Hello Local Bermuda Community!
We hope everyone is enjoying a lovely weekend. Chantel J. Simons, BSc, MA, the Business Development Manager at the MoonGate Group has contributed an article to help us adjust to our new normal here in Bermy. Thanks to Chantel for another amazing contribution and to all of our readers!
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Transitioning Back to Work After “Shelter-In-Place”
Many of us have been “Sheltering-In- Place” at home since March due to COVID-19. We have adapted our lifestyle and daily routines to create something completely different from our normal schedules.
Having to become teachers, parenting 24 hours a day, full-time cleaners, and cooks while also working from home has surely significantly impacted our work-life-balance experience.
Each of us has to adapt our schedules to something completely new, but now returning to our workplaces may have an unexpected, and perhaps, overwhelming effect on our emotional wellbeing and create even more unsettled feelings.
I can draw from my own experience as I decided to return to work in Phase 2 of our shelter-in-place order. This was my own decision. While having the option to continue working from home, I will say that I enjoyed it and the flexibility of getting my work completed without the normal daily interruptions and I was able to cook healthy meals, eat on time and get a head start on spring cleaning in my quest to become a minimalist!
Early in the shelter-in-place phase, and in order to keep some form of normalcy in my schedule, I decided that every day I would treat this situation as if I went into the office to work. By maintaining a schedule of getting up early, starting my morning with breakfast, and sitting down to my computer at 8:30 am to start my workday. Dressing professionally for work was good for my emotional wellbeing. While many of my friends found this to be amusing, I read that psychologists in the United States were recommending this to people in order to boost their motivation for having a productive day while working at home.
This was also helpful for Zoom meetings as you maintained some form of professionalism while having business discussions.
Returning to work was not an easy process in Phase 2. I found myself overwhelmed and stressed, to say the least. Safety fears were the number one concern. Having to prepare my own snacks and lunch (as we can only shop on specific days to get lunch) was a nightmare.
There was also the fear of the COVID-19 and taking all the necessary precautions by continuing to wash hands and wearing a mask while being in public. Limiting your public contact in the number of times you visit the food store, pharmacies, fuel stations, etc can be most helpful in avoiding any possible infection of COVID-19.
Our office initially opened for shorter hours during Phase 2 which was very helpful. Since it was my option to return to work during this time, I decided that I would start with transitioning back to work. I started slowly with two days a week, then three days a week until we all decided to go back to work on the regular work schedule. Doing this helped ease the overwhelming feeling of exhaustion that you will experience. Regaining your focus back to working in your office environment may take some time to get used to but it is worth it. I strongly recommend phasing your transition back to work in stages.
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