In Employee, Employer, Return to Work

Maintaining our values when dealing with WorkCover and Return to Work

Return to work PLUS: mindfulness

What are values and what happens to them when we become injured or start dealing with WorkCover? Our values are the fundamental beliefs of what we believe to be most important, they are what drive us to live and work the way we do. According to values should determine our priorities and at a deeper level they are probably the measures we use to tell if our life is turning out the way we want it to. When the things we do and the way we behave match our values, life is usually pretty good. But when the things we do or the way we behave does not align with our values, things do not feel so good and we start to feel a sense of unhappiness.

If we are feeling unhappy a lot of the time it might be because we are not making value-based decisions. So how do we change this? Well, we can’t change what we don’t know so the first step is to know what our values are. Once we become aware of our values, we can start making decisions and taking actions that are in alignment with our core values.

We can determine our values by having a think about the things that we spend most time thinking about, acting on, what makes us light up and what we would want to be remembered for. These can be things such as family, health, wealth, self-respect, integrity, or creativity.
Once we become aware of our values, which are often made up from pasts influences, we can then begin to demonstrate and model these values in both our personal and professional actions. We can start to make decisions and communicate in ways that are true to our values and so we can then start to prioritise those things that are important to us. Our goals and life purposes are ground in our values.

  1. Therefore, if work, career and personal relationships are some of our top values and we are currently off work and feeling unhappy, it is no wonder, we are not living in alignment with our core values. We need to start looking at what is going on and see if we can begin to make some small shifts or changes to get our actions and decisions back in alignment with our core values. Some steps to take could be:
    Reach out to loved ones and tell them how you are feeling, they might not have the answers but it will give them a sense of what you are feeling and why you are feeling that way.
  2. Reach out to work mates and ask what has been going on at work. This can help you to feel part of the team again as well as start preparing your mindset for a gradual return to work.
  3. If you can’t return to your original employer, perhaps have a chat to your GP about some other jobs that might be suitable, then work towards building capacity for a new role.
  4. Removing feelings of anger, guilt, blame and resentment can sometimes be a big help. These feelings and emotions are often referred to as ‘unhelpful’ as they tend to hold us back rather than move us forward. This is not easy but there are people out there to talk to and there is a lot of resources both printed and online that can help you learn to cope with these feelings.
  5. Get back in touch with your creative side. Having hobbies is a good way to shift your mindset and get your happy emotions flowing.
  6. And finally, don’t be hard on yourself. If personal relationships is one of your core values and your beating yourself up, then its time to readdress your actions and pull them back into line with your values. When you start to believe in yourself, wonderful things happen.

Take care everyone and until next week, stay safe.

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