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Setting and Maintaining Healthy Home Working Boundaries

Setting and Maintaining Healthy Home Working Boundaries

As the world starts to shift back towards ‘normality’ many companies are choosing to continue with remote working in the spirit of flexibility and, ultimately, cost savings. Today it’s a smart move, as so many people crave the flexibility, trust and empowerment that come from home working, and people are at the heart of any business.

However, as we all ease out of the most destructive and turbulent times, it’s essential that we all still have one eye on our working-from-home wellbeing and the well-being of others. To keep ourselves happy, focused and productive when working from home we must first lay down some solid and meaningful boundaries.

We want to share a few secrets about setting and maintaining healthy boundaries while working from home.

  1. Clearly define what your working hours and boundaries are and stick to them! Review them often, too, life is fluid and ever-changing, after all. 
  2. Give yourself generous deadlines and time frames on projects and tasks to minimise stress and avoid rushing. There are far more distractions at home, so to prevent yourself from getting caught short, if a task will take three hours, then allow yourself five.
  3. Streamline your communication channels where possible – having WhatsApp, slack, email and Teams popping up all day is massively distracting and somewhat stressful.
  4. Don’t be afraid to turn off your notifications and check your emails, phones and/or apps when ready. The constant ‘ping’ of messages isn’t helpful or fair.
  5. Utilise your ‘Out of Office’ or voicemail message to reinforce your boundaries and preferred communication channels. Leave a polite message so that your contacts, clients or colleagues know when you check your messages and how and when they should expect a response.
  6. Understand that ‘no’ is an adequate response sometimes. If saying a straight ‘no’ makes you uncomfortable, why not research and learn new, softer ways to reinforce and maintain your self-set boundaries that protect your happiness and sanity?
  7. Leave the house at least once a day to walk in nature, even if it’s just for ten minutes. The change in scenery will stimulate your brain, boost your thinking power and elevate your mood. It’s good for your body too. If your schedule is tight, stick the hands-free in and catch up with a colleague, peer or boss whilst you walk.
  8. Be gentle and kind to yourself. You’re human, and you’re allowed to have days where things fall apart or go wrong.

I hope these points give you some new things to explore or some old things to reinforce.

Also, please remember the only people who will ever have a problem with you having healthy, productive boundaries are the people who are set to gain from you having no boundaries.