Uncertainty. That is the best word that I can find to encompass the amalgam of feelings that I have experienced over the last two weeks. As our world, country, state, city, and community has been turned upside down and we are feeling the great impact of this pandemic of COVID-19, I have found myself at a loss for words and very uncertain about what comes next…
In order to cope best, I have been trying to re-frame these circumstances in a manageable and productive way. I have been asking myself 2 Questions that have helped me remain optimistic amid the uncertainty:
1- What Can I GIVE? & 2- What Can I ACCEPT?
The first question: What can I GIVE?
What Can I GIVE to MYSELF? positive inputs: physical, psychological, purpose. Kindness and compassion, and an openness to experience a variety of moods, emotions, and motivational states. I can give myself time to invest in my health and well being.
What can I GIVE to my FRIENDS/FAMILY/LOVED ONES? I can give: empathic listening, attention and awareness of suffering. I can go grocery shopping for those unable to get out to stores. I love to share food with others and with restaurants closed, I have been enjoying making meals for friends and family. Who doesn’t love a home cooked and healthy meal?
What Can I GIVE to my NEIGHBORHOOD COMMUNITY? I can give: smiles and greetings as I keep my 6 feet distance (“social distancing”), friendly conversations with the minimal in-person interactions that I do have, such as buying groceries. I can give: monetary support to those in my community that are struggling financially and help provide our basic needs. I am spending my money at farmers’ markets, shopping at my local co-op grocery store, and buying merchandise and to-go food and beverages at local restaurants and coffee shops.
What Can I GIVE to my PHYSICAL THERAPY (Professional) COMMUNITY? I can give:
Time and study resources to students. Specifically, I would like to offer FREE support and resources to current Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) students who are studying for their National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) licensing test.
Check out these NPTE study plans: Leda’s NPTE 8-Week Study Plan & Leda’s 10-12 Week Study Plan that I have created to help guide your studying and keep you accountable for putting in those study hours! Also, My Series of FREE Recorded NPTE Prep Lectures
I am currently working on developing 1-2 page brief notes sheets on various NPTE topics including: neuroanatomy, physical therapy screening of red flags, and various musculoskeletal topics. Stay tuned for more on this… (I will post links on this blog site, so subscribe if you want updates!). I am also offering some remote tutoring to students via Zoom Video Conferencing.
The Second Question: What Can I ACCEPT?
I Can ACCEPT: HELP
Many generous individuals and companies are offering free resources as they acknowledge the hardships (illness, financial, social), that have been placed on individuals in our society. A few of these resources and free offers that I plan to ACCEPT as help are listed below:
Bodhi Tree Yoga Studio (Liz Chamberlain) Free Recorded Yoga Classes
DoYogaWithMe (Free 2 Months of Content)
Free Home Exercise Programs:
The Barbell Physio’s “quarantine” free 30 day at home workout plan
Pursuing Health: Free for 30 days workouts/mobility routines use code: FLATTENTHECURVE
Shift movement science: 6 day free home gymnastics workouts
Free Meditation/Mindfulness Resources:
Headspace (Free with NPI Number for Healthcare Workers)
Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR): Free 8 Week Course (and free guided meditations)
Tara Brach: Free Guided Meditations
I Can ACCEPT: OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
Free Physical Therapy Continuing Education Courses:
Evidence in Motion (EIM) (Free Courses on Pain Science) use code: COMMUNITY at checkout
Institute of Clinical Excellence (ICE) “Quarantine Con-Ed” 5 Free Lectures
Modern Pain Care (“Foundations of Pain” Course)
Physiopedia Free Course (Coronavirus Disease Programme_PT Applications)
Opportunities to Develop New Skill sets:
This means stepping outside of my personal comfort zone and learning about telehealth for physical therapy services. Also, learning to provide tutoring and support to students via online and remote methods.
I Can ACCEPT: UNCERTAINTY…AND…the mix of HUMAN REACTIONS and EMOTIONS: Discomfort (check out this post: Learning to Be Uncomfortable), fear, anxiety, hope, joy, inspiration…
I can accept that each of us is a wonderfully irrational, human being; Being Human is Messy and we all have different contexts for how we experience, act, and react in this world. The circumstances that we find ourselves in with COVID-19 have reminded me of the seemingly conflicting (though concurrently true!) realities and feelings that make up our human experience. For example, as the temperatures warm up and spring flowers abound I have found myself awash in feelings of hope and abundance. But, I have also felt heartbroken for those struggling so deeply through this this challenging time. I do not think the joy that may be experienced from nature’s beauty should be denied. Neither should the sorrow and empathy for those who are suffering. Both are valid and true and this diversity of human experiences is worthy of acceptance.
What can you GIVE and ACCEPT in this time of uncertainty?