A 2017 report by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions found that 41% of remote employees reported high levels of stress, while just 25% of employees who worked in an office did. Psychological stress can affect depression. But there’s little evidence directly linking remote work to depression.
In fact, some research indicates that people specifically look for jobs with the flexibility to work from home to reduce stress. Commuting to and from work can be a source of stress for some people. Working from home may help reduce stress by removing this stressor. Time saved by not commuting can lead to increased flexibility in working hours, which can further reduce stress for a range of people, including working parents.
Five actions to help ward off depression
1. Connect with friends
Connecting with friends and family can help you feel more connected with others. Connection can happen over the phone, through texts, or in person, depending on what works for your lifestyle. The important thing is maintaining those connections.
2. Write down your goals
Depression can get in the way of your productivity, especially if you’re working from home. Having a list of measurable goals in front of you may help you visualize what you want to achieve.
3. Create a daily schedule
It can be easy to lose track of time when you’re not in an office. Creating a schedule for the day not only helps you get your tasks done but also pencils in opportunities to take breaks to maintain your mental health.
4. Make time to meditate
Meditation can give you a sense of balance and calm, which may provide you with inner peace and help improve overall feelings of well-being. Even if you can afford to meditate for only a few minutes, consider the potential benefits when you’re working from home. Try a guided meditation as short as 3 or 5 minutes.
5. Go for a walk
Going for a walk benefits both your mental and your physical health. Regular brisk walking can help improve your mood, so it may be worth fitting it into your day if you regularly work from home.