Combating the January Blues in the Workplace

Winter can be a beautiful time of year, particularly when the snow is gently falling or when ice gleams like diamonds in the trees. But the cold weather and short, dark days can also make it a depressing time of year, especially this year as our activities and interface with others are restricted by the pandemic. This can make January feel even worse.

Right now, many of us are working from home and feeling isolated, and those who aren’t (thank you, essential workers!) may be facing a great deal of depression and anxiety over the COVID-19 pandemic. This is not only detrimental to our own health, but it can have a negative impact on productivity and overall profitability. So, how do we fight the January blues in the workplace this year?

Here are a few tips:

Stay Active

Although it can be tempting to want to crawl under a blanket and just wait until spring, it is better for your mental health if you get moving. Exercise can relieve depression, as it helps create endorphins in the brain which make us feel better.

If you’re working at home, there is a good chance that you are probably wearing sweatpants or yoga pants already, so why not take some time out of your day for a quick workout and encourage your team to do the same?

Get Outside

One of the reasons why we often feel so down during this time of year is the lack of sunlight. The days are shorter, so we spend most of the daylight hours inside our places of work. Whether you are working from home or at the office, try to get outside and go for a quick walk – especially on bright days.

Connect with Others

Social isolation is taking its toll on us. Since the start of the pandemic, there have been increased incidents of mental illness and the problems associated with it. While we would never advocate breaking health directives, we do need to stress the importance of connecting with others – even if you have to do so virtually.

Those working from home may feel disconnected from their co-workers. Regular staff meetings over Zoom or a similar platform can help to keep everyone in the loop. Even a ritual such as getting together virtually for lunch once a week can help your team feel connected and fight the winter blues.

Celebrate Success

During this time, it can be tempting to focus too much on the negative news that we are being inundated with. If your company hits a goal or target, gets a new contract, or achieves even a small success, make sure you let your team know so you can celebrate together.

You can also use this time to recognize the achievements and hard work of those on your team. Your staff will feel appreciated and celebrating success as a team will help to combat the January blues.

Get the Help You Need

Finally, it is important to let your team know that there is professional help available when they need it. If depression is more than just the winter blues, they may need to seek help from a counsellor or psychologist.

Make sure that your team is aware of what resources are available to them and how to access those resources.

Contact TeksMed Today

Are you an employer looking to provide your team with mental health care resources? If so, contact TeksMed today to learn about our QuikCare Thrive Program and other services that we offer.

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