If you are in the caring profession, you will likely experience compassion fatigue. You may first notice exhaustion, both physical and mental. If you don’t recognize what’s occurring, you will eventually have a decreased capacity to empathize for those in your care.
This is serious for your health and if not addressed, it can become a cause for concern for your employer. Caring for yourself with a plan for addressing these issues before they become critical means both you and those you care for will benefit.
Compassion fatigue is real. Here are a few markers to watch for that will help you take steps in care and prevention.
- Severe exhaustion (emotional, physical, or both) that isn’t corrected by sleep
- Reduced feelings of sympathy or empathy
- Feeling guilt around your emotions for others (feeling guilt for feeling bad)
- Becoming short tempered or quick to anger over things that normally don’t bother you
- Difficulty sleeping even when you’re tired
- Irritability at home about work, feeling guilty at work about what’s happening at home
- Loss of interest in work, loss of fulfillment or happiness
- Headaches or minor ailments that linger
If you see yourself in a few of these it may indicate you are at risk. If you see yourself in all of these, you are likely experiencing compassion fatigue.
I’m not a medical doctor. I don’t diagnose but I do know how to help. I teach HealthCare Professionals how to incorporate principles for conscious living.
When you care for your own needs, you will then be able to care for others. It’s not an either/or option. I’ve seen first-hand the effects of helping people like you take back their life by getting crystal clear on their motivations and by recognizing how they can be the best version of themselves.
Don’t let the cost of compassion rob you of your joy in life. Say yes to self-care.
Side Note: 7 in 10 HealthCare Professionals report feeling stressed out. Be the exception!