Share • Connect • Receive Support
You don’t have to go through this alone
We know you are facing unique difficulties and stress as a healthcare worker while you care for us during this unprecedented time. You may be feeling a whole mixture of emotions–frustration, disappointment, overwhelm, sorrow, guilt, loneliness, gratitude, or numbness. Most likely, you are expected to be the strong one in your community, to care not only for your patients but also for your family and friends.
This is a lot to hold. And you don’t have to hold it all on your own.
I am so thankful to have found COR.
“A few weeks ago, a friend read my despair in a social media post I had written. As a healthcare worker herself, she encouraged me to attend a COR zoom meeting specifically for healthcare professionals. I am an ICU nurse on the frontline in this pandemic. I had been and continue to feel feelings I have never felt before.
If you need a place to express yourself and share what you are feeling, I encourage you to attend one of these meetings. This is a safe place without judgment for you as a healthcare professional. You will be given self-care tools to help calm your fear and anxiety. Your feelings will be acknowledged, which is greatly needed during these unprecedented times in healthcare.”
What these circles are about
What is a sharing circle?
It’s a format for you to share for a designated amount of time about whatever is on your mind or heart. For example, you might share about the experiences or challenges you are facing right now. In a sharing circle, all is welcome–any emotion, any judgement, any experience.
It’s not a discussion. We won’t give you advice or platitudes. It’s not a lecture.
It’s simply a place where you can share authentically and be heard. A place where you can receive support and process some of what is going on for you. A place to connect as you hear what others are going through.
Each sharing circle follows this basic format:
1. Start with a mindfulness exercise/meditation practice and brief check-in.
2. Sharing circle–every person will have a designated amount of time to share about whatever is going on for them, where all that is coming up is welcome, and participants may receive emotional support if they so wish.
3. We’ll teach and guide you through a tool or practice for the week such as a mindfulness practice, self-compassion tool, or relaxation/integration practice.
These circles are facilitated by COR facilitators and senior staff, and will offer a safe space to share and receive support.
How to join a healthcare workers sharing circle
1. Figure out which sharing circles you can attend:
Sundays from 2:30-3:45pm PT
Wednesdays from 6-7:15pm PT
2. Register for the sharing circles you’d like to attend
3. You’ll get an email reminder before each circle with the Zoom link and password
Then all you have to do is join!
Why join one of our healthcare workers sharing circles?
This time can be incredibly stressful and is probably bringing up a lot of difficult emotions. We’ve heard a lot of healthcare professionals saying they feel like they are on autopilot, numb, or just trying to “hold it all together” in order to survive.
This makes sense. In order to get through your day-to-day, you can’t be feeling all the stressful emotions that are swirling during this time. But, research suggests that if you don’t make time to acknowledge, feel, and processes these emotions, it can lead to burnout.
In her book, The Upside of Stress, Dr. Kelly McGonigal writes, “Many physicians have been trained to shut down the part of themselves that responds emotionally to pain, suffering, and death… While this may initially seem like a good way to reduce stress, it comes with a heavy cost… Trying to defend against the suffering around them can, paradoxically, increase their risk of burnout, by removing an important source of meaning.”
When physicians were apart of a weekly program where they practiced mindfulness, shared a story or experience from work, listened to each other rather than give advice, and were able to create meaning from their stories, they reported significantly less burnout.
The first seventy primary care physicians who completed the program where they met once a week for two months and then once a month for ten months reported feeling less emotionally drained from their work. Additionally, they felt fewer feelings of isolation in their stress. Finally, the program also helped reduce feelings of depression and anxiety, and increased feelings of gratitude and job satisfaction rather than overwhelm.
That’s why we created these sharing circles–so that you as healthcare workers have a chance to process the stressful emotions, feel less isolated in your struggles, and leave feeling filled up rather than burned out.
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