In Preparation for the 2nd Wave, Lessons Learned So Far from COVID19

Things are opening up again. 

I’m not taking out my confetti just yet – at this point, we’re peaking out of the bomb shelter without knowing if the surge is really over. 

But it does feel like we’re over a hump in a lot of ways. The frantic energy of late March and early April has calmed down. While we’re in that moment, I want to take a few moments to reflect on what lessons we can bring coming forward. 

  1. There’s no magic 8 ball. Uncertainty kinda took over for a few weeks there, didn’t it? I don’t know about you, but constantly refreshing my news feed or speculating about what would come next wasn’t the best remedy for my nerves. 

Accepting that we can’t predict the future and that some things are wayyyyy outside of our control is the first step to figuring out what we CAN do. And sometimes, all we can do is take deep breaths, hug our loved ones, and feel present in the moment we’re living, even if that moment is uncomfortable or scary. 

  1. Pain happens but suffering doesn’t have to. We cannot control everything that happens around us, but we can control what happens inside of our hearts, minds and souls. Unfortunately, there will be more painful events in life, and it’s totally healthy to feel that pain. 

But when feeling that pain starts your mind spinning into a thought tornado creating more problems, it turns into suffering. At that point, it’s time to acknowledge that pain and the shared human experience of pain, thank it for the lessons it’s taught, and let it pass. 

  1. Passable coping mechanisms are better than no coping mechanisms. Self-care is not a competition!!! Definitely not with other people, but also not with yourself. Maybe under “normal” circumstances, you’re able to bounce back after a run or church or girls night. 

But when you’re not able to complete your favorite self-care routine, whether it’s because of quarantine or for other reasons, it’s ok to go second-tier. Maybe reading a book won’t get you to 100%, but it distracts you enough to get your heart rate down. Or maybe you’ve never been a huge fan of painting, but it helps you connect with your kid. 

Point is, it’s ok to just be ok and semi-helpful is fine to get through. Feeling fine beats feeling dumpy – you don’t have to feel your best to feel good. 

  1. It’s ok to think about other things. When huge events like this happens, it’s easy to feel guilty about not wanting to think, learn or talk about it. This can happen on an individual scale, like when someone passes away or finances need to be sorted out.

Pause and take breaks. Yes, bad things may happen, but that doesn’t mean good things don’t deserve our attention. If anything, it’s important to celebrate the positives even more. 

  1. You are capable of hard things. Look, you are here. You’re making it. You’ve gotten through hard things in the past and you will continue to make it through in the future. It’s not easy to wade through the muck and confront what’s holding you back, but when you finally make it to the other side of that river….oh boy does it feel good. 

Bottom line is that even when things suck, we can still take away some good! I want to hear your reflections on the pandemic…what surprised you? What did you uncover that you still need to deal with? DM me on IG @truthrxs and tell me your answers. 

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Errin Weisman DO

Errin Weisman, DO is the self-proclaimed wellness guru on Authentic Medicine. She is a life coach, podcaster and fierce advocate for wellness in medicine. She faced professional burnout early in her career and speaks openly about her story in order to help others, particularly female physicians and working moms, know they are not alone. Dr. Weisman wholeheartedly believes to be a healer, you must first fill your own cup. She lives and practices life coaching and medicine in rural Southwestern Indiana, loves her roles as farmer’s wife, athlete and mother of three.You can find out more about Dr. Weisman on her podcast Doctor Me First, her website truthrxs.com or hang out with her on social media @truthrxs. Her podcast is “Doctor Me First”.

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