According to the National Institute of Mental Health, mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression and substance use had nearly doubled one year into the pandemic. Fast forwarding to 2023, many people are still reeling from the aftereffects of COVID-19. The need for mental health services has greatly increased and most counselors have a full case load of clients they are helping.
We are celebrating April as National Counseling Month across our family of ministries. This year’s theme created by the American Counseling Association is “Get Fit for your Future”. This theme calls counselors to take the time to look after their mental, spiritual, social, emotional and physical fitness. By caring for their own wellness, counselors can be more present in their professional and personal lives.
We have over 40 therapists who have provided counseling to literally thousands of individuals of all ages. Our therapists have chosen this field because of their desire to make a difference in people’s lives. This work is enjoyable and fulfilling; however, this endeavor can be challenging. Therapists can help clients find many successes, but they also come face to face with difficult situations and even second-hand trauma.
The American Counseling Association recommends therapists to create their own self-care plan to present these negative implications. First, they recommend filling out a self-care assessment to determine in which areas you need help the most. Next, you can create a self-care plan.
“Create an inventory of personalized self-care strategies that cater to the whole self and include physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually nourishing activities. This could be a list of the top five things you can do, or not do. Be specific. Don’t just write down “do a breathing exercise” — describe which exercises you foresee yourself doing and enjoy doing. Focus specifically on those you can do when you wake up or before you go to sleep, when you start and finish your day, and when you are between sessions.” (Counseling Today, 2022)
Autumn Gonzalez, author at Counseling Today shares,
“Maintaining and enhancing emotional, mental and physical well-being is a form of prevention as it prevents burnout, assists in staying present with clients and enables us to provide the highest quality of care to clients while maintaining our well-being. When we take time to care of and invest in ourselves, we are preparing ourselves to take care of others.”
We say, ‘THANK YOU’ from the bottom of our heart for the amazing and impactful work all our therapists provide each and every day. We continue to encourage and equip our staff to not only take care of clients, but themselves as well. We would not be here without our wonderful team.