There have been many stressors as a result of COVID-19 and the NCAPA Health Committee is dedicated to providing support and resources. To that end, NCAPA will be launching Wellness Wednesday posts on social media as well as the NCAPA blog. These posts may include tips or strategies, with links to further information. We know you are focused on taking care of your patients, and we hope you will focus on your own well-being as well. If you have any strategies or links to any resources you think your PA colleagues could benefit from, please share them with us for potential use in a future Wellness Wednesday post. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bob Paul, PA-C, NCAPA Health Commitment member uses a gratitude practice to build his own resiliency. He shares, “one way to help with overall mental well-being, including burnout, is to practice gratitude. During our hectic day, many of us tend to gravitate to all of the negative things that happen – my patient schedule is overbooked, that patient was exceptionally challenging, the X-ray machine is down, compliance is on my back to finish my charts, etc. By shifting our perspective to one of gratitude, we can focus on the positive rather than the negative. Keeping a gratitude list is a great way to start. When stress is piling up and negativity and cynicism start creeping in, pause and pull out your gratitude list to help refocus on what is truly important.”
Meg Leddy, PA-C, NCAPA Health Committee member, describes: “COVID has put a strain on all of us. A key element that may help us through this time is self-compassion. For Physician Assistants, this may sound counter intuitive. Aren’t we supposed to be compassionate with others? Yes, but we can extend the same compassion to ourselves when the inner critic waltzes in to make a few comments about everything we are doing wrong. I always thought this voice was helping me be better, but what is really interesting about research done by Kristen Neff PhD, a top self-compassion researcher, is that people who had compassion for themselves were more productive, not less.” A quick exercise to help with the inner critic can be found here: https://self-compassion.org/exercise-5-changing-critical-self-talk/