7 critical skills for thriving in the 'new normal'

Disruption and uncertainty have left workers feeling overwhelmed

7 critical skills for thriving in the 'new normal'

What skills do modern workers need to thrive in the new normal?

It isn’t just technical skills, according to a new survey. Workers want to learn how to focus better, be more mindful and cultivate their emotional intelligence.

The disruption and uncertainty brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic have left workers feeling overwhelmed, and the stress of adjusting to a new way of working has affected their well-being and productivity, research from mindfulness expert eMindful has revealed.

Employees are growing increasingly aware of what they need in the new normal. Their main strategy? Tune out all the distractions.

Read more: COVID-19: Why burnout is on the rise

In a recent poll, about a third of workers said they needed to learn how to focus better – given the pressures of remote work and in the face of a looming health and economic crisis.

“During periods of heightened anxiety, the ability to focus requires more effort and can be challenging for many individuals,” said Dr. Ruth Wolever, eMindful’s chief science officer.

But mindfulness – a mental state in which a person pauses to reflect on events happening in the present moment – allows a person to step back, take a deep breath and assess matters that are in their control instead of worrying about what they cannot.

It’s the key to building resiliency, experts suggest.

According to the survey, the seven most critical skills respondents hope to develop in relation to mindfulness are:

  • Focus (30.51%)
  • Letting go (19.29%)
  • Patience (18.50%)
  • Acceptance (11.02%)
  • Gratitude (8.86%)
  • Connectedness (8.07%)
  • Compassion (3.74%)

Promoting mindfulness among workers benefits not only the individual employees but also the entire organisation.

“Taking a personalised approach to build these skills will help organisations thrive and emerge from the pandemic with employees who are more resilient, focused and connected to one another,” Dr. Wolever said.

Read more: COVID-19: How to relieve employee anxiety

With a spike in the number of people experiencing mental health issues during the pandemic – from 18.5%, the number is up to 45% – employers are facing immense pressure to lead the conversation on mental health.

“As employers look at what benefits to offer in 2021, they will need a proven solution to address this surge in mental health issues and build new skills both leaders and employees will need to navigate this next normal,” said Mary Pigatti, CEO of eMindful.

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