4 Effective Ways That Will Make You Real Productive To Work From Home

TIP #1: Say No To Overtime

"There's a pressure to check emails, jump on video calls and to be on hand at all hours of the day, and it's become harder to draw a line between work and home life."
- Claire, an IT consultant from Northern Ireland

The Office for National Statistics has found that 35.9% of the UK's employed population did at least some of their work from home last year.


This group - while saving time on commuting - did an average of six hours' unpaid overtime each week, it adds.


The right to disconnect has been law for four years in France, where companies are asked to set agreed "specific hours" for "teleworkers".


Ireland also brought in a code of practice last month, under which employers should add "footers and pop-up messages to remind employees... that there is no requirement to reply to emails out of hours".


Prospect, whose members include managers, civil servants, engineers and scientists, wants the UK government to set out similar protections in its Employment Bill, expected to be published later this year.


"Burning people out isn't good for workers or employers," says Claire. "We've got to give people time to switch off and recharge."

If you're being offered extra hours that you don't want, it's polite to say, “I appreciate the offer, but I have no more availability” or “As much as I wanted to be of help, my other responsibilities won't allow that.”

 

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Call to ban out-of-hours emails from bosses
By Justin Parkinson (Political reporter, BBC News)

 

 

If you're being offered extra hours that you don't want, it's polite to say, “I appreciate the offer,

but I have no more availability” or “As much as I wanted to be of help, my other responsibilities

won't allow that.”

 

What-is-the-most-tactful-way-to-turn-down-extra-hours-at-work

Workplace and Professional Etiquitte section in Quora

 

 

TIP #2: Create your Work-to-Break ratio

The ideal work-to-break ratio was 52 minutes of work, followed by 17 minutes of rest. People who maintained this schedule had a unique level of focus in their work. 
- Next Big Idea Club

It’s a tough way to start to plan your day ahead and set regular office hours. If you start and stop your workday at various times throughout the day, it can wreak havoc on your productivity. Instead of getting more work done effectively, you’ll find yourself working much longer than you need to. You can make a gradual change until you have completely adjusted for everything, then never overschedule yourself. 


#DidYouKnow that the brain is only able to maintain true focus for around 45 minutes before it begins to lose steam.


Therefore it would be wise practice to study or work diligently for up to an hour and then take a break. Breaks consist of leaving the work area to go outside, talk to a friend on the phone, or get a healthy snack. Taking a break does not entail checking one’s e-mail or Twitter account. 


A break is considered something that truly takes you out of your academic realm and into places where you're in a more relaxed state.

 

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How to study smarter
Healthy UNH

 

 

Apples are better than coffee!

 

Not only does an apple a day keep the doctor away, they can also help improve breathing.

Apples contain a high amount of vitamins, phytonutrients, antioxidants and fiber, which keep the body going.

A medium apple is about 90 calories, which is a great way to add substance to your breakfast or pre-workout meal.

Apples contain no caffeine but instead have about 13 grams of natural sugar.

These sugars provoke a similar response to caffeine because vitamins from the apple are released slowly

throughout the body, making you feel more awake.

 

Unlike caffeine, there are no jolts, mood swings, anxiety, jitters or the dreaded crash.

Much of the increase in energy is due to the natural glucose in the fruit, which is digested and feeds the body’s cells.

The feeling of being awake lasts about as long as it takes the body to metabolize the apple

and the cycle of energy reflects that of a bell curve instead of a pyramid like caffeine.

 

CCE Suffolk County Family Health & Wellness

Cornell University blog

 

 

TIP #3: Use Fake Background Office Noise

"I don't know whether it is the office sound that works or just having a feeling of human contact."
- Paul Hewson

Statistician Paul Hewson, has turned to websites providing artificial office noise to help.

The sites, which provide background noises of things like printers and coffee machines, as well as people chatting, have attracted millions of hits during the crisis.

 

Mr Hewson has worked in a wide variety of settings in the past, from open plan offices to his own private office in academia.


"After about a week I found the photocopier noise was annoying me, so I mixed that out. And voila, when I really need to concentrate I can."

'Started as a joke'

 

When lockdown hit, a number of experts set up office noise websites, largely as a bit of fun or entertainment. But many workers have found them useful and the response has surprised the people behind the free sites.


Belgium research engineer Stéphane Pigeon, who created Office Noise Generator, told the BBC: "When the pandemic hit and people started to work from home, I released an office noise generator, really as a joke. I didn't think anyone would listen."

But many people did and he says his page has racked up 200,000 views since April. The Sound of Colleagues has done even better, attracting more than a million page views, including 164,000 from the UK.


"Initially, we thought of it more as a light-hearted distraction during a very serious situation.


"We speculated people might actually enjoy the relative peacefulness of their home offices, but as it turned out it was quite the opposite."


How does it work?

"The trick is for the pleasant noise to be constant so that your brain will filter it out from your conscious perception," he said.


"After a couple of minutes, you won't actively hear it anymore - especially if you are doing something else, like working on your computer - but this noise will still block the nuisance you didn't want to hear in the first place."

More benefits how it helped many people:

 

- Fake office background noise helped workers to be more productive.
- It also helps people feel less lonely when working from home.
- It takes away the feeling of isolation. We as humans feel more comfortable together than alone, even if we are not actively engaging with the group that surrounds us.
- We can trick the mind into thinking you are actually physically together with other people.
- Added benefit by Mr. Hewson: "It's also another way of demarcating work from home. Office noise on, you're working. Office noise off, you are at home."

 

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The Brain Break: How to study smarter
By Healthy UNH

TIP #4: Balance your Physical and Mental health

How Remote Workers Will Look Like In 25 Years...
- DirectlyApply

DirectlyApply shows a model What People Could Look Like After 25 Years Of Working From Home

With the current health crisis ongoing, many of us have found ourselves working from home for the last three months, swapping the office for the living room. There are pros and cons to the whole working from home set up.

 

 

Health Implications of Remote Working:

 

 

Computer Vision Syndrome

Staring at screens for long hours that can cause you Digital Eye Strain. Overly it can also negatively impact your eyesight.


Poor Posture

Lack of physical movement. It will work its way from your neck to your hands and back as the strains slowly creates a bend in the neck


Repetitive Typing Strain

This can lead to repetitive strain injury over time. Hand and wrist is at risk and can significantly worsened poor posture  in other parts of the body over time.


Hair Loss

Working indoors all day can leave the body deficient which can cause hair loss. Vitamin D deficiency has also been linked to Alopecia, which is also known as baldness on our scalp.. 


Dark Circles

Not only the sleepless nights can cause you eyebags. Staring at multiple screens while working all day can cause prominent dark circles to form in the skin under your eyes. 


Tech Neck

The results from excessive use on your devices such as mobile, laptop, or PC, can cause strain on the neck and shoulder. This can also affect your lower back and hamstrings.


Increased Wrinkles

Squinting at a screen all day can increase the onset of premature lines forming beneath the surface of the skin leading to wrinkles.

Your devices can expose you as well to UV radiation that may account for up to 80% of visible signs of aging in the skin including dry appearance, scalping, impaired pigmentation, and photoaging correlates with cancer risk.


Obesity

Long periods of sitting and lack of exercise can lead to excess body fats and the wrose is it can lead you to be overweight due to unhealthy eating habits. 


Pale & Dull Skin

This is due to lack of Vitamin D and B-12.


Increased Stress

Overworking leads to chronic stress producing high levels of adrenaline and cortisol, associated with chronic health conditions and cardiovascular disease.

 

Susan is a model, created by fitness experts and psychologists, to show (scare) us into taking note of what will happen if we continue to ignore guidelines put in place for those of us working from home.


What are the solutions then?

 

TOP TIPS FOR MAINTAINING MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH:

Create a Healthy Routine 

“sticking to a routine that suits your life, your productivity levels and your job demands is essential to maintaining emotional health when working remotely. Routine empowers us to manage our time, and optimise our focus.” - Dr Rachel M Allan, Chartered Counselling Psychologist


Nurture social connections

One of the main challenges we face with remote working is the lack of face to face human contact. Positive working relationships are good for morale, productivity and boosting emotional health at work. - Kate Brierton, Clinical Psychologist


Regular Exercise

It’s important to take time to exercise and get some fresh air after a long day of remote working. Joe Mitton, Personal Trainer recommends Yoga as “the perfect remedy for stiffness and 'tech neck'.


Work-life balance

Remind yourself that you need down-time so you can stay healthy and be the best version of yourself both at work and home. - Kate Brierton, Clinical Psychologist


Try to make a room meant for your workspace only if possible. If not, try being creative thinker by laying out furniture, or using some house plants or pictures to mark your working space, or divide the floor space with a rug. Set a reminder up on your phone or screen to take regular breaks, getting up and moving around, eating and drinking properly and getting outside for some physical exercise if possible.


Sun Exposure

Vitamin D is mostly absorbed from the sun exposure.


#DidYouKnow

Did you know the right balance of sun exposure can have lots of mood-lifting benefits.


Exposure to sunlight is thought to increase the brain’s release of a hormone called serotonin. Serotonin is associated with boosting mood and helping a person feel calm and focused. At night, darker lighting triggers the brain to make another hormone called melatonin. This hormone is responsible for helping you sleep.


Without enough sun exposure, your serotonin levels can dip. Low levels of serotonin are associated with a higher risk of major depression with seasonal patterns (formerly known as seasonal affective disorder or SAD). This is a form of depression triggered by the changing seasons.

 

 

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https://www.unilad.co.uk/health/model-shows-what-people-could-look-like-after-25-years-of-working-from-home/

https://directlyapply.com/blog/the-future-remote-worker

https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/benefits-sunlight#_noHeaderPrefixedContent

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