Being quarantined for almost 4 weeks is the bitter reality now and we are still counting days to go on till we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Pre and post quarantine could show a lot of differences in our emotional values indirectly and affect our productivity at work.
Isolation, anxiety, and depression are some of the common mental health effects. Let us know what they have to do with this situation.
An Unsound Mind#
Focusing our mind towards the right goal is an essential skill we need during this virtual work atmosphere. Especially working from home seems to be good in the initial days but as time goes, issues like isolation, anxiety, and depression could pop up despite being home with family. Online communication could sometimes be misinterpreted as they lack visibility over body language. Comments and feedback could feel rude and criticizing. One way to solve this is by calming your emotions with some music, motivational talks, and even meditating.
We get involved in our work and lose track of the working hours. Starting the day and ending the day at a fixed time is never the case when you work from home. Working hours could overlap with your time leading to stress and exhaustion. As a result, you might start taking the stress out on your family. The best way to handle this is by following the Pomodoro technique. There are many extensions available to support this technique and practicing time management is a key skill.
Keep a keen eye on the habits you develop during these days. You could get easily distracted during working hours by your phone notifications, television, messages, or the temptation to eat something. This becomes a repetitive cycle as the quarantine days prolong. All the above mentioned are unhealthy to the mind and body. To break this cycle, push yourself to practice a better habit cycle. You can replace eating with a short brisk walk around the house, play some music to distract yourself from your phone, etc.
We’re still in the early stages of figuring out how remote work affects our mental health and what we can do to improve the situation. Here are some suggestions that we can follow to resolve these.
- Openly acknowledge that we are in a tedious situation and being mentally strong is the only way to handle this. Being anxious or depressed is nothing “wrong”. Talk to people; there are many ways to get help in this virtual world.
- A forum to discuss mental health-related issues can be helpful. There are many anonymous forums available too.
- Management can take some steps to help their people. An open line for connecting when people feel stressed or arranging for virtual yoga/stress relief sessions.
- Physical activity will be very less now and self-motivation to workout, yoga, exercise, or even dance is much needed now. 30 mins a day can make a difference.
- Develop a habit of eating fruits and healthy items. Healthy food intake can keep the body and mind fresh.
Remote work comes with unique mental health challenges and when you don’t notice your team’s stress, without meeting every day, it’s easy to assume that everything is okay. We need to quickly acknowledge the downsides of remote work and do the need to help our people thrive better.