Loo hesitancy: UK workers concerned about doing ‘No 2’ on return to office
One may think that people are relieved to be given the opportunity to work from home because they are avoiding being exposed to the deadly COVID-19 — but a recent study shows that COVID-19 is not and has never been the only concern.
According to a poll, people are really not looking forward to going back to their offices because they don’t want to take a poo there!
Taking a poo at work? People aren’t keen!
If you’ve ever worked in an office space, you know that a bathroom can either be a saving grace or a hellish place. While the loo is handy at helping you duck an awkward two-minute convo with your boss, actually using it when you need to can be quite stressful for a number of reasons including a blocked disaster, a loud explosion that may be overheard and even being stuck in a bathroom chat with a nosy co-worker.
The best thing about working from home is surprisingly for many people, being able to use the bathroom comfortably and not being concerned that it may create a stinky problem for your co-workers who won’t waste time sharing your smelly secret with the rest of the office.
Office loo blues
It seems this simple pleasure is more important to people than you may have realised and a recent study actually proves it.
UK-based health startup The Gut Stuff asked over 2 000 people what was the most worrying thing about returning to the office and a whopping 18% of them revealed that using the office bathroom is something that they loathe the most about returning to work.
More than half ( 53%)of the participants also said that they prefer leaving the office to take a poo while another 18% said that they had left the office and went home to relieve themselves.
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Also according to the study, women are more likely to feel uncomfortable having a bowel movement at work. A lot of them said that they would rather visit another floor in the building to go while many of them said that they hold it until they get home.
How can employers make it easier?
The Gut Stuff has encouraged employers to make bathroom breaks more comfortable for their staff members and encourage them to go when it is time to go.
Because well, employees who are holding it in are more likely to give one an unpleasant feeling of abdominal pressure and a bloated belly. It can also make you feel distracted, nauseous, and headachey – something that will definitely skew productivity in the workplace.
‘It’s so much more than feeling embarrassed – employers have a responsibility to make sure their team’s health and wellbeing is supported in the back-to-work transition, and that absolutely includes encouraging people to go, when they need to go.’
“Nobody cares as much as you think they do. They’re all too busy worrying about themselves, we promise!,” they say in a Refinery29 article.
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Based in Johannesburg, Brian Derenberger is a Senior Editor at Healthy Organic Lifestyle.