Facing Life&#039;s Challenges https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/ en Support After Challenging Outcomes https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/support-after-challenging-outcomes <span class="field--node--title">Support After Challenging Outcomes</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Thu, 01/10/2019 - 09:31</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/3129" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to Support After Challenging Outcomes"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p> </p> <table align="center" border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1"><tbody><tr><td align="center" valign="top"> <p class="text-align-center"><strong>Manage the </strong><br /><strong>Event</strong></p> <p data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" style="text-align: center;"><span><img alt="wlcAdverseEvent.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" src="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/images/wlc/wlcAdverseEvent.png" style="width:164px;height:164px;" /><span title="Click and drag to resize">​</span></span></p> <p class="rtecenter text-align-center"><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/support-following-adverse-event-vumc">Adverse Events</a></p> </td> <td>    </td> <td align="center" valign="top"> <p class="text-align-center"><strong>Elevate Psychological<br /> Resilience</strong></p> <p data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" style="text-align: center;"><span><img alt="wlcCriticalIncidentStressManagement.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" src="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/images/wlc/wlcCriticalIncidentStressManagement.png" style="width:164px;height:164px;" /><span title="Click and drag to resize">​</span></span></p> <p class="rtecenter text-align-center">  <a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/critical-incident-stress-management">Critical Incident<br /> Stress Management</a></p> </td> <td>    </td> <td align="center" valign="top"> <p class="text-align-center"><strong>Connect with<br /> Peers</strong></p> <p data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" style="text-align: center;"><span><img alt="wlcPeerSupport.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" src="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/images/wlc/wlcPeerSupport.png" style="width:164px;height:164px;" /><span title="Click and drag to resize">​</span></span></p> <p class="rtecenter text-align-center"><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/peer-support-programs-vumc">Peer Support</a></p> </td> </tr></tbody></table><p>When there are challenging cases that impact caregiver psychological well-being, Vanderbilt offers a variety of support services for faculty and staff.</p> <ul><li><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/support-following-adverse-event-vumc">Contact</a> the organizational resources that support you after an Adverse Clinical Event. Our risk management advocacy team can guide you through the process.</li> <li><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/critical-incident-stress-management">Access</a> Critical Incident Psychological Support when there has been an incident that impacts clinicians, teams, and staff.</li> <li><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/peer-support-programs-vumc">Learn</a> about Peer Assistance Programs for your work area.</li> </ul></div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=231" hreflang="und">Mental Health and Wellbeing</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=204" hreflang="und">Critical Incident Stress</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=237" hreflang="und">Prevention</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=259" hreflang="und">Violence</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=240" hreflang="und">Resilience</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=249" hreflang="und">Stress</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Thu, 10 Jan 2019 15:31:17 +0000 mcgownpw 3129 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness Peer Support Programs at VUMC https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/peer-support-programs-vumc <span class="field--node--title">Peer Support Programs at VUMC</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Thu, 01/10/2019 - 09:26</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/3128" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to Peer Support Programs at VUMC"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><img align="right" alt="wlcPeerSupport.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" src="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/images/wlc/wlcPeerSupport.png" style="margin: 5px; width: 164px; height: 164px;" /></p> <p>When a colleague is impacted by an unanticipated outcome or challenging case, Peer Support Teams within a workgroup proactively offer emotional support to affected peers. Several Teams have undergone specialized training equipping them to identify early signs of stress and burnout and how to provide guidance or referral to resources, as required.</p> <p><strong>General Surgery Wellbeing Response Team-Resilience Rapid Response Team (<a href="https://ww2.mc.vanderbilt.edu/gsr/52086" target="_blank" title="RT3">RT3</a>)</strong>: This Team is committed to being approachable and available to the residents and faculty of the Department of Surgery during ordinary and extraordinary times of stress.</p> <p><strong>Perioperative Services PULSE PAUSE Peer Support Team: </strong>Working to ensure that all clinicians &amp; team in the surgical areas receive the appropriate support following a critical patient incident. </p> <p><strong>Safe Faculty Peer Support Medicine Team</strong>: Residents can seek out Safe Faculty when there is a concern in their career that shakes confidence and they have a need for affirmation or to process their reactions.</p> <p><strong>Behavioral Health Clinical Practice Group:</strong> The Psychiatric Hospital at Vanderbilt has a process group for clinicians to address the emotional impact of treating challenging patients.</p> <p><strong><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/PDFs/wlc/wlcDevelopingaPeerSupportPrograminWorkUnits.pdf" target="_blank">Peer Support Toolkit</a>: </strong>Provides information on existing peer support programs across the medical center, as well as an 8-step guide to creating your own peer support program within your work unit.  Available training options at VUMC are included.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=231" hreflang="und">Mental Health and Wellbeing</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=204" hreflang="und">Critical Incident Stress</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=237" hreflang="und">Prevention</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=240" hreflang="und">Resilience</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=249" hreflang="und">Stress</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Thu, 10 Jan 2019 15:26:42 +0000 mcgownpw 3128 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness Support following An Adverse Event at VUMC https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/support-following-adverse-event-vumc <span class="field--node--title">Support following An Adverse Event at VUMC</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Thu, 01/10/2019 - 09:23</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/3127" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to Support following An Adverse Event at VUMC"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><img align="right" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" src="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/images/wlc/wlcAdverseEvent.png" /></p> <p>Adverse Event/Unexpected Outcome Support - When there has been an adverse patient care event:</p> <ul><li><a href="https://www.vumc.org/risk-management/" target="_blank" title="Contactd">Contact</a> Risk Management at 615-936-0660 VUMC or contact through the operator. They will assess, advise, and advocate throughout the process.</li> <li><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/critical-incident-stress-management" target="_blank" title="Call">Call</a> Work/Life Connections-EAP Office 615-936-1327 to arrange psychological support for teams and individuals providing an opportunity to process the emotional impact of an event.</li> <li>Utilize Peer Support in work areas where there are trained teams.</li> </ul></div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=204" hreflang="und">Critical Incident Stress</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=237" hreflang="und">Prevention</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=259" hreflang="und">Violence</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=249" hreflang="und">Stress</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Thu, 10 Jan 2019 15:23:40 +0000 mcgownpw 3127 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness What Do I Say When…I Feel Negatively About My Body or Weight? https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/what-do-i-say-wheni-feel-negatively-about-my-body-or-weight <span class="field--node--title">What Do I Say When…I Feel Negatively About My Body or Weight?</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Tue, 11/20/2018 - 13:37</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/3111" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to What Do I Say When…I Feel Negatively About My Body or Weight?"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><center> <p><em><strong>~You can never be too rich or too thin~</strong></em><br /><strong>Wallis Simpson, the Duchess of Windsor</strong></p> </center> <p>Although I admit that I am sometimes skeptical (or at times, even envious) of those with more money than they seem to know how to spend, I know that our culture has learned a lot in the past few decades about how being "too thin" comes at a cost. At the same time, there is abundant research concerning the physical and social risks of weight gain and almost constant exposure to ads for "magic" diets that will "melt the pounds away." This constant barrage of conflicting information is not only confusing but impacts our ability to have a healthy perspective about our bodies. Not only are both men and women feeling "<strong><em>fat-shamed</em></strong>," they can also be "<strong><em>thin-shamed</em></strong>" into thinking that the "ideal" body is always attainable, yet also somehow remains just out of reach.</p> <p>For example, the feminine "ideal" throughout the ages has varied widely:</p> <ul><li>In the 1890's, the most-desired figure for women was a full bust, wasp-waist, (achieved by the use of a stiff, whalebone corset one had to be ceremoniously strapped into), and a large, rounded derriere.</li> <li>By the 1920's, the "It Girl," Clara Bow, was said to have the "most boyish figure on earth." Women used undergarments to drastically minimize their breasts and hips.</li> <li>Marilyn Monroe, another "feminine ideal," wore a size twelve to fourteen (now seen in many circles as "plus-sized") and was revered for her "curves."</li> <li>Kate Moss, fashion and figure icon of the 1990s has been quoted as saying the reason for her 5'7", 105lb frame was that she "didn't have time to eat."</li> </ul><p>Is it any wonder that the ever-elusive "feminine ideal" seems much like a shape-shifting superhero: frequently coveted, but never captured.</p> <p>Consequently, the changes in our bodies that can occur (e.g., food intake, medical conditions, genetics, activity, hormonal fluctuations, mood and age) are constantly scrutinized and exploited by those with their own agendas as a means to reach Body Image Nirvana.</p> <p>Even though there is much to be learned about healthy nutrition and the reasonable, healthy approach to eating and exercise, our heads and hearts often have different perspectives on the matter. We know that "fat isn't a feeling," but when clothes that used to fit are way too snug now, or we limit social activities because we fear our bodies "don't fit in," all of the smarts in the world won't make the pain go away.</p> <p>So, what is <strong>Body Shaming</strong>? <strong>Body Shaming</strong> is between our ears: It is the critical, negative messages we send ourselves about some aspects of our physical appearance. We can also not only criticize ourselves:<em> "</em><em>I can't leave the house in THAT shirt! I'm way too heavy." </em>We can also criticize others:<em> </em> <em>"Why </em> <em>is she wearing THAT? She's so thin, she looks like a lamppost!"</em> Some of us cover with humor, but most of us suffer in silence.</p> <p>Given the brutal consequences of Body Shaming (lowered self-esteem, isolation, self-injurious behavior, sometimes dangerous alterations in eating habits), why don't we choose to do something else? We don't do "something else" because it's hard to fight these messages that appear from the pages of fashion magazines, or even from those we love. What we can do, however, is to begin to send ourselves different messages. Create our OWN Body Ideal.</p> <center><strong>~If anything is sacred, the human body is sacred~<br /> Walt Whitman</strong></center> <p>Here are some ideas:</p> <ul><li><strong>FIND YOUR OWN ROLE MODELS:</strong> Who do you consider YOUR role models? Speaking of models, most models in most fashion magazines have bodies that are WAY OUSTIDE THE NORM of the average man and woman's height and weight. Are your role models only working in fashion? Let me name just a few of whom I consider to be the most interesting and amazing people in the world right now: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Jane Goodall, Layshia Clarendon, Carl June, Ta-Nahisi Coates, and there are so many more. You may disagree with this list or wish to (I hope!) add your own names to it. The point is this: Do ANY of these people obsess about what others are going to think of their bodies each day? They may, but I think their primary focus is what they, individuals of different races, ages and gender orientations, DO with their bodies. Their bodies transport them through the day. Their individuality, mind, body and spirt, moves them through their day with purpose and meaning. We can choose to find our own purpose and begin to see our bodies in a new light.</li> <li><strong>FIND WHAT YOU LIKE ABOUT YOUR BODY: </strong>Then tell it so. Do you like your eyes, your smile, your hands, your ankles? Maybe you like the power you feel when you carry your large-bottomed self around campus! Embrace it. Thank that part of you for being a part of you. Then go and do something good for yourself. That will translate into doing good for others.</li> <li><strong>FIGURE OUT WHAT'S UNDERNEATH:</strong> Change is hard. Aging and loss are sometimes overwhelming. Feelings of shame and inadequacy are often learned in childhood. Those early years can be tough. School can be tough. Most parents and teachers mean well, but childhood bullying or an authority figure's impossible standards can leave scars that last a lifetime. It may be time to heal yours.</li> <li><strong>MAKE HEALTHY LIVING A JOURNEY:</strong> You may never be able to lose ten pounds, but we can all start to live a bit heathier by taking one step at a time. Explore new foods. <a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/healthplus" target="_blank" title="Browse">Browse</a> the Health Plus website for new ideas. Walk a different path. Appreciate that we have a finite time on this planet. Then move around and discover what it has to offer. That means less screen time and eyes up and open.</li> <li><strong>STOP COMPARING:</strong> I admit this is a hard one. We all have our own individual gifts and life mission. There are things I will never be able to achieve. I will never look like a beauty queen. My basic plan is to have enough grooming skills to not scare animals and small children, and enjoy nurturing my relationship with my husband. Have you ever gone to the beach, terrified that everyone there is scrutinizing you? Never fear. 99% of them are too busy scrutinizing themselves and their OWN perceived flaws to notice. I love this quote by Franklin D. Roosevelt: "Comparison is the Thief of Joy." He lived by this philosophy, after becoming permanently paralyzed at age thirty-nine. He became the 32nd President of the United States, in the midst of his fourth term when he died.</li> </ul><p>It is a sign of strength to seek professional help if feelings of sadness, anxiety, or body-shaming thoughts persist. Sometimes, we need a listening ear and need someone to help develop a plan for self-compassion.</p> <p>At Work/Life Connections-EAP, we are here to listen. Call us if there is any way we can help. Make an appointment at 615-936-1327. We're here for you.</p> <p><em>Janet McCutchen, Licensed Professional Counselor</em><br /><em>Clinical Counselor</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=232" hreflang="und">Nutrition</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=263" hreflang="und">Weight Management</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=260" hreflang="und">VU</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Tue, 20 Nov 2018 19:37:47 +0000 mcgownpw 3111 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness Dementia and the Healthy Brain https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/dementia-and-healthy-brain <span class="field--node--title">Dementia and the Healthy Brain</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Mon, 07/23/2018 - 09:07</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/3079" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to Dementia and the Healthy Brain"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>As our population ages, it is now estimated that for the US and other industrialized nations, the number of individuals diagnosed with neurocognitive disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, will continue to increase. The CDC noted that, in 2017, complications from Alzheimer's was the sixth leading cause of death for individuals in the United States who are 65 and older. Worldwide, the incidence of dementia is thought to be on the increase, with researchers estimating that the diagnosis of Dementia will triple by 2050.</p> <p>Neurocognitive Disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and other dementias are some of the most misunderstood conditions, as they are irreversible, and at times, difficult to diagnose. Even physicians who specialize in these disorders consider them a challenge to both diagnose and treat. All cognitive disorders have in common challenges with problem-solving, reasoning and memory, and they can also have other complicating symptoms.</p> <p>As we think about ways to support our brain health, research points to practical ways to enhance <em>neuroplasticity</em>, the ability of our brains to change throughout our lifetimes. Previously thought of as having a limited capacity for development beyond childhood, we now know that adult brains are much more malleable; data from brain "plasticity" studies involving adult brain trauma rehabilitation and work with dementia patients suggest that supporting brain health by minimizing various risk factors can play a role in mitigating some of the risk factors for dementia in older adults. Addressing mood issues was noted as one of the ways to potentially reduce risk-factors for dementia, as highlighted in an article in <em>The Lancet</em> in July, 2017. The following were among the key recommendations that may have a considerable impact on maintaining brain health:</p> <ul><li>Maintain a healthy weight and blood pressure</li> <li>Eliminate smoking</li> <li>Exercise regularly</li> <li>Address symptoms of depression and social isolation</li> </ul><p>Although there are no definitive conclusions, there is some evidence to suggest that taking care of our mental health can serve as a way to minimize the cognitive decline that often accompanies aging. Further, there is ample evidence that chronic feelings of loneliness and sadness contribute to a lowered sense of overall well-being.</p> <p>Vanderbilt offers support for all Vanderbilt faculty, staff, nurses, physicians, and their spouses through our Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program. Trained mental health professionals who can assess the need for individual counseling or other interventions for support are here on campus, and free of charge. Even the most resilient person struggles from time to time. Talking with a counselor is one way anyone can support their brain health. Call for a consultation: 615-936-1327.</p> <p><br /> Janet McCutchen, LPC, CEAP<br /> Licensed Professional Counselor<br /> Certified Employee Assistance Professional</p> <p>(Source: The Lancet, Vol. 390, No. 10113 Published: July 19, 2017)</p> <p>(Source: Center for Disease Control National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, September, 2017)</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=200" hreflang="und">Counseling</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=209" hreflang="und">Eldercare</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=260" hreflang="und">VU</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Mon, 23 Jul 2018 14:07:46 +0000 mcgownpw 3079 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness Coping with Reactions to School Shootings https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/coping-reactions-school-shootings <span class="field--node--title">Coping with Reactions to School Shootings</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Thu, 03/22/2018 - 08:29</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/3056" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to Coping with Reactions to School Shootings"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>​by Chad A. Buck, Ph.D.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Clinical Psychologist</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Work/Life Connections–Employee Assistance Program</p>&#13; &#13; <p>On Jan. 18, 1993, a 17-year-old student with his father's revolver walked into a high school classroom in my hometown of Grayson, Kentucky. His classmates watched as he fatally shot their teacher and a custodian. He then taunted the students and held them hostage before surrendering to police. Within a day, television crews and journalists descended on our town. There were profiles on nightly and morning news programs for weeks, and several newspaper and magazine articles about the shooting were published over the years. Although the media coverage eventually ended, the violation and loss caused by one person's actions continue to affect my hometown and its current and former residents 25 years later.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>On Jan. 23, 2018, only five days after the 25th anniversary of the tragic incident in my hometown, a school shooting at another rural Kentucky high school resulted in the deaths of two students. A few weeks later, a shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, left many injured, and 17 people were killed. Some situations have more fatalities or receive more media attention than others, but the psychological toll tends to be the same. For those who have experienced similar events, wounds can be reopened and result in painful memories and emotions.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Not all people who experience or hear about a traumatic event will develop psychological distress. Following any incident of mass violence, however, there can be direct and indirect effects on overall functioning. Those who experience a traumatic event directly may develop heightened stress, irritability and sadness. Unchecked, those normal reactions can develop into acute stress disorder or, eventually, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Those who experience an event through media coverage, social media posts or other sources like online videos may have typical responses such as heightened stress, irritability and sadness as well. There is also a risk for developing symptoms akin to PTSD but in a much less intense way. This is described as Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS). Research on STS focuses primarily on mental health professionals, health care workers and other helping professions, but some of the same symptoms can emerge for those outside of these professions. People who have experienced similar events, who have pre-existing PTSD, or who have other mental health issues are considered to be at higher risk for an exacerbation of symptoms and the development of secondary traumatic stress.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>The amount of exposure to images or stories about a traumatic event may have an effect on the development of STS or PTSD-like symptoms. In 1993, the images and stories, while still upsetting and triggering, were contained to television, radio, newspapers and magazines. Today we have the internet and social media providing 24/7 immediate access to firsthand accounts and visuals, real-time coverage, and audio and video recordings. Research on the effects of indirect exposure to social media and internet coverage of traumatic events is still in its infancy, but some studies point to an increase in PTSD-like symptoms following the viewing of images and stories about a traumatic event. This suggests the need to limit exposure to news and other sources of information, especially if you have experienced similar events or other traumatic experiences.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>Symptoms of Secondary Traumatic Stress</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <ul><li>Intrusive thoughts</li>&#13; <li>Chronic fatigue</li>&#13; <li>Sadness</li>&#13; <li>Anger</li>&#13; <li>Poor concentration</li>&#13; <li>Second guessing</li>&#13; <li>Detachment</li>&#13; <li>Emotional exhaustion</li>&#13; <li>Fearfulness</li>&#13; <li>Shame</li>&#13; <li>Physical illness</li>&#13; <li>Absenteeism</li>&#13; </ul><p><strong>Recommendations for Coping</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <ol><li>​<strong>Decrease exposure to news and social media coverage of the event.</strong> It is important to stay informed, but attempt to limit your time in contact with the issue until you feel better able to manage your reactions. The reactions are normal, but you need a break from them.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Do not engage mental health stigma.</strong> People with mental health problems are no more likely to be violent than anyone else. According to data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, most people with mental illness are not violent and tend to be victims rather than perpetrators. This is supported by a study published in the American Journal of Public Health in 2014 by Vanderbilt researchers Jonathan Metzl and Kenneth T. MacLeish. They write, "Fewer than 5 percent of the 120,000 gun-related killings in the United States between 2001 and 2010 were perpetrated by people diagnosed with mental illness." Also, there is no doubt that school shootings are horrific events, and any loss of life is too much. Concerns about safety are typical, but mass shootings are still rare events, statistically speaking.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Connect with your support network.</strong> Seek out those who will not minimize your feelings or thoughts and who allow you to process how you feel without judgment or an agenda. If you aren't looking to talk about it, then engage those friends who offer support through activities and distraction.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Check in with your children.</strong> Children may be scared to go to school or experience distress after hearing about a school shooting. It is important to listen to children and what they are afraid to face. Acknowledge how scary it can be, but remind them that there are adults working to make their environment safe and protected. Check in with them more than once, and be willing to hear what new responses they might have. This may also help you do the same for yourself.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Engage in positive self-care. </strong>Prioritize rest, exercise and healthy eating to help your body deal with stress. Do activities that you enjoy and find relaxing. Try to limit alcohol consumption or problematic behaviors (e.g., overeating, reckless spending, gambling) as a way to soothe your feelings.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Write about your experience.</strong> Writing is a useful way of focusing and organizing the random thoughts that may be overwhelming you. Hand-writing tends to be more effective than typing, but whatever gives you relief is the key.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Get involved.</strong> Engaging in positive activities like group discussions, campus events, spiritual activities or positive community action can help channel your reactions and offer opportunities to engage likeminded people.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Seek professional support.</strong> Not everyone feels comfortable seeing a therapist, but having someone with expertise in managing trauma responses and supporting healthy coping skills can provide significant relief in a short amount of time that can have long-lasting effects.</li>&#13; </ol><p>When that shooting occurred in my hometown in 1993, information on direct and indirect effects of mass trauma and recommendations for coping were merely twinkles in future researchers' eyes. Hearing the stories of how people from my hometown experienced and continue to cope with the aftermath of such a tragic event has helped me pay attention to how others experience trauma and loss. It provides a context and an important anchor to what I do as a psychologist. Finding meaning in the most unnecessary of events can offer hope and focus to those needing to grieve traumatic losses. It does not replace those who were lost, but it does motivate action and honor their place in our memories.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>Resources</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/work-life" title="Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program">Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program</a> - Call 615-936-1327 for a confidential and no-cost assessment, brief counseling, coaching, or referral to community resources.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><a href="https://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/index.asp" target="_blank" title="National Center for PTSD">National Center for PTSD</a></p>&#13; &#13; <p><a href="http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/aftermath.aspx?utm_source=International+Critical+Incident+Stress+Foundation&amp;utm_campaign=44874047cb-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_02_12&amp;utm_medium=email&amp;utm_term=0_dcdf1a5d48-44874047cb-151804953" target="_blank" title="American Psychological Association - In the Aftermath of a Shooting">American Psychological Association - In the Aftermath of a Shooting</a></p>&#13; &#13; <p><a href="http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/10.2105/AJPH.2014.302242" target="_blank" title="Metzl, J. M., &amp; MacLeish, K. T. (2015). Mental Illness, Mass Shootings, and the Politics of American Firearms. ">Metzl, J.M &amp; MacLeish, K.T. (2015). Mental Illness, Mass Shootings, and the Politics of American Firearms​</a></p>&#13; </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=200" hreflang="und">Counseling</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=204" hreflang="und">Critical Incident Stress</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Thu, 22 Mar 2018 13:29:01 +0000 mcgownpw 3056 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness What Do I Say When Someone Tells Me They Have Been Assaulted/Harassed? https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/what-do-i-say-when-someone-tells-me-they-have-been-assaultedharassed <span class="field--node--title">What Do I Say When Someone Tells Me They Have Been Assaulted/Harassed?</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Mon, 01/29/2018 - 08:41</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/2991" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to What Do I Say When Someone Tells Me They Have Been Assaulted/Harassed?"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p style="text-align: center">​​<strong>What Do I Say When…</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p style="text-align: center"><strong>Someone Tells Me They Have Been Sexually Assaulted or Harassed?</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p>Media coverage of sexual misconduct allegations against several celebrities and politicians, the Time's Up movement, and the #MeToo social media campaign have heightened awareness of the prevalence and effects of sexual assault and sexual harassment in the United States. For some, using #MeToo may be their first public acknowledgement of their experience. The culture of silence around these issues is shifting, and it can be difficult to know what to say to a friend, a family member, or a co-worker who discloses their story of sexual assault and/or harassment.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>The point of the #MeToo campaign is to foster awareness and empower those who have faced assault and harassment while also reducing isolation, shame, and guilt. Starting to speak about an experience like this is very difficult for the survivor, so it is important that you convey support and empathy. The idea of talking about these issues can be scary for the listener. It's not always due to not wanting to be supportive. It may have more to do with fear of saying the wrong thing. My best advice is to focus more on what the person is saying and less on what you are saying. <strong>The first step in creating a space for supportive and effective communication is to listen.</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p>The following are a few guidelines to help minimize worry about saying the wrong thing. Remember that the exact wording is not the point as much as the intention and the meaning behind the words you use.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>1.<span style="white-space: pre"> </span></strong><strong>Survivors decide when they share, what they share, and how they share it. </strong> Just because someone uses #MeToo does not mean they are ready to disclose their whole story in detail. If it's shared on social media and you want to show support, then acknowledge that you saw it and are available to listen. If the person is ready to talk about it, try saying, "I'm glad you feel comfortable talking to me about what happened. You can tell me as much or as little as you want." If they start to talk but then want to stop, let them know, "I imagine it can be hard to talk about it. I'm open to talking when you feel more comfortable. No pressure." </p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>2.<span style="white-space: pre"> </span></strong><strong>Acknowledge the pain without assuming how they feel. </strong> People have different needs at different times in their lives, and they react many different ways. Be careful to not minimize or catastrophize. Stay focused on what the person is telling you and not on what you think the person is feeling or thinking or what you think she or he should do. You might try saying, "What was it like for you?" or "What feelings come up when you talk about it now?"</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>3.<span style="white-space: pre"> </span></strong><strong>It's okay to express your anger or sadness.</strong>  You are a person who has feelings, too. Seeing how you react to the story sometimes validates the survivor's experience or helps the survivor know you are present in the conversation. The key here is to make sure it does not become about your feelings or story and to always bring the focus back to the survivor. You could say, "I'm so angry that this happened. No one should ever have to experience that. I want to help. What can I do for you?"</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>4.<span style="white-space: pre"> </span></strong><strong>Don't ask a lot of questions. </strong> In an effort to understand, people often fall back on asking lots of detailed questions when confronted with someone else's experience. Sometimes questions do the opposite and suggest judgement or disbelief. Asking questions like, "Were you drinking?"; "Did you say no?"; "Why did you go to his room?"; or "Why did you wait so long to talk about it?" are examples of questions that can shut down the person who is disclosing to you. These types of questions also suggest that the incident was the survivor's fault. You may have those questions, but it is not necessary to ask them. You aren't trying to solve a crime. You are trying to support someone who has experienced one.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>5.<span style="white-space: pre"> </span></strong><strong>Offer to help them find resources. </strong> There are those who already have their own resources and support systems in place, such as trusted family, friends, or professionals in mental health. Ask, "Do you have support?"; "Have you talked about your experience with someone?"; or "Would you like help locating more or different types of support?" It's also okay to say, "I'm not sure of what resources are out there, but I can help you find out." Offer choices and options that the person selects. For example, if the person is in distress, offer hotline information, refer them to their employee assistance program, or help them get to more immediate services such as the emergency department.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>After hearing someone else's story, you will have your own reactions and may need your own support. <strong>Practice self-care and set reasonable boundaries. </strong>You may want to seek out a trusted individual or a professional who will support you and offer guidance. It is important to remember that when survivors share their story with you, it is not your story to tell. If you seek support from friends, family members, or co-workers after hearing about someone else's experience, minimize sharing details and focus on your own thoughts and emotions.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Vanderbilt University and Medical Center employees have several resources to access. Some services offer support and guidance while others focus on safety or grievance/complaint procedures.  </p>&#13; &#13; <ul><li><a href="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/work-life" title="Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program">Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program</a></li>&#13; <li><a href="https://www.vanderbilt.edu/projectsafe/" target="_blank" title="Project Safe">Project Safe</a> - Project Safe has compiled a list of resources for employees, the service offered, the level of confidentiality, and other important information. <a href="https://s3.amazonaws.com/vu-wp0/wp-content/uploads/sites/133/2013/11/04181522/VU-One-Page-Resources-List_Employees_2017-18.pdf" target="_blank" title="Read">Read</a> more on their w<span style="font-size: 8pt">ebsite.</span><span style="font-size: 8pt"> </span></li>&#13; <li><a href="https://police.vanderbilt.edu/" target="_blank" title="VUPD">VUPD</a>  </li>&#13; <li><a href="https://hr-mc.vanderbilt.edu/employee-relations/index.php" target="_blank" title="VUMC Human Relations - Employee Relations">VUMC Human Relations - Employee Relations</a></li>&#13; <li><a href="https://www.vanderbilt.edu/title-ix/" target="_blank" title="VU Title IX Office">VU Title IX Office</a></li>&#13; <li><a href="https://www.vanderbilt.edu/eeo/" target="_blank" title="VU Equal Employment Office">VU Equal Employment Office</a> </li>&#13; </ul><p>In an emergency, the following services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week:</p>&#13; &#13; <ul><li>Project Safe Support Hotline: 615-322-SAFE (7233)</li>&#13; <li>Work/Life Connections – Employee Assistance Program: 615-936-1327</li>&#13; <li>Vanderbilt University Police: 911 or <span class="baec5a81-e4d6-4674-97f3-e9220f0136c1" style="white-space: nowrap">615-421-1911</span></li>&#13; <li>Vanderbilt University Medical Center Emergency Services: 615-322-0160</li>&#13; <li>Nashville Sexual Assault Center Hotline: 1-800-879-1999</li>&#13; <li>YWCA Crisis and Information Line: 615-242-1199</li>&#13; </ul><p><em>Chad A. Buck, PhD</em><br /><em>Clinical Psychologist</em><br /><em>Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program</em></p>&#13; </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=260" hreflang="und">VU</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=259" hreflang="und">Violence</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=200" hreflang="und">Counseling</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Mon, 29 Jan 2018 14:41:29 +0000 mcgownpw 2991 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness What Do I Say When Someone is Talking about Suicide? https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/what-do-i-say-when-someone-talking-about-suicide <span class="field--node--title">What Do I Say When Someone is Talking about Suicide?</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/mcgownpw-0" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mcgownpw</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Tue, 09/05/2017 - 11:15</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/2900" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to What Do I Say When Someone is Talking about Suicide?"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p style="text-align: center">​What Do I Say When…?</p>&#13; &#13; <p style="text-align: center">Someone is Talking about Suicide</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Suicide can be an anxiety-provoking topic. Often, the simple act of just seeing or hearing the word spikes personal and societal fears. The idea of a colleague, friend, or loved one talking about killing themselves or “wanting to die” can be even more overwhelming and scary. This article will help to alleviate some of the unknown and answer common questions about how to manage the difficult topic of suicide.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>Talking about suicide is not a call for attention, rather a cry for help.</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p>There are two different types of situations you may experience with people having suicidal thoughts – passive and imminent. Both should be taken very seriously, though likely handled a bit differently. In either case, do not be afraid to ask detailed and difficult questions. Asking about suicide does not increase their risk of an attempt. Instead, it decreases the stigma, alleviates feelings of isolation, and increases support – decreasing the likelihood of death by suicide.</p>&#13; &#13; <h3>Passive:</h3>&#13; &#13; <p>This situation occurs when someone is speaking more vaguely of wanting to die - maybe they have considered suicide or state that they feel they simply cannot go on like this.</p>&#13; &#13; <ul><li>Start with <strong>validating</strong> that person’s emotions and expressing your own <strong>genuine concern</strong>. Showing empathy and emphasizing that the person’s feelings matter can go a long way. “It sounds like you are really struggling. Can you tell me more about it? I’d like to listen and help where I can.”</li>&#13; <li>Try your best <strong>not to argue</strong> with the person’s negative statements, no matter how dire they may sound. You can use positive reinforcement, while still acknowledging that their current emotions are real and fair. “You feel hopeless right now; we will get you the help you need together. You are not alone.”</li>&#13; <li>Encourage the person to <strong>seek professional help</strong> and <strong>offer to help</strong> them identify and contact resources (see resource list below).</li>&#13; <li><strong>Safety Plan</strong> – Speak with the person about who they will contact if their suicidal thoughts and depressive symptoms begin to escalate. This list will likely include close friends or relatives, a professional, and a 24-hour suicide hotline.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Ask the tough and detailed questions. </strong>“Do you have a plan?” “Have you ever attempted before?” “Do you feel as if you could do something to hurt yourself today?” “Are you scared to be alone right now?”</li>&#13; </ul><h3>Imminent:</h3>&#13; &#13; <p>Someone who is expressing a desire to die in the near future is in imminent danger, particularly if they have established a plan, means, or timeline.</p>&#13; &#13; <ul><li><strong>Call 9-1-1</strong> or the nearest emergency services unit.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Do not leave the person alone.</strong> Make sure they are escorted by a trusted person to the nearest Emergency Department or mental health crisis center.</li>&#13; <li>Ensure that <strong>all means are removed</strong> from the person’s access. This might include guns, knives, medications, alcohol, and poisons. If this person is not a close friend, be sure to alert someone who will have the ability to remove means.</li>&#13; </ul><p>Work/Life Connections-EAP psychologist Chad Buck created a helpful acronym for keeping some of the tips mentioned above in mind: <strong>BELIEVE</strong>.</p>&#13; &#13; <ul><li><strong>B</strong>elieve that suicidal comments or gestures are serious</li>&#13; <li><strong>E</strong>ngage in conversation about thoughts and feelings</li>&#13; <li><strong>L</strong>isten without judgment or arguing</li>&#13; <li><strong>I</strong>nvestigate intent and access to lethal means</li>&#13; <li><strong>E</strong>xpress empathy for the person and situation</li>&#13; <li><strong>V</strong>alidate how difficult and painful this is for them</li>&#13; <li><strong>E</strong>ncourage them to seek support and escort the person to access help</li>&#13; </ul><p>Supporting those with mental health issues can be incredibly tough, and you should not have to walk through it alone. Vanderbilt’s Work/Life Connections – Employee Assistance Program is a no-cost, confidential benefit for all employees, faculty, physicians, and their spouses. If you are wondering if counseling is for you, I encourage you to call 615-936-1327 and schedule an appointment to speak with one of the licensed clinicians on our team.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>If you are a Vanderbilt student, call the Vanderbilt Psychological and Counseling Center at (615) 322-2571.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>We are here for you.</p>&#13; &#13; <h3><strong>Additional Re</strong><strong>sources:</strong></h3>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>Crisis Lines:</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p><a href="https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/" target="_blank" title="National Suicide Prevention Lifeline">National Suicide Prevention Lifeline</a> - 1-800-273-8255</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Tennessee State-wide Crisis Phone Line - 855-CRISIS-1 (855-274-7471)</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>Walk-In Crisis Centers:</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p>Mental Health Cooperative<br />&#13; 275 Cumberland Bend, Suite 237<br />&#13; Nashville, TN 37228<br />&#13; 615-726-0125</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Vanderbilt 24/7 Behavioral Health Access<br />&#13; 1601 23rd Ave. S.<br />&#13; Nashville, TN 37212<br />&#13; 615-327-7000</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>References</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <p>National Alliance on Mental Illness. (2017). Preventing Suicide. Retrieved from: <a href="https://www.nami.org/Find-Support/Family-Members-and-Caregivers/Preventing-Suicide">https://www.nami.org/Find-Support/Family-Members-and-Caregivers/Prevent…</a></p>&#13; &#13; <p>National Institute of Mental Health’s Science Writing, Press &amp; Dissemination. (2015). Suicide in America: Frequently asked questions. <em>National Institute of Mental Health</em>. Retrieved from: <a href="https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/suicide-faq/index.shtml">https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/suicide-faq/index.shtml</a></p>&#13; &#13; <p>Smith, M., Segal, J., &amp; Robinson, L. (2017). Suicide Prevention: How to help someone who is suicidal and save a life. <em>HelpGuide.org in collaboration with Harvard Health Publications</em>. Retrieved from <a href="https://www.helpguide.org/articles/suicide-prevention/suicide-prevention.htm">https://www.helpguide.org/articles/suicide-prevention/suicide-preventio…</a></p>&#13; &#13; <p>​<em>Maggie Reynolds – Clinical Counselor</em></p>&#13; &#13; <p><em>Vanderbilt Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program</em></p>&#13; </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=230" hreflang="und">Mental Health</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=200" hreflang="und">Counseling</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=260" hreflang="und">VU</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Tue, 05 Sep 2017 16:15:41 +0000 mcgownpw 2900 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness What Do I Say When Someone is Grieving? https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/what-do-i-say-when-someone-grieving <span class="field--node--title">What Do I Say When Someone is Grieving?</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/admin" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">admin</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Mon, 04/24/2017 - 09:36</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/2797" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to What Do I Say When Someone is Grieving?"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p style="text-align: center">​What Do I Say When…?</p> <p style="text-align: center">Someone is Grieving</p> <p>Tension and uncomfortable silence fill the air. Your friend or colleague has just told you that a loved one died…and you struggle for something to say…</p> <p>As frequently as we may encounter this situation, most everyone has felt awkward at times like this as death and many other significant losses are usually very uncomfortable to discuss. In fact, our culture spends a great deal of time focusing on how to keep death, aging, illness, and many other significant losses at bay. We feel more comfortable discussing the latest face or body lift, the newest medical "cures," or throw ourselves into yet another exercise or diet regime. </p> <p>Intellectually, we know "death happens," and when it does, we somehow want to extend ourselves in some way to comfort others in their grief; but how?</p> <p>For any of us who have lost a loved one, or even those who have suffered the loss of a job, gone through a divorce or relationship breakup, or are suffering a health crisis, we feel your pain. This is an awkward time. Rather than have others impart words of "wisdom," most of us appreciate simple responses of sympathy and compassion. This is a time when less is more. Examples of supportive responses could include the following: </p> <p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>I am so very sorry. </strong>That's it. Look them in the eyes. <span style="font-size: 8pt">Allow them to take the </span><span style="font-size: 8pt">lead. If they want to talk, let them. If they change the subject, let them. </span></p> <p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>Listen without judgement or comment.</strong> This is difficult for us. We want to do something to make it all better. But, the fact is, there is a loss that has been suffered. Grieving people need validation, not resolution. If they want to talk, let them set the pace. </p> <p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>Several examples of supportive and uncomplicated responses are: </strong></p> <ul><li>I know this is a very painful time for you.</li> <li>I'm sure that (whatever that is/was) has been so very difficult for you.</li> <li>I'm glad you've shared this with me. </li> <li>I will be thinking of you.</li> <li>How can I help further?<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span></li> </ul><p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>When you do offer to help further, then FOLLOW THROUGH.</strong> Stop by their office to check in, send a card, take them groceries, take them out to lunch, or mow their lawn. Ask the grieving person what they need. They may also ask for privacy. Give them space, but also check in again in several days or weeks to let them know they are not alone.</p> <p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>Everyone grieves in their own way and at their own pace. Allow them theirs.</strong></p> <p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>Unless asked, try not to share your own stories of loss.</strong> The focus is on <em>their</em> story and what <em>they</em> need.</p> <p>•<span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space: pre"> </span><strong>The worst thing to do is to say or do nothing, unless you're told they don't want to talk and they let you know that your actions are unwelcome. </strong></p> <p>I admit to having a bias against the common use of the word <em>closure</em>. I don't really like that word. It infers that there is a process of grief that occurs in very linear, predictable stages - after which one moves forward, and the emotional impact of the loss is "officially" over, we have<em> moved on</em>. Instead, I believe that once we experience profound loss, we are forever changed. We can learn to build our lives <em>around</em> the loss, but we are never again the same. This is both a tribute to the person or circumstance we are grieving, as well as a testament to the depth of our attachment. When we care deeply, we tend to feel deeply. This perspective of building our lives around our losses also honors the very convoluted pattern of grief: there are days we're OK, days we are struggling and days we occasionally feel renewed grief, even years beyond the initial loss. This <em>feels</em> awful. <strong>But it is NORMAL.</strong></p> <p>If, weeks and months beyond the initial loss, we are still experiencing fresh grief, such as constant crying, no energy, ruminating thoughts, or appetite and sleep disturbance, then it is time to seek professional help. Strong, capable people seek help. Life happens and even the strongest among us sometimes need to reach out for support. </p> <p>Vanderbilt's Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program is a no-cost, confidential benefit for all employees, faculty, physicians, and their spouses. If you are wondering if counseling is for you, I encourage you to call 615-936-1327 and schedule an appointment to speak with one of the licensed clinicians on our team.  We are here for you. </p> <p><em>Janet McCutchen, LPC, CEAP Licensed Professional Counselor</em></p> <p><em>Vanderbilt Work/Life Connections - Employee Assistance Program / Faculty and Physician Wellness</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=200" hreflang="und">Counseling</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=221" hreflang="und">Grief</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=240" hreflang="und">Resilience</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=260" hreflang="und">VU</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Mon, 24 Apr 2017 14:36:17 +0000 admin 2797 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness Adjusting to New Technology and Systems in the Workplace https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/news-resource-articles/adjusting-new-technology-and-systems-workplace <span class="field--node--title">Adjusting to New Technology and Systems in the Workplace</span> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=164" hreflang="und">Facing Life&#039;s Challenges</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=139" hreflang="und">Resource Articles</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?cat=155" hreflang="und">Work/Life Connections</a></div> </div> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"><span lang="" about="/health-wellness/users/admin" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">admin</span></span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">Wed, 04/05/2017 - 14:33</span> <a href="/health-wellness/blog-post-rss/2795" class="feed-icon" title="Subscribe to Adjusting to New Technology and Systems in the Workplace"> RSS: <i class="fa fa-rss-square"></i> </a> <div class="field field-name-field-barista-posts-author field-type-text field-label-hidden"> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-author field--type-string field--label-hidden field-item">Work/Life Connections</div> </div> <div class="text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><img class="alignright wp-image-8753 size-medium" src="https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness/sites/vumc.org.health-wellness/files/public_files/images/wlc/wlcAdjustingtoNewTechnologyandSystemsintheWorkplace.jpg" style="width: 251px; height: 167px; margin: 5px; float: right;" /> Technological innovation in the workplace is important in order to stay competitive, efficient, and effective, though adjusting to new technology or systems can have its challenges. All worthwhile adjustments will require energy, focus, and faith. While some employees may enjoy the challenges of adopting new technology or see the long-term benefits, others will have understandable concerns about what it means to face such changes in the workplace.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>Four Concerns about New Technology/Systems in the Workplace</strong></p>&#13; &#13; <ol><li>Expecting work demands to increase.</li>&#13; <li>Disruption of day-to-day workflow by system-wide changes.</li>&#13; <li>Increased stress, anxiety, or frustration while adjusting to changes.</li>&#13; <li>Potential loss of employment due to an inability to master new technology or systems.</li>&#13; </ol><p>All of these possible reactions relate to a person’s sense of power, control, and ability. So much of our identity is tied to what we do and how well we do it. If our jobs or our duties begin to change, it can threaten our understanding of what is within our control and how successful we can be.</p>&#13; &#13; <p><strong>How Do We Cope with Stress Related to Changes in the Workplace?</strong> When our coping resources do not match the demands of the situation, stress emerges. Therefore, the best buffer to the potential stress is to have effective coping skills. The following represent a few skills that may help with coping and adjustment to new technology and systems in the workplace.</p>&#13; &#13; <ol><li><strong>Stay informed.</strong> They say that information is power. It also offers a sense of control. The more you know about the reasons and/or process for changes in procedures and technology, the more likely you are to understand and accept the changes.</li>&#13; <li><strong>Accept what you cannot change.</strong> This does not mean ignore how you feel. In fact, ignoring or suppressing your emotions can cause even more challenges. The goal is to not allow short-term thoughts, feelings, and impulses to direct your behavior. Instead, focus on the long-term implications and your personal goals and act according to your values. To develop this skill:&#13; <ol><li>Be aware of what is happening in the present moment rather than focusing on anticipated problems.</li>&#13; <li>Identify the thoughts and feelings you have in this moment and recognize you have choices.</li>&#13; <li>Select the behavior and responses that support what you want to achieve. In other words, choose to be effective versus just being “right.”​</li>&#13; </ol></li>&#13; <li><strong>Recognize your learning style.</strong> There are seven different styles of learning, and everyone has a mix of styles based on their strengths. Ask yourself: How do you prefer to take in information and when are you most likely to remember it? Use your learning styles to your advantage as you begin to learn something new.&#13; <ol><li>Visual/Spatial</li>&#13; <li>Auditory/Musical</li>&#13; <li>Verbal</li>&#13; <li>Physical</li>&#13; <li>Logical</li>&#13; <li>Social</li>&#13; <li>Solitary​</li>&#13; </ol></li>&#13; </ol><p class="rteindent1"><strong>Seek support.</strong> Training classes and technological support will help with skill development and technical questions during a technology shift in the workplace, but they will not cover the emotional toll of what can be a frustrating process. While co-workers and managers can provide a space for expressing frustration, it is important to not sit in groups and complain about the change. Instead, explain the problems and then consider how people in the group can help one another. Friends, family, and clergy are also valuable sources of emotional support.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>​Vanderbilt Medical Center and Vanderbilt University employees can contact Work/Life Connections – Employee Assistance Program (WLC-EAP) for support through any change in the workplace, as well as other professional and personal situations. WLC-EAP offers confidential, short-term, no-cost counseling and coaching to enhance resilience and manage stress. Employees can make an appointment by calling 615-936-1327.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Change in the workplace is to be expected, but by using these skills and the resources available to you, there also are ways to make it more manageable.</p>&#13; &#13; <p>Written by Chad A. Buck, Ph.D., HSP<br />&#13; Licensed Psychologist, Work/Life Connections - EAP<br />&#13; Psychological Support Consultant, Health <em>Plus</em></p>&#13; </div> <div class="field field--name-field-barista-posts-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=192" hreflang="und">Change</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=200" hreflang="und">Counseling</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=240" hreflang="und">Resilience</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=255" hreflang="und">Training</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=260" hreflang="und">VU</a>, <a href="/health-wellness/news?tag=261" hreflang="und">VUMC</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-lockdown-auth field--type-string field--label-above"> <div class="field__item">1</div> </div> Wed, 05 Apr 2017 19:33:56 +0000 admin 2795 at https://www.vumc.org/health-wellness