Empathy starts at home.
Recently, my colleague Dr. Gerald Suarez wrote a great blog post discussing the importance of Empathy with others as we move back to working in our offices. If you have not read it, I encourage you to check it out.
But remember to start with yourself. Give yourself time and space to get into new routines and create your new normal.
COVID Fatigue is real. Each of us has had different circumstances through the past seventeen months, and some of us have had much more trying times than others. But all of us have had to spend mental energy on issues we never had to consider before:
How do I keep myself and my loved ones healthy and safe from this virus?
Should we even leave the house?
How much social distance is enough?
Should I get the vaccine?
How, when, and where do I get the vaccine?
Is it safe to go to the store, the restaurant, my place of worship, my friend’s home?
Do I have a summer cold or COVID?
Do I shake hands or fist bump?
Should I still wear a mask?
None of us had to think of any of these things before March 2020.
Expending that mental energy has a price. We can only do so many things well at the same time and most of us have overloaded ourselves in the past year-plus.
And, as we know, it’s not over. COVID variants are giving us even more to think about as we enter what we had hoped would be a more “normal” return to schools and offices.
So – make sure to give yourself a break every now and then. Don’t push it so hard. And – to the point of Gerald’s blog – have empathy for others and what they are going through. Don’t push your team too hard.
We will get through this. We just need to be gentle with ourselves and others as we make our way.