Taking Care of Yourself When Working Remotely

Shared from DeVry University website
Presenter: Toni Lang, HR director with DeVry University




When working remotely, it's easy to forget about taking care of yourself, especially when you're faced with working remote for the first time. This workshop will offer you some practical things you can do to take care of yourself.

Hi. I'm Toni Lang. I'm an HR director with DeVry University. I spent the last 30 years in the field of human resources, but the majority of my experience in leadership development and employee engagement. I've worked in multiple industries including energy, consumer products, technology, and for the last 10 years in education. My passion for leadership development and employee engagement comes from my belief that we only have each other. Let's help each other to be great.

Today, I'd like to talk a little bit about adjusting to remote work. For some, working from home is a benefit. It provides that work life balance. For others, being in an office with coworkers is what makes work fun. A team of working together to accomplish a goal. Those colleagues become friends and family. Right now, many of us are newly remote, which means we have to do things a little bit different, with little notice, and with little preparation. The technology side is fairly easy. You follow some sequential steps, and you're plugged in, you're connected.

And how about you? I've talked to some people who the transition has been very hard for them. They felt isolated, alone, frustrated, stressed. On the other hand, some colleagues feel energized, excited, productive. It's all okay. And it's normal. Take time to go through the change curve. Any transition takes time. It could take a day, a couple of days, a week, a month. Everyone is different. And that's okay.

The next tip is to keep your morning ritual. So, if you were like me, you would get dressed to go to work, have your coffee in one hand and call a colleague or a friend over the car phone. There's nothing that says you can't do that. So, keep that ritual. Instead of doing it in the car, you're just going to do it when you're sitting on the couch at home.

Make sure when you reach out to people that you ask them about how they're feeling. Don't talk about work. It's a great time to learn more about those people who you care about. Encourage other colleagues to do the same. It really helps with any feelings of isolation. Remember that getting to know someone on a deeper level builds relationships, and relationships build trust.

The next tip has to do with ergonomics. While working from home, it's really important that you have a really good chair with a back, that's comfortable. Make sure that your posture is straight. Poor postures we know can lead to physical pain. It's important to be mindful of your posture throughout the day. Aside from reducing pain, good posture can boost your mood and self-confidence.

Just a reminder how to sit properly at your desk:

Your feet should be on the floor.
Knees are in line or slightly lower than your hips.
Sit up straight, keep your hips far back in the chair.
The back of the chair should be somewhat reclined.
Ensure the keyboard is close, directly in front of you. Don't extend those arms.
The monitors should be directly in front of you, a few inches above eye level, within arm’s length away from the computer screen.
And use a hands-free headset. At the very least, use earbuds for long phone calls.

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