Back to the office: how to deal with stress and anxiety
Faced with the challenge of quitting teleworking and returning to the old normality of work already far away, different types of discomfort or psychological discomfort can awaken in us which, if we do not know how to concentrate well, can lead to pain. stress or anxiety.
BY RRHHDigital, 11:00 a.m. – July 26, 2021
Telecommuting has had its adaptation process, but will it cost us back to the office? After months of not stepping on it, it looks like September will be the month most businesses invite their employees back. It involves new routines that will require us to reshape our work-life balance schedules.
Faced with the challenge of giving up teleworking and returning to the old normality of work already distant (at least in part), different types of discomfort or psychological discomfort can awaken in us which if we do not know well concentrating it can lead to stress or anxiety. Some of the main reactions that employees may feel in this scenario relate to the following:
Health-related fears. Although measures to contain the Covid-19 pandemic are gradually improving, many people continue to fear falling ill or infecting those around them if they start indiscriminately breaking their bubbles of coexistence. Laziness to return to old routines. We quickly get used to teleworking and now changing the habits built in recent months is not easy. Many people won’t feel a real fear for their health when they return to work from the office, but their refusal to do so may have more to do with the laziness that our routines generate. Want the freedom and concentration to be at home. Many people have experienced additional stress from telecommuting, but others have benefited from better schedule flexibility, a more focused environment, less sense of being supervised, more great autonomy and, ultimately, greater comfort than working in the office. The fear of losing this by going back to the old system can lead to a high level of dissatisfaction and discomfort. Aversion to coexistence with the boss and colleagues with whom we do not fit. The worst part of a job can be the direct colleagues with whom we have to coordinate on a day-to-day basis. Teleworking doesn’t make these people disappear, but it makes contact with them much smoother. Literally having to go back to the office to work alongside these uncomfortable people can be the number one reason for many people to react negatively to being present. Stress of leaving at the right time. Telecommuting can be boring, sometimes it can even overload or isolate us. However, it also saves a lot of time at the end of the day, as well as the stress of going fast, having to use public transport, being in an office which is sometimes not the most suitable place. to perform our tasks optimally. , necessarily leaving home when it rains or there is a heat wave … Being present has its advantages for work but it also gives us multiple stress factors that many people would not want to have to relive s ‘there were alternatives. Back to reconciliation. Closely related to the previous point, many families have established their new schedules based on teleworking. Taking the kids to school was no longer a problem when the new office was at home. Presence and established schedules means having to rethink schedules again and make reels to achieve everything. How do you deal with these feelings? Psychologists at the ifeel platform recommend trying defense mechanisms to structure a version of the story that leaves out the most emotional part and focuses on the logic and meaning of reality, in order to see things from an alternative perspective. , anger or discomfort. Defense mechanisms are tools that allow us to find a certain psychological balance in a moment of crisis or discomfort, that is to say at a time when our psychological well-being falters.
Deny that I don’t want to go back. It consists of denying reality, that is, denying that I feel bad about going back to the office or that I am afraid of replacing telework with presence. “Anxiety about coming back? None, I am completely indifferent. It doesn’t affect me at all ”. Denying is a way of convincing ourselves that the problem, or threat, doesn’t exist so that we don’t feel bad about the problem. In our mind, we are literally creating a parallel world in which evil has not happened or will not happen, even when it is very obvious that it has happened. Since this is a very intense mechanism, it usually appears when the level of pre-event anxiety is very high or when the person does not have enough flexibility to develop other mechanisms. Relativize it, take a little distance from the facts and compare them with the possible alternatives, both better and, above all, worse, to achieve more conformity with what we have to live. “Come on, I’m scared to go back, but it’s worse for people who don’t even have a job, so I’m not going to die to go back to the office either.” Minimize the problem. It is simply a matter of admitting what is happening but minimizing it, so that it does not seem so bad, neither in front of ourselves nor in front of others. “I’m afraid to go back, but I’m not terrified either, it’s just a little uncomfortable” (even if it really bothers me a lot, or it scares me very much, it’s just that I minimize). For example, when we deny, relativize or minimize the importance of a fact, we run the risk that others do not really know how we feel, since we make them understand that it is not so bad, that we are are fine and that reduces the likelihood of it supporting us or providing a solution. Honesty in life about how we feel can sometimes hurt us, but it’s also a way of signaling to others that we need help, that we need the situation that is causing us discomfort to change. . Find compensation for me. To use this defense mechanism, we must find compensation, reward, compensation, in exchange for the discomfort that comes from returning to the office. “As I’m going to have trouble getting back, I deserve to come back one day by taxi, to negotiate a certain flexibility in the schedule, to bring out something material …”. Gorgeous. We will try to turn the fear, anger or discomfort we feel about having to go back to the office into something productive. “I’m afraid to go back, but it will make me become more involved in the company, mature as a person, have an advantage for the company that will give me satisfaction, or be an example for other people or companies. ” Avoid – Minimize any behavior related to returning to the office. The goal, as in the previous defense mechanisms, is to minimize the level of psychological contact with reality: you have to go back. To avoid we would postpone the return date, the time spent at the office, contacts with other colleagues …
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