Currently, I include therapeutic elements into my workshops. These are informed by the Narrative Therapy approach first outlined by the late Michael White and transmitted to me by Dr John Stillman of Minnesota while participating in his Narrative Therapy Certificate Program.
Care for the Caregiver
Humanitarian workers deal on a daily basis with the pain of others.
The demands of the work are great and those attracted to the field are highly motivated to help others, but this comes at a cost. A common theme shared amongst many caregivers is the tendency to place the needs of others before their own. Often this can be so compelling and so instinctual, that the caregiver loses sight or appreciation of what truly underlies the gratifying and fulfilling sense derived from his or her work. That is, until one begins to feel eroded, depleted, resentful and used up, the experience of compassion fatigue.
These difficult conditions can lead people to neglect their own needs, and not know how to prioritise self care, particularly necessary after exposure to trauma. Work hours are often long and without weekend breaks. This is especially true when working in post disaster situations.
This course aims to:
- Enhance caregivers’ awareness of those factors that underlie the motivation to care for others.
- Increase caregivers’ understanding that caring for others requires self –care as a self sustaining practice. The course explains the dynamics that support and undermine self-caring activity.
- The course defines compassion fatigue and suggests ways of dealing with it.
- Provides tools to the caregivers for changing existing self-defeating patterns and acquiring or strengthening more constructive ways of being.