Today we find ourselves on the frontlines facing a pandemic, facing COVID. Our healthcare system is stretched. We are finding our own health and the health of our families may be in jeopardy. We may be faced with decisions we never thought we would make when we took our Hippocratic Oath to do no harm. How do we remain “well” when on the wards facing COVID?
Some tips to maintaining our wellness:
- Meet your basic needs. Eat, drink and sleep. Take care of your body. Make time for exercise, rest, relaxation.
- Schedule some down time to unwind. Read a book. Talk with a friend. Do something that helps you relax.
- Connect with colleagues. Sometimes listening to one another can be therapeutic. This also gives you a chance to tell your stories.
- Find something to be positive about. Compliment someone. Find something to be grateful for. Share positivity and gratitude as much as possible.
- Stay up-to-date with what’s going on. Policies and procedures are changing quickly, which can be more stressful. Find a source of information that you trust and stay up to date with that.
- Disconnect. Turn off social media and the news when necessary. It can get overwhelming.
- Honor Your Service – you are fulfilling a NOBLE calling, despite the chaos.
These recommendations are adapted from the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress. For their full recommendations for Sustaining the Well-Being of Healthcare Personnel during Coronavirus and other Infectious Disease Outbreaks, click here.
Get Some Exercise:
- Free home workouts with Les Mills Home Workouts
- Try out OnePeloton Workout App. They are currently offering a free trial for 90 days.
- Stream a free yoga class at Down Dog Yoga.
- Or check out Yoga with Adriene.
- Check out this schedule of Instagram Live workouts from Sweats & The City – it’s updated daily…
Practice Meditation & Mindfulness:
- Try the Headspace App, a meditation/mindfulness and sleep app, that is available for free to healthcare providers at this time.
- Download the Meditation RX App for free during the pandemic. Or check out the Meditation Oasis Podcast.
- Try the Ten Percent Happier App for meditation and take a look at their Coronavirus Sanity Guide.
- Download the Calm App.
- Sign up for ZivaOnline and learn how to use Meditate, Mindfulness and Manifesting to decrease stress. ZivaOnline is currently free to medical professionals!
Practice Self-Care & Self-Compassion:
- Work on Self-Compassion Meditations & Exercises here.
- Read Self-Care tips from the Center for Mind-Body Medicine.
Check out Physician Wellness Websites:
- PhysiciansWorkingTogether.org – An online community of doctors caring for doctors
- TheHappyMD.Com – A Balanced Approach to Burnout Prevention, Physician Wellness and living
- The PBCMS Physician Wellness Resource Library
- Mind-Body Skills Training for Resilience, Effectiveness, and Mindfulness (STREAM) program from OSU – an innovative on-line education program for health professionals.
- TedTalks for Burn Out
Find a Support Group or Therapy:
- Supportiv – an anonymous peer support group online is now offering waived fees for healthcare workers during COVID.
- Try out TalkSpace – an online therapy app with licensed therapists and unlimited messaging. To assist nurses, doctors, and social workers cope with the stress, anxiety, and pressure of fighting the coronavirus, medical and healthcare workers can now access free online therapy. To sign up, healthcare workers should register via the app (Google PlayorApp Store) orwebsiteby providing verification with their NPI and state of residence. Once certified, they will gain access to our Unlimited Messaging Plus plan.
- COVID19 Maternal Wellbeing Facebook Group – The COVID-19 Maternal Well-Being group was created by three board-certified women physicians – an Obstetrician Dr. Tara Abraham, a Pediatric Critical Care Physician Dr. Anita Patel and a Perinatal Psychiatrist Dr. Pooja Lakshmin. We aim to provide evidence based information for women who are considering pregnancy, trying to conceive, going through fertility treatments, pregnant or postpartum and to create a safe space and community for women during this time of difficult and uncertainty.
- COVID19 Physician Group – An inclusive resource for physicians to share front-line clinical information about COVID19 as it becomes available.
- PMG COVID19 Subgroup – A COVID19 subgroup of the Physician Mom’s Group.
- SweetGreen plans to offer free meals to healthcare workers. “In the midst of the current crisis, we’re dedicating our Outpost operations and teams to support those on the front lines by delivering free, fresh salads + bowls to hospitals in the cities we serve.”
- Don’t miss out on coffee. Starbucks is serving free tall hot or iced coffee to all health care workers through May 3.
- Krispy Kreme may not scream “wellness” but it is comfort food… They are offering a free dozen donuts on Mondays through May 11 to anyone who works in healthcare who shows up with their employee badge.
- UberEats and DoorDash have lifted delivery fees, so don’t cook after your long day. Get food delivered! And they will leave it at your door to minimize contact during social distancing!
- Listen to the Met Opera
- Check out the Seattle Symphony Live
- Try taking a virtual tour of one of these Museums
- More Museums https://artsandculture.google.com/partner?hl=en
- Stream a Broadway Show
- Take a drawing class.
Resources for kids:
- Try Comic kids yoga.
- Go on a Virtual Disney Ride.
- Check out the Natural History Museum at the Toledo Zoo
- Take a home safari through the Cincinati Zoo
- Tour the San Diego Zoo and find all the animals.
- Try one of these 30 virtual field trips.
- Virtually tour Yellowstone National Park.
- Talk to your kids about Coronavirus using this comic.
- Watch the otters and the Manatees at Mote Marine Laboratory.
- Check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium live cameras – watch sharks, otters, penguins, birds, coral and more!
- Watch the beluga whales at the Georgia aquarium.
- Tour the Louvre.
- Tour the Boston’s Children’s Museum.
- Check out the surface of Mars.
- Make homemade play dough.
- Listen to Story Time from Space – Astronauts will read your child a story while floating in space.
- Take a virtual farm tour.
- Make Origami.
- Take a dance class with Miss Melodee.
- Get MOVING with GoNoodle!
- Here are another 105 ideas to keep kids entertained during Coronavirus…
For those trying to support their loved ones in the healthcare field, here’s a great post on how to help…
For our medical students who may have had rotations and classes cancelled, see if you can babysit for a healthcare worker. Babysit for one of the physicians on the front lines. Many medical schools are setting up programs for childcare, which is so important to allow our healthcare workforce to show up at the hospital. See if you can set one up at your hospital. You never know when the connections you make during this time could help you in the future!