Step 1. Meet up with your friends for lunch regularly... Well, that's hardly an option now. Most of the tips on how to work at home without going crazy are now based on the new way of human interaction - the assumption that face-to-face communications should be avoided wherever possible.
The recent COVID pandemic has indeed changed our lives. We all try to adapt to change differently and get on with what we have now. Of course, some struggle more than others depending on the work situation and the surroundings. But the worst thing we could do is to refuse to understand the change, do nothing and get depressed.
How To Work At Home Without Going Crazy
If you've been working for yourself from home, at least you may be a little luckier for not having to hit a sudden job loss like others. But the lack of real-life communications may have impacted your personality over time.
I haven't had a decent conversation with anyone outside the home for 6+ months now and I'm forgetting to speak (quite literally!) I no longer seem to encounter any situations where I need to make a quick decision, and I see my life in general slowing down because of it.
Does that sound healthy? Not exactly. But is it a problem? I'm not so sure. All I can say is I would try anything I could think of to keep my sanity. My husband & I enjoy this ordinary life that we have. We both stick to the daily routine and I work hard as I normally do. No one knows what the future is going to look like - when nothing is certain, the least we can do is to look after ourselves. I mean, I'm talking about all of us, don't let anything get us down!
Tips To Avoid Getting Depressed by Proud Members
Recently, my tips to stay mentally healthy have been featured in the article "3 Quick Tips to Combat Depression by 11 Proud LGBTQ Members" by EZCare Clinic, along with some awesome tips by 10 other proud members. I'm flattered to be included, as all others are great social influencers, thanks to the editor Zahra.
I have tried to break down our advice into categories and found some interesting results. Some of the tips are LGBTQ-specific (which is great, that's what the article is for!) but the majority of them apply to anybody who wishes to avoid getting depressed when working from home alone. So regardless of your gender or sexuality, I want you to read it without prejudice.
Because we are no different, you know. We are normal people, yet we often struggle to fight for our recognitions and rights in very normal circumstances. In the middle of the recent #BlackLivesMatter movement, a couple of people called me "disgusting" for being gay on Instagram. It's not the right time to bully one minority group so they bully another instead...
...No, I'm not trying to jump on the "lives matter" bandwagon. I'm just saying how we deal with mental health issues is no different from the way you guys all do. So if you think, "I'm not gay, all men need a woman, LGBTQ is considered wrong in my country", fine, I'm not going to argue. I still want you to take a quick look with no prejudice, and if you find any part of it that's relatable to you, visit the EZCare Clinic page and learn more detail. So here's the summary of our tips.
#1 Go Out, Get Some Exercise
When you move, your body releases endorphins which makes you happy. Dr. Debbie Hayton also says go out, get some sunshine and fresh air. Not good staying at home all day. Just getting out of the house and walking around the block may help you feel refreshed.
#2 Stay Connected With Your Loved Ones
Four of us said, reach out to your friends, family, whoever is important to you. Over the phone, via Zoom, or whatever possible. Communicate to those who would say "don't worry, it's ok". But don't feel guilty if you can't reply to messages all the time, because everyone needs space. Make sure you have a happy relationship with your loved ones.
#3 Don't Let Others Wind You Up
On the other hand, it's the communications with others that often wind up your feelings. Bad communications can ruin your day, the rest of the week, or they can leave you with trauma for a long time.
As far as online business is concerned, if you belong to an entrepreneurs' community or Facebook group, you might receive endless private messages from others trying to sell their stuff. Simply cutting them off is often the best solution but if you are communicating with the ones you care about, the conversations can wind you up. So our tips are;
- Limit your time spent on social media and close yourself off to other voices.
- If you've unfortunately had a bad conversation, make sure to ask yourself what you can learn from the experience.
- Avoid arguments, but simply express your struggling point of view. It will make you feel more comfortable and confident. And you can do this if you are truly honest to yourself, which leads to #4 below...
#4 Validate Your Feelings and Accept Yourself
I strongly believe that you can be anything you want to be if you have strong willpower. And you know you need to motivate yourself if you want to take your work-at-home business to the next level. But it's a waste of energy lying to your feelings and pretend to be perfect.
Five of us said how important to be true to yourself, in various different ways;
- Don't try to resist, avoid, or deny your experiences. Forget how you would like them to be.
- Validate your feelings and embrace them. Feelings aren't always logical, so it doesn't matter if they don't make sense.
- Accept yourself rather than trying to get others to accept you.
- Treat your depressed feeling like a separate entity that needs to be looked after.
- And love yourself!
Three of us said, "Appreciate yourself, appreciate what you already have, and appreciate people in your life." Law of Attraction, baby! You know that nothing positive will come out while you keep complaining - at least many of us "think" we know it, but can easily forget that. Write down your best qualities and stop focusing on a feeling of lack of abundance. Worth noting, once again.
#6 Channel Your Energy Into Something That Makes You Happy
More than half of us mentioned how important to make time for things that make you feel positive. In relation to how you spend your time outside work;
- Watch your favorite show, eat your favorite food, bath, shower, skincare routine, to stay positive.
- The lockdown may allow you to discover more hobbies that you didn't know you had.
- If it's something that you enjoy and you're pretty good at, practice it to get even better and to take your mind off other things.
#7 Get Organized
Make small goals for yourself to complete. You may already have an organizer/to-do list for your work, but you can also write little lists for housework, for example, and cross tasks off. This way, you won't end up wasting hours & hours of your spare time on YouTube meaninglessly.
#8 Eat Healthy
The Nomadic Boys also mentioned the importance of "clean eating". I swear by it, too. I'm not a health-food fanatic but when I stopped eating fatty food and white sugar at the beginning of the pandemic (because we couldn't freely shop at the time), I was amazed how my body felt differently. A low-fat, no-white-sugar diet made my body feel much lighter and more energetic, and it has helped me become mentally stronger and focus on my work online a lot more.
And every time I have a slice of cake "for a treat", the following day I feel my body too heavy to complete the usual exercise regime. So if you think you're on an unhealthy diet, try to cut down some junk, replace it with fresh vegetables - just for a few days - and see if you feel differently.
Other Tips To Keep Your Sanity
There are a few other tips that my fellow LGBTQ members shared. Personally, Luke Benn's advice opened my eyes - he said, "Hate and anger are the only things that protect us mentally, depressed people lack the emotional ability to be angry or happy." So it may be good to get angry, but make sure to forgive others because forgiveness is more powerful than hate.
How To Work At Home Without Going Crazy - Round Up
My granddad always used to say, your job itself hardly ever creates problems, but it's your relationships with workmates or the lack of them creates problems. I hope the above tips will keep you mentally strong and help continue to maintain your work-at-home days productively.