Mental health is of the utmost importance for individuals during times of crisis, especially a crisis as big as the global pandemic occurring currently. In particular, healthcare professionals on the frontlines are especially vulnerable as they struggle to find a balance between caring for patients and worrying about their wellbeing and their loved ones. Those in healthcare having a good grip on their mental health is important not only for themselves but for the patients they treat as well. So how can healthcare professionals manage this aspect of life while on the frontlines?
Talk About Your Feelings
Due to the current state of the world, you’re likely to be feeling many different emotions. This is even more likely when you work in healthcare and are seeing the virus and how it affects people first hand. It’s important that you acknowledge how you’re feeling and discuss it with people you feel comfortable with. Ignoring your emotions is an unhealthy habit that has the ability to lead to physical stress on your body as well as amplifying those emotions. Talking about our feelings helps us process them, as well as understand why we’re feeling these things.
Limit Social Media Exposure
Technology has allowed us to be constantly connected to those around us, whether they be in our immediate surroundings or across the world. It’s also spawned an always accessible 24/7 news cycle that can be difficult to avoid. While keeping up with the news is important, it’s also important that you’re able to control your intake of it. Try to make a habit of taking breaks from your phone or computer more often, and when you do get back online, be sure to only read news from reputable sources. If you’re on social media such as Twitter or Facebook, perhaps you can try muting certain phrases or accounts so only the posts you want to see will show up on your feed.
Take A Break
Most of all, it’s important to avoid overworking yourself in times like this. While it’s understandable to want to do whatever you can to help, especially when you have the capabilities as a healthcare professional, it’s also important to have time for yourself. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep and eat healthy meals every day. Do something you enjoy that isn’t related to work, such as reading a book or working in your garden. Of course, be sure to follow proper social distancing guidelines depending on how you choose to spend your free time.