Working Through It

April 08, 2020

Everyone in the country is managing the anxiety of the Coronavirus and social distancing, with many working from home and trying to be productive despite the stressful news of the day. Here are some tips for working from home through this crisis, to ensure you focus not just on work, but on your mental health, as well.

  • Set the Schedule You Need for Now – Most work from home tips will tell you to set a schedule and stick to it. Unfortunately, in this extreme situation, that’s not always possible. If you are dealing with sleepless nights, avoid early morning calls to give yourself a bit more time to get up and running. If you are taking care of small children at home, you may need to work around their eating and sleeping schedules. Or, if you are caring for sick or elderly relatives, you may need long breaks during the day. There is no rule book for our current situation. Do what you can, when you can.
  • Stay Informed, but not Immersed – News is moving very quickly, and you could easily spend all day reading updates, analysis, and estimates of what is to come. Try to limit your news intake so that you know the current situation and can plan accordingly but aren’t so engaged that you are dwelling in it. Don’t check in with the news sites more than once a day. Set a curfew for nighttime, turning off the news feed a few hours before bed to give you some time to decompress.
  • Acknowledge the Unknown – It’s tempting to go on executing plans as if everything is normal, but it’s important to acknowledge we aren’t in the same world we were in just a week ago. Projects may need to be postponed or cancelled, deadlines may have to shift, and new needs have certainly popped up. Start each week – or even each day – with an honest assessment of the impact of Coronavirus on each project to make sure you are focusing on the right things.
  • Schedule Time to Connect – Working on your own can be great for productivity but isolating, as well. Make sure you have time at the start or end of meetings to just connect with one another. Set individual video conferences to see how people are holding up, or just reach out to colleagues or clients to check in and make sure everyone is alright.

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