Think ahead to the year 2100. 77 years away. The world will likely be much hotter due to climate change, even more densely populated, and technology will have advanced further than any of us can even begin to predict.
If all of that wasn’t overwhelming enough, we have also now received a somewhat unfortunate look into what we’ll all look like. If we continue to work from home.
A furniture company – an office furniture company, to be exact – has this week released a set of images of a new 3D model called Anna. She isn’t what we humans would necessarily aspire to look like many years in the future. With a bad hunchback, swollen eyes, and ‘claw-like hands,’ all brought on due to working from home long-term. She has raised shoulders, weight gain, and ‘anxiety and depression.’
Poor Anna. If only she didn’t work in such a modern and flexible way.
As you might imagine, this image of Anna has not gone down too favourably with the people of The Internet. The team who produced it - Furniture At Work – have been severely criticised for creating ‘work from home propaganda.’ As people were quick to point out the company’s vested interest in people returning to the office full time; their website describes themselves as ‘delivering outstanding office furniture products to businesses and organisations.’
They have been slammed online. So much so that the blog post introducing Anna, has been removed from their website.
But is there any truth to these claims? Is Anna really what remote workers will look like in 77 years?
In short. No.
Remote and flexible working has been proved time and time again to actually be beneficial to our overall health and wellbeing. One Twitter user highlighted this perfectly in response to the Anna article, sharing: “I’ve lost 20lbs, do yoga daily, am more productive, and my work life balance is 70,000 per cent better since remote working.”
Why remote working might actually benefit your health
- You’re no longer commuting
Back in 2018, before the word “COVID” was not part of our everyday vocabulary, the average commute for UK workers was almost one hour per day. Now, that’s an extra hour per day that people can be using to exercise, rest, or spend time with loved ones. Undoubtedly far better for our health and mental wellbeing.
- Your stress levels are much lower
A massive 82% of remote workers surveyed in this study by PGi have equated more flexible work arrangements with much lower levels of stress. With over 13 MILLION working days lost to stress each year, lowering stress experienced by workers can only be a good thing. Both for personal health reasons, but also for productivity and even the economy.
- You have time to dedicate to healthier habits
Time. A precious gift. Something we all have far more of now that we’re not in an office every single day. The time saved from working in offices means people have far more time to dedicate to building and maintaining healthy habits. Food no longer needs to be eaten quickly and on-the-go, but can be prepared freshly at home. Staff no longer need to neglect exercise either, which is key to living a healthier lifestyle.
And after all, healthy employees are much happier and more productive at work, too!
With these benefits, and plenty of easy measures you can take to stay healthy while working from home, it’s highly unlikely that ‘grotesque’ Anna will become the reality for most of us.
Instead, the workplace will continue to thrive as flexibility becomes the norm.
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