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Is Telework Good For Your Health?

The brownie in question. The brownie in question. PhotoXpress

While writing about the release of the Office of Personnel Management’s most comprehensive report on telework practices in the federal workplace to date, this reporter with a sweet tooth took special notice of the photo chosen to accompany the story, showing a home desk, complete with a snack. Those brownies looked pretty irresistible.

This got us thinking: Is telework better for our health, or worse? It’s certainly easier to resist the office candy jar when working remotely, but might we venture to the kitchen more often if we stay home?

What about exercise? Telework advocate Josh Sawislak, who spoke with Government Executive about the OPM report earlier this week, says many teleworkers tell him they have more time to exercise when they don’t have to commute. Teleworkers might also use breaks in the workday to prepare healthy food at home, or to engage in a relaxing activity. In general, he says, teleworkers use their breaks differently than office workers, and have a separate set of distractions. Sure, the Internet is always there for teleworkers, but that colleague who wants to recap last night’s All-Star Game is not.

We want to hear from our teleworking readers: Is telework good for your health? And is it easier to focus on work when you’re outside the office, or harder? You can use the comments section to elaborate more on how your habits change when you work remotely.


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