After over a year of remote work, many people are now contemplating the return to in-office work. While this comes with benefits like less loneliness and better boundaries between work and home life, you may be concerned about returning to work because of the loss of freedoms you have become accustomed to.
If you are returning to full-time in-person work, here are five tips for making the transition a little less painful.
1—Return to work gradually
Some people can feel anxious about returning to work. Much has changed, and things are not likely to look or feel the same as they used to. Introverts may worry about having to deal with crowds of people again.
Mentally prepare for returning to the workplace by taking it in stages. Head back into the office for a half-day before your official return date. If your work allows for hybrid work, transition back to working in the office in stages so it doesn’t feel you’re being dropping back in at the deep end.
2—Understand your company’s safety precautions
COVID-19 hasn’t gone away, so we all need to continue to take precautions. It can be worrying to return to a place full of people who may not take pandemic safety protocols seriously.
Ask for your employer’s COVID-19 safety policy so you can keep tabs on whether they’re following through on their promises. Make it clear to your employer and your colleagues that safety is important to you and you’re still following social distancing guidelines.
3—Assess your wardrobe
Returning to work in a sharp new outfit can help you feel confident. Mentally, it will subconsciously remind you you’re returning to a professional work environment. Those who feel and look good project an air of professionalism, and now is as good a time as any to look for ways you can climb the career ladder.
4—Tidy up your workstation
It’s time for a fresh start in your office. If it’s been vacant for a year, it may require some cleaning. Take some new photos to work with you and make your office environment as welcoming as your home office.
If there are things you’ve enjoyed having around you when working from home, consider whether it’s appropriate to take them to the office. If so, go ahead. A tidy, clean, and organized office can reduce stress levels and increase your productivity.
5—Establish your sleep schedule
For the past year or so, you’ve not had to commute to and from work. You’ve probably not had to spend so much time in the morning getting yourself looking presentable, either. So, you haven’t been getting up as early as you used to when you worked in the office.
As soon as possible, get back into the habit of getting up early and going to bed at the right time. Getting seven to nine hours of sleep is crucial for emotional and physical well-being, and re-establishing a proper sleep schedule is the ticket to great sleep.