As the 2020 holiday season begins, I’m sure many of us are feeling slightly off kilter as things this year feel different. In past years, one of my sisters comes over from England and spends this week with us – it has become a tradition – we talk, walk, shop, cook, laugh and generally put the world to rights. No sister visit this year. We talked this morning and shared how odd it felt, like something was missing. And it is – and the odd feeling is grief due to the loss of something held dear by us both. So we planned next year’s trip which lifted our spirits and gives us both something to look forward to.

In talking with friends about how they are coping with life in a pandemic, a number of silver linings have emerged that they want to keep as we move forward into a Covid-vaccinated world. I’m calling these Covid Keepers.’ A friend of mine is an ER doctor at one of Boston’s academic medical centers. Her Covid Keeper is the ‘double on call’ system that has been implemented so if the primary on call doctor gets sick, a back-up doctor has already been identified. This prevents the stress of a last minute scramble to find someone. For her, this relatively simple change has reduced her stress level and improved morale. Therapist friends are enjoying the ability to see their patients in virtual space and patients are benefitting from not having to travel for appointments. The same goes for primary care doctors. My son’s school has run the fall ‘back to school’ night curriculum review via Zoom and compared with past years dashing around the school trying to find the right class room and right teacher it’s definitely a keeper from my perspective.

Many of us are experiencing the loss of Thanksgiving traditions, especially those centered on gathering with friends and family. If you feel you are slipping into the ‘loss funk’, I’d encourage you to reflect on your life and things you are grateful for. Call friends and family and ask them what their Covid Keepers are – you’ll feel more upbeat and have some great conversations!

I’d love to hear what your Covid Keepers are – please get in touch or share below. Wishing you and yours a safe and happy holiday season!

About the author

Celia is a results-focused business and change consultant with twenty-five years of experience serving corporate, healthcare and not for profit clients. She has delivered compelling business results for organizations worldwide, including some of the best known medical institutions in the United States.