Here are some helpful tips to protect your health and be productive working from home.
UT System does not endorse any specific service or vendor. This list is shared as a convenience for our members searching for resources.
Tips for Working from Home
- Get dressed for the day. You don’t have to wear your normal work clothes but get out of your pajamas and into “work” clothes.
- Keep the same schedule as you would at the office.
- Pick a spot in your home where you’ll work. Make it somewhere free of distractions.
- Start by getting clear about what needs to get done during the day ahead, and create a manageable list.
- Set boundaries. If other people are at home during the day, discuss with them the times you’ll be working and ways to minimize distractions.
- Move throughout the day. In addition to exercising (e.g., walking, doing an online exercise video), take short stretch breaks. You can use this short video as a guide. Airrosti also has videos with information and stretches for specific injuries and maintaining or improving mobility.
- Meditation. Use that time you would be commuting to start a mindfulness practice. Try out the BCBSTX Centered App (available for iPhone here). Try out a free trial of Headspace or Calm.
- Social connection. Take time to connect with your coworkers through email, instant messaging or phone.
- Enjoy healthy snacks. Find ideas at the American Heart Association.
- At the end of the day, put your work away. While you won’t have a commute to transition your day from work to home life, putting away your work may help signal your body it’s time to rest and recover from the day.
(Sources: How to Stay Sane While Working From Home (Especially During the Coronavirus) [YouTube video], and the New York Times.)
It is important to have an ergonomic workstation. Watch this short video and use this Desk Ergonomic Comfort Self-Checklist (.pdf) to set up your workstation to support your health.
MDLIVE: Instead of going to the doctor’s office, you can have a virtual visit while at home. MDLIVE is available 24/7 at no cost to UT SELECT and UT CONNECT members. Visits with a board-certified MDLIVE doctor can be made via online video, mobile app or phone. Register online or call 1-888-676-4204. You will need your benefits ID card.
24/7 Nurse Line: 1-888-315-9473
UT SELECT and UT CONNECT Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas have registered nurses available 24/7. The nurse line can answer your health questions and help you decide whether you should go to the emergency room or urgent care center or make an appointment with your doctor. They have been trained on the latest clinical guidelines for COVID-19.
Mental Health Resources
EAP: The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a confidential program offered at no cost to you that can help you and your dependents successfully deal with life's challenges. Professional assistance is available to help resolve personal and professional problems of all kinds. Find the EAP for your UT institution here.
MDLIVE Behavioral Health Counseling
MDLIVE offers virtual visits for behavioral health counseling. Speak with a licensed counselor, therapist, or psychiatrist for support. You can choose who you want to work with for issues such as anxiety, depression, relationship problems, trauma, loss, and more.
Taking care of yourself including getting enough rest, healthy eating, and staying emotionally healthy is important all the time but especially during times of great change and stress. Visit our list of Selfcare Resources.
Digital Health Programs
Many of our current programs are great resources to turn to even while you’re at home. These are covered 100% by UTSELECT.
- Hinge Health: Hinge Health is a coach-led digital program for those suffering from chronic back, knee, hip or shoulder pain.
- Omada: The Omada program inspires healthy habits you can live with long-term. It provides tools and support to help you make changes that stick. It's an approach shown to reduce risk factors for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Plus Omada participants receive relevant tips from their coach like ways to boost your immune system.
- Livongo: Manage your diabetes and/or hypertension digitally with the support of a certified coach and many other resources.