4. Treat yourself!
Moving from remote working to hybrid working can take a lot of motivation. Creating an informal reward system for yourself is one of the easiest (and most fun!) ways to get yourself going!
Using rewards is a useful way to tap into the chemical processes in your brain. When you’re rewarded, your body releases a chemical called dopamine which makes you feel good. Dopamine is highly addictive, so once you’ve had some, your body craves more.
Of course, when we say rewards, we don’t necessarily mean treating yourself to massive, bank-breaking things like buying yourself a new iPhone or going on a shopping spree.
You need to find a type of reward that works with your budget and your interests, so there isn’t a one-size-fits-all response. Make a list of small things that make your day in the office that little bit easier.
It could be getting a posh coffee once a week, setting up a lunch date with your work BFF for that new restaurant you’ve been wanting to try, or treating yourself to a cheeky takeaway once in a while.
Whatever it is, take time to reward yourself!
5. Bring creature comforts into the office
One of the reasons many of us enjoyed working from home was that it was, well, comfortable. We could wear what we wanted. We could listen to our own music whilst we worked. Snacks, sofas, blankets and fuzzy slippers were always near to hand.
Going back to the office means re-submitting to rigid discipline, upright chairs and trousers without elasticated waistbands – a move few of us will relish/
Whilst we may not be able to change bigger aspects of our office décor or dress code, there’s no reason we can’t work within them to bring more comfort to our workspaces.
Your imagination is the limit when it comes to thinking about how to make your office more comfortable.
For example, food, drink and snacks are a great way to bring home comforts to your working area. If allowed, consider creating a snack drawer or table, where everybody contributes a snack each week and anyone can take what they fancy that day.
Office a little chilly? A blanket over your lap might be inconspicuous enough to pass muster with your boss (and inspire your colleagues to get an office blanket of their own!)
If your workplace is a little more formal, something as simple as asking management for a space heater or a fan can give you more control over your surroundings.
6. If it isn’t working, request a change
Whilst employers might like to pretend that every single employee is clamouring to return to full-time office work as fast as possible, a significant number have serious misgivings about returning to crowded, face-to-face environments whilst a pandemic is still raging, and nearly 50% of people globally still haven’t been vaccinated.
Real world data supports the idea that workers are not particularly happy about returning to the office. A survey by McKinsey, for example, found that roughly a third of workers said that returning to the office had negatively impacted their mental health.
If hybrid working is really not working for you, let your employer know.
Raise your concerns with your workplace’s trade union representative, HR department or your own manager and see if they will help you request flexibility from your employer and perhaps a different type of working arrangement.
If you don’t ask, you don’t get!
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