1 May 2020, 12:22 — 6 min read
Mental health is a topic that has been taboo across the globe for a long time. Taking care of your physical health was a given while checking on your mental health was unheard of. Thankfully in recent years, we, as a society, have come to address and aid mental health.
With the fast pace of technological advancement and human connections around the world become closer than ever, both positive and negative effects on mental health can be witnessed - especially now that a pandemic has taken over and shaken businesses, government entities, and various communities. Employees are working from home and companies are managing their people at a distance.
So, what happens with the sudden disruption of your routine? How do you deal with a situation that is far from the ordinary yet safe and familiar? How can you work on your mental health while working from home? Here are some tips to help you cope in the midst of the contagion, advice that you may also pass on to anyone else who needs it.
It sounds simple, but it’s difficult for some to do. Ask yourself: “What does self-care look like to me today?” Is it reading a good book with a cup of tea? Is it baking goodies for you and your family to enjoy? Is it decluttering your wardrobe and doing a long-overdue clean-up in your room?
Assess what exactly it is that you need to do for yourself at the moment because each day is going to be different. When you are sitting in front of your laptop and getting caught in the whirlwind of doing task after task, it is unavoidable to feel mentally exhausted.
When working in the office, you have the freedom to take a walk outside or catch up with a colleague. It’s no wonder that your brain is seeking an activity to break away from the mundane. We are not robots and taking a break is needed in order to remain productive. And in some days, just to simply stay sane.
More often than not, we spot negative news on our Facebook or Twitter feed about the pandemic and our mind goes into haywire about what could happen. And yes, conspiracy theories count.
Panic, fear, frustration. These are common emotions that you may be feeling at a time like this. Panic arises because there is fear of the unknown. Frustration grows because there are suddenly so many things that are out of our control.
Do what you have to do with what you can control. Unfollow people or public figures that bring your spirit down or better yet, go on a social media detox. When needed, keep the negativity out of your sight and of your mind.
Also read: COVID-19: A change of directions for MSMEs
Having a “buddy” who can check up on you as well as take your mind off the negativity (and vice versa) is also important for your mental health. Beyond that, talking to someone who you know will understand what you are going through and help you pick the pieces back up is vital at a trying time like this.
Since we are experiencing a community quarantine, we are unable to meet our partners or catch up with our friends outside. However, virtual calls are more than possible in this day and age. Get on a video call and have that meaningful conversation. Or take a few steps away from the computer and chat with a close family member about how you’re feeling.
We are not robots and taking a break is needed in order to remain productive. And in some days, just to simply stay sane.
It is okay to talk about the difficult situation while it’s happening. You do not, by all means, have to wait until you have healed or learned something from it in order for it to be considered valid. A problem shared is a problem 50% solved.
If there is one thing that shouldn’t be minimized and taken for granted when working from home, it is your current mental state. You have every right to feel the way you do. It may not always be logical, but it is valid. Do not suppress it. But do what you have to do in order to get past it.
Then, think deeply about the blessings that you have around you. Keep in mind one thing that you are grateful for each day. Because it’s always good to have an attitude of gratitude. To take it a step further, set at least one goal that you are looking forward to achieving. This can help with your productivity.
Also read: COVID-19 crisis: 3 effective strategies to build resilience
We are still capable of helping those around us, no matter how small or big the support. While it is true that there are several things that are out of our control during a pandemic, we can control our contribution to the betterment of our community, our people.
You can donate to organizations accepting donations to aid frontline workers and COVID-19 patients. On the other hand, you may lend a listening ear to a friend, a colleague, or family member dealing with depression or anxiety. Whoever you choose to help will create an impact one way or the other.
TeamAsia has always deemed mental health important, even before the global health crisis. Because at the end of the day, the overall wellbeing of our people coincides with the wellbeing of our team. We hope that these tips will help you take care of your mental health better as well as adjust to an easier and sustainable lifestyle when working from home.
How are you feeling today? We are here and ready to listen to you. Let’s chat over at firstname.lastname@example.org and take mental health breathers together.
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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy or position of GlobalLinker.
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