A graphic showing two people. One is sitting at a desk with a laptop in front of them and the other is standing next to the table holding a coffee and laptop.
Health Hacks

How to prepare for your return to work after COVID

Health Hacks

How to prepare for your return to work after COVID

Going back to the office? Let us help you ease some anxiety.

Most people we know have worked remotely the past couple of years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses retooled their workflow and set employees up with home offices and virtual meeting platforms.

But recently, many states and companies are opening their offices for employees to return to work. There are lower restrictions as a result of less risk of infection and scary variants. Companies like Microsoft, Ford, and Wells Fargo have, or are, opening their workplaces to welcome employees back to the office.

So, what are the ways to prepare to return to the office and lessen the anxiety about going back to work?

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  1. Set a routine
  2. Be proactive with your comfort level
  3. What about wellness?

Set a routine

Whether you're a morning person or not, a great way to get back into the groove is setting a start–of-your-day routine.

Get prepared: Organizing the night before can ease a lot of stress in the morning. Figure out what you’re going to wear that evening. Also, check the weather to make sure what you picked out will work through rain and shine. Organize your wardrobe and put your work clothes on one side of your closet for easy access.

Get zen: Give yourself a little more time in the A.M. to stretch and relax and even do some exercise. Try activities like a quiet hour of yoga, a jog around the park, or a sweat-induced gym workout. You can even incorporate exercise into your daily routines like sprinting up the stairs or doing some squats when making breakfast. These can help tremendously to help center your breathing and calm anxiety about going back to work.

Get your buzz on: Sometimes we need some help to get moving. We already know coffee and teas give a good caffeine kick. If you’re not into caffeine, certain foods naturally boost energy for a healthy pick-me-up. Make overnight oats with bananas, berries, and other fruit that have fiber and natural sugars. Get your protein on at lunch with a quinoa salad stocked with meat and vegetables for a carb-filled boost. An apple or a piece of dark chocolate can also give some much-needed mid-day energy.

Get use out of your commute: Whether you drive to work or take public transportation, there are ways to put your mind at ease. Finish a chapter of your favorite book, listen to a podcast, or even write some thoughts down in a journal. These kinds of activities can distract you from your workday and help you relax.

An illustrated graphic showing 3 tips. The first is someone in a suit holding a coffee with the text “set a routine” underneath. The second is a bottle of sanitizer and a mask with the words “be proactive with your comfort level”. And the third is someone playing jenga with the words “prioritize wellness”.

Be proactive with your comfort level

Companies understand that it’s not an easy transition to go back to work since some people are anxious about returning to the office. Talk to your supervisor and HR or People team to establish what works at work.

Your schedule: Working a hybrid schedule can be a great way to ease yourself back into sitting amongst other humans. Your pets may also want some alone time.

Cover it up: After 2020, masks have basically become part of our daily wardrobe. Even with decreasing mask mandates, there’s no shame in wearing one in the office. It can not only offer a level of physical protection, but it can offer a mental one too.

Talk to your team: Asking what the company’s health protocols are can also make you feel at ease. While most businesses follow their city or state mandates, they may also have their own specific set of guidelines to ensure safety.

Be proactive: Having transparent conversations with your colleagues, supervisor, or HR team is a great way to help them understand your comfort level. Your family situation, health condition, or other unique lifestyle needs can help your team know why you tailor your workday differently.

Prioritize wellness outside of work

While going back into the office is a big step, life is not all about work. Having a balance between being a good employee and having a good life is key to not drowning in thoughts of anxiety.

Quiet time: With the busy lives many of us lead, spending time alone is one way to calm anxiety and relax your mind. Do a digital cleanse and turn off your devices. If you’re into meditation, take some time to sit in your thoughts. Sometimes just taking a walk in solitude can give us some peace and quiet.

Socialize: Have a game night with family or get dressed up and head to your favorite cocktail bar with friends. Making plans that have nothing to do with work (even if with work friends) is a mental vacation from our daily routines.

Get life insurance: We are in the insurance business so we have to mention this one. After our lives changed due to the pandemic, so did the insurance industry’s response. There was a deep realization from both companies and customers that getting coverage is a key way to feel at ease. Getting protection for your loved ones can provide relief knowing that if the worst were to happen to you, they are covered.

The opinions we expressed in this post are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations.