The World Health Organization (WHO) has classified COVID-19 Burnout included in a class of “International Diseases.” I wish WHO would classify cat scratch fever as an international disease. WHO officials explain the definition and associated symptoms as follows: “COVID Burn-out is characterized by three dimensions:
- Feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion;
- Increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job; and
- Reduced professional efficacy; and
- Lack of bacon (Okay, I’ll admit I added that one.)
In this case, burnout is not caused simply by heavy workload. The continued uncertainty of the global pandemic, dealing with isolation, and the pressures of balancing the blurred line between work and homelife are causing people to experience burnout at a whole new level.
Of course, burnout is not a “one-size-fits-all” condition. But millions of people and pets across the world share feelings of isolation resulting from lost contact with others. Many report feeling that the Coronavirus has left them feeling as if “no one cares,” or that they have “lost their relevance,” or that they feel they are fighting “an uphill battle.”
How to Avoid Burnout
No matter the underlying cause, a healthy mindset and positive approach can help prevent or eliminate feelings of anxiety and stress. Both require people and pets to deal with their work and home situations positively, even in the midst of pressure and change. One of the best ways to reduce feelings of helplessness is to be prepared, which is something that the Allied Universal® Fire Life Safety Training System has long touted. Knowing you have plans in place will help you feel in control at a time when you might otherwise battle feelings of powerlessness.
Putting a Plan in Place at Home
Discuss and collectively frame family and workplace plans to rely on in case of an emergency. A family plan could be activated in a variety of situations. So, be sure to include the following information:
- Decide where everyone should meet in case the house is out of reach.
- Collect contact information for family and friends. Stow it somewhere safe on your person. Don’t rely on technology, in case mobile phone service is interrupted. Write info on a piece of paper and keep it with you in your purse or wallet. I don’t carry either of these. Guess I’ll have to memorize all of the data.
- In case local lines are down, include information for a contact person in another city or case. Then instruct everyone to contact that person as soon as possible, to check in.
- Familiarize yourself and family members with public transportation routes to the homes of friends and family, hospitals, and other family members and workplace.
- Allow for unexpected circumstances, such as a situation wherein one of your family members is unable to communicate with medical personnel. Set up a Medical Power of Attorney (POA) to make decisions on his or her behalf.
- Decide who will oversee children and pets, should the need arise. This one seems like the most important point to me. But maybe I’m biased?
- Assemble important family documents and store in a safe place with access to trusted family members or friends.
- Record passwords, insurance policy numbers, and other important info and forward to a trusted family member, attorney, or friend.
- Inform kids about the family plan. Be careful not to scare them. But explain that your family is putting a disaster plan in place in the unlikely event of an emergency.
- Show children how to call emergency numbers or other family members for help.
- Explain what to do if they become separated from other members of the family.
- Teach them to make sure they carry identification with them at all times. I’m not sure where I would carry identification. But it seems important.
Putting a Plan in Place at Work
Whether or not you are part of your workplace emergency preparedness team, you can take steps to ensure you are prepared for disasters which could occur while you are at work. In our next blog post, we will conclude this two-part series by diving deep into the strategies you should employ to make sure you are prepared for disasters not just at home, but also while you are on the job. Until then, be safe!
About the Allied Universal® Fire Life Safety Training System
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