How to overcome work stress in the times of Corona?
Alisha stays alone in the city without her family because of her job. Her family is based in Lucknow and before she could plan to leave for her hometown during this pandemic a nationwide lockdown was imposed. Now that the lockdown is gradually getting withdrawn, the chances of disease spread are quite high and for this reason, she has decided to avoid travel and keep staying here. Though her organisation is really thoughtful about their employees’ well-being and has asked everybody to work from home till the end of the year, this doesn’t seem to bring down Alisha’s stress level.
Having to spend time alone, away from loved ones and attending to the household chores along with balancing official work, she is overwhelmed and figuring out how to cope with these emotions.
Many of you would relate to what she is going through, while many others will have different reasons for experiencing stress and anxiety around this time majorly due to the merge of personal and professional life.
At Infozech, one of the guiding principles everyone abides by is ‘Deeper Customer Engagement’. For us, our employees are our primary customers and integration of this value by our teams in their actions brings them to support each other, giving a helping hand whenever needed.
“I always try to connect with my colleagues several times throughout the day and share my problems with them. There have been a few occasions where a task needed more time than the office hours or I needed to fulfil a few client/project requirements on a weekend and, my colleagues have never backed down from helping me whenever I have asked them. Even I try to be available for my team members and friends whenever they need support, ensuring we don’t succumb to the stressful situation. The values and principles of Infozech define the way we work and I think that’s what set us apart from others.”
“For the past four months, we are working from home. Not being able to meet our colleagues is surely a dull feeling as there used to be so much to share. Sharing problems and challenges with them and getting their opinion used to make me feel lighter. Now we all are trying to adapt to remote working and relying greatly on calls and video calls to stay connected. Our birthday celebrations have also transitioned from physical celebrations to blowing on a cake on Google meet as we try to keep our spirits high and kicking.”
During these difficult times when people are living/working in a high-stress environment, our value of ‘Adaptability’ is being exerted by our employees to stay in control and become an example for others.
Some of our employees have also shared a few tips which have helped them stay resilient to the overwhelming emotions and prevent the interference of work stress with the quality of life.
Impose healthy boundaries and hear the unsaid
“I strongly feel that our core organizational value- ‘Teamwork’ goes a long way in reducing stress. I try to provide and gain support from my coworkers and connect with them every day. In Fact, the bonding between my team is so powerful that I reached out to one of my team members for a personal problem which had been bothering me. Both of us had a pile of work to finish so we decided to connect after office hours. I discussed the problems openly because I knew that he wouldn’t form a judgement. I needed someone to actively hear me rant. His ability to empathise helped me regain my calm and composure”
Our leaders at Infozech adhere to the principle of ‘Making the unsaid said’ besides believing in communicating clearly. The proactive honesty and the confidence that none of the colleagues will judge helps us take things off our chest in addition to strengthening the bond.
“To dodge stress I have also set up healthy boundaries for myself such as I keep some time aside where I don’t attend any work-related communication. I make sure to not get carried away with the tasks and urgency to meet deadlines that I forget to plan enough breaks in between. ”
Take a pause, this too shall pass!
When the road is bumpy adhering to our company principle of ‘Acting with a sense of purpose’ has helped our employees in avoiding unpleasantness from slowing them down.
“In the four months whenever I have encountered a stressful situation I try to live by and do justice to our company principle. I take a pause and try to gather my thoughts around, it helps me to gain a new perspective and look beyond what’s obvious.”
In a tricky situation taking a break limits the exposure to the doubts and despair greatly helping in coming up with a well-thought plan.
“Taking a break helps me think clearly and raises my efficiency by reducing the chances of making a wrong decision by a great margin. I start making a list of the pros and cons of the situation I am in and where it is heading. Ultimately I keep reminding myself that this is temporary and it will pass. Instead of letting the stress drain my energy, I try to focus on learning from the situation. By acting with a sense of purpose and looking beyond the obvious I sabotage catastrophic thinking and focus on the positive side. ”
Take it one task at a time
Breaking down tasks based on priority can go a long way as far as stress management is concerned as shared with us by one of our peers. Listing out tasks and setting up goals helps in creating a comprehensive stress-management plan and guarantees there is enough room for unplanned work.
“I try to break down my tasks into smaller bits and begin with the easy ones which I know I will be able to finish in time. The engraved value of ‘adaptability’ helps me rise to the challenge and set up/ reorganize goals which I can fulfil without feeling overwhelmed. Besides this, I also rely on my trusted friends and family and speak to them while grabbing my cup of black coffee to relax my mind.”
Leave no room for negativity
“Our organization’s principle ‘Implement actions which do not create negativity’ is close to my heart and my actions mostly revolve around the same belief. While working remotely, small instances like harsh feedback can send the mind down a spiral of negative thoughts as has happened with me often. During that time instead of getting defensive, and taking unnecessary stress, I try to engage in a meaningful dialogue with the person sharing feedback, actively listen and identify the improvement areas.“
“I see stress as a challenge and reassure myself that it can be conquered. I take a cue from the past experiences and analyse what steps were taken back then to overcome it. As I live alone, away from my family there have been several occasions where I have been hit by the blues. Apart from talking about what’s bothering me, I have resorted to meditating and listening to calm music to bring my stress level down. One of my colleagues asked me to follow a healthy diet and observe the changes and honestly, it has worked like magic.”
The above tips have helped our employees sail through a tense environment. However, since two people are not the same, and their response might vary depending on the situation, it’s best if you try to get to know yourself better. Take out some time for introspection, reflect on the problem bothering you and live by your values. You will find your answers to coping right at that moment.