Kudos to those employers who have started adapting to the greater good by allowing their staff to work remotely! This is not a post against working from home. It’s meant to shine a light on what working from home might bring up for some. I have had a number of clients mention that they are struggling with self-isolation. This is what prompted me to write this article.
For people like me – introverts, HSPs, some autists (and many other groups) – getting the chance to work from home can bring on a long, deep sigh of relief. Finally we can hear our own thoughts. Finally we can relax in the calm we create in our own homes, while doing our best work.
But what if that’s not you? How do you cope when your employer has decided to send your team or the entire staff body off to work from home in the face of COVID19? Maybe you live on your own and work is where you usually get your strong need for social interaction met. Or maybe your homelife isn’t as supportive as you’d need it to be? What if the thing that keeps your relationships healthy is the fact that you usually get to have your own thing going and now you have to share your space all day with your significant other / your kids / your housemates? All of these dynamics can have a make it or brake it kind of impact on individuals – and as a result to the companies they are running or employed by too.
Social isolation can bring on depression in the otherwise happiest person. Forced change of routine can throw seasoned strategists off balance. We need to remember that sustained stress can harm our immune systems – and that’s really the last thing we want right now.
If you find yourself struggling with the idea of added stress due to current routine changes, a coach can help develop strategies and highlight resources. In a few weeks it will all hopefully normalize again, but we need to make sure that we don’t end up hitting a low when we’re supposed to fully step back into our old roles.
This is how employers can help their staff: Talk to your team members and support them in the way they need it. Some will be perfectly fine and enjoy their time working from home. They might deliver their best work ever right now. But others might not be so happy and they are the ones to look out for. You can hire coaches, counselors or therapists to work remotely and make sure your staff have what they need to fully take care of themselves. Give them the support to develop the tools they need to come out the other end healthy and ready to jump right back in when you call off current safety measures. The last thing we all need now is for people to get stuck, exhaust themselves, lose themselves in added pressure and get unhealthy in the process of trying to stay healthy.
Understandably, financial resources are tightening for many at this time, but as ever: foresight is much, much, MUCH cheaper than hindsight can ever be.
The Cordial Coach
Jasmin Egner is a Whole Person Certified Coach, working with clients from various industries across the globe.
Jasmin is a Co-Founder of Cordial Fox Limited and lives in Edinburgh, Scotland.