As professionals who help people every day, we are all too familiar with the measures used for preventing burnout or compassion and empathy fatigue associated with our profession. More than a year into the pandemic, mental health professionals are finding that helping others during a time of loss and uncertainty can be overwhelming. Many healthcare professionals are taking larger caseloads, working longer hours and say they are still having a tough time meeting the demand for treatment for patients.

During the COVID pandemic, we have experienced many challenges, yet there are still more challenges ahead.

It’s important to remain grounded and remind ourselves that the very attributes that we cultivate to be successful for our patients can make us vulnerable on all levels.  As you practice burnout strategies, consider making these suggestions a priority for yourself or other mental health professionals:

  • Allow yourself permission to experience self-compassion. You may be the expert, but you are a real person first and foremost.

  • Invest time into evaluating and establishing the best restorative self-care strategies for you.

  • Prioritize practicing regular emotional and physical self-regulation so that it becomes a lifestyle.

  • Periodically evaluate and adjust your definition of personal and professional success.

  • Always acknowledge small successes.

  • Allow yourself to ask for support and delegate.

  • Reach out to professional networks for support and understanding.

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Robin Riggins, LICSW
Robin Riggins, LICSWMarketing Executive