The issues with working from home!Heidi Hadley
Over the last few months people have learned to adapt to a new way of living and working. Many feel it will make humankind stop and consider habits and behaviours which had become the ‘norm.’ In many instances, these habits and behaviour didn’t really help human kind or the environment. So the resilience and ingenuity of mankind created a new way of living! Granted many have found challenges associated with it, but thankfully due to technology we are able to connect more then ever. Thanks to technology, you are able to read this! However, one new behaviour that has occurred is now starting to show habits which I am seeing in my clinic and also with clients online. Let me explain!
This has become the new statement for people working from home. When the dog barks or the children start arguing in the background, many say to their colleagues online “#workingfromhome!” The rawness and transparency has been very refreshing and actually created better connections because there is less of a facade. It has become quite a nice change for many because they have cut out the commute and they feel more present and productive during their day. In a recent survey conducted in the UK by uSwitch.com, they gathered the feedback from 2000 anonymous Brits. When you read the stats, you’ll see why some were probably glad to be kept anonymous!
People working from home would work from the following places:
- 45% at the dining table
- 40% on the sofa
- 25% in bed
- 25% in nightwear
- 15% in the garden or on the balcony
- 8% in someone else’s bed (I hope there was physical distancing)!
- 6% on the toilet (I hope they washed their hands thoroughly)!
These stats are just a small number of how people have adapted around the world. With the change in behaviour, many are happy to continue working from home, especially if the children have returned to school! I have found clients dread the day when they have to commute to the office again. With many businesses seeing the financial advantage to working from home, this will become a new trend and way of life. So with new behaviours comes the opportunity to consider our habits. I have noticed clinically a new set a postural, muscular and pain points with working from home. Some clients have created an ergonomically friendly environment, whereas others as we have seen above are working from kitchen tables or dining tables. As comfortable as these places may be for a meal, to actually sit for hours every day at a computer is a different kettle of fish altogether! If you are a regular reader of my blogs or are a member of my online program (which we discuss in further detail), a habit is a practice repeated over and over again to the point that it becomes automatic or subconscious. After several weeks of working in an adapted work environment, I am now seeing the results of subconscious behaviours or habits.
Interestingly, a client attended my clinic recently and reported severe neck and shoulder pain. When this client stood in front of me, it was extremely clear to see that the muscles along the right side of their body had become habitually tight, pulling their right armpit and shoulder down towards their right hip. When I asked them several questions to heighten their awareness to their muscle tone, tense and posture, they said they felt “normal.” However, when I unblocked their view and they could see their reflection in the mirror, they were amazed at the huge right shoulder drop. This muscular tension had developed from repetitive actions at their new work set up. It was clear that repetitive actions at the computer and mouse use were having a detrimental effect on their muscles, joints and also depth of breathing. Using Pandiculation and Total Somatics principles, the client was able to recalibrate their nervous system and in turn release chronically tight muscles which had developed from subconscious behaviours.
Your nervous system is always trying to adapt and make life easier for you. So if you develop a new habit, good or not so helpful, your amazing brain will start to take over repetitive actions, so you can focus on more important daily pursuits. However, its over-eagerness can sometimes create new issues, which is what I am seeing in practice now.
Here are a few top tips I would like to offer as you continue adapting to a new way of working from home:
- Create a work station that will work in harmony with your body.
- Stay hydrated. To learn the benefits of this check out my podcast episode on Hydration by CLICKING HERE.
- Develop times in your day to move away from your work station.
- Pandiculate, pandiculate, pandiculate! Find opportunities throughout the day to be specific with your Somatic movements to release muscular tension
- If you are a member of the Total Somatics Online Program, incorporate a somatic movement class into your day as a 'software reset.'
- Develop Total Somatic breathing throughout your day. Shallow breathing creates a catalogue of neck, shoulder, jaw and back issues. There is more detail of this within The Total Somatics Online Program, however for non members, CLICK HERE to add this 10 minute practice into your day.
- Be mindful throughout your day with your posture. Create a reminder on your computer or if you still love ‘post it’ notes, write it down! These prompts keep you mindful and present rather than subconscious and mindless to what is actually happening from the inside out.
- Be structured with your time. Ensure you have rest breaks, lunch and finish within the hours you would work in the office. As tempting as it may be, adding an extra half an hour to an hour on every day, can start to exhaust you and create other issues. Maintain your boundaries.
On Saturday 6th June, I will be holding a workshop on how you can release muscle tension and reset your ‘software’ so you can stop recurring pain and injuries. I will be delving into the amazing world under your skin! When you learn how wonderful your mind and body are, you will sense and feel with the skills and knowledge I give you, that you can make huge shifts and changes.
Time: 7pm Australian eastern time, 10am British summer time, 5am Eastern time.
I will email an invite to all Total Somatics members. However, if you are unable to attend, it will be recorded and available to view within the online program.
If you are a non-member and would like to know how Total Somatics can help you reduce pain, improve posture and increase mobility, CLICK HERE FOR THE FREE CHALLENGE.
If you would like to know what Somatics is all about and how it can help you, CLICK HERE for my FREE EBOOK.
If you would like to know more about Somatic movement, health, mindset, mindfulness and wellbeing, CLICK HERE for my podcast.
The membership enrolment is currently closed. However, if you would like to be added to the Wait List, CLICK HERE to be the first to hear when we open the doors for new members.
In the meantime, as we continue adapting to a new way of living, developing new habits, each day look for different way to be grateful for this situation. Maybe it is spending less time commuting and more time with the family. Maybe it is having lunch in your garden or on the balcony. Maybe it is to start incorporating Mindful Total Somatic Movement into your day. Whatever it may be, allow positive upbuilding thoughts also shape the emotions you feel within. Next time I will discuss the power of your mind and why it is important to be careful with how you think, talk and behave.
Until next time, take care.
Heidi Hadley xx