5 Ways to Alleviate WFH Stress and Be More Productive

Achieve a better work/life balance from the home office while increasing output.

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.

Of all the radical lifestyle changes sparked by the coronavirus, there is none as prevalent as the number of people who have vacated their offices and are now working remotely. As millions of employees around the world work from home, people are starting to see the benefits, including no commute time, more autonomy and even less distractions than being in an open office.

Yet people are experiencing troubling amounts of stress in the work from home (WFH) environment. In addition to the feeling of being held “captive” in our homes, we are captives to our work; traditional work hours are gone; our days are filled with exhausting marathon Zoom meetings and back-to-back conference calls. Having spouses and children at home has blurred the lines between our work and personal lives. All of this has led many of us to ask,“Why am I working more than I ever did, but not getting as much done?” 

With this crisis playing out over several more months and possibly years, businesses previously wed to office environments – especially in large cities –  are rethinking WFH strategies and figuring out how to keep remote workers sane and productive at the same time. In the near future, there will be dozens of studies on how people coped in the new WFH environment and the best practices that have come out of it.

In the meantime, as someone who has created social and collaborative platforms for workers through the use of technology, here are my thoughts and suggestions on how we can create a better work/life balance from the home office while increasing productivity.

  • Not every meeting has to be on Zoom. There’s something stressful about constantly meeting onscreen. Take a break by scheduling a phone call. It could be a quick call with people on your team or with a familiar client with whom you’ve been regularly communicating. 
  • Set aside time for asynchronous work. At some point you must be able to focus on the actual work rather than being in meetings. Try pre-scheduling time slots to settle down and get things done.
  • Don’t be glued to a chair. Take the opportunity between meetings to get up, stretch and walk around, whether around the house or even more beneficial, outside in the fresh air. Carve out at least 30 minutes to relax your mind and smell the flowers.
  • Take a personal day. This might not be for everyone and some may be reluctant to use up a day of PTO because they’re already at home, but in these times people could use an extra recharge day. It won’t feel like a normal day off, instead being outdoors, exercising and simply relaxing will allow you to come back refreshed the next day.
  • Try to adjust your perspective. This can be a challenge right now, but maintaining a positive attitude is important for you and for your loved ones. Recognize that this is a temporary situation and focus on the positives, like spending more time with family or being able to have more weekend time for home projects. 

This global pandemic has given us all a feeling uncertainty. If we concentrate on making small changes in our lives, including how we work from home, these will go a long way in helping us successfully navigate this crisis. 

    Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

    You might also like...


    How to Maximise Your Remote Working Productivity

    by Gemma Fisk
    Let's put our thinking caps together and make a better workplace for everyone after COVID-19

    Putting the joy back to work

    by Arulnathan John
    GaudiLab / Shutterstock
    Work Smarter//

    How to Not Slack Off While Working From Home

    by Ashley Fern

    Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

    Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

    Thrive Global
    People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.


    We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.