when you are finished for the day.
- Have boundaries and don’t respond to work emails outside of work hours – it eats into your personal and relaxing time.
- Do not underestimate the importance of having a routine and ensure you set working hours and then do something to break up the day. It gives you a day that is focussed with tasks and allows you to have something to look forward to. It keeps you grounded and there’s less boredom, bringing balance to your life and structure to your day.
- Have a plan to do something in the evening to make the day exciting.
Combat video call fatigue
Fed up with multiple video calls every day? Donna suggests that you try to limit the number of calls you have every day and try to take breaks in between.
Make the meetings efficient and question if the meeting invite is necessary – is your presence essential? Challenge the meeting to see if it is vital? Does it have to last the full duration?
Also, have breaks away from your mobile phone. We are always stimulating our mind by flicking and swiping, but things can often wait.
We’re really starting to feel the effects of a lack movement; our bodies naturally become stiffer. We are sitting down more on furniture that is uncomfortable for our posture, looking at a screen, all day and this isn’t good for us.
Get up and move
- Get out and simply start walking.
- Dance to music like no one is watching – it’s fun!
- Try a new online exercise class as a new experience.
- Yoga has many benefits, and it can transform your life. It can help to heal you from illness, and it is great for mental health for a mind body connection. Yoga allows you to slow you down and focus on your breathing. Even 10 minutes a day can help.
- Consider signing up to an exercise project. Many people have told me about the beginners running programme Couch to 5k because it is a gentle way to get out and exercise.
Whatever you choose to do for movement, do it because you love it.
… and r-e-l-a-x after a long day
Do things you enjoy that make you happy and gives you good memories. Slow the mind and focus on deep breathing exercises or mindfulness. Whatever you have gone through, you’ve dealt with it and it is now in the past so try and be present in what you’re thinking and doing.
Follow Donna on Instagram @donnanobleyoga