The Cost of Caring & Self-Care Awareness

Categories: General News, News and Events, Other

If you are a Darkness to Light Authorized Facilitator, first, thank you. Thank you for being a leader in your community and within your organization and facilitating important conversations around child sexual abuse prevention in your communities. 

Second, during National Self-Care Awareness Month, we at Darkness to Light hope that now, and every month, you are taking time for yourself. That you are practicing self-care in whatever way is meaningful to you and brings you joy. 

During our Facilitator Workshop, Instructors ask, “Why do you want to be a Facilitator?” We hear a range of answers; 

Some find it aligns with their professional goals while others appreciate that facilitating supports their personal experiences and passions. Others are drawn to facilitating because they will be protecting children and teaching other adults how to do so as well. Whatever the reasons may be, the role of facilitator – along with all the other roles we are asked to fulfill – can overwhelm us at times. Combined, that may lead us to experience cumulative stress, burnout, or secondary traumatic stress. 

This is the cost of caring. 

So, what can be done? We need to build our resiliency. Here are five things you can work on to develop resiliency:

    1. Build a toolbox of self-regulation skills. This includes activities such as a body scan to release tension, breathing exercises, emotional awareness, and mindfulness.
    2. Live intentionally. Determine what drives you to do the work you do. Develop boundaries around your work and professional lives.
    3. Have a growth mindset. Learn to change your perception about an event or relationship that is causing you grief.
    4. Create connections. Surround yourself with people who will challenge and support you, in every aspect of your life.
    5. Practice self-care. Physical activity, engaging creatively, time away – it looks different for everyone.

As you build resiliency in yourself, you will find that those you serve and work with will benefit as well. Not only because of your personal growth but because you will be modeling it for them. They will notice and will hopefully begin to grow themselves.

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