Posted by: bluesyemre | May 24, 2022

Ten unexpected dangers of working from home

A third of people who WFH are eating more than they would otherwise CREDIT: damircudic

One of the downsides of working from home – as Boris recently pointed out – is that it’s bad for your health, allowing as it does fridge snacking on cheese. We’ve also learned in recent days that a fifth of those WFH are taking less exercise than they were when they didn’t WFH, while a third are eating more. 

Can’t say we are remotely surprised. Those of us who have worked freelance for decades know only too well that WFH – or, as we used to call it, “not having an office to go to” – is fraught with health hazards. Fridge bothering is just the tip of the iceberg. 

Here are a few of them (the list is virtually limitless):

  1. Rear Window-itis. As in noting that your neighbour who is WFH in their back garden, which you overlook, has 10 smartphones (not kidding). Then googling “burner phones”. Then nipping out to squat in the flowerbed next to the hedge and trying to hear what he’s saying. Time consuming.
  2. Window cleaner rage. Cost a fortune and look – he missed this whole bit. And this.
  3. Being in for deliveries. Vaguely recall that not being in for deliveries meant you really had to need an item in order to go through the agonies of arranging to be there to receive it. Not the case when WFH. You might order some new pillows on a whim (new pillows might be life changing). Or a red garden parasol.
  4. WIG (Working in the garden). Definitely starts off as working. You have highlighter pens and everything. Then you get uncomfy and somehow it always ends up as sunbathing in your pants with the radio on (Absolute 70s, not Radio 4).
  5. Making your home more like the home of the last woman whose taste you perved on. Perhaps you have a photo of her bathroom on your phone (it has been known) or her “gallery wall” of pictures, and since you are WFH you can torture yourself with trying to recreate it all with Ikea frames and “matched with” Farrow and Ball paint. The pursuit of stylish woman’s style is unhealthy (it’s borderline stalking) and you wouldn’t have the time or the opportunity were it not for WFH.
  6. Weighing yourself on impulse. Not exactly on impulse, more specifically because of yesterday’s cheese-heavy lunch. Weighing yourself doesn’t take long but the spike in adrenaline caused by the discovery that you’ve put on three pounds since last week (What!!) may result in low mood, as will removing all your clothes to see if that makes a difference. 
  7. Staring at yourself in the long mirror. Just in case there’s been any change since yesterday.
  8. Using drink as the end-of-lessons bell. When you’re going out to work you put on your coat, exit the workplace and head home, or out. When you’re already at home, you might have a shower, ring a friend or prep a souffle, but nine times out of 10 – 10 times out of 10 – the preferred way to mark the end of the day is by opening the fridge (again) and getting stuck in to a chilly glass of white. At a conservative estimate WFH has added seven and a half hours more drinking time to the working week. Clearly not healthy.
  9. Other kitchen distractions. For example, getting the urge to clear out the freezer. This is not just time wasting – it counts as unhealthy self-flagellation since you inevitably find that you cannot identify the lamb shanks from the sausages in the unlabelled frosty bags, because it all looks the same. Note: unhealthy self-flagellation is only one step away from working up a head of Husband Blaming. 
  10. Husband Blaming. If WFH you can go looking for any number of triggers. Might start with the dishwasher that he loaded, whose clean contents include the wooden salad bowl, hand-held blender and pan with mushrooms still in it.

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