Daily life is full of challenges, but this can be heightened at times when you’re a remote worker. Work from home stress can quickly creep up. Fortunately, there are practically infinite ways to cope and even thrive.
After reaching out to GoDaddy colleagues for tips on work from home stress, here are the suggestions they had to offer as well as advice, and more details from an expert.
Work-from-Home Stress: By the Numbers
Working from home can be great since you can ditch the daily commute, spend more time with family and pets, and you can even work in whatever’s comfortable for you. Pajamas anyone? While there are a lot of perks, work-from-home stress is a reality because working remotely does have its drawbacks.
According to research by Eurofound, remote workers can experience a blur between their work and personal lives. It can be difficult to separate the two, especially when both are happening in the same space. It’s difficult for many who work from home to unplug after hours.
Not only that, but 41% of remote employees considered themselves as being highly stressed compared to 25% of office workers. Work-from-home stress was also indicated by 42% to be the reason for frequent night waking, while only 29% of office workers reported the same.
Similarly, a survey by Monster also found that 69% of remote workers reported symptoms of burnout, and 41% reported high stress levels, compared to only 25% of their office colleagues.
Expert Advice on Work From Home Stress
Dr. Ali Macintyre is a behavioral economist and trauma-informed coach who spent a decade leading and helping a fully remote software startup in building culture and connection. She helped colocated employees with their work from home stress.
Her advice for those working from home is to find what works for you. There’s no one tip or tool to fix all your work-from-home stress. But if you find what works and put them all together, your efforts compound and it really makes a difference.
Sometimes, what works one day won’t work for the next. It’s important to keep iterating and adjusting when you need it.
Macintyre explains: “Sometimes, I can drop into focus easily. Other times, I can be like The Princess and the Pea where I need a lot more things to be perfect in order to begin. I think, like anything, adjusting to change takes time. It’s essential to practice self-compassion in the process.”
Tips for Dealing with Work-from-Home Stress from GoDaddy Staff
With that in mind, I reached out to my GoDaddy colleagues to find out what strategies they have for coping and helping themselves through their work-from-home stress.
Feel free to try these tips out, see what works for you, and create your own custom toolbox of strategies that work for you.
Stephan Robinson: Commerce Advanced Support
“When dealing with mental health and working from home, it’s OK to not over-exhaust yourself, and take time to focus on yourself first.”
For Stephan, that means taking a walk barefoot in his garden to feel grounded.
“Breathing, resting, and coming back to center helps, especially when working and having two kids to take care of.“
Finding a way to center yourself after a stressful day is crucial. Being able to disconnect and have a space away from work can go a long way toward managing stress or burnout.
Alycia Leno: Content Marketing Director for GoDaddy Pro
“Take two minutes to breathe. Inhale for a count of 4, hold for 4, and exhale for 4. Repeat as needed. If you are a visual person, look for ‘bubble breathing’ on YouTube.”
When working from home, Alycia suggest that if you can’t get a dedicated workspace, find a way to keep it separate.
“Work/life hygiene is important. I used to have a home office which is now the baby’s room, so I currently work in my bedroom closet. I put up a curtain rod so I can physically close the area when I’m done with work. I don’t want to see my work stuff while I’m trying to get rest and relax.”
Pablo Velasquez: Engineer: Software Development in Test
“I like using the Calm app, which has guided meditations. They’re surprisingly effective (even five minutes is good) after a long stretch of meetings. Another easy strategy is using the Pomodoro clock to get up, move around, and not sit all day.”
These two tips are his biggest go-tos when trying to keep work-from-home stress down.
Teddy Nixon: Marketing Ops Technologist
Teddy’s tips for helping with mental health and working from home include setting and keeping a regular sleep schedule, including trying to wake up at the same time every day, as if you’re going into an office.
Beyond that, Teddy suggests this: “Get outside. Getting fresh air and sunlight is vital. Take the dog for a walk or meet up with a friend for lunch. And on the topic of lunch, take a lunch break every single day, and make that time non-negotiable. It’s easy to skip meals and work extra hours when you’re working from home. Make sure you take time for yourself.”
Sometimes it’s about creating a mentality for yourself. Between the tips and tricks, inspirational mindsets such as the next tip can be all you need to set yourself in a positive mindset.
Porsha Robinson: Engineer Software Development
“When looking to help with productivity, use Mark Twain’s ‘eat a frog’ idea to help set your day up for success.”
The three steps are:
- Identify your frog, which is your most difficult task for the day.
- “Eat it” by accomplishing this task first, before all other work.
- Repeat it every day.
The key is to not give yourself the chance to put it off, and be consistent with it. You’ll be amazed at how quickly the small steps add up to big accomplishments.
Not only can this be applied to work, but you can also use this in your personal life. For example, when getting those daunting tasks done whether it’s doing the dishes, or going for a run.
Charles Wilke: Writer
“Setting personal boundaries is key when working from home.”
Here are four tips to ensure you keep that work-life balance:
- Choose kindness. Not just for your coworkers and clients, but for yourself.
- Show up when and where it counts. Visibility breeds connection, but eternal availability can lead to accidental trampling of boundaries.
- Respect your breaks. Take your lunch break and get outside when you can.
- Be vocal about your working hours and stick to them.
Finding a balance between work and family can be tough, but set some boundaries. Don’t feel guilty if you need to take time for family appointments or needs.
Courtney Robison: Web Designer and Developer Advocate
“If you work from home, find a way to commute to work. Try a five-minute walk to work, and a five-minute walk home. This lets you have a way to disconnect from work and set a boundary. Another tip is to not be afraid to adjust your work hours if you must. Need to pick up your kids from school, for example? Work shouldn’t prevent these things.“
Evan Weiner: Director of Marketing Brand Social
“Try using a simple rephrasing of words. For example, instead of saying “I have to,” I say “I get to.” From work to family, try rephrasing things in this way to recalibrate your emotions, and inject a pop of gratitude into your day-to-day life.”
Sara Boland: Director of Growth Marketing Pro Audience
Sarah’s tip for working from home is to have an intentional “go to work” and “leave work” routine.
“It’s as simple as opening and closing the blinds to my home office, honestly, but it sets it in my mind. When the blinds are open, the office is open. When the blinds are closed, so is work.
It helps set a visible boundary between work and home as well as ensuring connection with colleagues to find common interests, and creating that work friend.”
She also shared some words on how to connect with others: “Make sure you take the time to have ‘water cooler talk’ with your teammates. Learn who they are, and find a topic you can relate to and share regularly. Having a friend at work (even if you’ve never met in person) is critical.”
Carlin Gibbs: Community Content Marketing Specialist
What I have found helps is finding ways to work smarter not harder. If you can find ways to shave off time from administrative tasks, for example, and automate what you can, it can help you reclaim your time.
It’s one of the reasons why I recommend using the Hub from GoDaddy Pro. You can streamline admin tasks, and suddenly, there’s more time in your day to focus on what matters most. If you’d like to give it a go, you can sign up for free.
These are just some of the tips shared by my colleagues at GoDaddy. While some may work for you, some won’t, and that’s okay.
Taking these tips and making them your own can make a difference in your work-life balance. Small steps can pave the way to taking on the biggest challenges.
Remember that mental health is important. Being able to help manage it should be a consistent priority.