How Coaching Can Improve Overall Wellness

The past two years have forced healthcare workers to face a shift in the field towards work environments that are continuously stressful andtime-consuming, producing burnout in records that have never been seen before.

Knowing how to navigate these emotions and workloads can be overwhelming, but one on one coaching offers a solution. Through coaching sessions with Hope4Med you can focus on your mental health and improve your overall wellness, creating a better and higher quality life for yourself with a guide there to walk you through everything.

The Importance of Mental Health for Overall Wellness

Overall well-being starts with improvements in mental health. Poor mental health can lead to a lack of desire to take care of oneself, such as through proper nutrition and adequate exercise, which can cause negative health conditions.

Not only that, but poor mental health can also directly impact your physical well-being. For example, those experiencing depression, stress, anxiety and PTSD (conditions commonly affecting those in the healthcare field)can experience physiological effects over time that include increased heart rate, high blood pressure, reduced blood flow to the heart, and increased cortisol levels. If left untreated, these effects can lead to heart and metabolic disease.

Not only that, but poor mental health, and especially burnout, can lead to an increase in mistakes made while working. For those with a job that involves the well-being of another human, the implications of work mistakes are drastic.

The Mental Health Crisis by The Numbers

A range of surveys regarding healthcare workers have been completed over the past few years; here are some of the key findings:

  • 86% of healthcare workers experience anxiety.
  • 76% of healthcare workers report feelings of burnout and exhaustion.
  • 93% of healthcare workers experience stress.
  • 37% of healthcare workers report experiencing symptoms of PTSD due to working during the pandemic
  • 32% of healthcare workers experience symptoms of depression
  • 1% of physicians attempt suicide.
  • 17% of physicians think about suicide.
  • 4% of fourth-year medical students and residents experience suicidal thoughts.

Why Healthcare Workers Are at a Higher Risk

The nature of work a healthcare professional endures on a daily basis is the exact situation that typically produces the highest cases of burnout, and in severe cases, suicide.

Factors such as burnout, fatigue, and increased workloads are all too common to those in the healthcare profession, which is why healthcare workers need to be more vigilant than other professionals about protecting and caring for their mental health.

Some of the aspects of work in healthcare that contribute to increased job stress include:

  • very stressful and emotional situations
  • demanding physical work
  • risk of injury
  • risk of hazardous exposure (illness, chemicals, drugs, etc.)
  • long and sometimes unpredictable working hours
  • staffing shortages leading to increased workloads

These situations are a prominent part of the healthcare field, but despite this, relatively little is done to protect the workers putting the well-being and care of others first every time they clock in for work.

Hope4Med and 1:1 Coaching

Hope4Med offers a safe place full of beneficial resources for healthcare professionals. Through Hope4Med, you have access to a convenient, private, and confidential outlet where there is no judgment regarding your struggles,and plentiful resources tailored specifically to healthcare workers. Hope4Med is a place created by a healthcare professional for healthcare professionals, so you can feel confident that its resources will apply specifically to you and your needs.

One of the offerings at Hope4Med is 1:1 coaching, which provides many benefits and, for some people, is precisely what they need to take control of their mental and physical well-being.

What Do Coaches Do?

Hold You Accountable

Everyone can agree that having someone hold you accountable makes you much more likely to accomplish your tasks. As humans we have an intrinsic desire not to let others down, which encourages us to follow the tasks set aside by others and maintain a commitment to bettering ourselves.

When it comes to enacting changes to improve mental health, trying to hold ourselves accountable can be even more challenging since the side effects of poor mental health directly contradict the actions that help improve your mental health.

For instance, the side effects of poor mental health, such as fatigue and a loss of interest,make it difficult tocomplete actions that improve our mental health, further worsening mental health and continuing the cycle. A coach, however, serves as a way to stop the cycle and reverse it, ensuring that you take care of your mental health the way you need to.

Offer A Safe Place to Talk

As healthcare professionals, it can be challenging to discuss the problems we face at work with those not in the field. It’s a field that you don’t truly understand until you are working within it yourself, making it difficult to express how you are feeling and what you are enduring to others.

Having a coach offers someone you can talk to who understands the problems you are going through. Not only can you discuss your problems with them, but it is encouraged because discussing what is going on with you allows them to best understand the coaching skills that you need.

Help You Implement Needed Skills

Knowing that you need to improve your general well-being, and knowing how to do this, are two entirely different things. It can be challenging to know where to start, let alone how to accomplish what you need and find the desire to get started.

With a personal coach, you have someone with extensive experience helping other healthcare professionals, just like you, improve their well-being. You can be sure that the skills they offer you are successful while also being tailored to where you currently are health-wise.

It can be challenging to follow a “general” plan for improving wellness because everyone is different. For example, one person may need to implement activities to address depression, while another needs to focus on how to decrease stress levels. Everyone is different, and your help should be too. At Hope4Med, your coach will work closely with you to ensure that you get the help you need, not just a general guideline.

Your coach will also help you figure out ways to implement the changes you need to make a positive impact. For example, if you experience high-stress levels, your coach can help you figure out changes to implement at work and in your personal life to decrease stress levels. Breaking a huge task into smaller pieces makes it much easier to implement positive changes.

Know The Signs to Watch For

One of the most important jobs of a coach is to help you improve your mental and physical health, but they are also well-trained in recognizing the signs of worsening mental health. They know the warning signs of burnout and can keep an eye on you to ensure that you do not reach this point of mental and physical exhaustion.

Benefits Of Coaching

All of the above actions of 1:1 coaching offer some significant benefits, including:

Improves Mental Health

Mental health plays a significant role in your overall well-being, which is why it is one of the highest priorities for coaching sessions. By equipping you with the skills you need and providing awareness of your current mental health state, you are more likely to implement positive changes in your life that improve your mental health.

With healthcare professionals at the greatest risk of poor mental health and the severe side effects of a prolonged poor mental health state, including suicide, it is clear that improving mental health can have a significant benefit to their well-being.

Rediscover Your Love for Healthcare

Improving your mental health can have numerous benefits, one of which is a new satisfaction with your work. Many healthcare workers can experience a decline in their enjoyment of their job due to the high stress and ever-increasing workload. However, with the demanding nature of the healthcare profession, having a love for helping others is one of the most important qualities.

By focusing on your mental health, you can create a healthy relationship with your work again, helping you rediscover your love for the field.

Lowers Stress

Coaches provide healthcare workers with the skills needed to manage their stress levels at work and at home. This is especially important because, for many healthcare workers, the stress from the day follows them home.

Healthcare workers know better than anyone just how dangerous high-stress levels can be to the body, producing physical problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and memory problems. In addition, chronic stress can impact sleep, leaving healthcare workers sleep-deprived, affecting their clarity when doing their job and potentially leading to mistakes.

With the skills practiced during coaching, and the implementation tactics discussed, healthcare workers can learn how to lower their stress levels and improve their well-being.

Join Our Movement

For anyone in the healthcare field, professional and student alike, the nature of healthcare can become overwhelming. If you are starting to feel this way about your job, check out Hope4Med and all the resources it offers to you. For those looking for someone to help hold them accountable and provide personalized strategies to improve mental health, give coaching a try and see how it can benefit you.

Coaching is advantageous for those not currently feeling the beginning of burnout as well. By implementing solid strategies to care for your mental health before it declines, you can help prevent it in general. Having the resources to care for yourself is great, but coaching offers that extra push to truly implement the changes your mental health needs, improving your whole life in the process.

If you’re interested in how coaching specific for healthcare professionals can help you, join our movement today and see what our community has to offer.

References

Bremner, J., Campanella, C., Khan, Z., Shah, M., Hammadah, M., & Wilmot, K. et al. (2018). Brain Correlates of Mental Stress-Induced Myocardial Ischemia. Psychosomatic Medicine, 80(6), 515-525. doi: 10.1097/psy.0000000000000597

Jacob, L., Haro, J., &Koyanagi, A. (2018). Post-traumatic stress symptoms are associated with physical multimorbidity: Findings from the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey 2007. Journal Of Affective Disorders, 232, 385-392. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2018.02.063

The Mental Health of Healthcare Workers in COVID-19. (2022). Retrieved 14 April 2022, from https://mhanational.org/mental-health-healthcare-workers-covid-19

Bryant-Genevier J, Rao CY, Lopes-Cardozo B, et al. Symptoms of Depression, Anxiety, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Suicidal Ideation Among State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Public Health Workers During the COVID-19 Pandemic — United States, March–April 2021. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2021;70:1680–1685. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm7048a6external icon

Dutheil, F., Aubert, C., Pereira, B., Dambrun, M., Moustafa, F., &Mermillod, M. et al. (2019). Suicide among physicians and health-care workers: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLOS ONE, 14(12), e0226361. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0226361

Goebert, D., Thompson, D., Takeshita, J., Beach, C., Bryson, P., & Ephgrave, K. et al. (2009). Depressive Symptoms in Medical Students and Residents: A Multischool Study. Academic Medicine, 84(2), 236-241. doi: 10.1097/acm.0b013e31819391bb

Stress effects on the body. (2022). Retrieved 14 April 2022, from https://www.apa.org/topics/stress/body

 

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