Burnout: How to Hold Out the Light Without Burning Out
Spiritual caregivers are frequently called on to walk with persons traveling through all kinds of spiritual and emotional darkness. There is an expectation that the spiritual caregiver will offer some light amid that darkness. Light is a powerful symbol in most faith traditions. Light represents joy and life-giving power and the presence of the Holy. Spiritual Caregivers are constantly challenged with representing that light during tragedy, loss, and spiritual emergencies. All light requires energy to burn brightly or to not be extinguished. Moreover, spiritual caregivers need to be able to recognize the signs of the light going out and take actions to replenish the spiritual and emotional energy needed to continue the journey.
- Conduct a review of what is already known about symptoms, individual personality characteristics of persons at risk, and workplace factors that may contribute to burnout.
- Learn to differentiate between burn out and compassion fatigue.
- Discuss ways of making a spiritual or pastoral assessment of a depleted sense of being.
- Explore preventive measures and techniques addressing burnout and compassion fatigue.