Working at Home: Change your environment, Change your life!
There are over 100 million telecommuters and 200 million entrepreneurs that work from home in the US alone. A lot of people work part-time at home and have an ergonomic workstation at work but not at home. Or even if you don’t work at home, you might check email or surf the net for hours. Well never fear, the Ergo-Expert is here! Let me give you some tips to change your environment at home:
OK, the best thing you can do is not to use your computer all day long! Reconnect with your family, read a book, write that novel you’ve been putting off (OK, you might need a computer to finish it). Try to minimize your time in front of the computer as much as possible. If you must work, make sure that you take micro-breaks every thirty minutes and position your computer so that you can look out the window every twenty minutes. This will exercise your eyes, allow your eyes to accommodate to different distances and reduces the stress on your body by taking a break.
Laptop use: The best way to use a laptop is by using the law of extremes: use it standing up or lying down. Then try to use for an hour or less at one time. If you have a high kitchen counter or bar, you may be able to set up your laptop as a standing workstation. You can either buy a laptop stand or you can raise it with books (you’ll need about 7-10”) to raise the monitor to the optimal height. Then, plug in an external keyboard and mouse. On the couch, make sure your lower back is supported, use a laptop platform, pillow then tilt the screen back to minimize neck strain. If you are using a laptop in your office, it would be best if you can use it as your Central Processing Unit and have a height adjustable flat panel monitor, and external keyboard and mouse.
Now, you’re ready to go in your home office! Impress your friends, kids and your boss (even if it’s yourself)with your new ergonomic knowledge. Onward with your productive new life and-spread the word about Ergonomics-It’s a good thing!
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