Managing the next miles of our marathon
Friday, May 22, 2020
Posted by: Karen Hardin
A self-care message from your Prevention and Wellness Program
To all of our front-line psychologists, psychology assistants, graduate students, and staff, thank you for all of your outstanding efforts to help promote the mental health and well-being of our community. Together, we have past many mile markers in this marathon: found or made PPE’s and hand sanitizers; learned to be comfortable with masks, social distance and frequent hand-washing; learned the ropes of telepsychology; sifted through medical information and disinformation to keep ourselves and our clients/patients/staff/colleagues informed; hopefully stayed both physically healthy and grounded; and managed a lot of fatigue/stress that results from long hours on the front line. And many more challenges—perhaps also helping to support our partners/spouses/significant others, elderly parents, and our at-home children needing lots more reassurance and guidance. And a special thanks to the supportive and adaptable leadership of OPA and to each of you who has joined us for one of our Self-Care Assemblies and been willing to share your trust, vulnerabilities, and wisdom.
As Ohio begins to open up, we have many more mile markers ahead. We encourage you to remain open to checking inside to see what additional needs you may have in these next miles, and to be aware what you needed before may be very different than what you need now. Some of you may have slowed down enough to allow yourself to feel more of what we have all may have experienced—the feelings of achievement along with the doubts and anxieties of wondering if we have done enough; the pride of having set healthy boundaries and at the same time, the awareness of how much significant extra energy it has taken to maintain them; the comfort of finding out telepsychology can be very effective, and yet knowing in-person work could be even more effective, and struggling with the inevitable nagging doubts of when will you feel safe enough to return to the office, and debating inside about what is best for our clients and for us?
Times of trauma provide us opportunities for reflection. We invite you in the next miles to take some time for you to reflect on the wisdom you have learned in the past couple months. Have your priorities changed? What have you discovered about your resilience capacity? What have you cried about, laughed about, worried about? How have you increased or decreased reaching out for your own support? What coping methods have been effective, and which ones have you discovered have led to less than desirable outcomes?
Whatever you discover, we invite you to affirm for yourself you are worthy of exquisite self-compassion, deepened connections to your inner resilience and passion, and healthy engagement with the people in your life who help you feel loved, appreciated, respected and grateful. From everyone at OPA, we are grateful to each of you!
PWP plans to continue every two weeks to provide self-care assemblies. Our next assembly is Thursday, June 4th, 7-8:15 PM. Watch your email for your chance to participate, receive support and support your colleagues in future assemblies.
*This Photo of marathon by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA