We have been working remotely for more than a year thanks to the COVID-19 global pandemic. Recently, many employers are starting to reopen their offices. While there are some workers who are ecstatic about being able to leave their houses and go into work again, others are a bit more hesitant about the change and how their safety will be affected. One of the biggest questions for a lot of people is – how can I make the transition back into work as smooth I can?
Don’t worry. We want your transition into office to be as seamless as you do. Read our 6 tips below about how to make returning to the office as stress free as possible.
Think About What You Need
We are all more hyper aware of germs than we have ever been before. It’s easy to be diligent on your own, but when you go into a shared workspace, you have to consider keeping yourself safe even more. Think about what you need to feel comfortable in your office. Maybe bringing disinfectant spray or wipes, for example, will make you feel comfortable using communal spaces like restrooms. Perhaps you need to wipe down your desk and keyboard each night to feel safe and secure. Consider what feels right to you and secure the information and supplies you need as you think through your return to office plan.
Try To Socialize (If You Want)
If you have been craving face to face interactions with human beings and couldn’t wait to get back into office to get it, try to get back into the groove of in-person socializing.Start by making an effort to check in with your team throughout the day (from a safe distance if mandated by your job). You can also schedule in-person meetings or designate a time to have lunch. After interacting with your team through a screen for over a year, this might feel foreign at first, but soon you will see how those personal connections contribute to getting back to connecting with people and improving your overall mental health.
Know Your Boundaries And Stick To Them
Yes, you are back to work now, but that doesn’t mean that you do not need to speak up if you are uncomfortable about it or have questions. Feel free to get with your human resources department to see what support and resources are being made available to staff during this time. Trust yourself. If being in the office makes you uneasy, whether it’s a requirement about vaccinations or mask, or if you simply prefer to continue to work remotely, make your voice heard. It is important that you are comfortable at work to do your job efficiently.
Support Safety Protocols
If you have made the conscious decision to work in office, it is your professional duty to support your employer’s safety protocols. These protocols are set in place for the safety of yourself and everyone in office. This means that you should be prepared for mandatory mask, social distancing, and daily temperature checks.
It is also your right to offer feedback about protocol if you so choose. Get with Human resources and offer help or suggestions with the current policies. These recent changes are affecting everyone company-wide. Sharing suggestions, as well as empathy, will go a long way.
This pandemic is something that we have never lived through before. Some of us have had to watch our family battle COVID-19, others have had to submit to the pandemic changing our social lives and living situations. So, it is okay to feel as if you need mental and emotional help getting through these changes as Covid-19 continues to alter our lives. Whether you’re feeling relieved or hesitant about your return to the workplace, it may be helpful to find a coach, therapist, or counselor to help you get your mind around this transition.
Take this opportunity to get the care that you need so that you can feel well-supported as you return to the office. You deserve mental health care that sustains every part of your life.
Be Realistic About Your Situation
When we go back into office, things aren’t likely to be quite the same as it was before the beginning of 2020.
While it feels good to be back in office, workplace interactions will be different because the World is different. So, prepare your mind for the constant changes that may happen now within your workplace as we navigate through the pandemic and the ever-changing orders from National Heath Organizations and the federal government.
Just breath, be safe and stay prepared