You have been working for six months on a medical telemetry floor and notice a change in your colleague Allie. Allie has been showing up to work late for her shifts and recently made a medication error when drawing up insulin. She mentions to you in the break room that she is having trouble sleeping and has been struggling with migraine headaches. Her husband was recently laid off from his position with a local manufacturing company, so Allie has been volunteering for extra shifts and overtime. Allie is typically good-natured and has a great sense of humor, but lately she has been short-tempered and irritable. As her friend and colleague, you want to see if there is anything that you can do to help
- Using your own words, how would you address your concerns with Allie?
- What strategies and assistance could you offer her?
As Allie’s colleague, you note many signs of harmful stress beginning to manifest in Allie’s physical, mental, and behavioral health. One of the first actions that you could take would be to invite Allie to discuss what you have noticed lately. Allie may not even realize that she has been exhibiting signs of ineffective coping and harmful stress. Opening the opportunity to discuss what you have seen and demonstrating that you acknowledge that she is in distress are important steps. Additionally, it is important to discuss with Allie what other resources are available to her. She may wish to reach out to the organization’s employee assistance program for assistance, or there may be other organizational resources available to her. Allie should also be encouraged to reach out to her manager to discuss the challenges that she is currently experiencing. This is an important part of mobilizing the resources around her so that she can continue as a successful employee within the organization.