It has been approximately three months since the Covid-19 outbreak affected us globally. The Covid-19 crisis has brought misfortune to some industries. However, some have unexpectedly benefitted from the situation, for example: mask and sanitizer manufacturers.
Have you ever thought that Working from Home (WFH) will be something necessary before the outbreak? This difficult situation of Covid-19 has affected much of the way we work, how we work with our clients, and even how we manage to maintain relationships with our family and friends (including our customers and suppliers). I personally felt overwhelmed when my company first applied the WFH policy. Professionally, I was not sure if I could be productive and work effectively from home. I also had to find practical ways to communicate with my supervisor, in order to ensure that he could always get the latest updates on my work progress. Personally, I am worried about how I can protect my own health and that of my family from this contagious virus.
May is often celebrated as Mental Health Awareness Month. Through this blog, I would like to share 3 points that can hopefully remind us to always be always grateful amidst this difficult Covid-19 pandemic.
1. More Personal Time
Let us be honest. When we’re busy with our travel schedule or appointments, we sometimes forget to plan for our own personal time. With WFH, we actually can have more personal time to ourselves. We may enjoy our own personal time by watching movies or reading those books on the shelves which we have not had the time to complete before.
We can also do some self-reflection and self-development. As we are supposed to stay at home most of the time, we might find ourselves learning to unlock new skills, such as video editing, hosting virtual meetings, or even our cooking/baking skills!
Not to forget, now we also have more time to exercise. We tend to find excuses not to go to the gym after working the whole day. As we do not need to commute to our workplace anymore, we have plenty of time to keep our body fit.
2. Precious Bonding Time
When was the last time you really spent quality time with your family members other than on weekends (if you do not have any appointments with your friends)? For countries with lockdown measures like Singapore, Malaysia, and the Philippines, you are required to stay at home with your family nearly 24/7, with the exception of going out to buy essentials. We can see what our kids/parents/siblings or even pets are doing the whole day! While some of their lifestyle habits may surprise you (E.g. your kids write the letter x in a different way than you do), this might be the perfect time for us to have precious bonding time with our partners at home.
If you miss your friends, you can always just call them instead! Video calling our friends virtually might seem awkward at the beginning, but as time goes by, you will find yourself comfortable with it. Video calling our dear friends might now be the perfect way to catch up with them.
3. The New Normal
For those whose companies are applying the WFH policy, I would like to congratulate you! Many front-line workers do not have the chance to do that, and we should appreciate their honourable act of fighting the pandemic outbreak. For us who are told to stay at home, let us be grateful as the new normal is currently here at your doorstep.
We are officially more flexible now! Although we opt to find new solutions in order to be productive while we are working from home, we can actually adjust our activities according to our own needs. We can work from our own beds wearing pyjamas, also at our own preferred timing. We may also set our own preferred music for the purpose of our own entertainment.
Moreover, by doing frequent virtual discussions or meetings with our teams or managers, we might create an unusual bonding which might not have occurred if we meet face-to-face in the office. This bonding or connection will undoubtedly be beneficial when it is the time for us to be back in the office.
To conclude, we must understand that this crisis is beyond our control and it is important to look at the silver lining. We have to stay positive, and being positive can help maintain our mental health. Although we still cannot predict when this pandemic will be over, it is part of our social responsibility to motivate our friends & family by looking at the current issue in a positive way. Just like the old proverb: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”!