7 tips for a better work life balance during Covid-19 restrictions

Written by Anna Bishop
Nov 18, 2020

Anna is a Training Product Manager at Red Cross Training responsible for the development and review of our training products.

The ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has brought many challenges, one of them being the ability of people to adapt to the new normal of working from home. As the restrictions continue, achieving the balance of working from home becomes ever more challenging.  

In this blog, we’ve identified seven top tips for achieving a better work-life balance during the current coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.


1.Take regular breaks

Whilst working from home, you may find that you are working longer hours. A study commissioned by LinkedIn and The Mental Health Foundation found that on average, people are working up to an extra 28 hours of overtime each month.* Regular breaks throughout the day can help to improve focus and avoid fatigue. You could try a few minutes of exercise, reading, meditation or have a cup of tea.


2. Create space

If you have space, you should try and set up an area of your home to use as a workspace and distance yourself from the area when you are not working. When you have finished working for the day, you should try not to check in again until the next working day. If you do think of any work-related tasks, you could try noting them down as a reminder.


3. Stay connected

A survey by Totaljobs found that 46% of UK workers have experienced loneliness whilst working from home.**  It can be challenging to maintain the same level of communication many people are used to when in work and working from home has also meant spending a lot of time on video meeting applications. Too many online meetings can lead to you feeling like you must make increased emotional effort and the intense focus on words and eye contact can be exhausting. There are lots of great alternative tools to help you connect with your team such as a multiplatform messaging app or a private group on a social networking site. Why not arrange a virtual water-cooler moment with your colleagues to share ideas, or provide support and resources?


4. Establish a routine

Even though most people are not commuting to work it is still important to maintain your usual weekday routine, such as getting up at the same time. Setting and keeping to a schedule will also help in keeping track of time during the working day and will help with you in switching off at the end of the day. 


5. Planning is everything

Try to plan and prioritise your working time well in advance, so that you can focus on the most important tasks. It may help to make ‘to do’ lists and don’t forget to include non-work-related activities on the list e.g. walking the dog. The simple task of noting things down may help to relieve stress. You could also download a productivity app to help in blocking out any at home distractions and stay focused. 


6. Remember to have fun

A recent poll by the British Red Cross found that that 67% of people who voted, experienced stress more often since the start of the pandemic.** Personal and team resilience is an important part of managing a stressful situation.

Stress is an inevitable part of life but how we deal with it can make a lot of difference. We are all unique, so situations that can trigger stress in one person can affect another person differently.

The 6 Rs of resilience can prepare you so you are better able to bounce back when faced with a difficult situation.


7. Get the support you need

Balancing life at work and home can be extremely difficult and it’s important that everyone has the access to the right support. Our free mental health and coronavirus online training course has been designed using the British Red Cross’ experience of helping people cope with crises. Our short and easy to access online training is aimed at those who may be finding isolation challenging during the lockdown, are experiencing loneliness, anxiety or stress, or are simply struggling with furlough or working from home.

The course takes around 30 minutes to complete, with the ability to pause and come back to it whenever you like. Through this mental health and wellbeing training, you will learn how to build and maintain resilience during these challenging times and how you can improve the mental health and wellbeing of yourself and others.

Topics covered include:

  • what is psychosocial support?
  • reactions to an abnormal event
  • common reactions to crisis
  • powerful emotions
  • isolation and loneliness
  • resilience and wellbeing
  • the 6Rs of resilience
  • the CALMER framework.


Enrol on the free mental health and coronavirus online training course today. 

*Source: LinkedIn and The Mental Health Foundation

**Source: Total Jobs

***Source: British Red Cross LinkedIn poll


Topics: Mental health & wellbeing

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