I’m doing well and feeling fine!
To be honest not totally. Although I am one of those lucky individuals who is wired happy, grateful, and hopeful, this pandemic has even rocked my world a bit.
We have had to deal with a great amount of anxiety, change, loss, and isolation in the last year. It has taken a toll on our minds, hearts, and bodies. There is so much work to do with so little time and sometimes less staff, so we push forward as usual. Looking ahead, what are we to do?
Ignoring the signs of stress does not help it go away. Forcing ourselves to push forward can cause burnout and that won’t help either. To be our best, we need to take a hard look at where we are now and how we really feel. By doing so, we can refresh, refuel, and recharge.
It is hard to manage employee stress in the middle of this pandemic when nonprofit services and support are crucial. It may appear that organizations just need to keep pushing forward without addressing employee morale, health/wellness, engagement, and burnout. Eventually though, this will have an adverse effect on your employees and in turn, on your service levels.
The good news is that there are several ways employers can support their employees in a positive way to build resilience and to ultimately improve productivity.
- Build a culture of support and awareness.
- Have regular staff check-ins.
- Create team building opportunities for connectiveness.
- Recognize employee achievements and contributions.
- Set personal and team goals.
- Prioritize and re-prioritize.
- Provide accommodations as able.
- Allow for regular breaks and flexible schedules.
- Provide resources and a good support system including an employee assistance program.
Also, employers are encouraged to allow for personal self-care as well:
- Be gentle with one another. Employees may be experiencing difficulty focusing at this time.
- Support healthy eating habits and proper sleep.
- Focus on positive change. Be creative.
- Pause and be mindful. Remember to breathe.
- Remember to be kind to yourself.
- Provide access to resources and support.
- Take care of your physical self by stretching, exercising, and moving.
Though we may struggle with not seeing the end of the tunnel, we can come out of this pandemic stronger and more connected if we support one another to be our best selves.
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