Tips for coping during the height of COVID-19
Health care providers are known to be compassionate, caring and giving of their time, energy and emotional reserves. But they might not be taking care of themselves so well. Here are some tips to cope better and improve resilience:
- Reduce information overload by limiting social media and news
- Engage in non-COVID conversations
- Communicate you needs with family/friends/co-workers
- Disengage from conflict when possible
- Limit screen time during rest and sleep preparation
- Take a moment to stretch
- Take a moment to slow your breath
- Take a moment to hydrate
Unique challenges facing healthcare workers
- Information overload – I need to stay informed and learned new policies, rules, expectations.
- COVID-only conversations – My family comes to me for credible information.
- Fear and anxiety – What if there’s not enough PPE, I get my family sick, I have to self-quarantine.
- Difficulties accessing support system – I’m just too tired at the end of the day.
- Rules and responsibilities are different than public – I have to go to work, yet others are told to stay home.
- Transitions/life plans interrupted – I like to make plans and now it’s impossible to.
- Difficulty staying present at work – It’s not easy being efficient and engaged when I’m feeling anxious and scared.
- Increased conflict – They’re not listening: the hospital, my leader, my spouse, the general public.
Risks and benefits of virtual therapy
Engaging in therapy using a video-platform is not possible for everyone. You will need a smart phone or computer with a secure and strong enough Wi-Fi connection. To get the most out of your session you will also need a private space free of distractions.
The platform we have chosen to use is both encrypted and PHIPA compliant, as confidentiality continues to be a top priority. It is also free for your use and does not require software or App download. You will experience your video appointment as very similar to usual in-person sessions, with one major exception. Instead of sitting in the same room, you and your psychologist will interact via live video conferencing. You can connect with a psychologist from home or from work.
To all health care providers: Thank you for what you are doing for your patients and for the public.