Remote working has exploded in popularity over the last few years, as more companies allow you to work from home post-pandemic. Whatever your profession, working-from-home opportunities have risen and even become the norm. Indeed, a recent survey showed 59% of workers prefer a hybrid setup, and 32% wish to be exclusively remote. It’s clear that performing some tasks at home has become increasingly popular. And the best part is, it can benefit your mental health!
In this blog post we will share 3 of many mental health benefits that come with remote and flexible work.
A significant factor of this preference for flexible or remote setups is that it helps promote overall well-being, so much so that employees — if they don’t have flexible arrangements in the workplace — they experience higher levels of burnout and intent to leave. Whether you’re a leader or an employee in your business, you may still have concerns about these new ways of working, but the mental health benefits of remote work can bring — when applied right — a significant advantage for all. Here are some ways remote and flexible work can improve mental health in your workplace:
1. Reduce the Risk of Overworking
Some professions are prone to overworking, such as those in the healthcare industry. Our post “How To Promote Workplace Mental Health In The Healthcare Industry” notes how a remote setup, or telehealth, allows for work to be more evenly distributed among doctors and nurses. This eases the strain on onsite staff and brings better medical care to patients regardless of location. With a physician shortage in states like Utah, there has been a drive to give more power to remote healthcare providers in order to ease the burden for onsite professionals. Remote nurse practitioners in Utah, and other states, are therefore able to provide adult/geriatric primary care, family care, and mental health care from their home. These remote practitioners can better design a schedule that works for them and the patient without overcommitting to shifts.
Regardless of your business’s industry, utilizing hybrid or work-from-home opportunities for jobs that lead to overworking can help alleviate the burdens of work by distributing tasks fairly, allowing for more time for other personal affairs. With more freedom, you can feel more rested, happier, and more efficient in your career. Lower rates of overworking also improve your physical health and lessen the chances of developing illnesses due to stress and exhaustion.
2. Gain Better Physical Health for Better Mental Health
One of the key ways to improve mental health is by making healthy choices that improve physical health. Professional counselor Katharina Star highlights that the two are closely linked. Being physically healthy and active can reduce mental health issues like depression or anxiety and prevent other mental illnesses before they even manifest. Case in point, you might be sitting down for hours, possibly ordering and eating unhealthy food, with little time for sleep or exercise. These habits could severely impact a person’s health if done for an extended period of time.
More opportunities to improve your physical health can come about when you work from home.
You can cook your own food and control the health factor of your meals.
You can get out of your chair more often to walk and stretch, or you can find more time to go to the gym or exercise at home. Building these habits can make you feel healthier and happier, helping to boost productivity and work quality and keep your business performing well.
3. Reduce Stress With Simple Hacks
Work stress is common across the country. According to one survey by WalletHub, citizens living in Ohio — specifically the city of Cleveland — were the most stressed overall; in part, this is due to traffic congestion, inadequate sleep, and job insecurity. Most professions, like corporate jobs, require employees to be at the office for hours and hours on end, focusing solely on work until they clock out. Couple that with the commute or drive home, which significantly takes away time for de-stressing and unwinding, and it’s no wonder why you get stressed.
A remote or hybrid work setup effectively reduces stressors that can affect work. No more daily commutes, a bigger focus on the family and the household, and fewer office-related distractions. Flexible setups aren’t completely stress-free, but being at home more often can give you better ways to manage stress and improve mental health in the manner you prefer.
Earkick’s self-care companion app can further support your employees to own their mental health journey. The privacy-first solution is free and helps employees understand their mental health trends, providing them with real-time insights and personalized, actionable suggestions. The enterprise solution for you as employer, offers a way to understand the mental readiness of your company in real-time and proactively improve productivity. Keeping track of workplace mental health and eliminating work stressors can keep your workplace safe and productive so both your managers and employees can stay for longer without sacrificing their mental well-being. “At Earkick we work fully remote” says Dr. Herbert Bay, CEO and Co-founder of the deep tech startup,
“The beauty of remote and flexible work is that it gives us the space to prioritize our mental readiness, to take care of our well-being, and to live our best life.”Dr. Herbert Bay
Written exclusively for blog.earkick.com by JB Hampton