Taking Care of Yourself: Don’t Forget about YOU!
This Mental Health Awareness Month, Laurie Nash, Ph.D., ABPP, director of Shepherd Center’s Psychology Department, gives some simple tips on facilitating your own self-care.
By Laurie Nash, Ph.D., ABPP
Director of Shepherd Center’s Psychology Department
Being a professional, taking care of patients with acute and long-term catastrophic injuries and illnesses, is both rewarding and challenging on a normal day. Since COVID-19, “normal” may seem like a distant memory.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and it's a great time to remember the importance of taking care of ourselves! Here are some simple ideas to consider for facilitating your own self-care:
- Breathe. Take a moment to catch your breath.
- Get enough sleep.
- Pray or meditate.
- Get some movement in every day. Practicing yoga can be a great exercise as well as a way to disconnect and meditate.
- Utilize social media to stay connected. Share a meal, play a game or watch a movie “together.”
- Take a long bath or shower.
- Pamper yourself at home by giving yourself a facial, manicure, pedicure or anything else that you consider a treat.
- Read, blog or journal.
- If you can, take time off work to unplug, refresh and renew. Even if you are working from home, unplugging with a day off can make a big difference.
- Start a recipe chain with others for new and creative ideas, and share favorite take-out spots.
- Get support and give support. Talk with colleagues. You are not alone!
- Meet with your supervisor if you’re feeling burnt out or overwhelmed.
- Many organizations have an Employee Assistance Program through human resources. This resource is available for all issues including stress, loss and finding a place to start, and are available via telehealth.
Shepherd Center provides world-class clinical care, research, and family support for people experiencing the most complex conditions, including spinal cord and brain injuries, multi-trauma, multiple amputations, stroke, multiple sclerosis, and pain. Ranked by U.S. News as one of the nation’s top 10 hospitals for rehabilitation and the best in the Southeast, Shepherd Center treats more than 850 inpatients and 7,600 outpatients annually with unmatched expertise and unwavering compassion to help them begin again.