Harriette Cole: I don’t appreciate my co-workers’ hostility when I’m not feeling well

DEAR HARRIETTE: I suffer from extreme allergies
all year long, and I work at a factory. When I get into one of my
sneezing or coughing spells, I can feel my co-workers cringe.

Harriette
Cole�

I get it. Coughing and sneezing spread germs, and nobody wants
to catch COVID-19. But we all take COVID tests once a week. I have
never tested positive. I have allergies.

Trust me — it’s not easy to have them and have to wear a
mask, which only makes it harder to breathe. But I wear it anyway,
just like everybody else. How can I get my co-workers to stop
glaring at me? It’s hard enough to be there when I’m not
feeling well. I don’t appreciate the hostility.

Stop Glaring

DEAR STOP GLARING: Make a sign to wear saying,
“I HAVE ALLERGIES, NOT COVID.†Seriously, if allowed, you may
want to do that. It indicates to people that you are not a source
of germs that they need to worry about.

I can only imagine how challenging it is for you to have to deal
with the daily glares. Continue to take your allergy medication.
Get the vaccine whenever it comes your way — with your doctor’s
approval, since you have allergies — and wear a sign if your
supervisor allows it. It may cut back on the hostility.

DEAR HARRIETTE: I want to be better at keeping
in touch with people.

I used to pop by and visit folks in pre-COVID-19 days. That
included people in my hometown when I went home to visit during the
holidays, and people in my neighborhood or from previous jobs
whenever I had some downtime. Now I’m at home all the time. When
people pop into my mind, I realize that it has been a long time
since we have caught up.

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Do you think it’s weird if I start randomly calling people I may
not have talked to in a year? I don’t want to be annoying; I just
want to check in. Being alone for months and months is taking a
toll on me. I can only imagine that this is true for some of the
people I know.

Checking In

DEAR CHECKING IN: It is very kind and
thoughtful for you to want to reconnect with people you haven’t
seen or talked to in a long time. It is natural, given the
limitations that we have had on personal engagement since March of
last year. I would imagine that people you know and care about
would appreciate you reaching out.

What I do to stay organized is to make a list of the people I
care about and want to contact. By writing down the names, I commit
to following through. By checking off the names, I know who I have
called and who is left to reach. Get creative with your list. Think
of elders, community leaders, family friends, high school friends,
college buddies, former co-workers, etc. When you can, use
technology to create an intimate connection by videoconferencing
and even scheduling group chats. Make it fun and engaging. Your
loved ones will appreciate it!

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Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an
initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can
send questions to askharriette@harriettecole.com or c/o Andrews
McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.

Source: FS – All – Interesting – News 2
Harriette Cole: I don’t appreciate my co-workers’ hostility
when I’m not feeling well