I recently had the opportunity to be featured in a USA Today article that addressed the Impact of COVID-19 on mental health professionals. Mental health professionals around the world are on the front lines in a different way; we are caring for the mental health of individuals. It was reassuring to know that someone cared enough to write about the issues that mental health professionals are facing. The article reiterates that mental health professionals are not immune to the overwhelming symptoms of burnout? If you are in therapy, don’t hesitate to ask your therapist what he/she is doing for self-care. Self-care is important. It is unrealistic for a mental health professional to think that the mental and emotional stamina needed for effective therapy can be sustained without self-care.
So, ask your therapist, “Are you finding time for self-care?” If the answer is “No,” I suggest you think twice about hiring this individual and consider a therapist who takes time for self-care. If your therapist is mentally drained, how are you being helped? Although it’s not mentioned in the article, I take time to meditate, pray, go for walks, get massages, and spend time with friends (virtual or social distancing). I also participate in a counselor's round table group, where I can be vulnerable in a safe space. As a psychotherapist, I take time for my own mental health so that I can continue to provide great care to my clients and prevent burnout.