May is Mental Health Month, and we want to touch on five key ways that coworking can support your mental health.
Truthfully, while we’ve tailored this article specifically around how we view and address mental health in our particular space, the mental health benefits of coworking extend well beyond our walls!
1. Create work-life balance
As remote workers, we all know how easy it is to get distracted while working from home.
The kitchen seems to always need tidying, the laundry pile is a little bit too big for our liking, family members might be chatting it up in the next room, and it’s frustratingly easy to keep raiding the kitchen pantry for that extra little snack that’ll hopefully give us the sugar boost to get us across the finish line-- It's hard to stay focused.
And if all those distractions weren’t enough, an even bigger hurdle is the struggle of switching from work mode to home mode at the end of the day
When you choose to work in a coworking space, eliminating distractions and making that end-of-day switch gets a little bit easier. It can help boost your productivity during the work day, then let you “leave work at work” so you can be more connected and present with your loved ones at home.
Your time and presence—both professionally and personally—are way too valuable to waste. Having a physical separation in your work and home environments prevents work from encroaching on your personal life and vice versa, leading to more balance and fulfillment.
2. Build genuine human connections
Let’s face it: working from home can be a terribly isolating experience. Sure, you might have a roommate or family member that you share a space with, but it’s tough to establish life-giving relationships with coworkers when you only get to talk to them through a screen.
About half of Americans report experiencing loneliness. In fact, loneliness is so prevalent today that the U.S. Surgeon General has even put out an advisory on how social connection and community can have profound healing effects on our mental health.
Obviously, joining a coworking space doesn’t magically bring your actual coworkers into the office with you. But coworking spaces do allow you to spend time with other professionals who are in the same boat as you! You can spend time at the proverbial water cooler talking about the weekend, have a lunchtime hangout in the kitchen, and make valuable, IRL connections.
Don’t get us wrong: there are tons of wonderful things about remote work. You can work with people all over the world, have flexibility in how you spend your time, and often get to choose when and where you work. Yet that flexibility can have some unintended costs!
As humans, we’re wired for in-person social connection. We ignore the in-person element to our own detriment. Coworking is one way to foster meaningful in-person interactions in your life.
3. Get out into the world
We’ve all experienced those days when we sit down in front of our computers in the morning, furiously work on a project, then realize we haven’t moved for hours. And while flow states might feel good for our to-do lists, they often leave our brains and bodies needing a little extra TLC.
If you’re an Apple Watch wearer, there’s a reason you get a notification to stand up every hour. Reducing sitting time and regularly standing up to move around holds tremendous benefits—both physically and mentally. A quick five-minute walk around the block can get the heart pumping, fresh air in the lungs, and help clear our brains to be more present with the work we do.
Fortunately, downtown Monterey has incredible two-hour parking all around The Pearl Works. The meter humans are always on top of it, and the motivation to move your car creates an incredible incentive to get up, take a break, stretch your legs, and get some fresh air.
Additionally, The Pearl Works is close to some of the best outdoor spaces Monterey has to offer. Stroll along the ocean on the Monterey rec trail, head to one of the hacienda gardens downtown (like the Stevenson Garden right across the street from us), or walk around Lake El Estero.
Your body and brain will thank you for stepping out for some fresh air.
4. Our furry mascots will make your day
Not only are they cute and cuddly, but research shows that the presence of pets can help reduce stress. Need some love before going into a challenging meeting? Our furry friends love respectful pets and are happy to develop a relationship with you!
One study by Passport Health USA found that having pets in the workplace can help reduce stress and increase employee satisfaction and morale.
At The Pearl Works, we value our furry mascots—recognizing that they keep our work environment both fun and stress-free.
5. Design with your well-being in mind
Did you know that your physical workspace affects your mental health and productivity?
Countless studies show that the physical environment you work in can have a tremendous impact on your mental health and the quality of your work. Stuffy offices, dim or buzzy fluorescent lights, uncomfortable working stations, no greenery? That’s a recipe for disaster!
First, it’s all about natural light. If you’re finding yourself feeling groggy and with a headache at the end of the day, it might be that your body didn’t get enough light. Even sitting closer to a window throughout the day can work wonders for your mental health while significantly reducing the strain placed on your eyes. The Pearl Works is brimming with natural light. So whether you just drop by for the day or you have a dedicated desk, you’ll always be surrounded by natural light to help keep your brain awake and active.
Second, greenery. Live green plants do more than just boost the aesthetics of an indoor space. They naturally improve air quality, which can support cognitive function and lower stress levels. We’ve tastefully filled The Pearl Works with live plants to liven up our workspace and give our members that extra boost for their mental health.
Finally, having designated space to downshift, our meditation room is ready, inviting you to take a moment to unwind, reflect, and just be present with yourself
It's all about creating a space that nurtures your mental well-being.
Our goal at The Pearl Works is to provide our members and guests with an amazing place to be the best version of themselves—both personally and professionally. From helping develop healthy work-life balance and hosting regular gatherings to designing our space to foster human connection and maximize productivity, we’re always looking to keep our members healthy and happy.
Want to learn more? Keep checking out our website and book a tour to see how coworking at The Pearl Works could help support your mental health.