Welcome back empowered readers,
For this weeks empowered journal I wanted to discuss self-love tips for those in the helping profession, those who volunteer as helpers, and caregivers.
Empathy is the tool that helpers, healers and caregivers must use to establish a healing relationship. Over time, working in continuously emotionally charged situations, this empathy can become overtaxed and exhausted, even when the helper is diligently maintaining self-care skills.
Burnout, secondary/vicarious traumatization and compassion fatigue affect most helpers at some point in their professional cycle and are challenged to reach out for help. This is a very difficult position as one may feel fear of judgment, ridicule, difficulty trusting other professionals, and fear of exposing ourselves. This can prevent us from reaching out for the help we need.
Some self-care tips include:
Connection & Support
Feeling supported, heard and cared about by your colleagues is a crucial skill to maintain resiliency and combat burnout and compassion fatigue. Meet with other professionals to reduce the feelings of isolation. For example, within my own professional network I have created a support group for other helping professionals where we meet every 6-8 weeks. This has helped normalize my own experiences while providing support to others.
This can also include accessing your own personal support group, like friends and family, to help you feel connected.
There are a number of ways that we can re-fuel and revitalize by utilizing self-care. For some, it can include more physical components while for others it is more refined. It is our responsibility to learn and regularly practice what works for us to sustain our energy, buoyancy and hope.
Some examples that work well for most people and represent the essential components of good self-care include:
Regular Exercise * Healthy Diet * Good Sleep Hygiene * Regular Social Activities * Spiritual Practices * Creative Activities or Hobbies * Professional Enrichment
If you are currently feeling impacted by the work that you do, the good news is that burnout and compassion fatigue is very responsive to treatment. When we, the helper or healer, take the crucial first step of reaching out to ask for help, we are well on our way to recovery. Treatment programs offered through Empowered Wellness & Solutions include the Accelerated Recovery Program and the balanced YOU program.
If you would like to learn more about our programs, please click the button below.
To your empowered wellness,
Exchiela Benusic, MA