We know it’s going to be a difficult to try flourish in your job and career under the coronavirus epidemic. As of Tuesday 23rd of March, prime minister Boris Johnson has put the people of the United Kingdom into lockdown whereby you can only leave your home to exercise once per day, to travel to and from work where “absolutely necessary” and to shop for essential items like food and medicine.
We are living in a time of uncertainty and this can be unnerving when you not only fear for your job security but also, you and your family’s health. The recent uprising of this global pandemic means we will all have our eyes on the World Health Organisation to see how this plays out in the coming months. With that being said, with coronavirus being on everybody’s mind at the moment, what can you do at home to help you flourish in your job and career whilst this current pandemic?
With the increasing and constant flow of negative news coverage on top of the depression and mental health statistics of this country, here are some practical ways that you can keep on top of your mental health and thrive in your job during these uncertain times.
Don’t break your current habits, use your commute time wisely
According to statistics, the average one way commute time for a British worker is roughly 25 minutes. Now that you don’t have to commute, why not use that time cultivating healthy lifestyle habits such as exercise, yoga, running or even meditation.
Spend some time in the sunlight
Unfortunately, holidays in the sun are going to have to wait, but that doesn’t mean you can’t work in front of a lovely open window with lots of fresh air. When you are travelling to work in a car or by train you are not able to get direct sunlight or fresh air, however, when you choose to spend your time in direct sunlight it produces serotonin and lowers blood pressure and cortisol – the stress hormone.
Share or send a thoughtful message
We all live busy lives and sometimes it’s hard to think of someone else’s needs above our own. However, according to science, help others in a time of need stimulates the same part of the brain that is also stimulated by sex and food. Struggling on what to put? Here are some ideas:
- Share an inspirational quote to a group of your friends or even share it on your Social Media platforms such as Instagram, Linkedin and Facebook. Quite often you’ll be surprised with how many of your followers will reciprocate the same feelings.
- Give a colleague or someone within your network a recommendation on LinkedIn.
- Reach out to someone in your network on behalf of someone else.
When you are trying to put some of these ideas into practice, you can include something like:
“We all know that social distancing is going to be a real challenge, but I thought to myself, why not use it for another positive benefit, I wanted to (state what you have done or intend to do) and then share this positive message to your friends and extended network.
Practice being thoughtful a couple of times per week and you will notice that your brain will be flooded with a healthy amount of endorphins. Like mentioned earlier, people will likely return the favour to not only you but also their immediate group which will create an overall positive vibe within the online community.
Make a healthy breakfast
It sounds simple but a large number of us don’t spend the time enjoying a healthy breakfast, let alone sitting down at the table and enjoying the meal for what it is. They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and scientists claim that people on average are at their happiest when they eat this meal consistently. despite that, only 22% have time to down for breakfast during the workweek, with 40% skipping it altogether!
Look within and ask what you want out of your day
It’s extremely difficult not to focus on what is going on in the world at the moment with coronavirus and everything else negative that goes along with it. However, one thing to bear in mind is don’t ask what the world needs, ask what makes you come alive. Here are some reflective questions to get you going if you are considering a career change
- What does your ideal workday look like? You have to immerse yourself in the question and be creative about what you think about. For instance, consider who you’ll be talking to, what you will see when you look out of your new office window, what makes you laugh and smile during the day and how positive you will feel after completing tasks of your new job.
- When you look back at the coronavirus epidemic, what do you want to remember?
- What do you currently do at work at uses all of your energy?
- What’s your definition of work?
- What would you love to do that you’ve perhaps been putting off for a while?
Have a look for the inspiration around you
Filling your cup is essential during times of uncertainty and as humans, we have the best biological response to people telling their stories. A crisis gives us the ability to stand still and reflect on what has happened in our past, plan the changes that we wish to make and then go forth and execute these plans.
Many top companies like Apple, General Electric and Disney were started during an economic downturn. Oprah Winfrey, Richard Branson, Thomas Edison, Michelle Obama, and Steve Jobs are a few names that come to mind that had difficult starts to their successful careers. If they can do it, it is possible for each and every one of us to do the same. Have a look around and find strength in other people stories…
Time to reflect
As sad as it is, this coronavirus is a reminder that we are all culprits of taking the simple things in life for granted and people that are precious to us can be taken away in the split of a second. By being positive and demanding more from yourself during these times of uncertainty you will help keep your well-being and career flourishing when everything goes back to normal.