Tin Catacutan: Being aware of your physical and mental health while working from home

Dribble Media sat down with wellness advocate Tin Catacutan as she talked about the importance of maintaining a proper work-life balance in today’s new normal of working from home.

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Thousands of new COVID-19 cases still mar the daily lives of Filipinos. The possibility of our routines going back to pre-pandemic times is very far from the horizon.

As we now do most of our school or work tasks inside the comforts of our home, maintaining a fit and active lifestyle takes a backseat. That is completely understandable, especially with our priorities set on just basically surviving this pandemic.

But taking good care of our bodies should always be of utmost importance. As we become more immersed in the work-from-home set-up, an unhealthy lifestyle could affect our productivity. That’s the main reason why Dribble Media sought the advice of Tin Catacutan, a fitness enthusiast and a wellness advocate.

While Tin applauds people’s efforts to adjust to a new way of life, she also acknowledges the fact that the shift to remote working could lead to the lack of a proper work-life balance.

Working from home takes away a huge part of our physical activity. When we go to the office, it’s either we commute or we drive. We go out for lunch or go all the way down the hall for a quick coffee fix. We don’t do all these things anymore. More often than not, we can find everything that we need inside our house.

— Tin

Tin, a former radio DJ for Green Giant FM, is now a corporate sales professional. She is also an excellent event host, having handled team building events and year-end parties for Dyson Philippines and Bel USA, among many others.

Yoga helps Tin to meditate and to calm her mind.

Yoga helps Tin to meditate and to calm her mind.

However, the pandemic also forced Tin to work mostly from home, and she says that trying to move as much as she can helps her to still achieve an active lifestyle.

Having an active lifestyle doesn’t mean just working out. It includes what you do throughout the day. It’s tempting to just sit all day in front of your computer because you want to be focused on your work. It becomes easy to forget to move, but it’s important that you insert as much movement as you can.

— Tin

The tendency of sitting for almost half a day is to develop back pains. But the thing is, we don’t have much of a choice because all the tasks that we have to accomplish at work are done through our laptops or smartphones.

However, Tin suggests that standing up and stretching after every hour will be very helpful in maintaining a good posture and letting our blood flow circulate. These are little things that will prove to be of big value in the long run.

Try to incorporate movements as much as you can. Small things amount to big changes and big effects over time. That’s the difference between just working out and having an active lifestyle. When you say you have an active lifestyle, it’s a part of what you do the whole day.

— Tin

As for working out, consistency and discipline are two important attributes that we had to have to reach our fitness goals. But Tin points out that it’s also essential that we develop an awareness of our “baseline.” According to her, we can know our baseline by checking in on ourselves, and listening to our bodies.

During the lockdown, the principle that stood out for me is how I listen to my body. Maybe before I would advise people to always push your limits. That’s actually good, but only to a certain extent. There is a fine line between pushing yourself and allowing yourself to recover from what you’ve been doing.

Check in with yourself. Ask yourself, ‘Where am I right now?’ That’s how you figure out your baseline.

— Tin Before the pandemic, Tin lets off steam by going to the gym and working out.

Before the pandemic, Tin lets off steam by going to the gym and working out.

Tin also reiterates that injuries can happen when we fail to be aware of our baseline. She says that it’s important to also research, and get the educated opinion of a professional fitness trainer.

Most importantly, it’s also high time that we pay attention to our mental health. As we are now drawn to the four corners of our homes, we are more vulnerable to getting lost in our own thoughts and becoming more anxious than usual.

Tin confessed that she was diagnosed with anxiety disorder, and it’s something that she continues to fight and live through everyday. While it may be different with other people, she says that she finds peace in being systematic with her routines.

During the pandemic, I have learned to find peace with my routines. I have a clear-cut idea of what I will do for the day so that I know what to expect. Personally, that works for me. I find comfort in that.

— Tin

As the same case with physical fitness, checking in with yourself is the way to go.

It starts with being more honest and more intentional with yourself. Ask yourself, “Am I feeling anxious?” “Am I feeling good or bad?” Then lastly, ask yourself what you can do to make it better.

— Tin Tin emphasizes the importance of being more intentional with your mental health and seeking professional help. - 11.jpg

Tin emphasizes the importance of being more intentional with your mental health and seeking professional help.

Now that she has learned how to cope and live and move on from her emotional struggles, Tin acknowledges the constant support that she receives from her family and friends. As an individual who personally went through emotional turmoil, Tin has some words of advice to our readers.

For people who are battling mental health issues, or recovering from emotional trauma or any kind of turbulence, remember that your past will not determine your future. What you do right now is what’s important for you moving forward.

Know what you can and what you cannot control. It’s not too late to change something, or work something out.

— Tin

Tin Catacutan is a fitness enthusiast and a mental health advocate. She is also a full-time Partnerships Associate for The Kho Group, and a freelance event host. Reach out to her through her Instagram and LinkedIn profiles.

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