There are concerns that this may be contributing to higher levels of anxiety, stress and loneliness that many have reported feeling over the past few months. Stay home when you are sick. © Copyright 2021 Mental Health America, Inc. 2018 survey of over 3,000 professionals we conducted at FlexJobs, High rates of depression and anxiety are found in rural areas, FlexJobs is partnering with economic development organizations in Kentucky, Mental Health America study of 17,000 employees. break the stigma of mental health in our society, and to shine a light on the positivity and Unsplash/ThoughtCatalog. 19% of respondents revealed they feel pressured to look good on video meetings. The freedom that comes from working from home adds immeasurable value to your mental health. Read more. Start the fightback to a healthier you today. One resident of rural Jackson County Kentucky, Jennifer, now works as an online teacher for VIPKID. A further report on Coronavirus and anxiety in Great Britain released by the ONS suggested that whilst overall levels of anxiety have begun to lessen, pressures of homeschooling have lead to a further increase in stress and loneliness. In fact, the impact that work flexibility (things like remote work, flexible hours, and reduced schedules) can have is so great that 97% of people say that having a more flexible job would have a “huge” or “positive” impact on their quality of life. Working from home can have many benefits. Periodically, get up and move around your home. This can include something as simple as a 10-minute walk. Flexible schedule. Lines and paragraphs break automatically. While working from home offers a number of potential benefits, including flexibility, a better work-life balance and cutting out the commute, it's important to recognise possible issues and create a mentally healthy environment. When we originally published this toolkit, the first paragraph mentioned being past the peak of infection and looking ahead to coming out of lockdown in the near future. One thing for sure is that in this time of uncertainty an anxiety, workplace mental health, now at home or the office, must be a priority for employers. Emotional Wellbeing Prevention and Enhancement Lead at Nuffield Health, Gosia Bowling, commented: “Those who regularly work from home have established routines and boundaries that help them compartmentalise their personal and professional lives. I think we can all agree: 2020, as a whole, has been tough. Some did find that their mental health declined, but the responses overall gravitated to positive results. She explained her experience before finding remote work: “My husband and I both have college degrees. Here are some of the most interesting and, perhaps, surprising, ways flexible work can positively affect mental health. When you don’t have an office to show up to, you miss out on opportunities for regular social interaction and … If you like our website, then make sure you’re the first to read our digital magazine! directly, so that they may assist you straight away: We’re on a mission to create a healthier, happier, more sustainable society. For example, shut down your laptop rather than leaving it open, switch off your work phone, or close the door to the room where you’ve been working. Work can cause and exacerbate mental health issues, but it can also act as a support mechanism. While working from home can provide an amazing sense of freedom and flexibility as well as a no-cost commute, there are pitfalls and hidden stressors to be aware of. Schedule your time. It can be tempting to check ‘just one more email’ or to reply to ‘just one more message’ from colleagues in a group chat. The results of a new survey by Nuffield Health, the UK’s largest healthcare charity, have revealed that working from home may have significantly impacted out mental health. These things take time to get right and will be different for each individual, but without them, the continuous pressure of work can negatively impact our mental health, which in turn can impact not only our relationships but our physical health.”. By managing expectations and setting boundaries, you can give yourself peace of mind to take a step back, take a breather, and come back more refreshed and ready to go. Alexandria, VA. 22314 Feeling stressed, anxious, low or struggling to sleep? Our aim is to To encourage positive mental health, as well as create boundaries between work and home life, Gosia recommends following these five simple tips to help you to better manage your current situation and improve your mental wellbeing while working from home. Shower. If you’re struggling to get a restful night’s sleep, try these five simple tips, or find out more about how you can overcome insomnia. By doing this, you can begin to create a mental headspace that will help you to unwind, relax, and prepare for the next day. A further 27% reported difficulty in switching off at the end of the day or working week, whilst 34% believe working from home has placed a strain on relationships with their partners or children. The latest insights from Nuffield Health show that, whilst we are recognising many of the benefits of working from home, such as saving time and money thanks to the lack of commute, as well as more time to spend with our families, many feel that this prolonged period of working from home may be taking its toll on our mental wellbeing. Toll Free (800) 969.6642 By focusing on what you can do to mitigate this stress, you can enjoy the added benefits of a work-from-home … If possible, have a dedicated workspace that minimizes distractions and helps reduce the blurring of lines between your work and home life. Working from home can also have a significant impact on an employee’s mental health. Those living in rural or economically struggling areas may miss a key piece of the human experience: engaging in the workforce in a meaningful, long-term way. stigma of mental health in our society, and to shine a light on the positivity and support that It has unique challenges and benefits under normal circumstances, let alone in times of unique stress such as a pandemic.. 1. Another 10% identified as caregivers of someone with a physical or mental health issue. I am, I have is a new podcast where we’ll be talking with great define who we are we. people, finding out about the passions that shape their lives, as well as their responses to their Sixteen percent of the people who took the survey self-identified as living with a chronic physical or mental illness, the fifth-largest identity group out of 17 choices. Would you like to contribute to happiful? Over a third (36%) of those surveyed said that not being in the same space as colleagues has left them feeling unable to take a break or step away from their workstations, with many feeling they must always be ready to respond quickly from their computers. We all have mental health, and whatever our circumstance this outbreak is going to have an impact on how we think and feel about ourselves and the world we live in. Having a good bedtime routine will help you to switch off mentally and rest easier, hopefully then waking up with a positive outlook on the day.”. Keep the same routine as when heading into the office. For some, working from home is a great opportunity for their careers and health. Get in touch. Therefore, we are committed to anti-racism in all that we do. Hearing someone’s voice can be just as powerful at connecting as seeing them, so if you’re feeling under pressure to maintain your physical appearance on camera, pick up the phone for a chat instead if you can.”. Top 10 Advantages of Working from Home. Please find editorial contacts in our contributor Mindfulness and meditation can help us to rewire how we think, increase our overall sense of wellbeing, and support our mental health. guidelines. Good mental health has to be the top priority for staff when working from home during the COVID-19 lockdown, explains CartridgeSave MD, Ian Cowley. That’s according to a 2018 survey of over 3,000 professionals we conducted at FlexJobs. “Rather than worrying about stepping away from the computer, take a proactive approach. Of those surveyed, 25% said they are finding it difficult to cope with the challenges brought about by loneliness and isolation from colleagues. Get happiful magazine delivered straight to your inbox. Here are a few suggestions and tips from the team at TMS & Brain Health… Mental Health America understands that racism undermines mental health. While there are benefits to working from home, you might also find it lonely or isolating. For some people, working from home can put their mental health at risk, causing feelings of isolation and disconnection, Hooper noted. According to their findings, an overwhelming 80% of Brits feel that working from home has negatively impacted their mental health. Bonnie Evie Gifford is a Senior Writer for Happiful. And 71% said they’d like to work from home in order to reduce commute-related stress. In early June, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that 7.4 million of us have reported feelings of loneliness negatively impacting their wellbeing since lockdown began. Create a clear divide between your working day and home life. We want to break the Respondents also said that remote work could help them reduce stress and improve productivity by reducing distractions during the work day (75%) and interruptions from colleagues (74%), keeping them out of office politics (65%), allowing for a quieter work environment (60%), and giving them a more comfortable (52%) and personalized (46%) work environment. “Poor quality sleep will make you feel more tired, stressed, less energised and more anxious as a result. Looking after your mental health while working from home. As exercise needs space, it requires you to step away from your computer, so you benefit from both the mental headspace as well the boost endorphins give to both physical and mental energy.”. • Research highlights the benefits of exercise to improving mental, physical and cognitive health. The average commute time in the U.S. is almost 27 minutes each way. This means that we pledge to work against individual racism, interpersonal racism, and institutional racism in all their forms. Many of us work better face-to-face and miss seeing our colleagues in person. As many of us are now working from home, we’ve got to navigate this new way of working together. Phone (703) 684.7722 provide informative, inspiring and topical stories about mental health and wellbeing. Credit: iStockphoto We have also seen spikes in redundancies, alcohol abuse, and domestic violence calls. Working from home can be hard. As a Mental Health America study of 17,000 employees found, employees in unhealthy workplaces are likely to experience higher stress and lower engagement and these feelings actually spread throughout the workplace, negatively affecting workplace culture. “Commute” to work. Working from home is hard — a routine makes it easier. If you have a general enquiry that has not been answered in our FAQs, please do not hesitate to get in touch: If you are experiencing problems with your print subscription, please contact our distributor Others who desire more flexibility and a better work/life balance can more readily achieve it. support that should be available for everyone, no matter their situation. High rates of depression and anxiety are found in rural areas, especially among older adults who have often had their lives greatly affected by their community’s economic decline. Help is available. First, acknowledge it’s hard. The benefits are a huge boost to your mental health and well-being. Those with health conditions that would’ve limited them can work remotely for employers or themselves. While video calls are still providing a valuable link for many, they could also be creating more stress. Even if a person delights in their daily work tasks, the general process Americans go through just to get to and from work every day can take a toll on mental health. It looked pretty gloomy for a while.”, Because of her remote teaching job, Jennifer says, “It’s great to be making a change and to see the light at the end of the tunnel.”. Tell your colleagues when you’re taking a break for lunch, going for a walk around the block or helping out the children.”. Research from King’s College London has suggested more than half of us have struggled with our sleep since lockdown began. The average commute time in the U.S. is almost 27 minutes each way. Finding a work-life balance is also proving to be problematic for many, with nearly a third (30%) finding it difficult to separate their home and work lives. should be available for everyone, no matter their situation. Freedom and Autonomy. We’re on a mission to create a healthier, happier, more sustainable society. This isn’t a blanket rule, though. Our aim is to provide Companies that give employees more control over when, where, and how they work through flexible work options are supporting the health and wellness of their workers and enhancing the company’s culture and productivity at the same time. That’s likely why 77% of those we surveyed said flexible work options would help them be healthier. When we began working from home, many of us made an extra effort to stay social by arranging team catch-ups and informal chats over video call. Every Mind Matters and One You can help with expert advice and practical tips. Receive a free Remote work, in particular, shows huge promise when it comes to bringing people in these situations back into the workforce. “Relaxation techniques such as meditation and mindfulness can help you become more aware and accepting of your thoughts. collectively, to reinforce the benefits of team - in this case the new virtual team. Good work is great for our mental health and it's important that we preserve the opportunity to enjoy the benefits … Living through the decline of an industry or long-term high unemployment can negatively affect mental health. But, by letting your work day blend into your evening, you risk denying yourself quality time to relax, unwind, and reconnect with loved ones - be that with those you live with, or with friends online. Here are some of the most interesting and, perhaps, surprising, ways flexible work can positively affect mental health. £5 million loneliness fund set up to help Britain, half of us have struggled with our sleep since lockdown, Buy in Eat breakfast. But according to our survey, people who are interested in flexible work options have even longer commutes: 73% said they have had round-trip commutes of an hour or more. The other top factors that make people want a flexible job, in addition to work-life balance and commute stress, were family and time savings. Healthier at home. Reducing Work-Related Stress. Encourage movement. You can take breaks at any moment, feel no rush to hang up on your family members when they call, and eat lunch at any weird time you want. While most home workers in our survey clearly enjoy working from home, using words like “free”, “in control” and “calm” to describe how it makes them feel, it also revealed some negative feelings. Flexible work options, in particular, have a lot to offer in supporting mental health at work and in life. copy of Happiful straight to your inbox each month simply by entering your email address below. What is Juneteenth and how can we mark it this year? Takeaways from the study also include that participants had less psychological stress and more time to spend with their family and spouses. Working from home can impact on our mental health. By offering flexible work options, companies are signaling to their employees that they can and should devote more time to health and wellness. At the end of all the uncertainty it will be very interesting to see how this crisis has changed our landscape and how many continue working remotely. 500 Montgomery Street, The survey also found that work-life balance and commute-related stress are two of the top factors that make people want a job with flexible options. But there’s not enough money to go around, not enough jobs to go around. It can improve productivity, reduce distractions, reduce stress, improve work satisfaction, lower the time (and cost) you spend commuting, give you greater sense of control over your workday, and can even help to avoid challenging colleagues! Given your experience of working from home to date, what helps Keeping the camera switched off for some meetings can help take the pressure off, and may even allow you to focus more on what is being said, rather than trying to keep up with which pixelated colleague is saying it. To find out more about how talking therapy could help, visit Counselling Directory. We all have mental health and some of us will experience mental illness – but that doesn’t own mental health. To help you foster a more positive mindset, as well as to support your mental health and overall wellbeing, Gosia recommends you try the following: “Try to find a way to mark the end of the working day. Working from home has plenty of benefits...but that doesn't automatically mean it's the best thing for your overall mental health and well-being. Try to treat your working day like any other, get up in good time before you start work, shower, get dressed, take regular breaks throughout the day and eat properly. The sudden shift to a remote work setup has been surprisingly stressful for many employees, explains Dr Dominique Steiler, professor of people, organizations, and society at Grenoble School of Business. Professionals put a huge amount of time, energy, and focus towards work every day. If you aren’t sure how to get started, check out these simple mindfulness activities, consider trying your hand at mindful crafting, or find out more about how you can avoid aches and pains with the help of a little stretching, posture tweaks, and regular breaks. Fax (703) 684.5968. How working from home is worsening our mental health. With Covid-19 leading to many being furloughed or losing their jobs entirely amidst a health crisis like we have never seen before, we have all had to make changes to our daily routines and lives. If you are struggling with feelings of loneliness, isolation, or anxiety, or feel like your work or personal relationships may have been negatively impacted by recent events, it’s important to know that you aren’t alone. FlexJobs is partnering with economic development organizations in Kentucky, Colorado, Utah, and other rural areas throughout the country to assist residents in finding remote opportunities and the residents talk about the positive impact they’re already experiencing through remote work. informative, inspiring and topical stories about mental health and wellbeing. Negative impact on mental health - the switch to working from home may have a negative impact on your worker’s mental health if they are unable to find a routine that works for them, are struggling to separate work and home life or are feeling isolated. Stress related absence in particular has increased, with 37% of respondents to the CIPD and Simply Health Health and Well-being survey saying that stress-related absence had increased in the last year. With that said, let’s take a look at some of the classic benefits of telecommuting! The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly. If you must check-in after the end of the working day, try assigning a specific short period of time to do so.”. But according to our … Mental health related absence is the most common cause of long-term sickness absence in UK workplaces. Taking a lunchtime walk, or mixing up your tea break with some simple stretches to ease back pain can help you to feel reinvigorated and mentally prepared. And this isn’t just a benefit for employees--companies also benefit when their workers are healthier! Yes, even in winter. If working from home in these uncertain times has left you feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or anxious, take a deep breath — there’s a lot you can do to boost your mood and maintain your mental health. If work/life balance is a real struggle for you, check out the advice offered by Life Coach Directory. Print. The fact that improved mental health has an overall higher response rate than declined mental health is an interesting insight into the benefits of working from home, especially when considered in combination with the previous responses. Suite 820 Even if a person delights in their daily work tasks, the general process Americans go through just to get to and from work every day can take a toll on mental health. By Brie Weiler Reynolds, FlexJobs Senior Career Specialist. Exercise and stay active: This is not only good for your physical health, but also your mental health. ... Four things you can do to look after your mental health if you're working from home because of COVID-19. The latest insights from Nuffield Health show that, whilst we are recognising many of the benefits of working from home, such as saving time and money thanks to the lack of commute, as well as more time to spend with our families, many feel that this prolonged period of working from home may be taking its toll on our mental wellbeing. your mental health when working at home They can help you think about how you can support your own mental health and identify how to stay well and maintain good mental health in work 6 Working from home a Wellness Action Plan. Working from home has its advantages, but significant disruption and change can take their toll on your mental health. For example, employees on the autism spectrum or people with mental conditions like OCD, benefit from more time working from home as loud noises, distractions, and … Scheduling some activity into your day will benefit your work-from-home experience. Exercise is also a powerful way to help reduce stress and improve mental wellbeing. We want to Coronavirus: Coping with the challenges of working from home. For people with mental health concerns, caregivers, and professionals at large, flexible work options can help support our efforts to improve the mental health of ourselves and those around us. Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically. The constant pull that people feel between time spent with family and time spent at work can affect mental health, and flexible work options allow those priorities to co-exist more peacefully. “We are naturally sociable and like to be with others so using the tech at your disposal can help with this, but always being ‘on camera’ can be draining. Get dressed. It’s fair to say there have been a lot of twists and turns since then, and a lot of emotional pressures. When working from home: Get ready for work. Don't underestimate the benefits of simply being outside. 5. 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