How to stay on track while working from home is no easy task. It requires an entirely new game plan than the one that worked when you were going to the office five days a week.
This can be quite challenging when the Zoom meetings just keep on coming and the kitchen is always open. Many of us end up snacking or grazing through the day and end up eating less nutritious foods and consuming more calories.
How to Stay on Track While Working from Home
The founder of the intuitive eating movement Evelyn Tribole, RD offers some useful advice about the importance of making time for lunch while working from home.
Follow these tips to shift your mindset about meals.
1. Set aside time to eat — between 20 minutes to an hour. Tribole recommends placing the time on your shared calendar so others know you’re busy. “No one needs more of an explanation than, ‘I’m busy’,” Tribole says. “Mark the time so that others know you’re not available.”
2. Shift your lunchtime focus to nourishment. “Try thinking of the time as your own, personal oasis,” says Tribole. “Give yourself time to settle into this new feeling. Sometimes my clients will say this shift in thinking feels strange. It takes time to adjust.” Nourishment doesn’t just have to mean nourishing food either — this is a time to nourish yourself, to give yourself some peace in the middle of a work day.
3. Move your workspace, if you can. Creating a separate place for meals helps keep work at bay. According to Tribole, stepping away from your workspace gives you space to take care of yourself, which in turn allows you time to reset your mindset. “In the long run, it makes you a better worker,” she says. “You need that time away.” For those in smaller settings, this might not be an option. But if you have the space, save the dining room for eating meals, or consider closing your laptop while you eat.
4. Prep the night before. Whether it’s leftovers or a specially prepared salad, take a few minutes the night before to make a plan for the next day’s lunch hour. If you have children, consider packing a lunch box in order to beat the “what’s for lunch” conversation.
5. Sit down to eat — no more standing up to eat.
6. Take a digital timeout while you eat. Turn off your phone — better yet, leave it near your desk. Use the time to recalibrate your day.
7. Play with your food, if that inspires you. No one ever said lunch has to be the same bagged salad every day. Give yourself the freedom to explore different spices, cuisines, and textures.
8. Make time to move before or after your meal. Even a quick walk to the mailbox and back can be a good mental transition from work to lunch and back again.
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