With my career choice, I know that life will always get busy. But I seem to have found a way of managing a balance between work and life. I’m an amazing multitasker and I like mixing business and pleasure. I love “workations”! Then coronavirus happened. Being a student and teacher at the same time during lockdown has been really challenging. The pandemic made me question my work practices and study habits. The work from home situation made it inevitably difficult to set work-life boundaries and I found myself in this cycle of persistent work, constant distractions, mini breakdowns and burnouts.

With the help of my SOs, mentors (and mindfulness apps!), I was able to recognize the importance of healthy breaks and redefine my idea of productivity. Thankfully, my mentors and colleagues have also invited me to take part in meaningful COVID19 projects and initiatives that kept me inspired and motivated. Truly, the pandemic is a pivotal moment for academia and public health practice.

For 2021 and the coming years, I aim to continually create a safe space for my students and to contribute more in finding solutions to the ever-growing problems surrounding public health – and hopefully, take that quick workation for a change of scenery.

Tricia Palola, WPR

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