Working from home is one of the many adjustments people and organizations are having to make during the coronavirus pandemic. Here are some tips to ease the stress.
Show compassion for your co-workers
These are unprecedented times and people are experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety. The future of our jobs, our companies, and the economy is uncertain. It’s not surprising that tensions may be rising with colleagues over the past few weeks.
Make an effort to be kind and show compassion. Accept that different people cope differently. We’re all adjusting - worried about family members and health concerns. Some people may remain positive and upbeat while others may lose their patience.
Many of us are new to working remotely and this is adding additional pressures to an already stressful time. Realize it may take longer for your colleagues to complete a task or return an email.
Your new workday
First, you’ll need to create a dedicated workspace – whether you have a home office, the dining room table, or a section in your basement. It may be trial and error at the beginning while you get your remote connections running and figure out how to use conference calling software. It’s okay, give yourself a break!
It may be fun to hang out in your pajamas for the first few days, but it’s a good idea to get dressed to create a sense of normalcy. Start each day with a to-do list to help prioritize and stay focused. Crossing completed items off provides a daily sense of accomplishment.
Add two 15 minute breaks into your schedule for you to get up and move. Take a walk outside. Shoot some baskets if you have a hoop in your driveway. Make a workout course in your house – do 20 jumping jacks in the dining room, 10 squats in the living room, go up and down the stairs. Physical exercise is good for your mental state.
Children Can Be Distractions
Another source of stress for many workers is the fact their children are home now that the schools are closed. Finding daycare is a challenge now. If you have school-aged kids, they should be able to direct themselves and be occupied with schoolwork for several hours each day. Have them on a schedule that compliments yours.
Realize that this is a temporary situation, and these are unprecedented times. Consider relaxing screen time rules for the time being. It can be more difficult with younger children. You’ll need to plan your workday around their napping and sleeping schedules. Plan ahead and have some craft projects and puzzles ready to pull out when boredom hits.
Avoid the TV & trips to the refrigerator
Turn the TV off. You need a break from the constant hum of the news. Stress eating is common and understandable, but it will end up causing more distress. Have healthy snacks easily accessible - a veggie tray, popcorn, and fresh fruit.
Make use of your former commute time
Use time you would have been driving to and from work for selfcare. End your workday with stress-relief exercises such as stretches and deep breathing. Put on some meditation music, close your eyes, and relax for a few minutes.
Connect with others
We are keeping away from each other physically, but we shouldn’t be isolating ourselves socially. Reaching out to people you trust is one of the best ways to reduce anxiety, depression, loneliness, and boredom. Add sending a funny text, making a phone call, or facetime a friend to your daily to-do list.