Health and Wellbeing
It’s important to maintain your health and wellbeing while working from home. Here are some top tips and useful resources:
- Follow a daily routine. Set your alarm and get up and dressed for work as normal. Plan your daily and weekly activities, try not to schedule back-to-back Teams meetings and make sure to take regular breaks during the day.
- Get up and get outside. Step away from your screen and follow the PHA advice to get 10,000 steps per day. Try to schedule a walk or some exercise at some time during the day that works for you, and get outside when you can.
- Prioritise your sleep. Don’t move from the laptop screen to the TV screen. Try to stick to your regular bedtime and get restorative sleep every night.
- Be mindful of your diet and alcohol intake. Try to eat a balanced diet and stick to the recommended alcohol unit intake.
- Don’t overlook your own mental health. It’s normal to feel anxious at the moment. Remember to reach out and seek help if you are struggling.
Our Wellbeing Team have compiled lots of useful information and resources for staff which you can find on the COVID-19 Staff Wellbeing pages.
All Queen’s staff can access our Employee Assistance Programme, run by Inspire Wellbeing. This is a confidential and free helpline for staff that can be accessed at any time. Further support and information is also available for staff through the Inspire Wellbeing Hub.
Working from home can often mean the lines between home and work life become blurred. You might find that members of your team are working different patterns now and that might mean that you’re receiving emails emails. Read our guide to Preventing an ‘Always on’ Culture, for some tips on how to manage this.
LinkedIn Learning Resources
LinkedIn Learning is freely available to all Queen’s staff, it offers some courses which might be helpful when considering how you can improve your wellbeing while working from home. The Support your Mental Health During Challenging Times collection includes advice on:
- Enhancing resilience
- Dealing with Grief, Loss and Change as an Employee
- Supporting your Mental Health While Working from Home
- Avoiding Burnout
- Mindful Meditations for Work and Life
- Managing Your Emotions at Work
It can be hard to adjust to working from home when you are used to a busy office environment and regular conversations with colleagues. Maintaining strong relationships with the rest of your team can help boost your mood and keep your productivity high, so why not try these tips to keep your team connected while working apart?
- Schedule a weekly group check-in. This could be a shared coffee or lunch break where everyone is encouraged to turn on their cameras and say hello in person.
- Encourage at-home exercise or host a daily steps or workout challenge.
- Share recipe ideas or start a virtual book club.
- Set up a shared space such as a Teams channel where colleagues can post questions, start discussions or share ideas with one another.
- Establish a buddy system within your teams. This ensures that everyone has a point of contact aside from their manager, someone they can check in with and have a chat.
- Encourage staff to engage in our Staff Mentoring Programme to expand their networks and build connections.
- Promote our Staff Coaching Service, as a way of staying connected.
- Keep staff updated with any volunteering opportunities that arise as part of Queen’s response to COVID-19, for example, supporting at Asymptomatic testing units or helping with Track and Trace.
Flexible Working and Time Off
You might find that you are unable to fulfil your work commitments as a result of changing circumstances due to COVID-19. This may be because of a lack of available childcare or other caring provision, the necessity to home school children, a need to self-isolate or care for members of your family/bubble who are unwell with COVID-19 or for some other reason.
Queen’s is committed to supporting our staff throughout the pandemic and we urge you to remain in close contact with your line manager and colleagues and in particular, to keep your manager updated regarding your circumstances. If you do need to work flexibly to accommodate your circumstances, please speak to your manager about changes that can be made, for example, different working patterns.
Note: If you are unable to complete your work via flexible working arrangements and need time off, please speak to your manager. You can also visit our Flexible Working webpages.