Are you heading back into the office? As federal and local Covid-19 restrictions are lifted across the country, remote and furloughed employees are preparing for a return to the regular work week. If you’re feeling mixed emotions of anxiety and excitement, you’re not alone. Many organizations are taking the necessary precautions for employees returning to work. In fact, in a recent survey of business owners and upper level management by SERVPRO, 83 percent of businesses are investing more in deep cleaning to keep their employees and customers safe. To help you feel more prepared and combat stress, here are five tips to consider:
Communicate with Your Employer
Whether through executive leadership, Human Resources or your direct manager, request information on any new policies and safety procedures that have been put in place since the global pandemic. Changes might include a new remote-work policy, conference room and building capacities, updated office traffic flows or mandated sanitizing procedures. To better understand what kinds of changes your office should be making, refer to information from healthcare officials and the Center for Disease Control (CDC).
Develop a Routine
For many individuals, shifting back to a 9 PM to 5 PM office routine won’t come without a little adjustment. To help yourself feel successful every day, consider planning your schedule and subsequent daily tasks ahead of time, taking into account everything from your diet to hygiene and health needs. Leverage the help of a family member or friend to ensure accountability in sticking to your plan. There are many different ways to develop a consistent daily routine; find the strategy that works best for you and stick to it!
It’s important to give yourself time to relax! Even during the day, a few minutes of break time can revitalize you and give you the energy you need to finish strong. You’d be surprised to learn that according to recent research, around 83 percent of gamers have connected online during work or school--and that’s not a bad thing! With an increase in video game sales during the quarantine of 2020, consider talking to your boss about keeping this stress-relieving hobby and incorporating it into your day as a way to recharge.
Monitor Your Stress
Frequently check in with yourself and make sure you’re monitoring your body for signs of stress. While the symptoms of anxiety or stress can vary from person to person, there are a few things you can look out for:
- Emotional effects: feeling agitated, overwhelmed, lonely or depressed.
- Physical effects: headaches, low energy, chest pains, nausea, dry mouth, muscle aches and pains.
If you begin to notice any of these side effects, consult with a healthcare provider to receive the help you need. Many organizations also offer mental health resources for free to their employees: don’t forget to ask your Human Resources team about any additional support available.
Protect Your Health
Without a vaccine or cure, it’s still vital to protect your health and the health of those around you. Continue to follow social distancing protocols and disinfection guidelines to make sure that you’re limiting the spread of Covid-19. The simple act of wearing a mask and washing your hands makes a huge difference! Consider bringing supplies, or contacting your employer for resources, to create a sanitation station at your desk or personal work environment.