It goes without saying that the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic have spread far and wide. Starting off as a primary health crisis, the response to the outbreak has had a knock on effect on our secondary health services, food supply, childcare, finances- and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. One perhaps less talked about effect is the pressures on our mental health.
Working at home during the lockdown has thrown many of our daily habits and routines completely out of whack. On top of this is the added feelings of uncertainty and anxiety about what is going on in the world. Some of us may struggle to sleep as thoughts of ‘I hope I don’t lose my job’, ‘who’s going to look after the kids tomorrow as I get that project done?’, or ‘when will this all be over?’ circle through our heads.
But despite all of this stress, concern and upheaval, there are ways to ensure you and your employees are keeping well when working remotely. To celebrate our next webinar taking place on Tuesday the 14th of April from 14.30 to 15.30- where Counsellor and Coach Beverly Rayner from BeYouNow will be divulging her remote wellbeing tips- we asked Bev and members of Hethel Innovation to share how they’ve been coping with remote working and their top tips.
Beverly Rayner – Founder of BeYouNow
‘One of the things that I’ve found as someone who works from home the majority of my time is that we all have a need for privacy. That need is individual to each of us, and may vary according to our circumstances. My need for privacy is usually easy for me to manage, because I spend time on my own in my studio working from home. However, now that my husband has been laid off work and is also at home, he very kindly brings me cups of tea which breaks into my private space. Just now, I need to establish boundaries with him so that I don’t feel invaded- for example, agreeing tea-breaks where we can be together for a specific amount of time. This will be especially important where children are also at home and parents are juggling work commitments with childcare and homeschooling’.
‘My top tip for looking after your wellbeing while remote working is to assess your own emotional wellbeing. One way to do this is by using the handy questionnaire I’ll be sharing in my webinar. Developed with MIND, it focuses on the things that we need for emotional wellbeing, which we so often take for granted in normal circumstances. In these extraordinary times, my recommendation is to become more aware of how well our emotional needs are being met, so that we can find ways to restore the balance we individually need’.
Imogen Shipperlee – Innovation Manager at Hethel Innovation
‘Working for a business with multiple sites spread across Norfolk (Hethel Engineering Centre and Scottow Enterprise Park), my team are pretty used to moving about and working from different offices over different days. But working remotely from home without being able to see other members of the team has been something we’ve obviously never experienced before. What we’ve found has helped is trying to keep to our usual routine as much as possible. For example, each Friday we have a team huddle, a time when everyone in the team gets together to discuss how things are going etc. We’ve continued doing this at the same time each week, the only difference being that we’ve done it via video calls rather than face to face.
Trying to keep usual business as normal as possible, while still adapting to challenges as they arise, has helped make the team feel that really not much has changed for us. We still have businesses to help and we’re lucky to have technology that keeps communication flowing’.
Arthur Allen – Customer Manager at Scottow Enterprise Park (managed by Hethel Innovation)
‘Making sure that my colleagues don’t feel isolated while working remotely has been a concern of mine during lockdown. I suggested to my manager that during some mornings all the team join together in a group video call so we can work but also chat about non-work related topics, just like we usually would in the office. I’ve found this to be a good way for people to open up a bit and share how they’re feeling. By keeping it casual, they don’t feel like they’re disrupting an important meeting, it’s just general chit chat.
We’ve also boosted morale throughout the organisation by organising regular quizzes that everyone can join in with on Slack. It’s especially good for people who live with their parents or on their own and aren’t able to socialise with their peer group at the moment. We all log on in the evening once a week or so, do a quiz and have a good laugh, which feels really important right now’.
To find out more remote wellbeing tips, and to access Bev’s questionnaire, join her on Tuesday the 14th of April at 14.30. Sign up to the free webinar at: https://remote-wellbeing-tips.eventbrite.co.uk