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Being a Resilient School Based Clinician UFT Clinician’s Appreciation Day January 24, 2008 Andrew Livanis, PhD, BCBA Long Island University - Brooklyn.

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Presentation on theme: "Being a Resilient School Based Clinician UFT Clinician’s Appreciation Day January 24, 2008 Andrew Livanis, PhD, BCBA Long Island University - Brooklyn."— Presentation transcript:

1 Being a Resilient School Based Clinician UFT Clinician’s Appreciation Day January 24, 2008 Andrew Livanis, PhD, BCBA Long Island University - Brooklyn Coordinator, School Psychology Program

2 Goals of This Presentation The job of the clinician in the schools is incredibly stressful and can be quite overwhelming. This presentation is designed to help school based clinicians: Begin to develop an awareness of resiliency. Assist in managing stressful situations at work. Identify and prevent the symptoms of burnout. Promote personal and professional growth.

3 However… I do not have all the answers. I do not want to tell you what to do with your careers. Really, I don’t want you all to think that I am part of this family….


5 General Outline Resilience in Children Resilience in School-Based Professionals Burnout – the ugly opposite of Resilience

6 Resilience: the ability to deal with life’s challenges in a positive and productive manner…adapting to adversity.

7 What is resilience? Represents the ability to deal with life’s challenges in a positive and productive manner. Adapting to Adversity Resilience is the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or even significant sources of stress -

8 What is resilience? 4.It means "bouncing back" from difficult experiences such as family and relationship problems, serious health problems, or workplace and financial stressors. 5.People commonly demonstrate resilience.

9 What is resilience? 7.Underlies successful learning and healthy development. 8.Critical to understanding a person’s reaction to trauma or adversity. 9.Plays a central role in a person’s recovery after exposed to trauma or adversity.

10 Why is Resilience Important for Children?

11 Resiliency is essential to success in school and life. Adults can help children become more resilient. Fostering resilience in children improves school outcomes and reduces risk behaviors.

12 Resilient Mindset

13 Sources of Risk Identified for Children Deprivation Maltreatment Health issues Neglect ViolencePoverty Mental health problems

14 Common elements in the research Positive adult role models Social connections Committed & caring community Personal characteristics

15 Research suggests… Academic efficacy Academic self-determination Behavioral self-control Effective school staff-student relationships Effective peer relationship Effective home-school relationships Resilient Classrooms…B Doll

16 Children need: To feel competent To belong and feel connected To feel autonomous and have a sense of self-determination

17 Applying resilience to our professional careers

18 School clinicians’ risk factors excessive workload or number of caseshigh student-clinician ratiosschool district policies & practicesinsufficient professional supervisionlack of opportunities for advancementlack of appreciationbeing a solo practitionerunidimensional practiceearly career status

19 Career development stages Advanced Student (0 – 5 yrs) Novice Professionals (5 – 10 yrs) Experienced Professionals (10 – 15 yrs) Senior Professionals (15+ years)

20 Advanced Students

21 The advanced student: Self-focused Rule-governed Little attention to context of situations See situations as bits of information Evaluates information against own experiences Frequently has anxiety, frustration, confusion But, hopeful and highly motivated

22 Novice Professionals

23 The novice professional: Mastering technical aspects, procedures, rules Increased consideration of context Needs help setting priorities, relevance of information starts to emerge Increased confidence Dependency-autonomy in conflict

24 Experienced Professionals

25 The experienced professional Automaticity in skills Balances skills w/empathy and understanding Has developed schemata/ sees relationships Makes decisions easily Engages in planning, goal setting, considers long- term effects Very involved and engaged in situations

26 Senior Professionals

27 The senior professional Has paradigms, multiple schemes Integrates across domains of practice Feels at ease with complex, rapidly changing situations Makes decisions using qualitative distinctions Very skillful, involved, engaged,

28 Protective Factors Professional competence Professional self-determination Professional relatedness Professional connectedness

29 Professional competence Knowledge and skills + Effective management strategies

30 Professional Self-Determination

31 Professional Relatedness

32 Professional connectedness

33 Burnout – the Ugly Opposite of Resilience

34 Burnout Serious problem in the helping professions School context just adds to the stress of it all.

35 Those clinicians who experience burnout are likely to: –Leave the field altogether –Stay in the field, but operate at a reduced level of productivity.

36 What is burnout? An interaction between individual characteristics as well as environmental variables which cause the following subjective states: –Emotional Exhaustion –Depersonalization –Decreased Personal Accomplishment

37 Multi-factorial nature of burnout Emotional Exhaustion – –Overwhelming feelings of emotional strain –Subjective feelings linking the job to feelings of overwhelmingness. –Depletion of emotional reserve –Tendency to reduce involvement with clients and co-workers

38 Multi-factorial nature of burnout Depersonalization – –Tendency to view and relate to children and their families in an impersonal, detached fashion. –Cynical attitudes towards children and families –Tendency to “blame the victim” for their issues.

39 Multi-factorial nature of burnout Decreased personal accomplishment –Subjective feeling of incompetence –Thoughts related to not making a difference –Conscious judgment that efforts are not achieving the desired outcomes.

40 Maslach & Goldberg, 1998 How does burnout develop? Emotional Exhaustion Depersonalization Decreased Personal Accomplishment

41 Huebner, Giligan, Cobb, 2004 What types of things may lead to burnout? Personal Factors Environmental Factors

42 Personal Factors Youth –The younger you are, the more likely it is you will experience burnout –Magic number is “10” years –Corresponds with the novice – experienced professionals

43 Personal factors Youth –Has difficulty sorting the relevant from the irrelevant; unable to respond to context of situations; –Sees situations as many bits of information; evaluates information against own experiences; –Emotions--anxiety, frustration, hopefulness, confusion, excitedness, –Highly motivated; anxiety can interfere with empathy –Unable to look ahead –May lack experience or skills to deal with conflict –May lack effective time management strategies

44 Personal Factors Behavioral tendencies –Low verbosity (introversion) –Low subjective self-esteem –Few non-psychology, non-education interests –Difficulties dealing with ambiguous stimuli

45 Environmental Factors Conflict with administrators, teachers or parents High intensity meetings (increased number of MDE, due process hearings, child abuse) or high intensity cases (severe behavior or DD problems, child abuse) Increasing legal requirements Juggling responsibilities between two schools

46 Environmental Factors Inadequate assistance or beaurocratic walls Lack of contact with colleagues Insufficient recognition for the good work or prevention of problems. Lack of opportunities for professional enrichment.

47 Personal & Environmental Factors lead to: Role conflict Role ambiguity Role overload

48 How does a Resilient School Based Clinician Cope And Prevent Burnout? Professional Competence Professional Self-Determination Professional Relationships Professional Connectedness

49 Join professional organizations –Allows one to remain current –Allows for supervisory relationships to develop –Allows for collaborative relationships to develop –Allows for the sharing of difficult issues, and peer mentorship

50 Role Clarification Role clarification –Identify what it is that you do and what you do not do. –Identify what your responsibilities are and are not. –Do this all in advance, before problems arise.

51 Build Professional Resilience Develop strong, supportive personal/ professional relationships Be a life-long learner Have professional goals & move towards these goals

52 Personal Resilience Positive Cognitive Style –Positive self-talk, view of self –Keep events in perspective –Optimism Healthy living –Enjoyable/ relaxing activities –Good exercise and sleep habits –Healthy nutrition Nurturing personal relationships

53 Building resilience: Something we do for others… something we need to do for ourselves.

54 Special Thanks Rhonda Armistand, NASP President, for her assistance in helping me put this together. The Executive Board of NYASP, for assistance in facilitating my presentation here today. Ann Englesbee, for her timeless contributions to my presentation.

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