This is certainly NOT the work-life balance that many of us aspire to, as COVID-19 has thrown all those plans out the window. Most of us have made the switch from:
- Where we work or learn (from downtown office to home office)
- How we work or learn (at our office desk to the kitchen counter or dining room table)
- What we do (the same but with longer hours)
- When we work or learn (Internet access is now 24 hours a day, and we are available)
The DIY workspace that we set up for our hobbies, now becomes our home office which doubles for ZOOM calls, meetings etc. We’re sitting longer and in awkward positions (slouching), getting more aches and pains than we’re used to, AND it seems like there’s no end in sight. Here are a few suggestions to help you get through this trying time:
- Sit at a 135° angle. Researchers have found that this is the optimal sitting position, producing less strain on the spinal disks, leaving the muscles and tendons in a more relaxed state.
- Try sitting on a gym ball if an ergonomic chair is not available. This will engage your core while maintaining posture.
- View your computer screen (laptop, tablet, phone) with a straight neck to prevent strain.
- Take a 5-minute break every 60-minutes to alleviate back stiffness, refresh your mind, and ease any eye discomfort from staring at a screen for too long.
Although the cold weather is now upon us, getting outside into natural light alleviates your mood and helps prevent the effects of seasonal affective disorder. Here are some other ways to deal with lockdown or housebound isolation and anxiety:
- Overcoming the fear trap by separating fears/uncertainties/doubt (FUD) from facts. On a piece of paper, create two columns, one for fear and one for fact, to help you separate truth from fiction.
- Stay positive when negative thoughts begin overtaking your mind. One way to deal with this is with gratitude.
- Limit media consumption, especially if it increases your stress levels.
- Find a go-to relaxation method, such as yoga or meditation.
- Be prepared with enough cleaning supplies to keep surfaces and areas free from germs.
- Follow a routine to help restore your sense of normalcy.
- Work out, because exercising helps keep you healthy, and by increasing serotonin in your brain, it also helps curb anxiety and depression
- Speak up whenever things are too much to handle by yourself. Reach out to someone when feeling overwhelmed. Consider calling a Toronto 211 hotline or using a crisis resource to speak with a trained professional about your feelings.