Category Archives: Health

Tips to Stay Productive When Working from Home

Have you been planning to work from home? Here are tips from experienced professionals that you might find helpful in your plan to start a career while you are at home. 

(Got these tips from my Jobstreet email subscription)

Hundreds of millions of people are on lockdown as the world battles the coronavirus. As our front liners—health workers, security and maintenance personnel, police officers, soldiers, supermarket employees, pharmacists, delivery riders—continue to protect and serve us, many of us have the tremendous fortune of being able to work from home.

While these are days that can fill us with restlessness and anxiety, let’s find ways to be both calm and productive. Here are some tips on how to stay focused while working from home.

Have a designated workspace

This could be a corner of your dining table, a small desk and chair in your living room, or one end of the couch. No matter how small, a designated workspace will help your brain stay in work mode. If the only workspace you can set up is in a communal area, keep all your work things in a bag or box for easy set-up and pack-up.

Keep your workspace tidy 

When you can find what you need when you need it, you’re more productive. Clutter can distract your brain from the task at hand. A clean, organized workspace keeps you focused.

Make a schedule

Working from home means having to juggle both your personal and professional responsibilities. Whether you’re living alone or with others, there are chores to be done, people to take care of, and errands to run. Making a schedule will allow you to maintain a clean home, which is very important as we battle the coronavirus. It also lets you set boundaries with your co-workers—working from home doesn’t mean you’re on-call 24/7. Plus, if you have children, they’ll know—and happily anticipate—when they can have quality time with their parents. Establishing a routine is also best for mental health, bringing consistency and structure during an uncertain time in our lives.

Get ready for the day as though you’re going to your office

Because that’s where you’re headed, even if it’s just ten steps away. Take a shower, put on some nice clothes (not your pajamas), have a healthy breakfast, organize your workspace, and get cracking.

Stay away from social media

Easier said than done when we’re all anxious to know what’s happening around us. But anxious is the operative word here—it’s just going to stress you out and distract you from your work. Limit your online activities as you focus on your tasks.

Make time for exercise 

This becomes even more important as we stay indoors and live in uncertain times. If you’re a morning person, you could exercise once you wake up. If you tend to get sleepy mid-afternoon, a quick workout could give you an energy boost. If you used to hit the gym after work, then you can exercise once you’ve finished the day’s tasks. It can be a short, ten-minute HIIT workout, or an hour-long yoga session—what’s important is that you get moving.

Not all of us are fortunate enough to be able to work from home

Let’s be grateful we have that choice and the resources to do so. Let’s continue to stay home, practice good hygiene, and find both calmness and productivity indoors. Be safe, everyone!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Five years ago, a cousin succumbed to breast cancer complications. I thought of sharing a brief story about her cancer journey in observance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

My cousin was newly married and starting to build a family when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She underwent a mastectomy to remove the early stage of cancer from the affected breast.

Photo by Klaus Nielsen from Pexels

But two years later, her oncologist disclosed she had stage IV cancer. The cancer cells from her breast were not contained but had spread to her brain.

Despite the pains and rigors of cancer treatment, my cousin remains positive through her battle. Even up to her few remaining days, we know that she is holding on to her life. She loves her family so much that despite being sick, she still thinks of their welfare. I remember her saying, “Kailangan maging malakas ang loob ko para sa pamilya” (I need to be strong for my family).

Photo by Olya Kobruseva from Pexels

She may be terminally ill, but nothing prepared us for her passing.

My cousin died peacefully at the hospital four days before Christmas. She was only 46.

Our extended family welcomed 2016 with a heavy heart. She was laid to rest after a long, painful fight with cancer.

My cousin, Cecil

The observance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the Philippines highlights the importance of regular self-breast examination and the early detection and treatment of breast cancer among Filipino women.

A breast self-examination (BSE) is a method to detect any noticeable changes in one’s breast. Early detection of any changes in the breast and seeking immediate consultation will increase one’s chances of successful treatment.

The 2020 Global Cancer Observatory showed that breast cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the Philippines.

The high global incidence of the disease paved the way for the popular movement called Pink October in the 1990s. Source: DOH

We Are Vaccinated!

Have you had your Covid19 vaccine yet? I hope you did. Getting vaccinated the soonest possible time protects yourself and the people around you.

Covid19 vaccines will give you an extra layer of protection against the severe effects of the virus.

Taken at a vaccination site inside a mall in Quezon City

My family was able to register with the LGU-supported registration site online. We finally got our doses separately a few weeks later.

Hubby, myself, and our daughter are fully vaccinated now. Our son will have his second dose a few days from now. I’m glad that we were allowed to get the vaccine at the right time. Many are still waiting for their vaccine schedule in our area.

Taken inside a public school in Quezon City

Three of us are on the priority list being in the A3 category or those with comorbidities. Health experts said Covid19 vaccines prevent possible hospitalization and emergency room visits due to severe illness.

As for the vaccine side effects, what we experienced were all the common ones. These include pain at the injection site, mild fever (for me), the feeling of weakness or fatigue, and headaches for a couple of days.

Get the available Covid19 vaccine if you are not vaccinated yet. Protect yourself, the people you care about, and those you meet outside your homes.

Even when you are vaccinated, health experts remind the public to observe the minimum health protocol. Wash your hands frequently, wear a face mask, practice social distancing in public or crowded places.

Here at home, we wear face masks when we do not feel well. We do not know what afflicts us, so we wear face masks to be safe. We do not eat together, keep our distance when talking to each other. And we sleep in separate rooms.