Many people are currently working from home due to the social distancing requirements of COVID-19. There has been a need to be proactive and creative in managing the challenges this presents.
As the initial response phase of COVID-19 moves forward to the next phase, we are faced with the reality of a “new normal”. There is the potential that we can experience an emotional fatigue that can come with the stress of a constant response to the change. Communication is essential for early intervention and effective solutions to the negative affects of stress on our mental health. Consider the following to keep yourself on track:
- Keep a routine, whatever works for you.
- Wake at your regular time (and finish work at a regular time)
- Shower and get dressed for the day.
- Schedule exercise and time outdoors, where possible.
- Schedule regular online catch ups with colleagues, friends, and family.
Video meeting platforms have provided a great way to recreate the regular face to face contact that we would normally have. However, as restrictions ease, there may be some unexpected anxiety and apprehension as we return to the workplace and social gatherings. If you are struggling there are lots of resources that can help. There are also some great resources you can access that provide strategies for mental health support:
- Head to Health is an Australian government website that provides Australians with trusted information and digital supports to help support everyone’s mental health and wellbeing during this pandemic. This page covers where to get the facts about the COVID-19 outbreak, tips for maintaining good mental health, information on how to access mental health services, information for parents, and how to keep older Australians safe and connected by helping them get established online https://headtohealth.gov.au/covid-19-support/covid-19
- “MoodGym” is an interactive program which helps you to learn and practise skills which can help to prevent and manage symptoms of depression and anxiety. moodgym.com.au
- “MyCompass” from the Black Dog Institute is an easy to use, personalised self-help tool for mental health blackdoginstitute.org.au
Employers and employees have a responsibility for health and safety in the workplace and this duty of care extends to remote work requirements, including work from home arrangements. (NSW) Work Health & Safety Act 2011. If you want more information about WH&S obligations and ergonomics considerations to support your business, we would love to hear from you.
Always report any problems to your workplace. If symptoms of pain or discomfort persist, advice from a medical professional may be appropriate.