The current economy is evolving rapidly. Businesses are shifting away from traditional workplace environments, brick and mortar shops and mass production manufacturing. There are new opportunities for service-based companies, freelance contractors and entire boutique industries are popping up all over the world. This isn’t just a trend; it’s becoming the new normal. That’s great news if you’re thinking of running a home based business. More and more people are finding ways to avoid the rat race. A home based business can be more productive and have increased health benefits. Here are just a few ways that you can experience increased health and wellness without leaving the home.
Avoid the Commute
Commuting to work can actually be very bad for your health. According to a USA Today survey, most Americans spend 25 minutes commuting to work each way. That’s nearly an hour a day. A recent study conducted in the Dallas – Ft. Worth area found that people with especially long commutes were more overweight and had higher risks of serious diseases.
If you’re taking public transportation to work every day, then you’re exposing yourself to noxious fumes from city buses and subway cars. Day to day levels might not seem that bad, but over time the carbon dioxide that you are inhaling can really add up. The highest risk are for people walking or cycling to work near densely congested areas. Riding in a car isn’t much better. Have you ever been stuck in traffic on the freeway? You’re exposed to high levels of toxic emissions with the windows open, but that’s just the start. Spending all that time slouched over the steering wheel is bad for your posture. Daily commuters experience back pain, nerve damage and neck cramps.
You’re really better off staying at home. If you have a home based business you can reduce your exposure to rush hour traffic. By reducing your exposure to noxious fumes, you can improve your cardiovascular health by leaps and bounds.
Lower Stress Levels
Working at home will help you manage stress levels more easily. A traditional office setting is fraught with social interactions with people that probably keep you anxious and stressed out. There’s that obnoxious co-worker who always wants to chat about her weekend even when you have a pile of work to do. There’s the supervisor who hovers over your desk just to verify that you’re on task. Those are just a couple of the obnoxious people you might be forced to interact with on a daily basis. Most people just have to endure them, but you have greater control over your social interactions when you have a home based business.
Not only do you have the freedom to choose who you work with, but you also have the ability to shape your environment. You rarely get the chance to choose what your work setting looks like. Sure, you can bring pictures from home to decorate your desk, but that’s about it. In the privacy of your own home office, you can cultivate a zen garden, play your music at high volumes, or configure your work space to suit your own needs. At a traditional office setting, someone else might be following your shift so the work space has to remain very generalized. Yet, if you have greater control over your work setting, you can actually be more relaxed and more productive.
Staying at home gives you more time to spend with your family. When you set your own hours, you can allocate time to pick up your children from school or even participate in their extra-curricular activities. Of course, you do need time for actual work, but running a home based business gives you the freedom to schedule family interactions on your own schedule.
Dr. Kenneth Ginsburg of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia conducted a study that found that people with a strong connection to their families are less likely to do drugs, their children are more engaged at school and they’re even good drivers. Sometimes, it’s not all about the activities you’re doing with your family. It’s important for your family to just feel your presence. It works both ways. You can be a more productive worker when you don’t have to worry about your family all day. Your children are in your sight, the meals are getting prepared and you’re there just in case anybody needs your help.
Opportunities to Rest and Exercise
If you run a home based business you have the freedom to set up your own schedule. This can allow you to set times for periodic rest sessions. Sleep-deprived workers are less efficient. When you feel tired, there’s a lingering grogginess that caffeine just can’t quite get rid of. Taking a mid day nap is great for your health and your productivity. The National Sleep Foundation recommends taking a 20 to 30 minute nap at some point during the work day to feel more alert. Even companies like Google and the Huffington Post are encouraging their employees to take mid day naps when they feel tired. Yet, they are a small minority. Working at home gives you the opportunity to take a nap whenever you feel like it.
Running a home based business gives you the freedom to also take periodic exercise breaks during the day. When you work outside of the house, you have to cram in exercise sessions in the early morning or in the late evening when you’re already exhausted. Working at home allows you to exercise at a time that’s convenient for you. According to England’s National Health Service, regular exercise can reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer by up to 50 percent and lower your risk of early death by up to 30 percent. Even if you worked for a company that allowed you to set off to the nearest gym, it might be deducted from your lunch time. You can do simple exercises in the comfort of your home such as jumping jacks, push ups or sit ups. Not only will you feel the health benefits, but light exercise also boosts your brain activity and makes you more productive.
There are lots of self-employed people running home based businesses in the health and fitness industry. Your home is your laboratory, the place where you can test out new products and wellness techniques. You can make healthy meals and snacks from the comfort of your own kitchen and reap the benefits of nutritious meals every single day. Sometimes, when you are in a traditional working environment you only get 30 minutes to an hour for lunch. You barely have time to buy some fast food and choke it down before you’re expected to be back in front of your computer screen. Healthy choices aren’t always available to you on your boss’ clock.
You can actually make a living helping others reach their fitness goals. If you have the pleasure of working in the fitness industry, you can try out workout routines in your living room or studio space. With the popularity of home video workouts and personal training, more people are exploring new ways to get fit. Your administrative work can be done in the home office and you can actually make time to maintain your own healthy figure.
These are just a few of the benefits of running a business from your home. It seems to all boil down to freedom of choice. You don’t get much freedom in traditional working environments. Companies like Cisco, Google and Huffington Post are just starting to tap into the power of the worker. There was a time when people believed that getting up earlier, working longer hours, eating lunch faster and staying later would increase productivity. All those things actually have the opposite effect because they’re terrible for your health. Avoiding the long commute will maintain your effectiveness and lower your blood pressure. Having greater control over your environment will make you happier. Spending more time with your family is scientifically proven to not only maintain your health and sanity, but also it improves the health of your loved ones, as well. Taking periodic, targeted naps can actually help you get more done. And focusing on your own health and fitness can actually lead to greater profits for your business. Surprisingly, these are still novel ideas. A home based business can make you a happier, healthier, more productive member of society. So, get creative and explore ways that you can earn a living without the anxiety and stress.