Due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, work and life are looking a lot different now than in previous years. One of the biggest changes in Canada is the shift to greater work-life balance. With a significant number of employees able to work from home, many of them are able to spend more time with their families and pursue personal interests. However, sheltering in place due to the coronavirus also has placed additional caregiving burdens on a number of families. For them, balancing professional and personal responsibilities may pose an even greater challenge than ever.
Find out how work-life balance may be different for many Canadians this year due to COVID-19.
Working from Home
Many Canadians are handling their work responsibilities from home. This significantly improves work-life balance for a number of people. Not having a long commute to the office increases the number of hours employees can dedicate to professional responsibilities and personal interests.
Many are able to work during set hours throughout the day, spend time with family, and pursue other activities. Many Canadians hope they are able to remain working from home into the future to keep this flexibility.
Caring for Dependents
In addition to maintaining work responsibilities, many Canadians with dependents are spending more time in caregiving roles.
Increasing demands related to caring for children who are home from school or engaged in virtual learning can make fulfilling professional duties difficult. Tending to the needs of sick or elderly parents can feel like managing an additional full-time job. These stressors are especially heavy for many frontline workers who are at increased risk for COVID-19 infection or transmission and employees in small economy industries who often lack extended or short-term health care benefits or sick pay.
Many Canadians believe that employers need to set policies and cultural shifts that provide greater flexibility to manage family commitments and other personal issues. This may include providing a greater number of vacation days, offering longer paid parental leave, or encouraging employees to unplug after work and spend time with their families.
Focusing on Well-Being
The majority of Canadians are investing additional time caring for the physical, emotional, and mental health of themselves and others. Socializing from a distance and sustaining a network of support is more important than ever.
Maintaining connections with family, friends, and coworkers helps people remain close. Sharing personal experiences, including happiness and struggles, helps people get through the day.
Reaching out to counselors and other mental health professionals when needed is becoming more accepted. Many employers are providing access to mental health services and encouraging employees to use them.
Finding a New Job
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