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TWO TRUTHS

July 13, 2021

Well, hello friends & colleagues,

I thought I might take a moment to reflect on the past few weeks by reaching out to all of you with updates specifically for providers and those in the healthcare field.

If you’re subscribed to my regular newsletter, then you likely hear from me weekly about parenting woes, showing up more vulnerably as a human and ways to create resilience for our kids. But as my work has begun to shift dramatically towards helping the helpers, specifically healthcare workers in primary care, I thought I might begin to send some nuggets to all of you on a more regular basis.

Over the past weeks and months, I’ve talked with hundreds of providers and healthcare leaders. And, wow. There’s so much on our collective plates. I have the pleasure of working with people in different capacities which allows me to ascertain pain points and feel more effective when I help, offer resources, or create content to share. Here are some highlights:

  • Individuals in primary care feeling anxious as people try to figure out “new normal.”
  • Leaders feel frustrated as people refer to “post-pandemic” as if we’re there…
  • Groups of pediatricians who are struggling with vaccine hesitancy and trying to figure out how to have these delicate, often personal, discussions with patients.
  • Leaders who are trying to figure out how to create staff resilience after such long periods of burnout and overwhelm.
  • Providers trying to find meaning as we move back to “regular behavior” …

Does any of this sound familiar? You’re not alone. Fatigue, overwhelm, burnout, and exhaustion are words that I am hearing on a daily basis. We have to create space to name these feelings. We must normalize space for people to say, “I’m not okay right now.” And we don’t have to fix it, fade it, or make it go away – listening is a great place to start. And man-oh-man have I listened. And felt tearful. And powerless. And IN IT. How about you?

Here’s something to try right away that can feel pretty powerful: I want you to write down two things that feel opposing but can actually go together. Then bridge the two with AND. For instance, “It’s beautiful outside AND I wish we had rain because it’s so dry.” Or “I love treating patients AND I’m exhausted.” Or “I feel blessed to have had a job through such a tumultuous time AND it’s overwhelming to keep going for so long.” Once we embrace the AND there’s a certain amount of pressure that peels away; or at least, that’s my hope. Acknowledging that two opposing thoughts can co-occur acknowledges the complexity that we all experience. One does not exclude the other, nor diminish pain. BOTH are TRUE.

I’d love to hear from you – so many of you are struggling with fatigue and if you begin to embrace the duality – that it’s ok to feel grateful AND exhausted; inspired AND fearful; acknowledging AND frustrated – the overwhelm will begin to dissipate.

Oh, and another way to decrease the overwhelm – fuel yourself. Here are two ways to join me: The first is FREE and happening within weeks. The second is a retreat that will refuel your mind and spirit.

August 5 at 12:30 – join me for Refresh, A Meaningful Medicine Community.

Or, if you’re ready for more, for a deep dive full of great food, wine, yoga and sharing stories with like-minded professionals….join me for The Most Important Medicine: Transforming Primary Care by Focusing on Relational Health and Connection. 

Where will I see you next?

With compassion,

Dr. Amy

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