Tips for Physical Distancing in the Workplace


Office workers shake hands when meeting and greet bumping elbows.

Some of us may be re-entering the workplace after several weeks, if not months, of self-isolation at home.  Naturally, both employers and staff are concerned that their work environments are adequately set up to help people to stay safe, while still remaining productive and comfortable at work. 

We wanted to help!  So, we’ve compiled this list from the various health authorities of tips for helping to physically distance in the workplace.

  1. Have sanitizing and PPE supplies (ie. masks) readily available to each employee and in high-touch areas such as by the photocopier and breakroom. 
  2. Post arrows to direct traffic in the office one-way only to avoid unnecessary contact. For example, always have people walk clockwise.  
  3. If in a cubical workspace, have every other person in a workstation to keep physically distant.
  4. Avoid shaking hands with others, and if you feel contact is absolutely necessary, try an elbow bump in lieu of a handshake.   
  5. Stay home if you are feeling unwell and avoid contact with people who are sick.
  6. Discourage the sharing of telephones, keyboards, desks and workstations, and if this can’t be avoided sanitize between users. 
  7. Conduct virtual meetings as an alternative to a face-to-face meeting.
  8. Have only a half capacity of employees be in the office at a time (working on a rotating schedule A/B rotation).
  9. Stagger start times, breaks and lunches to limit any unnecessary contact. 
  10. Suspend all group activities and gatherings for the time being.
  11. Consider bringing back employees as gradual as possible, to limit both the employer and staff from being too overwhelmed with the change in procedures. 
  12. Posting positive notes or motivational messages around the office to show you care about staff’s mental health during this time is also very important.  This can help to reduce any increase in anxiety and stress due to the new environment. 
  13. Where you can’t follow physical distancing, install barriers such as Plexiglas to separate people.
  14. Restrict visitors and limit workplace entry to only essential personnel.
  15. Consider re-arranging the office layout by moving furniture or using visual cues such as tape on the floor to enhance physical distancing.
  16. Have tissues or paper towels conveniently located to be used to turn off light switches, open doors, push buttons, etc.
  17. In the washrooms, mark off any sinks and urinals that are not at least 6-ft away from one another to ensure sufficient physical distancing.

We hope this was helpful and you find comfort in knowing that we are all in this together as we learn how to navigate these challenging times! 

Sources:

https://www.cushmanwakefield.com/en/netherlands/six-feet-office

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/mental-health.html

https://www.pshsa.ca/covid-19/rtwp

Benefits of Stocking Up Your Breakroom


Finding it hard to stay energized and productive at work? Feeling tired and overworked? Breakrooms are meant to encourage a physical and mental break from a stressful workday. Stocking up your breakroom can help boost you and your coworkers’ performance in the long run. Here’s how:

 Fosters Healthy and Happy Employees 

happy employees

Stocking up the breakroom encourages mental breaks when you and your co-workers feel stressed out. Whole foods such as fruit and vegetables help nourish your body by providing the natural fuels it needs to take on the workday. Studies have revealed that people who maintain healthier eating habits are less likely to suffer from mood disorders and depression in the long run.

Boosts Morale and Productivity

whiteboard notes

The foods we eat have a large impact on our productivity. When you eat food, your body converts it into glucose, your brain’s largest source of energy; the fuel you burn over the course of the day. You’ve likely experienced a slump at work where you were hungry and were less productive- this was likely because you didn’t have enough energy to power you through the day. Having the extra boost of food energy helps increase your mood and overall performance.

Encourages A Strong Workplace Culturefood fist Most office employees spend more time alone at their desk during the day than with coworkers. Stocking up the breakroom empowers employees to come together to converse and brainstorm with people they may not have otherwise. In the long-run, building a strong company culture fosters innovation and new ideas, creating a strong competitive advantage.

A well-stocked breakroom helps create an environment where you and your coworkers will feel refreshed, energized and ready to take on any workday.

Reducing Stress with Adult Colouring


 

Benefits of Adult Coloring Books

We used to associate colouring with children only, but recently the hobby has attracted a new demographic. The sudden emergence of adult colouring has taken the world by storm and become an international trend. Now when you walk into a book store you’ll see shelves filled with adult colouring books and accessories. It is no doubt this hobby has been adapted by adults all over the world, but what is it that makes adult colouring so enticing? It turns out adult colouring isn’t as new as it seems. Doctors have been prescribing their patients with colouring materials since the 20th century. Since then, many studies have taken place to show the numerous benefits of adult colouring and why people are so attracted to it, including stress release. Here are a few of the ways that adult colouring can help relieve stress.

1. “Unplugging”

In this day and age, we are constantly surrounded by technology in which we feel must be consistently checked on and/or updated. From texts, calls and emails, to numerous social media platforms, it is no doubt keeping up can be exhausting. That is why adults these days may feel the urge to “unplug” and do something with their time that involves no phones or computers – just a real, old-fashioned hobby. Unplugging from this vicious cycle of sending and receiving messages, updating posts etc. can undoubtedly decrease stress by allowing us to switch off our brains from other thoughts and focus on the task at hand.

2. Thinking Positive

Dr. Joel Pearson, a brain scientist at the University of New South Wales in Australia revealed that concentrating on the shapes and colours may facilitate the replacement of negative thoughts and images with pleasant ones. This means that colouring has a positive psychological effect which could help those who suffer from anxiety and depression, and also shows the relation of colouring and meditation – as both activities help one focus their mind, relieving stress and negativity.

3. Sleeping Better

Due to the fact that colouring helps reduce stress, it of course also aids in relaxation and therefore helps improve sleeping patterns. Psychologist Gloria Martinez Ayala proves the correlation between colouring and relaxation, “The action involves both logic, by which we colour forms, and creativity, when mixing and matching colours,” she said. “The relaxation that it provides lowers the activity of the amygdala, a basic part of our brain involved in controlling emotion that is affected by stress.” So kick back, relax, and open up that colouring book before bed for a good night’s rest.

4. Reconnecting with Your Inner Child

Perhaps a reason why a lot of past trends re-emerge – the want to reconnect with your inner child. Remember the time when you didn’t even know what the word “stress” was? You just sat on your bedroom floor with your overloading boxes of crayons and pages of doodles. Adult colouring allows you to bring yourself back to that time – living in the stress free moment while focusing on your art.

5. Boosting Creativity

If you have tried adult colouring, surely you’ve discovered how much your colouring skills have improved since you were a toddler (or at least we hope!). Even if you aren’t a highly skilled sketch artist, focusing on the shapes while having the creative freedom to mix and match colours can help boost your creativity.

Looking for some colouring TIPS and TRICKS?

We found a handy guide for adult colouring techniques ranging from starters, the intermediate and experts!

Adult Coloring Tips & Techniques