Each and every individual is suffering from a high level of stress caused by Covid-19 but all managers, team leaders and company owners with a sense of humanity have to carry a lot more.
Covid-Stress & Anxiety
Besides from the obvious fear to either catch or pass on the virus, developing the life-threatening symptoms or having beloved ones suffering from it, there is more pressure, fear and even anxiety coming along with the potential second wave of the Coronavirus. Company owners face the existency fear of their own business and family but also of their employees. Team leaders may be concerned about some staff who live on their own as they are at high risk to suffer from severe depression as a result of weeks of isolation. The combined fear of financial, health and mental existance is draining for everybody but there are some things we can do to stay strong and positive considering the circumstances. In this article we will give you some Hacks on how to stay focussed and to keep a positive state of mind during these hard times:
Include Sports in your daily routine
Scientists have proven that sports and healthy nutrition do have a huge effect on people’s mental condition. It is easy to find excuses to not exercise this during lockdown periods and isolation but even if you are stuck at home it is important to set free endorphins to remove any feeling of discomfort, pain or stress. It is common knowledge that especially strenuous cardio-workouts will make our pituitary grand release endorphins. If you work from home we therefore recommend to exercise outside.
GO FOR A RUN OR WALK IN THE MORNING
Going for a run in the morning does not only wake you up but it will get you into good spirits. The combination of fresh air, daylight and exercise is all you need to start the day off with a clear mind. In a daily routine this will make you feel like you have to do something to ‘get’ to work, even if it is your home office.
EXERCISE IN QUARANTINE / ISOLATION
You cannot go for a run, go cycling or hiking but you will still be able to exercise. There are full body workouts on Youtube (for free) and really good virtual personal trainers. Rebecca Louise for example offers warm up, different workouts and even Yoga and Pilates sessions. You do not need the gym just a bit of space inside your own home/ garden. Yoga will not only help you to set free the endorphins but also reduce your stress level through breathing techniques.
We recommend a cardio workout in the morning to get up and yoga at night to end the day at reduced stress levels to get some rest.
MAKE IT A COMPETITON
Encourage your team to also do some exercise at home. It creates the team spirit and the feel of your company’s community. Set up a competition each day e.g. ’80 burpees challenge’. Everyone who will make the 80 burpees will experience a feeling of achievement and reward. The moment one tackles the challenge the body releases the neuro-transmitter dopamine that releases the feeling of reward and increases the level of inner motivation.
Every manager has got a certain responsibility towards his/her team. It is vital to keep in touch on a regular basis. We are lucky to have the internet to set up Zoom calls and to create virtual meetings. It is not the same as a one-to-one session but seeing the reactions and people is still triggering certain emotions and the feeling to be socialising. It does not matter how you connect but you have the responsibility to keep your operations transparent and inform your employees about any changes caused by the pandemic. Since everybody is scared to lose their jobs frequent communication will still release a feeling of reassurance or trust.
Our EICOM professors try their best to stay connected to
A. Inform their employees about any happenings in relation to the virus
B. To give their employees a feeling of a community
C. To find out about their employees’ wellbeing.
EICOM Programme Director, Mariano Gomide de Faria, has been conducting a daily call with his entire team since the beginnings of lockdown. He does not only give an update on global infection rates but also gives his team the chance to connect and interact. See some of the tips our professors shared with us during our webinar ‘ How Business Leaders are Preparing for Post-Lockdown”.
Angela tries to involve her team in the decision making process. “When we put our team into furlough […] we had that conversation with the team and say let’s make that decision together”.
Fabio stresses “it is important to put ourselves into the shoes of everyone working with us because after all we are all human beings.”
Zia reconnects with people she has not been in touch with for a while. “Checking in on people, […] you haven’t checked in with in a long time makes them feel like there is others out there who are concerned about them […].
Manage Stress with a Healthy Diet
Ultimately make sure you keep up a healthy diet. The way we nurture our body has an effect on our mental state too. With the pandemic we try to reduce the amount of shopping trips but this does not mean that we have to miss out on fresh and healthy food options.
Keep up a balanced diet and get enough rest
Make sure you nurture your body with sufficient vitamins, oils and enough fluids. This will not only help you to focus and feel good about yourself but also help your sleep. With all the stress and worries you will probably find yourself tired but restless and it is hard to fall asleep. Try to keep down your sugar level in the afternoon by reducing your carbs and sugar intake which also includes alcohol. The human body struggles to break down sugars, especially at night which results in a very inconsistent sleep. If you then start the day being tired you will experience a lot of cravings for sugary snacks and you end up in this vicious cycle.
Long lasting fresh produce
There are fruits and vegetables that last a long time if they are bought fresh and not frozen. Try to avoid pre-cut fruit and vegetables as their shelf life will be shorter. With fruit and vegetables you can also try to buy products that are not ripe yet to haven them ripen at home. Long lasting fruits can be Kiwi, Citrus fruits, Apples, Pears, Melon, Avocado etc. Berries and grapes on the other hand do not last very long.
All root vegetables and vegetables like courgettes, aubergine, pumpkins, cole and peppers last fairly long.
Alternative Shopping Methods
Many supermarkets offer delivery services and the amount of online supermarkets has increased during the pandemic. Schedule in a convenient date and time frame and have fresh products delivered to your home. This is the safest way to shop if you are shielding or a vulnerable person.
Be careful when Shopping
Try to keep the recommended personal distance at all times and wear a mask. Sanitise your hands before and right after your shopping trip to protect yourself and others from spreading the virus.
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