Are you a clinician experiencing compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma, or feelings of frustration from your work? Oftentimes burnout is seen as just an occupational hazard for healthcare providers, but it doesn't have to be that way.

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For those in healthcare, the days of the individualized relationship between provider and patient discussed in medical or nursing school is long gone. Instead, we're faced with the reality of managed care, shortened appointment times and defensive medicine. Sometimes this can give rise to myriad challenges.

 

It isn't uncommon for the reality of dealing with life and death situations on a daily basis to cause harm. Mental health counseling for doctors and nurses can provide an outlet for you, the healer, to re-prioritize both your professional and personal lives. You've always been there for your patients; now it's time that you be there for yourself too.

Do you provide mental/behavioral health services? Maybe you have difficult patients or extreme caseloads. In addition to shouldering other's emotional burdens, you also experience all the stress of normal, everyday life.

As a therapist, you spend all day in sessions with patients helping them work through their own depression, stress, or other emotional issues; then you go home to deal with your own stresses. Often when the counselor is stuck in his or her own personal life, this can translate to a practice with patients who are not progressing as they could.

You already know the benefits of therapy from the great work you do. Being involved in your own psychotherapy can be an important therapeutic tool for you and the patients you treat. By caring for yourself as a counselor, you are also providing a valuable service for your patient by honing and improving your own "therapy toolbox".

Image by Atharva Tulsi
Image by Fa Barboza