“A psychologist going for therapy” sounds unusual, no? Just like all of us, mental health professionals also experience emotional distress.
In reality, they are at higher risk of developing occupational burnout, compassion fatigue, and secondary traumatic stress.
While they dedicate their entire career to listen and solve everyone’s problems, it does take a toll on their life.
So if you are a mental healthcare professional, it is equally crucial for you to take care of yourself. Practicing self-care doesn’t mean you are prioritizing yourself over your patients.
It means being mindful of your needs so that you can treat your patients more efficiently. Don’t wait for the time when you are too disparaged to marginalize your loved ones, especially your patients.
So take a moment and appreciate the importance of self-care and be the best version of yourself. We have some easy self-care tips for you to prevent burnout and how to maintain your well-being. Let’s get started:
Fix your sleeping pattern:
When was the last time you slept for straight 8-9 hours? We bet it must have been ages. Sleep is the most ignored yet highly essential part of our lives. Stick to a proper sleeping schedule and prioritize it.
Set aside professional competency:
Professional competency can sometimes be a significant source of distress. We are all vulnerable to it at some point in our careers. Being a psychotherapist, you can opt for various programs to advance in psychology and have a lucrative career.
Plan a vacation:
Do you know the best way to recharge is to unplug? So there is no debating in it that you don’t need a vacation. You certainly need one. Your daily life monotony has chipped away your perspective, and a break is the only way you can restore it. The best thing is to focus on your mental and physical capacity.
Take mini-breaks throughout the day:
It is a practical mini intervention of self-care in your day-to-day life. For professionals who can’t spare chunks of their time for self-care, it is advisable to take out little moments of relaxation.
Even if you manage to squeeze out five minutes from your schedule, sit in a comfortable chair, take few deep breaths with your eyes closed, grab your favorite drink and sip it slowly. They are your precious five minutes, don’t waste it on checking your emails or social media. Just be yourself.
While you spend most of your time supporting your patients, you might lose sight of your loved ones. You will always have a bunch of people around you who will need your help. But what about your precious relations? Staying in connection with them is a vital source of self-care. Lean on them. Take out some time each week for your friends and family.
Take care of your physical health:
Self-care is all about your mental and physical well-being. If you neglect one, things fall apart. So remember the fundamental rule of eating a healthy diet, regular exercise, a well-hydrated body, and a strict sleeping pattern.
We all think burnout is related to our mental exhaustion. However, surprisingly it does take a toll on our physical health. Exercise boosts your mood; it makes you feel alive by generating happy hormones.
So don’t lose motivation if you are not able to exercise for 30 minutes or so. Even small amounts of physical workouts are also beneficial.
Connect with other therapists:
As a therapist, ethically, you cannot discuss your client’s issues or what is going on at your work with your loved ones. However, you may be lucky enough to have therapists around you who can relate to your concerns and empathize with you.
Another benefit of being a therapist is that you know how valuable therapy sessions are. Seek out a therapy session and express your feelings.
Being a private practitioner, you put a lot on your plate unintentionally. As your practice grows, the administration hassle and paperwork grow exponentially. So to save yourself and your team from the inconvenience, why not take help from different management software tools available.
They will help you organize your administrative tasks. They keep detailed patient records and streamline the appointments. You can also manage your patients anywhere around the world with the help of tech-savvy tools. In fact, after some time, you can easily monitor the changes in your practice.
A take-home message:
Self-love is known as a prerequisite for all kinds of healthy relationships. It is an essential requirement for ensuring fullness in helping others.
So if you don’t nurture yourself, you are less likely to help others with their mental well-being. Hence, always maintain a balance between your work life and personal life. Don’t forget; your life is precious, and you should enjoy it to the fullest.