Hi! I’m Michelle Risser.
I help therapists and helping professionals optimize their self-care and live and work without burnout. I believe deep in my heart that taking care of yourself first so that you can shine your light out for others is the opposite of selfish!
If you know anyone who’s a mom who works as a therapist or helping professional who you think might enjoy this video, please share the link with them. Okay, so here are the three reasons why moms who work as therapists and helping professionals are at an increased risk for burnout even more than others in the profession.
Reason number 1: You are doubly depleted.
You give your energy, your time, and your attention all day to your clients or your patients, and then as soon as you walk in the door, you give your time and energy to your family at home. Can anyone relate to this? Maybe you’ve been focusing on your clients all day. You’re giving, you’re giving. You walk in the door and immediately it’s, Mom, what’s for dinner? Or, Mom, can you help with my homework? Or, Mom, watch this? And you’re just absolutely tapped out at that point.
Reason number 2: guilt.
Guilt gets in the way of the self-care that you need to practice in order to stay healthy as a helping professional. You feel guilty if you take time away from your family to focus on work and you feel guilty if you take time away from work to focus on your family. It’s a no-win situation. Whatever’s happening, you feel guilty and you always feel pulled.
Let me share a little story. I like to call this the “Snowy Day Mom Guilt Epiphany”. One day several years ago, it was a snow day from school. My daughter was not old enough to be home by herself. She was maybe six or seven years old. And I live in Ohio, so we do occasionally have snow days and our road crews don’t usually do a great job clearing things out.
Her school was closed and I was scrambling. I had a booked full day of clients and my daughter was home from school. I didn’t know what to do. This was before teletherapy, so today this would probably go differently. I would just offer to meet people online, but at the time, I was meeting in person and I was scrambling and I asked a friend to help with my daughter for a couple of hours, and she did. I ended up canceling about half of my day. My spouse canceled about half of his day, and we divided and conquered, and my daughter went to my friend’s, and it was so stressful.
I remember driving to work on this snowy, slippery day on these crappy roads, and I was thinking, Okay, I think this system is set up against us. I think maybe this is not just me.Maybe these expectations are not very realistic.
I’m beating myself up because I’m not with my kid, but I’m also beating myself up because I canceled half of my clients and I know I’m not going to be able to really be present with them. It felt like an absolute no win. So that’s when I realized that this whole system really kind of sucks and it’s really not serving us.
Can anybody relate to that? Have you ever been in a situation where you had work and you had your kids, maybe your kid was sick, And even when you know that you’re doing the right thing, but whichever that choice is, you feel guilty and you feel torn.
Reason number 3: You push through.
You push through chronic stress and exhaustion. You ignore your body’s warning signs for days and days, because you don’t want to let anyone out down.
So you just keep pushing through, hanging on until the weekend, hanging on until that vacation. And the next thing you know, you are completely depleted and facing burnout. And the problem with that is once burnout has fully kicked in, it can take a really long time to recover. We’re talking months, maybe even years.
If you relate to any of this and you’ve wondered if you might be headed towards burnout yourself, I have a free burnout assessment and I’m going to drop that link right below this. And that’s all for now. I hope you have a wonderful day. Thanks for stopping by!