The outbreak of COVID-19 is causing stress for most people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. If you need help, use the university's employee and family assistance program.
This page will be updated regularly so check back for more resources.
Advice and guidance to help you manage change in these difficult times.
Managing COVID-19 Worry and Anxiety
Identify techniques to identify and manage worry and anxiety.
Tools To Handle Covid-19-Related Stress
Specific activities to reduce stress caused by COVID-19.
How to get along with your partner and kids during the pandemic.
Managing your mental health during COVID-19
Tips for Working at Home
Home work space
Working from home is a big change, especially if you are used to working in a more formal office setting. Setting up a home office takes a bit of planning and effort to make sure this space maximizes your efficiency and productivity.
Setting up a home workspace
- Discuss options for office set up or needs with your direct supervisor
- Contact ConnectionPoint prior to purchasing items for your workspace
- For all technology and accessory needs contact IT Acquisitions
- Webinar: Navigating Your Work From Home Transition
- Blog: Do You Suddenly Work from Home? What Do You Do Now?
- Article: Tips on How to Work From Home for Newbies
- Stretching: Stretches for Office Workers
Resources for Managers
- Webinar: Being An Effective Manager During The COVID-19 Pandemic
- What it Takes to Run a Great Virtual Meeting
- How to Collaborate Effectively If Your Team is Remote
- 15 Questions About Remote Work, Answered
- How to Run a Great Virtual Meeting
- If Your Team Members Work Remotely, Find Ways for Them to Bond
- 7 Tips for Successfully Managing Remote Teams
- 8 Ways to Create an Engaging Day for Employees
Designate a workspace
- Living room or bedroom are not ideal workspaces
- Table height should be comfortable
- Lighting should be adequate for work tasks
Use a sturdy chair
- Use an office task chair, if you have one
- Ensure your thighs are parallel to the floor
- Use your backrest and keep your feet flat on the floor
- For less supportive/non adjustable chairs use a cushion behind your low back to better support your lumbar spine.
Consider your computer/peripheral set-up
- External monitor and keyboard is preferable over a laptop. If working from a laptop, ideally connect a separate monitor or keyboard/mouse, as laptops are otherwise difficult to set up in a reasonable fashion.
- Keep monitor at eye level. Use books or whatever you have to block it up. Ideally approximately an arms length away.
- Keyboard set up for as close to 90 degree at the elbow as possible, primarily to reinforce good wrist posture. Kitchen table is reasonable. Keep arms/wrists neutral.
Take breaksTake a break from sitting every 30 minutes – without exception
- Stand up, stretch, move around, change your posture, especially if you are dealing with an existing injury
- Stay hydrated throughout the day – many people are chronically dehydrated, and this affects your musculoskeletal system and kidney function; water is the best, aim for 6 to 8 glasses a day
- Get some sun and get some fresh air every day – and/or consider a daily Vitamin D supplement, as many people are chronically Vitamin D deficient, and this negatively affects our immune systems
- Schedule your workday to allow for some time between tasks
If you need assistance or have concerns about your home workstation or help with handling pre-existing conditions, please contact Safety Resources.
Home workspaces are typically considered as low hazard work environments. However, sometimes people have limited options for setting up in their spaces which can lead to a musculoskeletal injury (MSI) if not addressed proactively.
It is recommended that employees take a close look at their home workspace and correct any safety concerns as soon as possible.
- Electrical equipment (electrical and fire hazard) – such as printers, kettles, hot plates, microwaves, space heaters, etc. can cause fires if it is old or without auto shut-offs and left unattended; be conscious of the electrical load as well as inspecting cords and plugs for damage; and, immediately replace any damaged equipment
- Power-bar use (fire hazard) – old power-bars do fail to age and daisy-chaining, not just from over-loading; any power bar over five (5) years old is a potential fire hazard and should be replaced; also, when you replace any power bar, you should write the date of replacement on it with a marker
- Electrical or network cords crossing walkways or under chairs (physical MSI tripping hazard and possible electrical hazard) – keep all cords out of walkways and from around rolling chairs
- Lack of general housekeeping and office organization (physical MSI and fire hazard) – examples: tall stacks of paper, abundance of combustible materials, obstructions in walkways or doorways, storage of unnecessary equipment, bicycles, etc. For cleaning at your home workspace, you can use a solution of 10% household bleach mixed with water
- Furniture that is worn or not adjustable (ergonomic hazard or physical hazard) – chairs that do not adjust or do not have five castors, or tables with uneven legs should be replaced; remember to take short breaks every 30 minutes
- Shelving or hutches that are not secured, are leaning or overloaded (physical hazard) – all shelves must be secured to the wall to prevent tipping; hutches must not be filled over capacity to prevent leaning or failure
- Storage areas (physical MSI hazard) – when storing items ensure heavy items are stored at waist height for easiest retrieval (over 15 kg), moderately heavy items (5 to 15 kg) may be stored at ground level and only keep light items stored higher up; following this practice can eliminate possible injury
- Home workspace maintenance – when working at home consider a few other things which could impact your home workspace, such as checking your smoke alarm batteries and furnace filters especially in the winter
If you require additional assistance please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 306-966-4675.
COVID-19 and Your Mental Health
A pandemic is a very stressful event for individuals and communities. It’s normal to feel some stress and anxiety. It’s also very common for people to display great resiliency during times of crisis.
We should remember that this is absolutely the time to lean on each other. Even if we can’t be close physically, we need to stay close emotionally. So, while you’re staying in, stay in touch with each other, and reach out if you need support.
Video SeriesDr. Bill Howatt, Chief of Research, Workplace Productivity with Conference Board of Canada, has put out a series of videos to help people cope during these times.
Charging Your Battery
Fear and COVID-19
Calm and COVID-19
Your Mental health
Most Canadians are experiencing some financial stress due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Thousands have lost their jobs as non-essential businesses have been closed to help stop the spread of the disease. The Government of Canada has. Learn how to get financial support from the government.
With the stock markets crashing around the globe you may have noticed your personal investments or pension has taken a hit in recent weeks. Depending on your personal situation you may want to keep your money invested. The Sun Life website has information about how to weather market volatility.
- Government of Canada Economic Response Plan
- Getting financial support from the government
- COVID-19: Staying the course in volatile markets
- COVID-19 and your savings plan: What can you do about it?
- How does coronavirus affect your savings?
- Webinar: Investing, the Essentials
- Webinars: Sun Life Financial Literacy and Wellness information
Be Active at Home
There are a number of benefits associated with regular physical activity and even more so in our present times. Here a few of the benefits of staying active while working from home:
- Prevents the loss of muscle strength and joint function
- Helps to increase energy level
- Helps maintain a healthy weight and may favourably affect body fat distribution
- Appears to relieve symptoms of depressions and anxiety and improve mood
- Prevents or delays the development of high blood pressure, and reduces blood pressure in people with hypertension
- Decreases risk of cancer
- Lowers the risk of Type II diabetes and maintains better control of blood glucose levels
USask Campus Rec Twitter Feed
When you are at home all day, it is easy to get into bad eating habits. But it is important to eat well and maintain a balanced and varied diet throughout these times.
It is important to receive information from credible, trustworthy sources during this time. Dietitians are regulated health professionals committed to providing evidence-based advice and information that is tailored to your personal needs and challenges. Here are some answers to some frequently asked questions about nutrition and COVID-19.
- Crisis Response Virtual Training for Essential Workers
- Managing COVID-19 Worry and Anxiety: Identify techniques to identify and manage worry and anxiety.
- Tools To Handle COVID-19-Related Stress: Specific activities to reduce stress caused by COVID-19
- Why Can't I Stop Eating: How emotions impact our teaching during the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Self-Isolating Together: How to get along with your partner and kids during COVID-19
- Navigating Your Work From Home Transition
- Mind Control: Help manage your mental health during COVID-19
- Coping with Stress: Stress management program with a focus on resilience (Access Code: SHOPPERS)