• Hannah Ireson

When work invades your personal space...

With many now working at least partly from home, we thought it would be interesting to explore a collective shift in the psychological approach to the work environment. Bringing work home with you rarely has positive implications, so with work physically invading your private space we are seeing people suffer increasingly with the pressures of stress and burnout. As work consumes the home-life it is difficult, but imperative, to establish firm boundaries around the breakdown of your working day. I have never officially done any WFH, however I completed my undergraduate degree with the Open University so can appreciate the important role that structure and routine play in facilitating quality work from home while maintaining the sanctity of your private space.

Establishing a dedicated workspace that is physically separate to your personal life is really important. Working from the sofa simply isn’t practical for most people in the long run. While you may not have a whole spare room lying vacant for an office, most people can set up a private, single-function workspace that is confined to one area only. This organisation is hard but is also intrinsic to how you perceive your own WFH situation.

We can apply Vandana Shiva’s teachings here that ‘the way you design the world in your mind is the way you relate to it in the real world’. Keeping work at work by allocating a physical space to your job is fundamental in establishing those psychological boundaries between work and home life.

Enforcing boundaries into your routine is crucial too – practice scheduling start time, downtime/breaks and finish times. Work is already at home physically so it’s hard not to bring it home emotionally. However, there is no requirement to work overtime just because your commute starts and finishes from the kitchen. Don’t be a slave to your environment - turn off the computer, silence your phone and embrace your independence. As with all things, there’s a silver lining to working from home - freedom. Ultimately, things happen for you not to you so make the best of these circumstances by making WFH work for you.

Unsurprisingly, the removal of constant stimuli in an hours floatation can offer a regenerative escape from the overstimulation of WHF. While floating, the analytical part of your brain is slowed as Theta brainwaves are activated. This quietens your thoughts and facilitates a deep meditative state, while the two sides of the brain are resynchronised resulting in a more positive outlook and boosted creativity post-float.

In a river of change, choose to float.


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