The Science of Why You Shouldn’t Work from Your Bed

The Science of Why You Shouldn’t Work from Your Bed

The Science of Why You Shouldn’t Work from Your Bed

If you can recognise yourself in any of the following questions, then you need to stop and think things through:

  • Are you tired of the same boring commute to your 9 to 5 office job? 
  • Did you change your work habits to working from home?
  • Do you happen to spend most of it in bed?

Perhaps, the idea to work from home sounds more and more attractive to you with each day spent in a cubicle. You dream about a pleasant time surrounded by your family and pets, wearing casual clothes and even pyjamas.

"To work from your bed is the freedom to combine office job and house chores, the freedom to wear what you want, the freedom to spend more time with family", comments Jonathan, CEO of the Mattress & Bedding Insider Company, "However, taking it to the extreme can and will cause you trouble", he adds.

Without the shadow of a doubt, freedom is a tremendous advantage of remote work over your traditional office, along with the highest level of self-control and the ability to regulate work-life balance yourself and that's great.

But where's the catch?

When you telecommute, you might end up spending the whole workday in bed. Blame thyself not, as this happens to most of the people working at home. According to a great study by the Wall Street Journal, 80% of young professionals share the same fate and it's up to us to change.

Of course, beds are comfy but to what extent? Truth is, you better avoid working from your bed, and here's a good chunk of reasons for you to stop and never go back:

1. Your Bedroom Loses its Primary Focus

Your home has separate areas based on functionality. As kitchens come to food and bedrooms to sleep, office space is meant for work and work alone. If you spend too much time on tasks directly from bed, it can blur the lines, though. A small apartment doesn't mean limited functionality per square feet. So at any cost, don’t fall for the easiness of working and eating from your bed. 

According to Harvard University, to have a stronger mental bond between your bedroom and relaxation, don’t work where you sleep. Keep your laptop, smartphone, and business documents out and far away from your personal life and relaxation zone.

2. Separate Work and Home

It’s hard to detach from work-life and often people bring their office problems back at home. It’s even harder to separate work from actual life when you telecommute. 

The blurring lines between work and leisure time are a real drawback when you deal with obligations in the comfort of your home. You don’t want the “always at work” experience nonstop as that is a severe hit to productivity. Establish an area to work and a separate one to relax.  

3. Decreased Productivity

Your brain associates the bed with rest and sleep. So how do you expect to be productive when your mind drifts away and prepares for relaxation? 

Instead of being productive, you’ll end up comfy and lazy with work tasks piling up by your side. That’s why you should the least arm yourself with proven productivity hacks for remote work to stay on focus.

Check out these 5 Ways for Remote Workers To Get More Done Faster

4. Worse Quality of Sleep

When you work from bed, you probably take your laptop or smartphone with you. You might not realize it, but this is harmful to your sleep. 

These electronic devices emit blue light which tells the brain to stay alert as if it is still daytime. It affects the sleep hormone called melatonin and you won’t be able to fall asleep easily. This means your productivity on the next day will also decrease, leading you in a spiral of exhaustion and stress.

If it’s necessary to use your devices in bed before sleep, turn on blue light filters to limit its effect on your brain.

5. Bad Posture when Working in Bed

bad posture working from bed

Let’s be honest - working from bed is comfortable only for 15-20 minutes and then your back starts to hurt. Even if you pile up a load of pillows to support your spine, it still isn’t enough to survive a full workday without dealing with back or neck pain in the end and it could easily turn into a chronic health problem. Save yourself the troubles and work from a designated area, at best, with an ergonomic home office chair.

How to Avoid Working from Bed?

  1. Ban smart devices from your bedroom
  2. Create a designated home office
  3. Search for other remote-work-friendly spots

1. Ban smart devices from your bedroom

At first, it may be hard to leave your phone in another room and not check your work mail or scroll through social media. But believe us, this is essential for your relaxation, sleep, and general wellbeing.

  • Detox your bedroom from smart devices and you’ll feel the positive effect soon enough.
  • Go to bed with a book and a cup of camomile tea to unwind and easily drift away.
  • In the mornings, wake up with a radio alarm or a lamp that simulates the sunrise light.

These minor tricks boost both productivity and creativity throughout the day.

2. Create a designated home office

To avoid bringing your work to bed, choose another space for your home office. It doesn’t have to be a separate room. A small corner by the window might be the perfect fit. Opt for a desk with drawers or a table depending on your work needs. 

According to career expert Mathias Mayers, "You should invest in a comfortable chair since you’ll spend significant time sitting. Although a puff chair seems fun at first, your back will suffer soon enough. So take the time to choose what furniture you will use for the considerable future as you better do it right the first time. 

3. Search for other remote-work-friendly spots

Why limit yourself to only working from home?

The concept of digital nomads gets popular by the hour. More and more coffee shops and restaurants welcome people working from their laptops. Take a stroll through your neighbourhood and look for cafes that provide decent Wi-Fi and power outlets to plug in your laptop. 

Ask around if there are any coworking spaces in your city. Most of these places provide a free trial day so you can test if working in a shared office is your thing. 

Final Thoughts

If you want to be productive when you telecommute, don’t take your work and smart devices to bed. This will only mess up with your sleep cycle and lead to back or neck pain. 

Instead, create a cosy home office or go out with your laptop and explore the landscape for coworking spaces, coffee shops, or even the library. Personally, I spend most of the winter juggling between two libraries. 

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  • Juliette P

    I’ve been having awful neck pain for months after sitting in bed and doing nothing during quarantine.

  • Mark Edwards

    Someone needs to create an all around pillow to work from bed

  • Dan Randall

    This is actually really helpful

  • Jennie Moore

    Thank you so much for posting this.

  • Azriel Adelberg

    Medical providers agree that working from your bed could disrupt your sleep schedule and actually make you less productive, causing you annoying aches and pain that could be avoided from a proper workplace setup. For sleeping concerns, you can check

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Dimitar Karamarinov

Digital Marketing Expert

Dimitar Karamarinov is an award-winning digital multi-instrumentalist coming into practice as early as 2006. Over a decade of audio, graphic, visual design, along with versatile know-how of business, marketing and communication. Dimitar grows experience with Entrepreneur Franchise 500, Inc 5000 and multi-continent brands under his belt. 


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