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Mental Health: The stress of working from home

Posted at 8:18 AM, May 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-20 09:19:14-04

TULSA — It's the new normal, moms and dads working from home.

"It's been fun to cook together, to clean together," said Lucinda Morte, clinical coordinator for the Mental Health Assistance Center. "I've even started mowing the back lawn as a way to help my husband for him helping me clean the bathrooms which is something I don't like to do."

But it's also putting everyone under a lot of stress. Morte is now a mom, a wife, a worker, a school teacher, and more. She's also the person at the other end of the line when someone calls Mental Health Association Oklahoma to get help dealing with stress.

"A lot of the things I'm hearing are people who are concerned about what's going on the pandemic, how that relates to their emotion health, the concerns they have for their family," she said.

Morte says during the pandemic when you're isolated at home with family, continue reaching out.

"So we've been talking a lot about staying socially connected with individuals."

Morte recommends sticking with a routine to stay productive and avoid stress. Get a good night's sleep, wake up at your normal time, eat a healthy breakfast, and get out of those pajamas.

"I tend to put an MHA (Mental Health Association) shirt on everyday because that helps as part of my routine," she said.

Morte also says don't forget about self care and have a little fun.

"I will often have sweat pants on underneath," she said. "So, I think it's important to be comfortable, too. Stay as routine as possible, but also be comfortable in your environment."

When the work day is over, she says it's important to unplug, literally, and get away from your work station.

"If you're using your dining room table as your work station during the day, make sure you unplug your technology, and put your notebooks away," she said. "Take anything that you would use for work and put that into a different room."

And if the stress gets to be too much, don't hesitate to reach out because you already have a friend on the other end of the line.

"You can reach out to Mental Health Association, we have several support groups, that we're offering to individuals during this time," she said. "And they're meeting virtually so you don't even have to leave the comfort of your home."

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