Moving is never an easy thing, but many of us have experienced the upsides that can come along with it. Unfortunately however, for others, it can cause a spiral of feelings of uncertainty, doubt, and sadness.
Relocation depression is a serious issue that can be mentally and physically draining. It can have an impact on work performance and can even lead to problems at home.
Remember that as the business owner or HR manager, you are responsible for the morale of your team. If you notice that certain employees are behaving differently than usual, it might be time to reach out to them and make sure they’re okay.
While you’re thinking about this, read through this quick guide about relocation depression to better understand what they’re feeling.
What is Relocation Depression?
Relocation depression occurs when someone is overcome with sadness or anxiety from moving to a new place. First comes all the stress and anxiety of the actual moving process. During this time, people may not feel as upset because they’re so busy and they may even feel excited about the new changes.
This can sometimes be the body’s way of coping with the stress by keeping busy and upbeat. The true moving depression comes when the work is done and there’s nothing left to do but go through with the relocation.
If you’re relocating your business and have certain employees or team members expressing their concerns, it’s important that you don’t ignore it. If you notice dramatic changes in behavior leading up to or after a commercial relocation, consider contacting the SAMSA Hotline.
Relocation Depression Symptoms
There are many symptoms of relocation depression and as previously mentioned, they can occur before, during, or after the move. Keep in mind the many things that also come along with business relocation.
Employees may have experienced layoffs, firings, and difficult meetings during this time. All of these things can have an impact on their morale and it can even start to boil over into their home life having an effect on their behavior outside of work too.
Here are some symptoms to look out for:
Isolation – Have you noticed that certain employees who used to be talkative and bubbly are no longer behaving that way? Maybe they’re isolating to their office or workspace more often than usual? This could mean they’re depressed or upset about the move.
Agitation – Are certain employees becoming more easily agitated with work tasks they would usually work right through? They may not even be depressed but could be angry about a downsizing that occurred and how some of their friends were laid off. It’s important to reach out to them.
Forgetfulness – When your mind is in a different place at work, it’s easy to forget things. Are certain employees making unusual mistakes? Are you noticing a change in their output? These could be signs of relocation depression.
How Long Does Relocation Depression Last?
The harsh reality is, there is no timeline on relocation depression. If your employees or yourself are experiencing depression after moving away from family, there’s no telling exactly when it will end.
Everyone copes with things in a different way. If you’re finding that yourself or some employees around the workplace are not coping well, it’s important that you do something about it.
Can Moving Help With Depression?
Believe it or not, sometimes moving can actually help with depression. Have you noticed that certain employees are embracing the move and actually performing better in their new environment?
It’s important that these employees are used as an example for those who aren’t doing so well. Shining light on those who are excelling is important and it can have an impact on the employees who may be depressed about moving to a new state.
How to Handle Relocation Depression: 3 Tips
Whether yourself or your employees are dealing with depression after moving, you don’t have to suffer. There are plenty of things you can do to help make the process smoother and to manage your feelings when you arrive at your new destination. Take these five tips with you as you go.
1. Reduce Stress Before and During the Move
Sometimes the mere stress of moving is enough to spiral people into depression. That’s one reason why it’s so important for you as the business owner or HR manager to work with your employees. Setting up temporary living, managing relocation taxes, and helping with the sale of real estate are all important.
Hiring an experienced and knowledgeable relocation company like ARC is important. We’ve been through it all and we’ve helped relocate hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. The smoother the process, the easier it is on your employees.
2. Create an Environment of Positivity
The morale of your staff starts with you and it trickles down. If you’re not happy about the relocation then it will be a lot harder for your employees to be happy.
Make sure you’re staying positive and showing everyone that, while we might not all be happy or agree with the situation, we need to do our best to persevere and keep on smiling.
3. Build a Support Team
Find a handful of employees that are embracing the positives in this dramatic change. In some cases, your office or location may have been dissolved into another one. If that’s the case, try assembling a support team of existing employees in your new location.
Regardless of the strategy you use, allow this support squad to work with the new employees and to help acclimate them to their new area. Be sure to extend this to after working hours as well. Company dinners, golf outings, or fishing trips could be an incredible way to cope with relocation depression.
Above all, it’s important to understand that relocating is never going to be an easy thing. Allow yourself and your employees time, resources, and understanding cope with the change. For some, it may take them a few weeks, others a few months, and some a few years. No matter what, your employees deserve this time for their loyalty.
If you’re looking for help with a business relocation or you simply want to inquire about how hiring a relocation company can make a difference, contact ARC Relocation today. We’re experienced, knowledgeable, and more than happy to help you with your move.