We’ve all noticed how technology has changed our lives, and specifically, how it’s influenced the way that we do our jobs. What makes technology good or bad for us, though, depends entirely on how we use it. In a time where working remotely from home is becoming a reality for many, technology can make our workdays more convenient and efficient if we let it.
Between online platforms, apps, and gadgets, technology makes it easier for us to practice better workforce wellness, especially in times such as this, where our health should remain a priority. From creating a greater sense of work-life balance to encouraging better habits, here are a few ways in which technology allows us to be healthy workers even at home.
We’re able to have comfortable and productive workstations
Working from home is an adjustment not only for your mind but also your body. You may find that your back hurts after sitting all day, even if you are already accustomed to sitting for long periods of time while in the office. Perhaps the reasoning behind this is due to the fact that working from home tends to involve less physical activity, so you’re lacking the healthy balance between sitting and moving.
Many employers recognize the connection between physical comfort and productivity. When comfort decreases, so does productivity because you’re too distracted by thoughts surrounding your discomfort, or you’re using your time to find ways to manage your discomfort. Fortunately, most employers are willing to meet the needs of their employees by providing ergonomic solutions, such as a chair that promotes good posture and movement. It’s important to ask for what you need to do your job efficiently from home, even if it means requesting additional ergonomic equipment like an adjustable keyboard tray, footrest, or a mouse pad with a wrist rest.
We’re able to stay active
Movement is incredibly effective for brain function. Without good blood flow, you can struggle with concentrating, creativity, and problem-solving. The absence of your normal morning commute or minutes wasted by distractful coworkers, you now have more time in your day to exercise. However, some employees who work from home struggle with incorporating movement into their routine. Maybe it’s because your job has an on-site gym or you pass a local fitness center on your way home after your workday. Either way, this lack of movement is hurting your productivity.
Luckily access to mobile apps and wearable devices has made it easier than ever to stay active while working from home. These tools encourage people to find ways to keep their bodies in a state of motion rather than in a state of rest.
Not to mention recent advances in fitness technology from Peleton, for example, allow you to replicate an in-studio fitness class at home. These digital resources provide ways to make living an active lifestyle more enjoyable and attainable—leading to greater mental clarity and strength while working.
We’re able to maintain healthy eating habits
When you work from home, it’s easy to blur the line between work and regular life. You might catch yourself skipping meals by working through your lunch hour or forgoing breakfast to get a head start on your day. Alternatively, it’s easy to mindlessly snack on junk food when you’re in the comfort of your own home with access to your pantry only a few feet away. But nutrition is very essential for staying focused, energized, and productive throughout the day, according to registered dietitian nutritionist Jennifer Glockner. “It’s hard to concentrate and be productive when you’re hungry or your blood sugar is low,” she explains.
Thanks to technology, though, you can take better control of your eating habits in a way that’s unique and useful to you.
For example, WW offers a weight loss program that’s individualized for each person, meaning that every user has a plan calibrated for their personal health goals, like better nutrition. As you become more aware of how your eating habits affect you, you’re able to make healthier choices that benefit the areas of your life that need it most, helping you to become a healthier and more efficient worker in turn.
We’re less fatigued
None of us are immune to the afternoon slump. You know—the feeling of sleepiness that rolls around at 2 o’clock. However, you might feel as though you’re unusually tired and cause you to be apathetic and unengaged in your work. Workplace fatigue is more common than you’d think, and it occurs even when your workplace is your house. In fact, there are many culprits besides the hours of sleep you get each night that can affect your energy. Believe it or not, hydration, or lack thereof, is a key contributing factor. Without adequate hydration, the body cannot function properly, causing you to be less productive.
While we’re busy sending emails and attending virtual meetings, it can be difficult to remember to keep ourselves hydrated. While humans are no stranger to the reusable water bottle, small innovations to this basic object are helping us drink more water. If you’re someone who has trouble remembering to drink your eight glasses a day, it might be time to invest in a smart bottle that reminds you when to drink. Products like the Hidrate Spark water bottle connects to a mobile app that signals the bottle to light up when it’s time for you to take a sip. With technology on your side, you’ll feel rejuvenated and ready to work.
As technology becomes more integrated into our lives and our health routines, it’s natural that our work will also be positively impacted. It’s now easier than ever to take our health and our careers into our own hands, and, in the case of the current events, it’s also allowing us to save lives. Make sure you’re taking full advantage of the tools available to you during this time!
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