3 ways to refresh your workspace to be more productive at home

Months into remote work, employees are still struggling with the strain of increased work obligations and the loss of their normal routines, says Erika Zauner, CEO of corporate wellness program HealthKick.

“A lot of businesses are realizing how business can still operate effectively with everyone working remotely,” Zauner says. “But it has taken a toll. We’re all dealing with parenting obligations and work obligations and just general anxiety about the uncertainty that we're all facing.”

To help manage stress and increase productivity at home, Zauner recommends three tips to refresh your workspace and rejuvenate your mental health.

Separate your workspace from the rest of your home
Especially if you have multiple people working at home, people have said, ‘Our house is like a WeWork. We have each person in the bedroom or taking over the guest room.’ But you should have a dedicated space to get away from everything.

There is something about that consistency — when you take over a space to get your work time in, it helps establish boundaries. There's this tendency to just set up shop wherever there's a free table, but look up proper ergonomic positioning, and then use coffee table books to prop up your computer. Set yourself up like you would at your desk at the office, where you might have some photos or your favorite coffee mug. Making it your space is helpful.
Set aside time for self care
Whether it's having a mindfulness practice or using exercise, it’s important to find a way to get your head out of the chaos of the world we live in. I have a yoga mat with free weights in front of my desk and that's my gym. I have my desk set up and then I just flip my computer around and I'll do a live stream fitness class.

When it comes to mental balance, something that I started doing over this period is having some kind of a mindfulness practice in the morning. The Inscape mindfulness app has all kinds of guided meditations. The Well is a wellness center in New York City, but they've gone online. Our team is doing one of their courses called “Re-emerge,” to focus on your daily habits and understand how that contributes to your wellbeing.
Reflect on the present, and look ahead
This has been a time for people to really take a moment and reflect on whether they are where they want to be in their lives. Am I in the job I want to be in? Am I really passionate about what I'm doing? Am I taking care of myself?

Sometimes at times of extreme stress, we are grasping for something and that often creates an opportunity to build new habits that are actually productive, like starting a mindfulness practice, or maybe starting a fitness routine when you haven't worked out before. How can I come out of this a better version of myself and more resilient and further along in my path?