Hospital Meditation, #3

“Crisis Illness Stresses Everyone Out.”

There’s little doubt that intense situations can cause heightened stress. The heartbeat quickens, the breath becomes more shallow, the brow furrows, the focus sharpens. Adrenalin pumps through our system, firing the inner engine to respond to the matter at hand.

It’s one thing to be able to directly action whatever is needed to deal with a crisis. When it involves a health issue, the variables can increase considerably. If the health situation involves a loved one, especially a child, that raises the stakes even higher.

There are fears that may surface based on the severity of the illness or injury. There are likely a lot of people involved in the health care being given, lots of personalities to deal with. There’s a whole new vocabulary to learn, trying to understand conditions and treatment options; there’s lots to remember too.

Schedule, sleep, diet, and routine overall may be negatively effected for people involved. Often tempers are short, patience at a premium. People say things they may wish they hadn’t.

It can be really hard for everyone involved as the situation plays out.

There are certain strategies that can be employed if you want to respond in the best possible way when a health crisis arises. Really, I think these strategies apply to most every crisis situation we might face.

1/ Recognize the situation for what it is. Accept reality, adjust your mindset, harden your resolve and focus.

2/ Put your ego aside; it’s only going to get in the way. [Good advice for most any emotional instance, actually.]

3/ First things first. Gather information. Understand the situation as best you can. Make decisions based on information not emotion.

4/ Remain compassionate. Reassure those around you as needed, as the opportunity presents itself.

5/ Be willing to adapt further and change the path if new information warrants it.

6/ Focus on what you can do to assist the situation. Offer to help.

7/ Persevere. Realize you have what it takes to make it through the crisis. More than that, you be part of a solution that makes the situation better.

There’s no doubt that crisis is stressful. But how we respond to crisis is our choice.

As the knight protecting the Holy Grail said to Indiana Jones, “Choose wisely.”

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