Architect discusses mental health challenges of returning to work

Joelle Laney, Senior Associate, Perkins and Will: “Over the last few months we have swiftly changed the way we live and work to keep ourselves and others safe. While we have adapted well, this situation has been very challenging for many, not least in terms of our mental health. Mental health is often difficult to talk about, and for those who feel more isolated or overwhelmed during this time, it can be even harder. It is also potentially more difficult to spot mental health troubles in others when we are not seeing people regularly.
“As we look towards the future and a phased approach to returning to the office, which many will be excited about, it is important that we don’t overlook the mental health of our colleagues in this process. We will not all have the same comfort level about returning to an office environment. Some of our colleagues will be struggling with the extended lock down and working from home, while others will be reticent to travel and return to work.
“In this transitional period, and beyond, safety and health are the only priorities, but we must remember to include mental and emotional health and safety alongside the physical.”