DrJoyCoaching Newsletter, Vol. 4
December 13, 2020
This year has been crazy and stressful, and burnout among physicians is at a tipping point. And burnout was already an issue before the pandemic.
But vaccines are coming. A new administration is coming. And there seems to be some light at the end of this tunnel.
So how can we come out of 2020 with the resilience to carry on in 2021?
There are a few areas that can cause some distress during the holidays, so I wanted to share a few ideas to keep in mind to support your personal resilience...
1. Family Interactions:
My college kids will be home for 6 weeks over the holidays, and a family of four cooped up indoors under one roof is trying, even for the most patient of souls. Whatever your situation is, before letting conversations escalate, I recommend taking a pause, and a breath or two, before reacting or responding in a way you might regret. Be respectful, even if someone's opinion differs from your own. Try seeing the situation from the other person's perspective. Ask questions that open lines of communication. Let people feel their feelings, and share your own. If you need to, take a timeout yourself.
Cooking and baking can be wonderful ways to bond with family members, and enjoying a good meal is one of those things that makes us feel comforted and connected. Be mindful, though, as you reach for that second cookie. Eating and drinking to deal with stress, boredom, or negative emotions is a dangerous pattern to get into. If you do find that you have overindulged, don't get down on yourself. Have some self-compassion, and just notice when those urges come up again. Have some strategies for dealing with the urge to overindulge- have a glass of water, have some healthy snacks at the ready, go for a walk.
Don't neglect your self-care just because the family situation is different. If you normally meditate or do yoga in the morning, keep it up. If you like to exercise when you get home from work, let family members know this is non-negotiable. If you need evening time to read or journal, make sure you allot time on the schedule. Your self-care is critical, especially if you are a parent. You need to take care of yourself to be able to take care of others.
Your resilience strategies are crucial for maintaining your physical and mental health. I invite you to watch my YouTube series, Resilient Women in Medicine, where I talk to several women physicians about their experiences with injury, illness, burnout, infertility, and career transition. You may hear something that resonates with you, and decide it's time to make a change!
I wish you peace and happiness during the holidays.
DrJoyCoaching LLC | California, USA