Are you ready to get back out there?
I think we can safely say we were wholly unprepared when we went into lockdown last year for the first time. Our lives changed overnight. We had to quickly adapt to grappling with online meetings, working from home, and homeschooling. Once we had our heads around that, we had to deal with the inability to go anywhere. It required resilience and there is no doubt some had it easier than others, while some dealt with it better than others.
Now we face change again over the next few months, but this time we know it’s on the horizon. I was thinking about how to deal with that change. Many people have benefited from working from home. They have enjoyed more time with their family and less of a commute. I know this wasn’t the case for everyone, but for those who preferred it, the idea of returning to the daily commute may fill them with dread. Whilst there are others who have found working from home much more difficult, and can’t wait to get back to the office.
Whatever your situation, the question I want to put to you today is – Are you ready for whatever is coming? Have you given it any thought? I believe we need to prepare on various different levels now so that we are better equipped when the changes arrive.
In order to prepare for change, we need to realistically assess our current situation and then plan for each area of our career and personal life that is going to change.
- Travel – how will this change for you? How can you prepare so it doesn’t wear you out? Pre-plan meals, ensure petrol tank is filled on a Sunday (small point but can save lots of stress on a panicked Monday morning!) Plan to listen to your audiobooks of choice on the commute to make it more enjoyable and useful.
- Work – how will your job change? Are you ready for face-to-face meetings? Prepare emotionally for how that will feel for you. Prepare for what you can do to ease yourself in gently. Prepare in advance for meetings. Set it up so the first week back you only do 1-2 days a week if that’s an option. Plan to do something that rejuvenates you in the evening after your return from work.
- Your qualities – What are the qualities you need in abundance to manage this change best? Are you aware of your levels of empathy, resilience, and adaptability? What strengths do you have that you can utilize to ensure you show up as your best self? What are the qualities you need to develop?
- The social aspect – for introverts, the return to being with groups of people may induce some anxiety. Prepare in advance by meeting up with a group of friends/colleagues, so that you get used to being around more people. * Ensure you have supports in place. Set yourself time-outs. Go for a five-minute walk every hour to give yourself a break, so that you don’t feel overwhelmed.
- Use the DIME method. I created this method to help me design the type of life I want. Design it, Implement and Imagine it, Measure it and Enjoy it.
We have plenty of time to plan for this, but plan we must! I certainly don’t intend to leave it to the last minute, do you?
If you would like to obtain a measurement of the eight areas (such as resilience, adaptability, motivation, and self-awareness) that predict success in the workplace, contact me to take the EBW Assessment. It will ensure you head back to the office one step ahead of everyone else!
*Obviously this all depends upon when this is fully possible and allowed!