Companies, people, and communities are preparing to move into the next phase of the pandemic – and many people who had just used to working remotely will be returning to work soon, one can experience emotional impact associated with returning to work post-COVID-19.
One study showed that over 60% of employees are worried about returning to work. While changing routines from remote work to in-office is one challenge. There are various actions that you can take to build resilience and make the transition easier. Articulating particular things that are causing worry or stress can provide a sense of control that will help to build emotional resilience. As you consider returning to work, our article will help you out to think about it:
Commuting by car will likely be the same experience, though carpools may be a thing of the past (for now). Public transportation can be a source of concern, as it would be difficult to maintain social distancing. If these things are on your mind, speak with your employer and see if there is a possibility such as adjustment of work schedule so that you can avoid rush hour commutes; or explore alternate means of transportation.
2. Personal Workspace
Considering the hygiene, many organizations are reconsidering open offices and looking to restructure workspaces to provide personal space, increased distance. Speak to your HR manager openly about your concerns, and find out what the plan is to manage the potential spread of infection at the office. We recommend you to maintain physical distance and wear masks.
Your company should have a plan for common areas at the office such as scheduling breaks in shifts to reduce the number of people in a break room at once, reconfiguring set up to support social distancing; or limiting the number of people in a conference room at once.
Bring your hand sanitizer, and have lunch at your desk.
4. Develop a Routine
Our regular daily routines changed due to lockdown and adapting a routine is one of the best ways to develop a sense of control over your activities and that also helps you to break down your day into manageable pieces and reduce your anxiety.
A manageable routine helps with the emotional impact of returning to work may include: take consistent work breaks, participate in outdoor activities, keep a regular sleep schedule, and keep up with hobbies / enjoyable pastimes during off-hours.
A common thread is a communication, make sure you communicate with your concerned authorities by sharing your feelings on returning to work is a great way to define your emotions so that they can be addressed – it also offers your authorities the chance to offer solutions that they have already considered (or consider solutions, if they haven’t yet.)
Ask about, if any PPE will be provided, or if the company will provide hand sanitizer, cleaning wipes, tissues, and other hygienic products.
While there is still a lot of uncertainty about the future and many factors that are outside of individual control, still there are proactive ways and approaches that one can be taken to help cope with the emotional impact of the changes that are to come.