You’re working from home. You don’t have to get dressed you don’t have to shower, you can roll out of bed over to the computer, you can be in bed whilst making calls and no one else has to know.
Working from home sounds like a great way to get your job done, but the reality of it is very different and if you don’t learn to get organised about your approach to working from home, and implement an effective strategy to suit your personality then you could see it having a detrimental effects on both your mental health and physical health too.
Before COVID-19 forced remote working upon so many of us, it had already started to grow in popularity, with more and more companies starting to realise that people have different workstyles, (for example an extrovert may thrive in a busy, buzzing social office whereas an introvert may excel in a more secluded quieter location) and therefore providing a varied approach for employees to achieve optimum productivity was a more effective working model, as well as a more cost effective one too.
But now that everyone is working from home, understanding how to adapt to suit your personality is crucial for your mental wellness as well as your motivation, performance and productivity, so you need to understand what your personality needs and why.
The basic difference between an introvert and an extrovert is their source of energy.
Introverts get their energy from within and can start to feel drained after being around people for a while. To regain their energy, introverts need to spend time alone or in solitude.
Extroverts, on the other hand, get their energy from outside themselves through other people, so the more an extrovert is around other people, the more energized he or she feels. If an extrovert is alone for too long, they can start to feel drained.
Of course, there are varying degrees of introversion and extroversion, and these basic definitions won’t always apply, but they are a good rule of thumb when considering your own personality and work preferences.
For an extrovert working from home can feel very, disjointed, demotivating, draining and isolating so it’s important to keep regular working hours, and opting against a flexible work schedule.Kim Rutherford – Dalton Wise
For an introvert it is very easy to disconnect from the workplace, reducing interaction with colleagues, and falling into the trap of taking minimal to no breaks and working long hours due to the comfort of the working environment – but this will not benefit longer term metal health.
It is important to still connect but do it in a way that is more effective, such as reserve days and specific times for engagement, scheduling designated time afterwards for recharging energy levels and ensuring regular intervals away from the home office whether that to be to take a walk or make a drink.
Suggested Read: 5 ways to use Alexa in your home office
For an extrovert working from home can feel very, disjointed, demotivating, draining and isolating so it’s important to keep regular working hours, and opting against a flexible work schedule.
Connecting regularly and making all communications via video call is an effective strategy for interaction, rather than just telephone calls.
Using goal setting, action planning and lists to maintain motivation is a positive approach as is scheduling regular social interactions throughout the day with colleagues and engagement in social activity with family and friends after work to recharge energy levels.
For both introverts and extroverts, there are positives and negatives to working from home.
From a positive perspective;
- No more waking up unnaturally early
- Less time spent in the car or on public transport commuting
- Fewer interruptions through the day
- Less eating out
- A more flexible schedule
From a negative perspective;
- Decreasing social skills
- Stress on home relationships
- Loss of routine
- Loss of colleague connect an interaction
Overall, working remotely can be hugely rewarding for both introverts and extroverts, but only if productivity, a healthy work-life balance, and solid business relationships are maintained, as well as a healthy approach to overall wellness and wellbeing through a positive routine.
Here are some suggestions for maintaining mental wellness whilst working from home:
- Keep your alarm set to a usual time – live as if you were leaving for work
- Continue a commute routine through introducing a walk before you start your work day – even if it is just around the block.
- Keep connected with your colleagues throughout the day through video calls – don’t hide behind emails
- Upgrade your lunch time to quality down time and exciting food cooked from scratch
- Mark the end of the day with a commute ritual just like you did at the start of the day with a walk
- Try something new – keep your brain as active as your body
- Prioritise sleep, don’t let stress and uncertainty effect sleep patterns.
- Keep a regular bed time and add in relaxation to your evening routine
About The Author
Kim is a qualified coach, therapist and trainer, with a career spanning over a decade in corporate business at a senior level.
She set-up Dalton Wise Coaching and Therapy up in 2017, in response to her own journey and experiences with mental health which came to a head after a car crash in 2014. She suffered with stress, anxiety, burnout, depression and low-level agoraphobia. I sought help and after a 16 week wait, was provided with my initial 6 sessions of NHS counselling.
As a stubborn, proactive, problem solver by nature she decided to take her recovery into her own hands, and as a result, via a lot of research and additional training to secure professional knowledge, skills and qualifications, Dalton Wise and 8 Wise were developed.