Sponsor spotlight: Wellness tips from Compass Health for those navigating a layoff  

Provided by Shannon Webb, LICSW, director of Whatcom County Outpatient at Compass Health

1. Sleep – Practice good sleep hygiene by sticking with your bedtime routine, including the times you normally go to sleep and wake up. Work life balance is important, and when there’s a loss of a job, that balance becomes askew or, sometimes, completely reversed. Try to remain consistent with your sleep schedule and get eight hours a night minimum.

2. Self care – Wellness rituals are good for you and can calm the mind. Going through a major life event such as a loss of role or identity can trigger flight/fight/ freeze responses. Engaging your senses through scent, for example, can evoke good memories and allow you to calm and center yourself. Light a candle, put essential oils in a bath, or do whatever gets you to “zen” and enjoy time set aside for you to simply be.

3.  Keep a schedule and a to-do list – Those who have become used to a busy schedule or are high achievers professionally have a difficult time going from a fast-paced lifestyle to an unstructured, slower pace during their downtime. Creating a list of items to check off – even chores around the house – helps provide a sense of normalcy. This also reinforces the value of your personal wellbeing being as equally important to your professional identity.

4. Allow time to grieve – Many Americans have a strong sense of self tied to their professional identity. Taking time to grieve and process a major life change such as loss of a job and income is important. Just as we go through the stages of grief with death, any major loss triggers the same emotional process.

5. Sharpen your coping skills – Find ways to channel your energy such as making time to exercise and get your body out of flight/fight/freeze mode. You can also journal, do breathing exercises or mindful meditation, enjoy the outdoors, ask for support from a friend, or create a self-care or to-do list as mentioned above.

6. Reconnect with yourself and your community – Take time to reconnect with parts of your life that you may have lost touch with while in your previous role, including yourself and your community.

7. Volunteer – Aside from keeping your resume “active,” volunteering can instill a sense of purpose and routine as well as keep you engaged in a structured setting. This creates an outlet for new social connections as well.

8. Get Help – Know when the above is not enough and you need professional help to process the major life change of losing a job and income. Resources are available.

For immediate mental health crisis support, call or text 988. 

Compass Health is Northwest Washington’s behavioral healthcare leader. A community-based healthcare agency, Compass Health integrates behavioral health and medical care services to form a key section of the community safety net and serve clients and others in need of care and support. From comprehensive mental health treatment to crisis prevention and intervention, supportive housing, children’s services, community education and much more, the non-profit organization serves people of all ages throughout Snohomish, Skagit, Island, San Juan and Whatcom counties.

Compass Health recently launched It’s Time: The Campaign for Compass Health, a $14 million capital campaign to fund a state-of-the-art facility designed to meet the intensive mental health needs of Northwest Washington’s most vulnerable populations. So far, the campaign has raised more than $10 million thanks to lead funders, and several significant corporate, individual and family gifts. To raise the remaining $4 million in capital funding that is crucial to reach the campaign goal, Compass Health is inviting community members to invest in the future of behavioral health care by donating to It’s Time. To learn more or donate, please visit www.compasshealth.org/itstime/.

Learn more: www.compasshealth.org


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