Yesterday marked just one month since the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Louisiana. So much has changed in thirty days in the lives of our clients/patients and our own. I marvel at how many of my routines are now different. We are all encountering rapidly changing circumstances that have both transient and potentially enduring mental health implications.
Frequently observed is the deep loneliness that accompanies physical distancing and self-isolation. Loneliness is not only prevalent among the larger public, psychologists experience the effects as well. I, myself, miss the hugs and affection so common in our beloved Louisiana culture. Self care for psychologists is more important in these changed circumstances than we have practiced in the past.
The inevitable uncertainties that come with a virus that is not yet well understood require us all to remain vigilant for new, verified information. LPA has established a task force, led by President-Elect Dr. Erin Reuther, to frequently update LPA’s membership and the public via LPA’s website. APA, through its website, is also informing psychologists about all aspects of COVID-19 and implications for practice. Another important source (monthly) for psychology is The Psychology Times, Louisiana’s treasure for psychologists. Dr. Julie Nelson, editor (and past-president of LPA), fiercely maintains an “independent voice for psychology in Louisiana.” The April issue has much to offer all of us on self care.
I urge all psychologists to routinely check LPA’s website for updated information on COVID-19. Your state association is actively involved in supporting you and your communities in surmounting this public health challenge. We all need to remember, “we will get through this together.
2019-2020 LPA President