A Research Paper By Carine Alcabas, Life Coach, FRANCE
Understanding the Impact of COVID on Our Daily Work-Life Balance Is a Key Component of COVID Coaching
People have been facing a large range of issues since the beginning of the pandemic. At first, people who didn’t have enough work feared redundancy. Then also those who had too much work, or leaders bending over backward to support clients and/or their teams through the crisis. People experience anger, frustration, and guilt. People struggle to work with others experiencing those same emotions. People live in isolation, with friends and family living out of state or overseas. People share living space with flatmates, working from their bedrooms or inside cupboards. People trying to work with children at home, feeling unable to meet the needs of both colleagues and family…
Symptoms associated with COVID effects can include:
- Feeling tired/exhausted all the time
- Mood swings
- Difficulty concentrating
- Inability to sleep very well
- Feeling demotivated
- Chronic anxiety
COVID Coaching as a Supporting Tool
At the beginning of the pandemic, I had just moved with my family to Saudi Arabia for my husband’s work. I ended up stuck in a compound, unable to go out, supporting my children through homeschooling for months. I was feeling like I was in jail, unable to do what I wanted, re-living the same day, over and over again.
I did find ways to help make my everyday life more bearable, mostly through gym practice, and the peer coaching I was doing with my ICA fellows was a great support!
This research paper is an attempt to highlight the ways and possibilities of how coaching can be a powerful and helpful tool to support others intending to cope, manage and recover from all the mental and physical issues raised by COVID over the last 2 years.
Role of Coaching in COVID Mental Effects Recovery
What has changed in our lives these last 2 years? Everything!
Our way of working: people have had to learn a new way of working, with much less human interaction, in lockdowns… technically most of our work has become virtual.
In this situation, coaching can help a person on:
- how to put in place a new organization
- how to work from home effectively
- keeping other people engaged through a screen / daily meetings
- how to deliver a presentation via Teams/Zoom… to an audience and keep their attention
- how to look professional behind your screen working in your kitchen or bedroom.
On a personal, human side: wearing masks for the last 2 years, not being able to see faces, smiles, expressions, not being able to interact as we use to has been very disturbing for adults as well as children at school. Many people and students, young adults went into depression and high levels of anxiety. As it is a worldwide pandemic, people have been confronted with death daily. All of this has had a strong impact emotionally: agoraphobia, depression, insecurity, anxiety, insomnia, weight gain, loss of motivation, and energy.
In this situation, coaching can help a person to:
- rethink and accept their new situation
- stay motivated
- put in place actions to help improve their work-life balance
- organize time for work, for their family, and themselves!
- coaching can also support parents who are concerned about their children’s education, missing school, organizing homeschooling when you have kids at home and you still need to work at the same time… and keep the house clean!
The pandemic has also been a time for many people to rethink their lifestyles. Some left the big cities for the countryside for a better quality of life. Others completely changed careers, leaving big firms to become farmers or become their bosses. Many couples did not make it through the lockdowns, with a peak in divorces and separations.
Today’s Society Needs COVID Coaching
All these changes we are facing in today’s society, and our way of living mean this is when coaching is the most needed. Before the pandemic, it was ‘How do you succeed in your work environment?’. Now it is ‘How do you succeed out there on your own?’
This pandemic became a new starting point in everyone’s life. It can be seen as the opportunity to rethink our lives and decide what we want for ourselves in this world, what the after pandemic will look like for us.
Coaching is the perfect tool that will help you reach this awareness, define your new goals and start a new chapter of your life!