Dreading Work Event: Please let go of any shame. If the pandemic has taught me anything, it has been to be more compassionate. Everyone has gone through personal hardships through the pandemic: depression, anxiety, loss of loved ones, isolation, loneliness, weight gain, weight loss, etc., etc. Those that work with you will just be excited to be in your presence again. I live in a country where we have been in various lockdowns since March of 2020 — to be able to be in a friend’s presence again would be so incredibly delightful. Those that learned hard lessons during the pandemic will just be happy to see you again in the same room. Focus on that joy and leave the shame behind.