Say No To Corporate Creep: Bring Back Balance

Covid-19 has put us all through the wringer. Most weeks our Mondays feel like Wednesdays, our Wednesdays like Sundays, our Fridays like Tuesdays, and our weekends like vacations. It all blends together when most of us work from home. I think much of the muddled timeline is a result of “corporate creep”.

It can be tough to recognize; most of us don’t see it until we feel completely burnt out. Combating it when our home lives and work lives constantly overlap, especially for those of us that work right above the kitchen, isn’t as difficult as you might think though. Below are a few ways I like to keep from losing balance, staying on task, and bettering my work and home life.

When I can focus on forging a better workday, I find it easier to discern the divide between work and home.

  1.     Remember to breathe and forget the what-ifs. Many of us in work comp know how quickly scheduling a patient for last-minute transportation or translation can turn into a mental meltdown. We stare at the list of vendors…”Who should I call?…..It’s 4:57pm on a Friday for a Monday morning appointment…are they open?…..It’s 4:58pm on a Friday!….There! That’s the one!…..The phone rings…..the ringing continues….voicemail. It’s 4:59pm on a Friday!!!!!!….These guys! They’re open!…the phone rings….the phone rings….HI THIS IS….oh no I’m yelling again….”

But we forget that claimants are feeling the same way. They depend on US to tell them where and when they will get the care they need. If we take a moment to breathe, call the claimant, and reassure them that we are on it, we inadvertently relieve our own stress. By doing so, we can focus more on getting results, and less on just finishing the next task. Our claimants appreciate it, our clients appreciate it, and most importantly, we work harder knowing we make a difference.

  1.     Organize. It may be cliché but write down what you “need” to complete and prioritize that list realistically. When we take time to organize our day, we stress less, perform better, and, at the end of the day, give better service. You might find many of the tasks on the list are like white noise. I’ve had days where I “organized my desk” but really only moved stacks of paper to the other side. I did it because I did not take the time to work out what needed to be done the entire day, only the next task at hand. I could have saved myself much headache, and could have “left the office” earlier, had I taken a few moments to look at what was important.
  1.     Take breaks. Everyone needs a breather. When you spend your time alone instead of in the office with others, it can be difficult to discern how much time has passed. There have been many days that the grumbling of my stomach was the only indication I hadn’t taken a break. We are always better at our jobs when we take care of ourselves. I set a periodic alarm to remind myself to get up, grab a bite, and walk around for a few. I feel all the more refreshed when I sit back down to work and, by default, work better.
  1.     Depend on your team. It may be cliché, but depending on your team, even when we are separated, helps keep you sane. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Don’t be afraid to vent. Here at CentralComp, I’ve had days where the only thing that kept me from giving up was getting a helping hand from someone I work with.

All in all, the best thing we can do for ourselves is the same thing that is best for our employer. There are books galore on how to bring yourself the peace of mind needed to be your best self, however, it always starts with you. Remember you are important. Always remember you matter. Remember that regardless of how crazy our days can get; you get to choose. Choose balance, choose success, choose happiness.

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