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Tips to help you cope with working from home

Londiwe Dlomo Journalist
Being indoors can be overwhelming sometimes. Take time out, talk to colleagues.
Being indoors can be overwhelming sometimes. Take time out, talk to colleagues.
Image: 123rf

By now even the homiest of homebodies have started feeling the effects of being indoors for this long. The national lockdown due to Covid-19 pandemic, currently on level three, is in the beginning of its fifth month.

The lockdown has also started to impact people's mental wellbeing and the way they deal with death and grief.

"The restrictions brought about due to Covid-19 are likely to increase the incidence of prolonged grief disorder, or what psychologists commonly refer to as complicated grief.

"This is because many of the processes that aid our healing are not possible," said Durban psychologist Rakhi Beekrum.

Beekrum went on to say that restrictions on visiting loved ones in hospital meant family members could not say their goodbyes thus causing them to struggle with closure.

Beekrum also said rituals played a significant role in healing and Covid-19 restrictions further affected the grieving and healing process.

Sibu Mabena.
Sibu Mabena.
Image: via Facebook

Like children strapped into a car seat at the beginning of a long distance drive, South Africans are feeling the restrictions and they're acting out. Just this weekend a nature reserve in KwaZulu-Natal had to be closed down because attendees flocked in their numbers, breaking the lockdown regulations.

So, what is a law-abiding citizen to do when faced with countless hours indoors?

For starters, you can take a look at these five tips that Sibu Mabena, founder of the Duma Collective, an 'entertainment consulting boutique', has for those working from home.

"The pandemic has done a lot to disrupt how corporate employees have grown used to working. One, in particular, is the issue of trying to navigate distance working, especially when you're used to shared office environments," Mabena said in a statement.

"We now have to find new ways to navigate the business world. We've had to learn new processes that are better suited to enabling the move from physical to virtual interactions with colleagues."

Young professionals need to remind themselves why they do what they do

When you're starting to feel overwhelmed, Mabena says it's best to remember why you've chosen the career path you're on.

"The ability to remember why the work is important is vital, for both mental and physical wellbeing. A big part of this is staying focused throughout the day and making sure your intake of the right vitamins is vital. One 250ml can of Red Bull provides B-group vitamins and 80mg of caffeine to keep you going through a day of work.

Communication is key when working from home. Check in on the team.
Communication is key when working from home. Check in on the team.
Image: 123rf

"The key lies in realising when the situation starts to become overwhelming. When that happens, taking a second to recognise all that's been accomplished over the past week or two can provide that much-needed boost to keep going."

It never hurts to check in on the team

"Team leaders need to schedule regular check-in meetings to chat through the team's state of being," continues Mabena. "The key here is communication - lots of it!"

Sticking to a routine isn't all bad

Sometimes all that's needed is a sense of routine. This can include making use of tools that once ruled the office space like shared calendars or introducing virtual group chat sessions (think water cooler setup) that allow members of the team to communicate issues they might have.

Adopt a "half full glass" attitude

It's important to accept that things are different and start viewing the comfort of homely surroundings as an aid in the creation of a different kind of energy that can inspire the creative process in an entirely new way. The key lies in seeing more of the advantages than the disadvantages.

Remember to recognise the team's most valuable member

"It's still imperative that working professionals remain driven to continue giving their all, despite what's happening around them and that they are recognised for their ability to showcase high performing characteristics," Mabena adds. - Additional reporting Suthentira Govender

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