Wellness Student Spotlight: Patricia Gore, PA
How did you balance your academics and your personal life as you transitioned to studying remotely/taking classes online?
It was definitely an adjustment at first! I went from being hyper focused on my clinical rotations to having more than enough leisure time at home with plenty of distractions. I found that it was best for me to take my assigned schoolwork for the week and break it up into short blocks that could be tackled every day. That way I was able to accomplish my schoolwork without feeling overwhelmed and make time for activities like working out or spending time with my family.
What do you do for fun and how challenging has it been to have fun during this pandemic?
Before the pandemic, I used to enjoy trying new restaurants and breweries, exploring Boston and attending sporting events, so I have been working to redefine what fun means to me. I was fortunate enough to relocate to Virginia to be with my family during this time, so it has been fun being able to spend more time with them than I have in years. I also love cooking, so this has been a wonderful time for me to experiment in the kitchen. I think the most challenging part of having fun is not being able to meet up with my friends whenever I want, but I am so fortunate that we have FaceTime and Zoom and can communicate that way.
How do you de-stress, and have you done anything differently during this pandemic?
I used to rely heavily on the gym as an outlet for my stress, so I was a bit nervous once my gym closed. However, I found a way to channel this energy into other forms of movement. Walking has always been one of my favorite ways to de-stress, so my newfound free time gave me plenty of opportunities to go for walks whenever I needed. I love to throw on a good podcast and see where the trails around my neighborhood lead me! I am also very thankful that I decided to dive deeper into my yoga practice during the pandemic. I had never taken yoga very seriously, but the free weekly yoga classes offered by the School of Medicine helped me gain an appreciation for it over the past year. I had a hard time managing my anxiety at the beginning of the pandemic, and I found that doing 15-20 minutes of yoga when I felt overwhelmed immediately brought me back down to earth. There is an incredible amount of yoga videos on YouTube, and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking for a way to de-stress.
You’ve logged 771,787 steps; can you share what motivated you to keep moving?
As I mentioned above, walking has always been an easy way for me to de-stress. I also found that it was very easy for me to be sedentary while studying and doing schoolwork at home and going for walks helped me break up my schoolwork and help me feel refreshed throughout the day. I also thought about how much I missed going for leisurely walks, as my clinical rotation schedule prior to the pandemic often required me to be at the hospital for 12 hours each day and I was never home during the daylight hours to enjoy the fresh air. I also challenged myself to train for a marathon, so following a training program was an easy way to stay motivated! It helped provide me with some of the structure I was missing from being in school and on rotations.
What advice would you give to your future self?
I would tell myself to remember all the things I took for granted before the pandemic began. It has been humbling to realize how little control we have over our lives. The next time you shudder at setting an alarm for an early shift or struggle to stay up for an overnight shift, remember the times you sat at home so desperately wanting to be on rotations instead. Also, don't be afraid to speak your mind and stand up for what is right. You have a voice. Make sure you are using it to promote positive change in this world.