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Compassion Fatigue The Unspoken Hazard of Veterinary Medicine Chery F. Kendrick, DVM, MPVM, MLT, ASCP, CFS Compassion Fatigue Specialist Kendrick Technical Services, LLC © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
About This Presentation We will explore the following: Compassion Fatigue Definitions Signs and Symptoms of Compassion Fatigue Preventing Job Burnout Preventing Compassion Fatigue Healing From Within Healing With Your Team Sharing Ideas and Resources © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
No Quizzes!! With this presentation there are No Quizzes We do have a sign-in sheet if that helps And a very important Workbook So simply Relax, Listen, and Breath We will look at the workbook at the end of the presentation © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Our Compassion Fatigue Workbook © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Working Through The Exercises The Workbook we will look at the exercises in the workbook but more importantly you can take it home and practice these relaxation techniques in the peace and privacy of your own home © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Let’s Start With Some Definitions © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
What IS Compassion Fatigue? Compassion Fatigue is also known as: Secondary Traumatic Stress It is a part of a the developing field of traumatology Most often this phenomenon is associated with the “cost of caring” for others in emotional pain In the animal welfare industry we are especially vulnerable to Compassion Fatigue and job burnout Compassion Fatigue, also known as a Secondary Traumatic Stress Disorder, is a term that refers to a gradual lessening of compassion over time. It is common among victims of trauma and individuals that work directly with victims of trauma © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Caring May Come With a High Cost “ People continue in the field because they love their work; this love causes them terrible pain.” - - Figley & Roop, p46. But it Doesn’t Have to…. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
PTSD Primary Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): firsthand experience of trauma or traumatic events PTSD symptoms directly related to traumatized individual or animal STSD Secondary Traumatic Stress Disorder (STSD): secondary experience of trauma or traumatic events STSD symptoms are associated with secondary person or person helping traumatized individual and/or animal Comparing PTSD – vs. - STSD © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Job Burnout The total depletion of physical and mental resources caused by excessive striving to reach an unrealistic work-related goal. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
More on Job Burnout A general feeling of exhaustion that develops when an individual simultaneously experiences too much pressure and has too few sources of satisfaction. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Symptoms of Burnout Alcohol, drugs, food, or sex to escape feelings Irritable with patients or colleagues More time alone or felt withdrawn Depressed/emotionally drained Not accomplishing anything with patients Lost interest in or resented patients Preoccupied with images of death - - Furman, 2002 © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Here Is An Interesting Statistic: People reflect and think about events inducing negative emotions 5 times as long as they do about events inducing strong positive emotions. - - Robbins © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Emotional Reactions to Working with the Suffering A sense of powerlessness or ineffective as a helper Anxiety or fear when thinking about the client Guilt – self doubt; hurting client Anger or rage Shutdown or numbness – silencing response © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
More Emotional Reactions to Working with the Suffering Sadness Depression…insomnia, loss of appetite, thoughts of death, self-medication Emotional rollercoaster – happy to sad Overwhelmed Depleted as a helper © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Compassion Fatigue Burnout Symptoms - Cognitive Confusion Spaciness Loss of Meaning Apathy Rigidity Disorientation Self -doubt Trauma imagery Whirling thoughts Perfectionism Diminished Concentration Minimization Thoughts of self-harm © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Compassion Fatigue Burnout Symptoms - Physical Shock Sweating Rapid heartbeat Breathing difficulties Aches and pains Dizziness Increased number and intensity of medical maladies Other somatic complaints Impaired immune system Helplessness © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Compassion Fatigue Burnout Symptoms – Work Performance Low morale Low motivation Avoiding tasks Obsess details Apathy Negativity Detachment Poor work commitments Staff conflicts Absenteeism Exhaustion Irritability Withdraw from colleagues Lack of appreciation © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Compassion Fatigue Burnout Symptoms – Interpersonal Withdrawal Loss of interest in intimacy or sex Mistrust Isolation from friends Overprotective as a parent Projection of anger or blame Intolerance Loneliness © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Impact On Professional Functioning Performance of Job Tasks Decrease in quality/quantity Avoidance of tasks Morale Detachment Decrease in confidence Interpersonal Impatience Staff conflicts Behavioral Absenteeism Overwork Frequent Job Changes © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
“Just because someone brings you a problem doesn’t mean you're automatically in charge of fixing it. Learn to detach yourself from drama.” Drama Avoidance 101 © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Effects of Toxic People Happier people when making real-life decisions may be smarter (decision makers) than unhappy people. Lisa Aspinwall, University of Utah A chilly negative mood activates a battle-stations mode of thinking: The order of the day is to focus on what is wrong & then eliminate it. Martin Seligman, Ph.D. A positive mood buoys people into a way of thinking that is creative, tolerant, constructive, generous, un-defensive and lateral. This way of thinking aims to detect not what is wrong, but what is right. Martin Seligman, Ph.D. Just Say “NO!” To Toxic People © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Symptoms vs Disease Compassion Fatigue is a set of symptoms, not a disease © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Symptoms of Compassion Fatigue? Burnout Depression Sadness Physical Illnesses Irritable Bowel Ulcers High Blood Pressure Insomnia © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Recognizing Signs The outward signs we experience are displays of stress resulting from giving care to others. Compassion Fatigue is the name that has been attached to these symptoms so that we have a way of identifying it in ourselves and in others. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Identify Once identified, we are able to take action to manage the distress this disorder is causing in our lives. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Coping with Emotions In working with traumatized or suffering people or animals, the most common method of coping with the discomfort we experience is to stifle the emotions that arise. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Stifling Emotions Sometimes it is the only way we can continue to do the care-giving work that we want to do. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Effects of Compassion Fatigue Once we are open to accepting the fact that Compassion Fatigue is creating our emotional, psychological, and physical symptoms, we can look at our pain and learn new ways in which to react to them and channel them into positive, healthy actions. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
What is the Basic Message of Of Compassion Fatigue? Recognize the signs Take care of you the caretaker Follow the Rules of Eight © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Satisfaction derived from the work of helping others. - - Charles Figley, Ph.D. Compassion Satisfaction is What We Aim For © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Now What © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Our Goal Is To Prevent Compassion Fatigue “To Enable Us to Keep the Candle Lit Without Getting Burned” © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
We Do This By Practicing Self-Care © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
“You need your own foundation for self esteem or you can’t accept what people say if you don’t believe it yourself.” Self Esteem and Caring © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Self-Care Exercises Include Relaxation Techniques Healthy Lifestyle Recreation Balance Between Work and Play Learning Self-Care Techniques Asking For Help When Needed Learning to Detoxify Your Life © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Follow The Rules of Eight The Eight Rules Governing Healthy Change The Eight Rules Governing Healthy Care-giving The Eight Rules Governing Healthy Self-Care The Eight Rules Governing A Healthy Workplace © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
The Eight Laws Governing Healthy Change © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Breaks and Saying “No” #1 Take frequent breaks from what you are doing. #2 Weigh your options carefully and learn the word “no.” Use it whenever necessary. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Sharing, Humor #3 Share the load with others. #4 There is humor in every situation. Find it and laugh. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Help and Credit #5 Recognize when you need help. Ask for it. #6 Give yourself credit when credit is due. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Credit, Breathing #7 Give others credit when credit is due. #8 Breathe deeply as often as possible. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
The Eight Laws Governing Healthy Care-giving © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Compassion, Skepticism, Release #1 Sustain Your Compassion #2 Retain Healthy Skepticism #3 Learn to Let Go Puppy Breath Can Be Healing © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Optimism, Insight & Solutions #4 Remain Optimistic #5 Be part of the Solution #6 Trust Your Insight © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Self-Care, Acknowledgement #7 Practice Sustainable Self Care #8 Acknowledge Your Successes © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
The Eight Laws Governing Healthy Self Care © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Validation #1 By validating ourselves, we promote acceptance. #2 By validating others, we elevate ourselves. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Healthy Self Helps Healing Role #3 By meeting our own mental, physical and emotional needs, we give care from a place of abundance, not scarcity. #4 By practicing self-goodwill, we manifest it throughout our lives. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Honoring Past ► Freedom & Power #5 By honoring past traumas and hurts, we allow ourselves freedom from the pain that controls us. #6 By “doing the work,” we reclaim the personal power that is rightfully ours. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Healing Our Emotional Pain Allows Us To Be Better Healers © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Ownership, Authenticity, Happiness #7 By naming and taking ownership of the core issues that limit our growth, we create authenticity. #8 By managing our self- care, we welcome happiness into our lives. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
The Eight Laws Governing A Healthy Workplace # 1 Employer provides a respite for staff following any traumatic event. #2 Employer provides continuing education for staff. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Benefits, Tools #3 Employer provides acceptable benefits to aid staff in practicing beneficial self care. #4 Employer provides management and staff the tools to accomplish their tasks. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
#5 Management needs to monitor workloads. #6 Encourage team- building activities to promote strong social relationships between colleagues. Workload, Team Work © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Support, Planning #7 Employers encourage “open door” policies to promote good communication between workers. #8 Employers have grief processes in place when traumatic events occur onsite. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
For More Help and Information © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC Please Visit Our Website:
Working Through the Exercises in Your Workbook You have been given a Compassion Fatigue Workbook with exercises designed to help you relax and refocus your energy These exercises are the tools to help you relieve the stress in order to prevent Compassion Fatigue Let’s take a moment to walk through them © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Breathing Sounds simple right? Let’s talk about breathing: Emotions change breathing patterns Deep breathing exercises help to clear the mind and relieve stress Walk through the Breathing exercise in your workbook © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Creative Visualization Exercise This is a relaxation technique that uses guided imagery. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Self Hypnosis Exercise (Self-Talk, Self-Advice) The purpose of this exercise is to evoke a relaxed consciousness and focus that will help you overcome stress linked to various stressors © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Dealing with Violent People © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC Bottom line is: Do not get caught alone with a potentially violent person Get Help! Never hesitate to call 911 or to press a panic alarm. Run, kick, scream, do whatever you need to do to stay safe and get away from danger No job is worth endangering your life for. Talk to your Safety Coordinator about other ways your clinic protects employees from potential workplace violence such as panic alarms or secret alert words.
Giving Credit Exercise We all like to be appreciated. Take a moment to think about ways to give yourself and others credit where credit is due. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Learning To Say “No” Exercise Just Say “No!” True this is Easier said than done sometimes. However it may help you to choose wisely if you actually take a moment to think of the consequences of saying “yes” before you agree to take that next project on. © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Healing Touch Self Care Program A self-care tool Uses energy fields (chakras) Realignment of energy fields Allow the body to self heal © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Healing Touch Healing Touch = Energy Medicine Like Acupressure it uses the bodies energy fields known as chakras HT used for dogs and cats © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Healing Touch for Horses © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Healing Touch for Humans A powerful tool for you to use Self healing Self Chakra Connection © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Self Chakra Connection
The Wellness Wheel It’s All About Balance Balancing the : –Physical –Emotional –Spiritual –Work /Career –Play/Recreation –Family –Friends While Maintaining Mindfulness © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Practice Makes Perfect Be sure to work through the exercises in your workbook until you feel comfortable. Soon they will become so second nature that you can use one of your exercises to take a quick de-stressing moment any time throughout your work day Encourage all team members to work on these exercises for the good of the team as well as the individual Thank you for all you do © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
Questions? © 2011 Kendrick Technical Services, LLC
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