10 Ways to Stay Safe and Stress-Free at Work
As a physician, I’ve needed to continue to go to work throughout the Coronavirus pandemic. You may also find yourself in the situation where you need to go into work and working remotely is not always an option. To help keep all of us safe at work, I’ve listed 10 ways to help reduce your anxiety during these uncertain times as well as staying safe.
The first thing is to breathe. I’ll say it today. I’ll say it tomorrow. I said it last year. I’ll say it in the coming years. Breathe. It’s the cornerstone of stress management as this is where you activate your parasympathetic nervous system, which is your body’s response when it’s in a relaxed state. You can take this benefit to the next level to meditate when possible, even if for only short periods of time.
- Practice good hygiene
Practice good hygiene before you even get to work. Brush your teeth. Wash your body. Washing just not only helps you smell good, but it helps remove the dirt, bacteria, viruses, and all that stuff from your skin.
- Prepare your own food
When possible, pack your own meals for work. This reduces your risk of coming into contact with the virus and will also reduce your anxiety by knowing you’re limiting your exposure.
- Do your part to decrease spread of germs
Be mindful of what you’re touching or take precautions to touch only cleaned-off surfaces, or make sure you’re cleaning off those surfaces. For example, door knobs, coffee pots, etc. I have videos on my YouTube channel that covers this topic more in detail.
- Move meetings/discussions to a virtual format
Help decrease your stress in this day of COVID-19 at work by having more virtual meetings or correspondences. In some work settings it may be hard to practice social distancing and remain six feet apart, so hold virtual discussions when possible. Even when everyone is in the same building, hold virtual meetings wherever possible.
- Don’t give attitude
The sixth thing is, okay, it can be a little bit humorous, but it’s really true. The sixth thing is don’t give attitude, okay? Don’t fuel the fire. A lot of your coworkers, maybe even you, are on edge, and maybe feeling extra stressed. We all want to be safe. We all want to make sure each other is safe, especially in the work setting. I would just encourage you not to give attitude to your coworkers and don’t perpetuate falsity. If something is not 100% accurate, don’t just start rumors. Stick with facts and be supportive during these crazy times.
- Be kind to coworkers
Be respectful, right? You know we’re all feeling the stress, okay? We’re all different walks of life. We all handle our stress in different ways. The last thing that we need to do is to turn on each other. My mom used to tell me, “There’s really no sink or swim. There’s only a swim or swim.” There’s no choice. We got to keep it moving. We got to be there to support other, and keep it moving, and protect each other.
- Do your job then go home – don’t linger
Do your job admirably, and then go home. If there’s any other correspondences, maybe you all can text each other, or connect virtually. If there’s something that you need to do at work, you do your job. Minimize points of contact.
- Work from home when possible
Employers are trying to find ways to keep workers safe and more are enabling their staff to work from home at times. Do your part and work remotely when possible.
- Check out additional resources
Many of us find ourselves stressed at work, even before the COVID-19 pandemic. My book, Relaxed and Ready, shares insights on ways you can reduce your anxiety at work. I can’t see a better time not to pick up a copy for yourself, or you can give it as a gift for somebody who you know is stressing at work and need a little bit of help with that. Please visit relaxedandreadybook.com for a copy.
Just know that you are not alone. I’m not alone. We’re all not alone. I know in this day of Coronavirus, everybody is definitely on a big learning curve. Let’s continue to support each other during these challenging times and do our part. You can continue to find tips, motivational quotes and inspiration by following me on social media at @drdeitrickg. I look forward to staying in touch!