Image of a globe flanked by the text 'Resources for Recruitment and Retention, Support in the Workplace' and wrapped in a banner that says 'Plan It.'

Support: Dealing with Stress in the Workplace

Wellness [2.10.3.c]

In Transforming the Pain: A Workbook on Vicarious Traumatization[1], Saakvitne and Pearlman describe the ABCs of Self-Care as
    “Awareness: Being in tune with one’s needs, limits, emotions and internal/external resources including practicing mindfulness and acceptance. Awareness requires mindful attention to all aspects of our experience including thoughts, feelings, and our sensate experience. This kind of attention requires quiet time and space that supports self-reflection.
    Balance: Maintain a balance and diversity of activities at work. Balance your energies between work and play, between activity and rest, between focus on self and focus on others. Balance provides stability and helps us be more grounded when stress levels are high.
    Connection: Connection to oneself, to others, and to something greater decreases isolation and increases hope. Connection is supported by open communication. Connection to others both personally and professionally is essential and an ethical imperative for clinicians and human service providers. Connection provides an anchor that supports us to be able to witness tremendous suffering of our clients while not getting caught up in it. We cannot do this work alone.”
Patricia A Burke, MSW, describes “mindfulness” as
  • Non-judgmental awareness
  • Alert yet relaxed consciousness
  • Compassionate witnessing of experience
  • Curiosity
Burke further explores the subject of self care by offering reflective questions and worksheets as part of the training session, An Integrated Approach to Clinician Self-Care.  
The Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC Network) a nationwide, multidisciplinary resource for professionals in the addictions treatment and recovery services field, offers information on steps toward care and lifestyle balance, including supervisory involvement and “Self Care Approaches.”
Specific Steps for Self Care are found on the ATTC web site. Also included are case studies on posttraumatic care and burnout,
The American Counseling Association offers the following printable handouts on self care in addition to information on developing a self-care program for your whole self and a list of things agencies can do to support wellness:
Additional information on American Counseling Association’s Taskforce on Counselor Wellness and Impairment is found through their home page.
Additional wellness information tailored to the behavioral health field is found on Wellness Resources [2.10.3.c.1]

[1] Saakvitne, K. W. & Pearlman, L. A. (1996). Transforming the Pain: A Workbook on Vicarious Traumatization. New York: W. W. Norton & Company.

Submit your Feedback

Upload or attach a document:

Go to Chapter: