Whilst the year has started out with an unfortunate feeling of déjà vu, being in the lockdown situation, I wanted to share some key aspects I feel can make it a little less frustrating. The back and forward cycle of things feeling like they are getting normal again to then being locked-down weeks later can really take its toll on you mentally.
Just after the new year, we all have plans/resolutions that we want to achieve and going straight into the WFH scenario certainly was not one of mine. However, we can alter those goals to suit the circumstances that surround us at the minute, it is not a failure if something none of us can control gets in the way!
Break up the working day
I have spoken to so many IFS Consultants, Contractors and professionals in general that are struggling to remember what day it is. One of the best things you can do to reduce the weight you feel on your shoulders from being cramped in all day is getting outside for a short-walk or piece of exercise. In the first “Lockdown” I didn’t take this too seriously and barely nipped out for a walk at all, which looking back on it, didn’t make me feel great at all. Call it cabin fever, or that being stuck indoors is just plain boring. Get outside for 20-30 mins and come back to the home office/living room/kitchen table, refreshed and feeling like you’ve had a proper break away from the screen.
Work on yourself
Whether it be cooking new recipes, perfecting your favourite dish, learning a new language, reading a few books, whatever it may be that you’ve been considering over the last year, just give it a go. Using the time that you would have used to commute or meet up with friends, family etc. there’s a good block of hours that you can invest into teaching yourself a new life skill that’ll give you a real sense of achievement.
Remain present in each other’s lives
It’s hard not seeing friends and family, but just because you can’t be physically present doesn’t mean you should disappear altogether. Even colleagues, a great way to not feel so far away from those around you is to make alternative efforts to remain present. Being in IFS recruitment myself, I have aimed to keep in contact with any IFS professional I can as well as my own work colleagues.
Look at the situation through a positive lens
The vaccinations are happening and being rolled out, after time being locked down the case count will fall and as long as you maintain your health, that’s the perfect place to start. There have been plenty of negative stories come from this period, but if you can shift those initial negative experiences into a positive light, then you’re going to move on from it more effectively. One of the major things that’s happened in the current work environment was a rise in redundancies and unemployment. I for one can say that redundancies have worked out for some that viewed it this way.
As someone that works with IFS contractors, more recently, I have been moving those that have been pushed into unemployment by redundancy into IFS contract positions. Something they’d been on/off about for 2+ years. With the decision being made for them, some have taken the leap of faith into something they probably never would have themselves and could not be happier with the way things have fallen. They have more flexibility, are earning more and are doing something they always had the thought in the back of their mind telling them to consider. So, under the shade of a negative cloud, there are still rays of light to be found!
Hope the above helps, I’ve implemented these thoughts strongly this lockdown and it feels much better than the last two!