"Compassion Fatigue is a state experienced by those helping people or animals in distress; it is an extreme state of tension and preoccupation with the suffering of those being helped to the degree that it can create a secondary traumatic stress for the helper."
Dr. Charles Figley Professor, Paul Henry Kurzweg Distinguished Chair Director, Tulane Traumatology Institute Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
For Child Abuse Organizations
If you provide direct services to hurting people or victims of crime, you may be at risk of experiencing compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma. The interactive training we provide will explore self-care techniques as well as strategies managers can use to help ensure balance and self-care for those that they supervise. By participating in case studies, role-playing, and other interactive exercises, you will learn how to recognize the symptoms of compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma, develop resilience and healthy coping skills, and create a professional and personal care plan to minimize the risk of compassion fatigue in your work.
This training is available in a half-day or full day format.
Caring too much can hurt. When caregivers focus on others without practicing self-care, destructive behaviors can surface. Apathy, isolation, bottled up emotions and substance abuse head a long list of symptoms associated with the secondary traumatic stress disorder now labeled: Compassion Fatigue
While the effects of Compassion Fatigue can cause pain and suffering, learning to recognize and manage its symptoms is the first step toward healing. The Stress Care Doc is dedicated to educating caregivers about authentic, sustainable self-care and aiding organizations in their goal of providing healthy, compassionate care to those whom they serve.
When Compassion Fatigue hits critical mass in the workplace, the organization itself suffers. Chronic absenteeism, spiraling Worker's Comp costs, high turnover rates, friction between employees, and friction between staff and management are among organizational symptoms that surface, creating additional stress on workers.
Healing an organization takes time, patience, and most important, commitment. An awareness of Compassion Fatigue and its far reaching effects must be present at the highest level of management and work its way down to encompass line staff, as well as volunteers. Often, the mistrust that employees feel towards management is not unfounded. Since many care giving institutions are non-profit, they inherit additional challenges such as low wages, lack of space, high management turnover rate, and constantly shifting priorities.
Organizational symptoms of Compassion Fatigue include:
Constant changes in co-workers relationships
Inability for teams to work well together
Desire among staff members to break company rules
Outbreaks of aggressive behaviors among staff
Inability of staff to complete assignments and tasks
Inability of staff to respect and meet deadlines
Lack of flexibility among staff members
Negativism towards management
Strong reluctance toward change
Inability of staff to believe improvement is possible
Lack of a vision for the future
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