By Dr. Jennifer Russel & Françoise Mathieu MEd RP

(Adapted and submitted by the Wellness & Support Team) 

We are nine months into this global pandemic and things are not lightening up — how do we keep going?

1)   Secure the foundations: physical & mental hygiene

Physical and mental health are often the first things that are sacrificed in crisis situations. We encourage focusing on two things: 1) getting enough sleep and 2) exercising every day.

2)   Reset & listen to your body

The amount of stress we experience during times of crisis depends on many factors including past experiences, personality factors, current life stressors, coping strategies, prior training, personal resilience, and many others.  Often our body knows what to do — we just need to listen: humming, singing, a brief burst of physical exercise, or connecting with a significant other or a beloved pet can be quick resetting strategies.

3)   Pick your battles: circles of concern and influence

Try to assess whether this is an issue that you are able to modify or not.  In situations where you have no (or limited control) we encourage you to work at acknowledging grief and letting go. When you are unable to do this, try to practice self-compassion, recognizing that we are all doing our best and that we need to focus on this one day at a time.

4)   Connecting with others: creating an emotional village

One of the best ways to mitigate burnout and compassion fatigue is through social support. Be sure to create and maintain effective support while maintaining physical distancing. By participating in regular peer support, peer supervision, and making virtual coffee dates with colleagues, you can ensure that you are “socially connected” while physically distancing.

5)   Here are some resources and tools:

  1. Self-care in your workplace and personal life questionnaires
  2. Psychological PPE to manage COVID-19
  3. Circle of control and influence
  4. Feet on the floor video
  5. 3-minute breathing space infographic
  6. Managing media exposure
  7. Podcast: This is a marathon, not a Sprint

Click here to read Dr. Jennifer Russel & Françoise Mathieu’s full article.

This page last updated Nov 24, 2020 5:58pm PST