Getting back to work is both an exciting and potentially stressful experience. Whether you’re returning after businesses have had to manage the COVID-19 pandemic or any other crisis, the mental and emotional challenges are real. But the benefits of returning to work are also genuine. However you feel about returning to work right now, it’s good to keep in mind the positives if you are struggling with conflicting emotions. Here are just a few of the benefits of returning to work that will help you keep a positive mindset, even in a stressful situation.
Work Provides a Sense of Accomplishment
For many individuals, work provides a sense of responsibility and accomplishment that greatly impacts overall mental wellbeing. With nothing to do, it can feel like you are not truly a contributing member of society or your family. The sense of pride that comes with going back to work, having a purpose, and getting out of bed and getting ready for your day can be a real mood booster. Remember that even while returning to work presents new challenges and risks in the current environment, unemployment is high. Many people are struggling right now to find work or who are mourning the loss of their job due to the disruption of COVID-19. But having a job, being able to provide for yourself and your family through these difficult times, is something that you should take a sense of pride in. It is an accomplishment and a privilege in and of itself.
Financial Stability and Success in Challenging Times
Obviously, most people work because it provides an income on which they can support themselves and their dependents. That financial stability is a huge benefit of returning to work. Without knowing where your next paycheck is coming from, it can be a real struggle to stay happy and healthy in such drastically challenging times. That stability is essential, and you should take it seriously, while at the same time mitigating your risks of exposure and that of your coworkers.
Have an Open Dialogue with Management Around Risk
Understanding what actions and behaviors put people at risk of contracting or transmitting the novel coronavirus is key to a successful return to work. That will likely require a certain amount of reeducating of what a safe work environment currently looks like. If you feel nervous, talk to your employer about PPE and the steps being taken to protect employees and clients from increased risk exposure. Are office seating arrangements being restructured? How often are you able and allowed to wash hands, change clothes if needed, etc.? What is the sick leave policy, and what are protocols for those who may have been exposed? What will happen if your region goes into lockdown again? These and many other questions and logistics on returning to work should be top of mind for all employers, so make sure they are communicating their thoughts to the team and that those protocols are incorporated into the new work environment. Because going back to work is a major event right now, but it’s not a return to the same workplace you left earlier this year. Things need to look different because the risk profile of returning to work is completely different than before.
Are You Ready to Get Back to Work?
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