COVID-19’s impact on our everyday lives is undeniable. Whether you have experienced a significant decline in business, struggled with the challenges of from working from home for the first time, feared about the health and safety of a loved one, attempted balancing homeschooling children with your own workload or have had to produce more results with less resources, we have all experienced significant stress in the workplace recently.
From small businesses to large corporations, employees around the globe are feeling the mental and emotional effects created from significant increases in stress. According to a recent interview with Time Magazine, Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, stated we’re “absolutely” in a mental health crisis.
Stress not only impacts work productivity and performance, but it can also deeply affect the way you engage with your work and communicate with your coworkers. According to the Mayo Clinic, stress can lead to anxiety, feelings of restlessness, irritability or anger, sadness or depression, fatigue, insomnia and even muscle tension or pain.
While we currently don’t have much control over the pandemic, there are many tools and resources available to help you, as an individual, decrease the effects of stress and tension at work and gain feelings of calm and composure.
GET SOME HEADSPACE
Headspace, a digital guide to mindfulness and meditation for stress, anxiety, sleep, fitness and more, has launched a brand-new toolkit for employers. This free collection of resources is perfect to share with employees who are struggling to navigate this global crisis. Inside you’ll find everything from support for working parents to tools on how to manage anxiety during a crisis. Headspace is also offering those who have lost their jobs a 12-month free trial.
TAKE A WALK WHILE LISTENING TO A PODCAST
While many of us are confined to working from home, stepping outside for a walk in the sunshine while listening to a calming podcast is great stress relief. Many mental health experts have been releasing episodes specifically addressing how to navigate stress and anxiety created from the pandemic. In Your Anxiety Toolkit, host Kimberley Quinlan, a licensed marriage and family therapist, dives into how to manage powerful emotions that get in the way of work. Host Teresa McKee of A Mindful Moment offers advice on how to not panic about life changes like working remotely for the first time. There are dozens of other options available for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google Podcasts.
INCLUDE SELF-CARE TIME IN YOUR DAILY AGENDA
When working remotely, sometimes the line between work ending and downtime beginning may become blurred. When scheduling out your daily or weekly agenda don’t forget to prioritize time for exercise, eating well and getting enough rest. Doing that online Zumba class may become forgotten about after a long day in front of your computer, but if you set a calendar reminder or alarm, you’ll be much more likely to get up and move. Something your physical and mental health will thank you for later.
TAKE A BREAK FROM WORKING INDOORS
The laptop has become an irreplaceable part of the modern worker’s toolkit yet taking them outside to work in the sun is never as ideal as it seems. There’s too much glare, your battery dies and so on. Luckily, many different companies sell laptop hoods or screens that decrease sun glare. There are also customizable settings on Macbooks and PCs that manually increase the brightness and contrast of your screen which makes it easier to see outside. If you wear dark clothing while outdoors, it also reduces the glare on your screen.
TALK TO A FRIEND OR LOVED ONE
While we may not be able to go out and crash on a friend’s couch to vent about the work week quite yet, social distancing does not mean social isolation. Having a strong support network of friends and family members you can talk to is a great way to reduce stress. While they may not be able to completely relate to your work situation, calling or FaceTiming a friend will allow you to get some much needed feelings off your chest.
We’re #VegasStrong and we’re in this together. Taking time to share these tips with your coworkers, employees and bosses benefits us all. We know the importance of community here in Las Vegas, and when we look after each other during challenging times like this, we become stronger together.