Pain In The Neck Working From Home

Developing A Pain In The Neck

developing a pain in the neckWhat to do when it's a pain in the neck working from home?

Now I love working from home in my online business, but one of the problems is that I love it too much, and I don't quite know when to stop! That leads to long hours at the computer.

The bad news is that I have developed chronic neck and shoulder pain, almost certainly caused by bad posture sitting for too long at the computer.

It's too long a saga to explain the other (grandchildren related!) story that finally prompted me to go to a chiropractor to be told what was fairly obvious to everyone who knows me – even me! Namely, bad posture and too many hours at the computer. But you don't really like to admit they're right!

Chronic Neck And Shoulder Pain

The pain probably started about six months ago. But I was busy with my Dad's ill-health and keeping my business going at the same time, so I neglected it. Finally I gave in, paid my money, visited a chiropractor and started the journey of looking for neck pain help. Although the chiropractor gave me some excellent tips, and focused my mind on improving the problem – somehow that focus keeps straying to my home business, which is much more interesting than watching my posture.

As a further call to action, the other day my friend Sonal Talwar had a helpful post on her health blog with tips for promoting a healthy back. When you've read that, please come back here and read what I did to supplement the neck pain relief tips from Sonal and what the chiropractor advised!

Bad Posture Sitting At The Keyboard

Yes, it's as simple as that (probably with a dose of stress thrown in for good measure). A perfect recipe for my pain in the neck

I know the theory of good posture and bad posture, and I start each working day with the best of intentions.

pain in the neck worse while sleeping

But somehow it doesn't take long to forget and get engrossed in my work, at which point I find myself slumped at the desk again.

Stupidly enough, while I'm engrossed in my work I forget all about my neck pain, which can so easily lead me to forgetting about my posture too. My pain in the neck is worst when I'm in bed, or supposedly relaxing. No wonder Blogging After Dark is more fun than laying awake in pain.

Help For Neck And Shoulder Pain

Ian G HowarthThen enter a suggestion from an unexpected source – a friend in another Internet Marketers group that I belong to. I'm used to getting IM tips here, but hadn't expected tips to help chronic neck and shoulder pain.

Meet Ian G Howarth, an ex warehouse worker who found “A better way to make money that doesn't break your back” (appropriately enough!) Ian's site is TheIanGWay.com.

Ian also hosts the Facebook group that I'll be happy to introduce you to.

He has an amazing story of recovery that you can read on his About page. He's successfully recovered from far more than a sore neck!

Posture Minder

Posture MinderWhile browsing Ian's Facebook Group I spotted this post.

Ian had found a Google Chrome extension called Posture Minder – and it's free! Click the link or just Google it to find Posture Minder.

It reminds you to sit up straight, and watch your posture, etc, with pop-up notifications at specified time intervals.

Downloading and configuring Posture Minder was quick and easy, and within minutes I was getting reminders such as those below.

Now it sits on my Chrome toolbar behind a little “spine” icon – like the one shown on the reminder images below.

When configuring Posture Minder, you can choose either (or both) of a Posture Reminder and a Walk Reminder, which of course reminds you to get up every so often. The number of minutes between each reminder is user-configurable, so you can decide whether to let it automatically close after a user-determined time, or stay on screen until you click to dismiss it.

A sound reminder can be turned On or Off. Mine is firmly Off.

posture minder app

You might think such frequent reminders would be annoying – a pain in the neck in fact. Instead the only thing that annoyed me at first was how quickly after the last reminder I had forgotten my posture and slumped again. Old habits die hard.

The messages are very varied and of a friendly nature, so I accept them with good humour.

walk reminder app

After a few days of reminders, I find myself making a deliberate effort to “beat Posture Minder” and be sitting up straight before I get “told off” again.

While I won't pretend to have perfect posture now and be pain-free, I can already feel the benefit.

If working from home (or in your job) has started to become a “Pain in the neck”, I recommend downloading Posture Minder. It certainly won't harm you to improve your posture.

Please share

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Shantanu Sinha - August 29, 2017

Hello Joy,

Great one over here 🙂

Yeah blogging could be fun, but sometimes it cause us serious health issues. Sitting in front of our computer for long hours
could lead us to severe spine, eyes or shoulder problems. Actually sometime we are so lost in our work, that we are not
able to get our diet correctly or some exercises that needs to be done.

This posture minder looks very promising, reminding us to sit in a perfect posture, so that we do not suffer from any serious health issues.

Thanks for the share.


    Joy - September 1, 2017

    Hi Shantanu,

    Diet is another important health issue that bloggers need to watch for. It’s easy to get carried away blogging and not allow sufficient time to cook wholesome food; resorting instead to convenience foods.

    I hope you’ll try posture minder and encourage others to try it too.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Donna Merrill - August 29, 2017

Hi Joy,

What a cool tool….a posture reminder….gosh what will they think of next? But this is so important because we usually bend over our keyboard causing bad posture. I will look into it because I do get a pain in my back often. I like the walk prompter too. Sometimes I get so into what I’m doing that time flies. Can’t have that!

Thanks so much!


    Joy - September 1, 2017

    Hi Donna,

    I too get completely engrossed by whatever it is I’m doing and the hours just pass!

    Glad you like Posture Minder and hope it will help.

    Let me know 🙂

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Sharon T McLaughlin MD FACS - August 30, 2017

Great information we can benefit from. I try to stand and do yoga poses when I am at the computer too long.

    Joy - September 1, 2017

    Hi Sharon,

    Great tip about yoga poses – and you reminded me of my rather neglected “Standing Desk” where I am supposed to stand instead of sit.

    Need to reinstate a few hours a day at that.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Chery Schmidt - August 31, 2017

Good Morning Joy! I love your title Girlfriend! Oh So True, Pain In The Neck Working From Home!! LOL I have never heard of this Posture Minder before , but girl what a great find! I do find myself slouching here while typing away and would love some kind of a reminder to pop me back up HEHE

Awesome Share!
Thank You
Chery :))

    Joy - September 1, 2017

    Hi Chery,

    So pleased you spotted the title 🙂 I was quite pleased with myself on that one. Titles come “hard” to me, so I appreciate you noticing !!

    Hope you enjoy Posture Minder. Prevention is better than cure. Time for me to “sit-up” again. My reminder will be hear soon LOL

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Edward Thorpe - September 2, 2017

Hi Joy,

“Frequent reminders aren’t a pain in the neck” – funny! I seldom have a muscle pain reaction from laptop use as I pound away from my comfy recliner. Good info and interesting to see where you research problems.

    Joy - September 3, 2017

    Hi Edward,

    Interesting thought to work from a recliner! I sit up (with luck) in my office at a desktop. When I use the laptop I don’t feel I’m working. Hadn’t really thought of that until now!

    Perhaps I’ll give it a try.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Elise Cohen Ho - September 3, 2017

I always have to be mindful of my posture when sitting at my desk. I also make sure to move around a lot.

    Joy - September 3, 2017

    Hi Elise,

    While I’m getting better at watching my posture now, I’m still very bad at obeying the moving about reminders. That’s the next challenge.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Ryan Biddulph - September 4, 2017

Loving the Posture Minder idea Joy. I take breaks every 50-60 minutes. I get up, walk around, stretch and prep myself for sitting with back straight, and with my body hanging from my head. Like a coat hanging from a hanger. This helps ease the big time neck stiffness I used to experience. Break, stretch and remind myself to sit with good posture.

    Joy - September 7, 2017

    Thanks Ryan,

    That’s a great image of a way to ease neck stiffness. Thanks 🙂

    My posture is certainly improving from using it.

    However I should definitely move around more – but that hour between Posture Minder’s reminders just seems to fly by.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Benjamin Ehinger - September 7, 2017

I have dealt with this for about a decade now. Not necessarily chronic pay for me, but trying to find a better way to avoid pain in my neck, back and other parts of my body.

My wife and I used to have standing desks before we hit the road in our RV/travel trail. Now, the best I can do is rotate from sitting inside to sitting outside in our canopy. This seems to help as I get different positions.

We also make sure we take breaks every hour and I do stretching every morning. Campground walks also seem to be very helpful and anything else getting us up and moving.

It can be hard to get up and moving when you work from home at a keyboard all the time. I think a big key for me is changing my typing angle and eye angle throughout the day.

Thanks for the post Joy, I really enjoyed it!

    Joy - September 7, 2017

    Hi Benjamin,

    Welcome to my blog 🙂

    You’ve reminded me that I don’t use my standing desk as much as I should. It depends what I’m working on – sometimes I need more room on my desk to spread paperwork out. Will try harder.

    Taking hourly breaks is tough – it can sometimes take me an hour to get properly engrossed in what I’m doing, and then it’s time to stop.

    Like the side of your RV/travel trail. What a lovely way to combine work and pleasure.

    Thanks for your visit and comment,

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Erika Mohssen-Beyk - September 8, 2017

Hi Joy,
it is true many people who are working from home on the computer have trouble with posture and are in pain. It needs balancing movement. Instead of a posture reminder, I would suggest making exercise a habit. Even a 30 min. walk every day would be good. I am sitting a long time in front of the laptop, but I have the habit of doing exercise and walking every day. No trouble with pain at all. Sonal did write a new post about just taking a walk in the park. This does not only help the posture but also the mind to relax.
Thanks for sharing your story

    Joy - September 16, 2017

    Hi Erika,

    I’m working on incorporating exercise into my day, but – on checking myself out – I realise that my posture and sitting position at the computer leaves a lot to be desired, because my hours are very long.

    Good point about exercise relaxing the mind too!

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

JohnShepard - September 9, 2017

Well everything has good and bad sides. So naturally working from home can be a pain. My main problem is that Friends, family or neighbor can disturb you while you’re working.

    Joy - September 16, 2017

    Hi John,

    I’ve experienced that too. People don’t understand that working at home means working!

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Unknown - September 13, 2017

I run a few different businesses so half the time I work from my home office because it is easier.

I do not know what I would do if I didn’t have a standing desk. Just a few minutes sitting down and my back starts to hurt. Even when I go to a coffee shop I try and find a tall table to I can stand while I work.

I think every home office and even regular offices should have a standing table for people to use if they please.

    Joy - September 16, 2017

    Yes, it’s a good idea to have standing desks in general offices to help people with their posture.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Robin Khokhar - September 14, 2017

Hi Joy,
Besides many advantages, there are some disadvantages of working at home, and I believe neck pain is one of that.
Some times I have neck pain while working on the computer for long hours, but a Good posture can help.
So, big thanks for appearing up with the amazing post.

    Joy - September 16, 2017

    Hi Adam

    Thanks for your visit.

    Yes, hard work and dedication is necessary for successful network marketing.

    Joy Healey – Blogging After Dark

Onlyremotejobs - December 21, 2018

You will avoid pain in the neck while working at home if you adjust your seat the right way! Great article!

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