When it comes to working from home, there's no one-size-fits-all solution. What works for one person may not work for another. And what works today might not work tomorrow. That's why it's important to find a way of working that promotes your well-being and allows you to be productive.
Well-being is about more than just physical health. It includes mental, emotional and social health. To promote wellbeing while working from home, or in a hybrid capacity at home and in the office.
This blog post will explore the 30-3-30 approach that has been developed by 4 Mental Health. This site has collated ideas to help you cope and build your wellbeing using the 30-3-30 approach. The model combines key ideas and suggestions into a great starting point for self-care, depending on how much time you have available. This simple routine can help to reduce stress, improve focus and promote creativity.
“A calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health.” – Dalai Lama
The 30-3-30 Approach
The suggestions below are grouped together depending on your available time. There a suggestions that take about 30 seconds, things that you can do in about 3 minutes, and things that might take 30 minutes or longer. Short on time? Consider trying something from the 30 seconds or three minutes suggestions. Notice that you have a half-hour free? Look for ideas in the 30 minutes suggestions.
Memorize an inspirational quote or keep a written version handy to read and reflect on whenever when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Feeling stressed or anxious? Slowing and deepening our breath can help us gain perspective. To do this, take a few slow deep breaths. Breathe in, count to three, breathe out, count to three. Repeat several times.
Multi-task for your health! Check your calendar for the next meeting you can take walking or standing to break up the time spent at your workspace. Getting just 30 minutes a day of movement is shown to improve your cardiovascular health and help prevent many diseases.
Studies show that having your cell phone nearby is a major distraction for most people. Put your mobile device in another room to help your focus and concentration. For best results work your way up to 30 minutes to an hour.
If possible, request shortened meetings with your colleagues (ex: From 60 minutes to 45 minutes). This is great for situations when you are in back-to-back meetings to allow for breaks and avoid meeting fatigue.
Phone a colleague for a quick chat or set up a remote coffee break to catch up. Set up a Teams meeting and use your webcams if possible! Seeing a friendly face will help reduce stress and promote connection.
Create a to-do list. Capturing what you need to do can help you focus on the task and remain mindful of deadlines. Using pen and paper is a great option. For an electronic solution, consider using Microsoft’s To Do List application which can be accessed through your web browser or phone.
Take a break and listen to a favourite piece of soothing or uplifting music. Read this article to help you build a playlist.
Set aside a block of time to organise your inbox, or your desk or workspace. The sense of completion will give you deep satisfaction.
Practice mindfulness. Be present by focusing on the one thing you are doing, whether it is watching a webinar, writing notes or planning your day.
Prepare a tasty lunch or snack, and eat it slowly, savouring every mouthful. Try a new recipe, at least one new recipe per week for example.
Go out for some fresh air. Step outside and take a brisk walk around the block or in a nearby park. Take time to notice the sights, sounds and smells around you. If not, consider participating in indoor exercises. There are plenty of great options online, including yoga, HIIT workouts and more.
Meditation can help to improve focus, concentration and productivity. There are many resources available that offer guided meditations for beginners.
Invest in a standing desk or create a makeshift one using boxes or books. If you can't stand for long periods of time, start with 10-15 minutes and work your way up.
“The ability to be in the present moment is a major component of mental wellness.” – Abraham Maslow
Practising mindfulness, being present and aware of what we are doing in the moment, can help improve our focus and concentration. It can also help to reduce stress and anxiety levels. It requires continuous practice to develop, but even a few minutes a day can make a difference.
The 30-3-30 approach is a great starting point for self-care. It is important to find what works best for you and to make time for activities that improve your well-being.
I hope these ideas help you to focus on your well-being as we continue to work from home. Do you have any suggestions to add? Please share in the comments below!