Challenges to Therapist Self-Care with In-Home Work

Module Sections:

Applying the Framework and Post-Test

Sally Vignette and Post-Test

Integrated ABC-X Model of Burnout.Integrated ABC-X Model of Burnout.

Sally is overworked at her agency as a result of layoffs (A-stressor). Moreover, her colleagues are also feeling overworked and unappreciated and talk about this often. Sally frequently hears them complain (emotional contagion). Due to her high caseload, she is works long hours and frequently has to miss out on attending her children's sporting events. She is also unable to attend continuing education workshops and conferences like she had planned (B-resources). Although she regularly meets with her supervisor, she is usually not invested in these sessions, as her mind is elsewhere. Compound these difficulties with the fact that she describes herself as a type A personality (C-individual differences/personal susceptibility). As a result of these variables in her life, Sally is beginning to feel emotionally fatigued and drained (emotional exhaustion), and doubts her own abilities as a clinician. Moreover, she has recently noticed that she is losing the ability to be empathic with clients (depersonalization) and is wondering if she has even made a difference in the lives of those she serves (reduced personal accomplishment). Sally notices that she is feeling at the end of her rope and can essentially do two things at this point (cope)

  1. Find ways to take time for herself and/or utilize her supervisor (control coping)
    Or
  2. Continue at her pace and without utilizing resources (escape coping)

If she does the former, these strategies utilize her resources and may prevent her from reaching emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, reduced personal accomplishment, and subsequent burnout. If she does the latter, she will likely end up burned out, having to continue to work in an overloaded, unproductive environment, which will continue to compound until Sally becomes ill, ends up quitting, or getting fired for unethical behavior.

Audio Companion: Challenges to Therapist Self-Care