Healthy freelancers are productive freelancers. That’s why last week’s lifestyle piece on Freelance Folder grabbed our attention. “Beware These Freelancer Health Hazards” focuses on some of the potential health risks associated with being an independent worker. From stress injuries and vitamin D deficiencies to isolation and poor diets, the article sheds light on a few of the buzz kills to your otherwise awesome career.
We wanted to delve deeper, so we asked Dr. Neil Patel, Medical Director at Collective Primary Care, the practice serving the members of Freelancers Medical, if he had any solutions to these common issues. The answer? Of course he did. Dr. Neil and his team are committed to ensuring freelancers stay healthy so they can stay at their best.
Here are a few tips from Dr. Neil to help you work smarter and healthier:
Switch up your seat and workstation. By changing your body’s routine, you’re less likely to develop the complications that result from being in one position. Stand up at a counter-height surface while you’re typing. Instead of a regular chair, improve your balance by sitting on a yoga ball. If you’re sitting on the floor, cushion yourself with pillows or a meditation bolster. Try standing on a balance board or test out different chairs.
Battle isolation by building community. Remember, you are part of a movement and a new economy, so it’s important to make connections. Reach out to your neighbors, friends, and other freelancers. Build your network. Volunteer, barter, cowork.
Be a good boss (to yourself). As a freelancer, you have to play the roles of both boss and employee. Imagine it: Would you give yourself the afternoon off? A vacation? Would you encourage yourself to practice yoga or meditation? Do you deserve a nice dinner? Work to maintain a healthy workplace, even if the workplace is just you in your apartment.