TGIF!! Although it feels like there isn’t that much of a difference between weekdays and weekends anymore, with all the staying at home going on forever. I am very convinced that I never want to go back to working from offices again and now that people are getting vaccinated, the possibility of returning to the old normal is starting to seem real and I for one and worried. What can I say, I found my balance, and working from home has been the greatest change of the century.
Speaking of vaccines, I had a WFH moment of realization during the week. I happened to post a status celebrating/anticipating me getting my vaccine over the weekend. Now we all know not everyone is into getting vaccines and as you can imagine some of my colleagues happen to have those strong opinions against vaccines which I don’t judge honestly, if God gave all of us free will who am I to hold anyone’s beliefs against them. Very naive of me to think everyone is extending the same attitudes towards other peoples’ opinions because I was taken aback by the criticism and the ridicule I got from a couple of my workmates for wanting to get a vaccine and believing the whole Covid-19 saga ( as they called it ). I actually got a lecture on the whole conspiracy, with references.
Now this is a very sensitive matter, and as someone who has had the covid-19 virus (which by the way is the reason I have been awol) and gotten very sick, I could have gone on the defensive and curate my own evidence to support my reasons for wanting to get a vaccine but I remembered. Not everyone will see things the way I do, and not being a scientist or doctor I have no business trying to defend something the whole world is fighting against. Being a learned psychologist, I know how to talk and listen to people so I moved the discussion, calmly towards a “to each their own” narrative.
My point is conflict sometimes is unavoidable, sometimes even in situations where it’s not even necessary, there is a possibility that someone will take offense or want to disagree with you. When working from home, it sometimes is easy to get caught behind your keyboard and type away your feelings and opinions, it’s not like you will be seeing them tomorrow at the reception right? But is it worth it, straining work relationships over popular/unpopular opinions? My mother used to say “learn to pick the right battles” but I don’t think there is any need to pick at all. It’s a tricky situation when you are working from home. People don’t always have the skills to decipher the tone of your words, some people are bad writers such that even when they mean well their words can be taken out of context. It is important to give your colleagues the benefit of doubt and always take their messages as well-meaning. It costs nothing and preserves everything. That was the peak of my WFH week. Avoid conflict at all costs.
After that episode, everything went back to being the smooth, comfortable WFH experience I have come to love. Cape Town went on being cold and rainy and I went on working from my bed, like a normal person. I hope to one day read the year without pants because I keep being told I’m living that book to the fullest.
Some helpful WFH Tips
– separate your workspace from the rest of the house life where possible.
– declutter your workspace
– take breaks (that 1-hour lunch break is important )
– work-life balance is important, don’t overlap work hours into your personal life
– more to come
Let’s meet next week, at the same place same time with another WFH weekly update. This could become a thing.