Mental health statistics in the past few years have been quite grim, and Covid-19 has certainly not been kind. While work-related stress has always been a massive issue, the impact of reduced social interactions, working from home and the general stress brought about by the pandemic has certainly exacerbated the matter.
There are various strategies and support mechanisms that can support mental wellbeing and promote a healthy work-life balance, and the use of shared working space solutions is one of them.
Combatting loneliness and anxiety
The number of Google results on "how to cure loneliness when working from home" is astonishing.
Interactions with co-workers is one of the things that makes work bearable for many people. Being removed from this environment can spark feelings of loneliness and isolation – even for those who thought they didn’t even really like their colleagues!
According to a study done by the Royal Society for Public Health, although many people felt working from home improved their mental health, nearly 30% of people reported a deterioration in their health and wellbeing.
While many people are now returning to the office, there are many who, for various reasons, still work from home.
Freelancers, entrepreneurs, and independent workers, for example, often have limited social interactions during a workday by nature of the work they do. A significant percentage of these people are extroverts, at least to some degree, and thrive off the energy provided by conversations.
Even for introverts, however, the benefits of human interactions cannot be overstated. Simply sharing a working space, even with complete strangers, can help you feel connected to people. Seemingly insignificant exchanges, such as casual small talk at the coffee machine, can boost your mood and help alleviate anxiety.
Coworking spaces also offer opportunities to meet like-minded people and build new friendships. For tips on how to meet people and network at co-working spaces, check out our blog article HERE.
Stress management support
Stress is a natural part of working life, and for many of us it’s part of what drives our productivity. However, too much stress is obviously detrimental to your mental health, as well as your physical wellbeing.
We have all experienced The Mental Snowball… A single email can escalate in our minds from a small hiccough into a life-or-death, career-ending, doomsday kind of issue. Not because it suddenly increased in importance, but because as humans we have the remarkable ability to build something up in our minds and turn it from a minor glitch into a giant monster.
One of the best strategies for taming the beast? Say it out loud.
Talking an issue or event over with someone allows you to gain an outsider’s perspective. In addition, often just hearing the words out loud can show you that the monster you’ve created in your mind is perhaps really more of a grumpy cat... And if not – at least someone is sharing the burden with you.
Because of the many opportunities to interact with people at shared work spaces, it is quite likely that you would find a willing ear for a 3 minute vent in the coffee area. Sometimes that’s all it takes.
Alternatively, a funny joke or random comment from a fellow workspacer might spark that deep-belly laughter, which we all know can suddenly make the world seem brighter again.
Subconscious impact of physical surroundings
Another significant benefit of coworking solutions is the physical surroundings. Coworking spaces are deliberately designed and furnished to promote a healthy work environment. Natural light, vibrant colours, uncluttered and organised surroundings all contribute to our mental state and mood, and consequently help us to cope better with stress.
Setting boundaries between home and work
Working in the same space as you live can often have a negative impact on work-life balance. There is no clear structure to signify the start and end of the workday, often resulting in a blur between personal and professional life.
On the one hand, this blur can make it challenging to avoid distractions during working hours, and resist the temptation to “quickly” attend to some personal admin (or laundry).
The lack of clear boundaries can also place strain on relationships with family and co-inhabitants, who may have a hard time accepting that for certain hours of the day you are not available for chit-chat or play time.
On the other hand, without a commute to clearly signify the end of the work day, some people tend to find themselves working long past the time when they should have called it quits for the day.
Allowing work to chew into personal time can have a significant impact on your ability to switch off, and can ultimately result in burnout.
Leaving the home environment to work at a designated work space can help to maintain a healthy balance between focus and rest time, which is vital to mental wellbeing.
Work environment to support personal needs
We all have different needs when it comes to mental health. Maybe your home environment is busy and loud, and you desperately need some peace and quiet. Maybe home is dead quiet, and you yearn for some voices other than the ones in your head...
Deskover’s platform provides the opportunity to book a co-working space that suits what you need, when you need it.
To counter isolation, you can book a co-working space with a lively atmosphere. To get some peace, you can secure a quiet spot away from the crowds. To create a routine and foster a sense of belonging, you can book the same place every day, or to fuel creativity and get out of a rut you could book different spaces as the mood strikes you.
In conclusion, coworking spaces offer a clear structure to your day, the ability to be as social as you choose to be, an environment that best suits your needs, and many more.
We all need to prioritise our mental wellness, and if coworking solutions can help us to do that, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t BOOK a space now and see how it can support you.