7 Ideas to Help Beat the Winter WFH Blues

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COVID-19 has certainly thrown a wrench into 2020, hasn’t it? Back in March, I couldn’t have predicted that we’d still be social distancing and working from home for the rest of the year—and through the winter. 🐻❄️

Let’s not beat around the bush—this winter will likely be very different from previous ones. In addition to the shorter and colder days that can naturally prompt a dip in energy and motivation, COVID-19 has also prompted us to socially distance to keep our communities safe. 

The outdoor activities that have kept many of us sane—long walks, dining al fresco, picnics in the park—will soon be much less comfortable due to winter weather.

remote-work-couch

That just means we need to find new ways to keep us sane. 😌

The following list isn’t meant to be the end-all, be-all solution to the malaise many of us may feel this winter—rather, we consider the small things that can make your work routine a little smoother, a bit more manageable. If one tip doesn’t help, try another. I, for one, am already planning to slowly make my way through this list. 👋👇

1. Experiment with lighting

It’s well-documented that lighting can have a big impact on your mood. One study found that there is an “indirect and direct influence of light on mood and learning … [and] light, the circadian clock, and sleep interact to influence mood and cognitive functions.”

Light—it keeps you regular. 😉💡

There’s all sorts of science out there around how specific types of lighting prompt certain responses (e.g. people feel energetic in blue light, or “sunrise” light—great for doing work, but not so much when you’re trying to fall asleep). Here are a few options to explore:

  • Bask in the sun: You can get vitamin D from being exposed to UV lighting, and a great way to do that is to soak up all the winter sun you can get. Why not try moving your desk or working space next to a sunny window?
  • Bask in the sun (lamp): Of course, if you live somewhere with an abundance of cloudy, rainy days (hello, Pacific Northwest! 👋), it can be difficult to catch enough rays during the cooler months. Light therapy products, also called sun lamps, are a popular way to artificially recreate the effects of sunlight and are a great way to brighten your day.
  • Smart light bulbs: Light bulbs have joined many other technologically-advanced domestic appliances in becoming “smart!” These light bulbs can be automated to shift in hue depending on the time of day, minimizing the effect of blue light in the evenings and regulating your circadian rhythm. Plus, the ability to turn the lights off with a clap of your hands or voice command is always a fun party trick.
  • String lights: Listen. String lights are just fun, and an easy way to make your workspace Certified Cozy.TM Plus, the holidays are coming up, and it’s always fun to be a little festive!
  • Device lighting: Using options like dark mode or night shift on your devices, or easy-to-install software like f.lux, is a great, often automated, way to minimize blue light exposure.
working-by-the-window

2. Be vulnerable with your team

As tempting as it can be to keep up a poker face in your professional life, research done for our annual Employee Engagement & Workplace Report actually revealed that workplaces that openly addressed. . .

By: Bonusly Blog

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