“The odds are high that burnout will strike every healthcare professional at some point. Health workers — as well as teachers, ministers and others in the caring professions — are at increased risk for the stress syndrome, because of the intensity of their work and the emotional bonds they form with the people they’re helping, experts say. “Most people in the healthcare professions carry their jobs home with them,” says an expert in burnout prevention from Connecticut. “It’s good to really care about your patients. But if you don’t know how to distance yourself at times, it will be a problem.”
HealthCare professionals are some of the most important people in this world in the minds of the patients and family members they serve. What caregivers do for their own health and well-being is one of the most difficult things for them to do for themselves. Why?…they don’t think they have the time or that they matter. I want you, the caregiver, to think about how you are treating yourself, or not treating yourself, and make the decision to adopt new behaviors, because you do matter. Many of you know what to do, but either don’t schedule time for your self-care or are too numb from stress and burnout to make the change.
When you separate yourself from doing what is required for your health, your life force will literally dry up — your energy will be depleted. Making time to connect and stay connected to your Source replenishes your energy and life force. You matter! As a HealthCare Professional you often fail to remember this fact.
Once you come to the realization that self-care is a necessity, not an option, you can then begin to make a change. You have to be that “Man in the Mirror.” You have to be willing to look at yourself honestly, as a caregiver, and truly see how you are treating yourself.
Here are four immediate things you can begin to implement as a starting point —
- It’s okay to say “NO” when you have reached your limit. Preferably say “No” before you have reached your limit. That’s what really prevents burnout. I know you don’t want to disappoint anyone, but your primary objective is to not sabotage your commitment to be a healthier person.
- Put systems into place to get away for some “me time”. You can’t give from an empty cup. This me time allows you to refill your cup by rejuvenating your body, mind and emotions. Our emotions and feelings get all dis-jointed when they are not given time to be at peace to regroup. To regroup it takes being away from everyone and everything for a while. STOP to be with you and realign yourself with your essence.
- Change how you think and speak, using more positive words. I have heard there are more negative words in the American language than in any other. We are good at using them when we criticize ourselves. STOP IT! It works to your advantage when you stop judging yourself so harshly. You and the work you do are important to everyone in your world. Speak the affirmative, so you can manifest the affirmative.
- Use the power of the breath for stress relief. This is readily available to you to release stress and get rid of toxins in your lungs. When you feel stressed take a moment to close your eyes, imagining a peaceful scene and breathe deeply. Take deep breaths 4 or 5 more times if you need it until you feel more in control and your heart rate decreases.
When you are stressed, exhausted, and burned out mistakes happen. Some of those mistakes can be hazardous to those you are caring for and to yourself. It’s time to “Knock It OFF!” Stop neglecting yourself and do something now to prevent your body from completely burning out.
Remember YOU MATTER! Say Yes to Self-Care! Because you and your well-being are your biggest asset!