Homeworking has become such an integral part of our routines that returning to work after lockdown seems strangely daunting. ‘How will I handle communication with colleagues back in the workplace?’ ‘How can I improve productivity at work after such a long time at home?’ ‘How can I strengthen my mental health in the workplace?’ All these questions are very natural when returning to work after lockdown, and there’s a simple solution to resolve them all: journaling!
The Benefits of Journaling when Returning to Work After Lockdown
So, why should you journal when returning to work after lockdown? The benefits of journaling are numerous. For one thing, returning to work after a long time away can be daunting. Whilst colleagues can provide support, journaling can help you to develop resilience as you return to the workplace. Writing in a daily journal about your feelings through the process of returning to work gives you a space to vent and discover new strategies to handle your challenges.
For example, with months of Teams meetings and Zoom calls, your in-person communication skills may have received less practice. Struggling with the intricacies of office small talk? Journaling is the perfect space to analyse your conversations, and develop specific strategies for more effective, engaging discussions.
What conversations went well today? What topics got the conversation started? Which areas could you improve? How could you make better use of body language? All of these questions can be considered in your daily journal.
Gratitude Journaling for Mental Health in the Workplace
One of the best ways journaling helps you when returning to work after lockdown is with mental health. Home-working and office-working come with their own individual stresses. Home-working often means using the same spaces for work and rest, whilst working from an office causes stress through communication challenges and because it requires you to leave comforting home spaces.
Gratitude journaling in a daily journal can be a great way to strengthen your mental health when returning to work after lockdown. Whether you’re missing your family or stressing over a deadline, journaling about what makes you happy can rest your mind and draw your attention to the positives in your life.
Write about three things that you feel grateful for at work. Maybe it’s a colleague whose jokes always bring a smile to your face, or the new organisational system that makes your job just that bit easier. Then write about three things you’ll feel grateful for when you return home. It might be sitting around the table for a warming meal with your family, or enjoying a good book with a cup of hot chocolate before bed. Gratitude journaling in a daily journal can place the happy moments in life and work into focus.
Using a Daily Journal to Improve Productivity at Work After Lockdown
When returning to work after lockdown, chances are your productivity has taken a hit during home-working. If we’re at home, we have many distractions around us, from the TV to looking after our children. The workplace has its own set of distractions, and so it helps to use a daily journal to improve productivity at work.
Plot out your goals and tasks for the week ahead into your daily journal. As you complete your goals, record your progress. What tasks were the most successful? Which did you struggle with? You can then analyse trends and patterns in your work routine. When was the best time for you to complete certain tasks? Perhaps the most challenging tasks were completed most easily first thing in the morning - or perhaps you were quicker just after a hearty lunch. Note down your dips and highs, so that you can factor these into your routines.
Returning to work after lockdown doesn’t have to be a challenge. Journaling helps you return to work by enabling you to write about your feelings, build communication skills, gratitude journal to boost your mental health, and record and analyse your work routines to improve productivity. When you return to work, a daily journal can make a world of difference, providing you with an all-in-one personal assistant and wellbeing hub for the workspace.