Spring is the perfect time to talk about resiliency.
The definition of resiliency is the “ability to recoil or spring back into shape after bending, stretching, or being compressed.” This time of year, the earth is demonstrating its own ability to “spring back into shape” after a long winter. This month our focus is resiliency, with suggestions and strategies to help you spring back after being bent and stretched by your work. The emphasis is on short practices that don’t require a lot of time. While you will, no doubt, have heard some of these suggestions before, they will hopefully serve as additional tools for your resiliency toolkit.
Appreciating the Small Things
Many of you have accompanied people as they die. I am not thinking of the Code Blue, sudden and dramatic deaths that occur in the hospital. Rather, I am referring to those more gradual deaths where there is time to talk and process. If you haven’t done that with a patient, then perhaps with a loved one. At their best, those experiences provide opportunities for the living to remember what is important. They provide perspective.
In reflecting on her mother’s death, the Pulitzer Prize winning author Anna Quindlen writes:
But of course I know that that’s how I understood the importance of living life to the fullest, from watching my mother lose it by inches. She wasn’t clinging to life so that she could write a bestseller, or make a million bucks. She just wanted to watch the sun come up one more time, or to hug my little sister, or to listen to “South Pacific” on the stereo. And that teaches you something. It teaches you that so much of what you take for granted is the bedrock of happiness. (Emphasis mine.)
This short exercise is to re-appreciate some small thing you have been taking for granted. It might be a view out your window, a familiar person, the taste of a favorite food–whatever your version of listening to South Pacific or watching the sun come up is. The small, good things of life help us spring back in the midst of challenging days.
Questions for Reflection and Conversation: What is a small, good thing that you have been taking for granted? How does it help you be more resilient?
The Physician Lounge
At its best, the Physician Lounge is a place of conversation and reflection. As a doctor, sometimes what you need is a chance to connect with other physicians, bouncing ideas off each other, laughing or venting. Other times you just need a moment to think in the midst of a hectic schedule. Physician Colleague Reflections by Lumunos are an attempt to get at the spirit of the Physician Lounge. In simple email format, they provide an opportunity to connect, discuss, vent, laugh, or reflect.
If you are interested in providing the Lumunos Physician Colleague Reflections to your medical staff or physician group on a weekly basis, contact Doug Wysockey-Johnson at Doug@Lumunos.org