COVID-19, the bitter truth that everyone is facing, has created situations that no one could have imagined and has altered our lives in both enormous and small ways. Work from home, blurring boundaries between personal and professional, remote learning for students, social distancing are all part of the new normal.
As women navigate through this global health crisis, many are affected by it as work, personal responsibilities, and demand for their time has increased. Today, most women are juggling remote working, managing household chores, personal relationships, parenting, homeschooling, and more during the new normal.
COVID-19 pandemic has triggered stress in careers, personal finances, health, and family life. In a survey conducted by a leading television channel, nearly 70% of people surveyed cited COVID-19 as the most stressful moment of their lives, even more, stressful than 9/11 and the Great Recession of the late 2000s. There has been an unexpected shift to remote working during COVID-19 and, it is taking a toll on mental health of women as they are unable to find respite, even in the comfort of their own homes. Working remotely and home quarantine has reduced the level of social interactions that occurred at the workplace with colleagues and with friends and family. These interactions acted as perfect de-stressors in the past.
The 24/7 “always connected ” culture is also another reason for the high-stress levels as work meetings take place at any hour and expectations are for instant response. The number of hours worked is on a rise and adding to the stress. If not managed carefully, these will result in burnouts and lower productivity. Since the “always connected” culture and the “new normal” is here to stay for some more time, it is important to safeguard your well being, and maintain high productivity levels. Here are a few suggestions to help during the current situation:
- Accept the change and build your routine around the new normal
- Maintain the balance between personal and professional time
- Intentionally disconnect from work and spend time with your loved ones to de-stress
- Learn things that you always wanted to do but could not, like baking or playing the guitar
- Care about your physical and mental health
- Use the downtime to reflect and ask yourself the question on what do you want in life and what are your priorities in life
- Focus on the present and take it one day at a time. And, don’t forget to laugh and have fun
Although this situation has created new challenges, women are adapting and learning new methods and skills to manage the situation and some have even mastered it. They can find brighter things even during gloomy times. Women have always been excellent at multitasking and are quick learners. They have again managed to adapt to this new situation and make the best of both worlds. Women are truly inspirational !!