As the unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic continues to upend the sense of normalcy we all depend on throughout each day, various Medical Professionals spearhead the charge to physically care for patients, battle the relative unknowns of the virus, develop effective treatments, and organize operations intended to minimize negative effects of the pandemic. Across all medical fields, brave Medical Professionals dutifully perform their jobs under unique circumstances, navigate the realm of the “new normal”, and effectively set aside their own potential anxieties for the betterment of society. However, as taxing days continue to pass, even the most seasoned Medical Professionals can begin to experience increased stress. Through prolonged stress, these frontline warriors can become subject to various negative physical, and mental consequences. Thus, in order to avoid potential burnout, and maximize productivity, Medical Professionals can practice various tools for effective stress management. Below, we examine ways to relieve stress and navigate the unknowns of the current pandemic.
Let The Job Motivate You
Most practicing Medical Professionals have dedicated an exorbitant amount of time to garner the education required to become licensed in their desired fields of medicine. Sacrificing free time, extracurricular activities, and social outings for a number of years throughout their education, Medical Professionals commit their existence to the higher calling of eventually helping others. Once they formally enter the medical field of their choosing, Medical Professionals often move forward with specializations and dedicate their professional trajectory to continue gaining knowledge, understanding, and the inherent desire to help patients in any way possible. Thus, this inherent calling propels young Medical Professionals to take the steps needed in order to succeed, remain motivated throughout times of difficulty, and otherwise maintain a commitment to the realm of medicine.
In times of great stress, then, recalling that inherent motivation to enter the field of medicine can act as a great motivator to continue to forge ahead. For New Jersey’s Dr. Shiva Gopal Vasishta, focusing on the reasons why he dedicated his professional trajectory to medicine helps the Neurologist maintain an unwavering motivation toward objectively performing his duties during stressful conditions. By the time he completed his formal education, residency program, and Clinical Neurophysiology and Electrodiagnostic Medicine specialization program, Dr. Vasishta already felt accomplished, having succeeded in such difficult programs. Thus, now a leading Medical Professional with several years of experience within the niche field of Neurology, Dr. Vasishta leverages those inaugural successes throughout his education to retain confidence in his professional calling, and effectively remove all external circumstances to recall his initial professional passions.
For the myriad of Medical Professionals actively involved in the fight against COVID-19, thinking back to their initial motivations for entering the medical field can be a great motivator. Recalling early triumphs, and giving themselves proverbial pats on the back, these frontline warriors can benefit from taking their thoughts back to the basics. In the world of medicine, committed professionals can reinvigorate their professional motivations, and gain an understanding of their unique place in these historic times.
Remember To Take Care Of Yourself
We all can picture the stereotypical in-flight safety presentation that occurs in the aisles prior to every plane’s takeoff. During these presentations, an Airline Attendant reminds flyers that in the case of an emergency, they must first secure their own oxygen mask, prior to attempting to help others. This universal mantra reigns true for a myriad of other situations, reminding those who instinctively first rush to the aid of others, that they must first ensure their own safety. As Medical Professionals are integral individuals in the fight against the global COVID-19 pandemic, their safety, wellness, and ability to perform their duties is crucial. Thus, they must always make sure to be mentally, physically, and emotionally healthy.
First, ensuring that all Medical Professionals have the needed personal protective equipment required to safely, confidently, and securely perform their jobs is a key element for reducing workplace stressors. For many nurses, Physicians, and other professionals, shortages in equipment enhance stressful conditions, unnecessarily increasing risk factors for the Medical Professionals working around the clock throughout the pandemic. Secondly, Medical Professionals must make it a priority to ensure that they are eating well-balanced meals, retaining a healthy sleep schedule, and partaking in self-care activities that enhance their overall wellbeing. While the concept of self-care may include uniquely different activities for different individuals, recognizing the benefits of partaking in these activities is crucial.
Sneak In 5 Minutes Of Zen
With many Medical Professionals working double shifts and being otherwise spread thin, even little moments dedicated to relaxation can make a big difference. When completed multiple times throughout the day, calming exercises can become a mainstay in the quest for ongoing stress management. While following an hour-long virtual yoga class may seem like the only way to reach nirvana, even five minutes of light stretching in the hospital’s break room can elicit similar benefits.
Utilizing technology to assist with this task, Medical Professionals can call upon the help of various self-help apps for a quick pick-me-up whenever possible. In between patient rounds, nurses can follow a five minute guided meditation. During a lunch break, Physicians can listen to a calming podcast story. Even while walking to perform another task, Medical Technicians can practice deep breathing exercises. These dedicated moments of zen not only manifest physical feelings of relaxation, but they can also create a deeper presence for perennially stressed out Medical Professionals, bringing them back to the moment at hand.
By following the previously mentioned tips, modern Medical Professionals can proactively regain control over increasing stress and successfully move forward within their respective days. In these unprecedented times, navigating the professional realm of medicine can suddenly feel difficult for all Medical Professionals. Thus, by implementing a few small, dedicated, and effective exercises throughout the day, these frontline warriors can remain physically, and emotionally healthy. With such a pivotal role in the fight against COVID-19, the health and wellbeing of Medical Professionals remain an important topic for exploration. As we all learn to navigate a rapidly changing world, within any industry, these stress management tactics can help to create balance, wellness, and the mindfulness needed to venture forth.
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