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How to support your staff’s mental health and wellbeing during Social Distancing

Posted by Alex Tyrrell

Work from home

How quickly things change.

Scroll through LinkedIn and you can already see the conversation changing, from people posting about the events they are attending, to now posting about Zoom meetings, sharing their WFH set up and promoting of webinars and virtual discussion forums. It’s impressive how quickly we have adapted to these changes, but it’s also important that we keep innovating and sharing.

With all the challenges that COVID-19 is throwing at organisations, one that can be easily forgotten is maintaining the mental health and wellbeing of your staff and graduates.

There are also some virtual options to help maintain your staff and grads wellbeing. It can be difficult when working from home to separate your home from work life, so some mindfulness and meditation apps can help. The below are apps which have been around a while, and some are pivoting to offer specific support during the current situation:

  • Smiling Mind - Meditation App https://www.smilingmind.com.au/ - Research shows that mindfulness can help staff take a pre-emptive approach to managing their mental health, stress and their emotions in the workplace.
  • Headspace - https://www.headspace.com/ offering free support during COVID 19 - Explore guided exercises, videos, and more to help you get healthier and happier
  • Calm – Meditation App https://www.calm.com/

Exercise at home

One thing that can’t be beaten is the endorphins created from exercise, and making time for this in your daily routine is more important than ever. With gyms closing, and access to equipment being limited, there are a lot of online options available – many of which are offering free trials. There’s something for everyone and all levels. It’s even an opportunity to give something a go that perhaps you may not usually have – away from judging eyes! Consider coming back from this crisis with some new skills… Some examples are:

There is also a great opportunity here to be creative with engagement ideas, and the onus is on all of us to support eachother during this difficult time. We can actually use this as a positive and create innovative ways to engage with eachother and build connections with our co-workers that we’ve never thought of.

Video Conference

Some things we’ve tried are:

  • A list of “Sanity Savers
    • Create your own list of ways to virtually:
      • Engage
      • Stay Fit (online workouts etc)
      • Be Entertained (podcasts, Netflix series, Virtual experiences, books etc)
      • Entertain your kids (online learning, activity ideas etc)
      • Eat/feed the fam (meal delivery - note there's also local groups set up on FB for local eateries who will now deliver)
      • Look after mental health
  • Virtual drinks
  • Pay Kahoot in a meeting (trivia) https://kahoot.it/
  • Download Housparty - https://houseparty.com/ - face to face social network
  • Team Yoga or Fitness Sessions
  • A team Spotify playlist

So, what can you do from here?

  1. Share some of these ideas
  2. Make time for yourself and your staff’s wellbeing
  3. Consider creating your own “Sanity Savers” list for your organisation
  4. Stay positive & keep innovating!

Online fitnessCentrfit


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