Self-Care for the Trauma Therapist Stacey Balkanski, LCSW, LLC As mental health professionals, it is essential that we take the time to create an infrastructure that supports our work with clients in a welcoming environment, as well as supporting ourselves as clinicians. We hear this repeatedly, but how many of us really take the time to examine our practice structure to see how it could work better for us? When was the last time you revisited your office hours to assess how well they are working for your current lifestyle and outside commitments? It is important that we address our own self-care needs in order to show up as our best selves with clients and take a proactive stance on medical/mental health concerns, fatigue, isolation, poor nutrition, lack of exercise and/or past traumas so that we aren’t easily triggered by topics that clients bring up. A trauma informed approach in therapy acknowledges the need to understand a patient’s life experiences in order to deliver effective care and has the potential to improve patient engagement, treatment adherence, health outcomes and provider and staff wellness. Think of what a difference we can make in our clients’ long-term outcomes with the proper approach. Now, think about how we can approach our own self care and wellness differently to increase our own long-term outcomes… The American Psychological Association defines self-care as “providing adequate attention to one’s own physical and psychological wellness” and believes the practice so crucial that it is considered an “ethical Imperative” of mental health professionals. Try some of these suggestions for improving your self-care and show up for your clients as the best version of yourself. 1. Identify what activities help you feel your best 2. Put it on your calendar-in ink! 3. Sneak in self-care where you can (5-10 minutes can make a world of difference) 4. Take care of yourself physically 5. Know when to say no 6. Check in with yourself regularly 7. Surround yourself with great people 8. Consider the quality of self-care Remember that looking after ourselves is non-negotiable!
If you should find yourself or someone you know in immediate crisis or need for help, dial 911 or go to your nearest emergency room. Some other resources for immediate crisis support include:
211 – In Florida, and many areas, most counties will have a dedicated 211 resource hotline. Dial 211 from your phone to be connected to your local 211 branch. This may depend on where you’re calling from if it’s from your Cell Phone.
Crisis Text Line – Text any word (Help, Talk, etc.) to 741741 to be connected via text to a trained crisis counselor.
Paational Suicide Prevention Hotline – Until the 3-digit hotline number is active later in 2022, the original number will still be the one to use – 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255).P al. al. al a Our Mission “Professionals United for Parkland was created to identify and meet the short and long-term needs related to mental health/well-being of the South Florida community in the aftermath of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas tragedy through evidence-based services including education for the general community and professionals, clinical training, clinical services, support for clinicians, and more. We work alongside other local organizations and groups to ensure that we identify gaps in current services and that the needs of our community are being adequately addressed. We are entirely non-political.
Professionals United For Parkland Honors the 17
Professionals United for Parkland remembers Christopher Hixon. From the website created in his honor, "His love for his student-athletes was well known. He always went the extra mile to ensure they were taken care of. To continue his legacy and continue to take care of student-athletes, we have created a scholarship in his name for student-athletes at his three former schools."
To learn more: https://chrishixonathleticscholarship.com/
PU4P Updates Interested in joining our trauma trained therapists (licensed only) - please take a few moments of your time and join the PU4P referral directory. The MSD community will need services for the long run. PU4P links those in need with a vetted list of trauma therapists. We ask for a commitment of 2 pro-bono clients a year. For more information or questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Please support PU4P by designating it as your charity with The AmazonSmile Foundation. They will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible smile.amazon.com purchases. Don't forget to check our Facebook page for the most current events, updates, and information about PU4P! Thank you for your support of PU4P and your dedication to the Parkland community.