Michelle Risser

I’m Michelle, and I help therapists and helping professionals overcome burnout with optimized self-care and diversified income streams so they can have bigger impact and more fun!

4 External Factors That Keep Therapists and Helping Professionals Stuck and Burned Out (and the things that you’ll need to overcome them.)


Hi, I’m Michelle. Thank you for stopping by!

I’m going to be talking about the 4 external factors that keep therapists and helping professionals stuck and burned out, and the things that you’ll need to overcome them.

There is a transcript of the video, below. So you can choose your own adventure, watch or read!

But first, welcome! Please say hello in the comments and let me know that you stopped by. 💖

I’m Michelle Risser, and I help therapists and helping professionals overcome burnout through optimized self-care and diversified income streams so they can have bigger impact and more fun. I believe that taking care of yourself first so that you can shine your light in a bigger way is the opposite of selfish, and it’s also the antidote to burnout.

We’re going to be covering the real factors that keep therapists and helping professionals stuck in the vicious cycle of burnout, and we’ll also talk about what you need to do to change it.

We all know that self-care is more than just manicures or massages.

Sometimes, self-care means doing hard things and setting boundaries, saying no, and doing things that we know are good for us even if we don’t want to. But what do we do when the things that are burning us out are out of our control?

Please share this video with any therapist or helping professional who you know who might feel stuck in a toxic system that’s keeping them burned out!

Therapists, coaches, and helping professionals are smart, highly educated, caring, and creative professionals. You have big ideas and dreams and you want to have more impact and help more people, but there are going to be things that get in your way.

One of my favorite things to do is to help therapists and helping professionals identify and start to knock down those barriers so that they can reach their goals. But sometimes these barriers are external. Whether you’re in private practice or an agency setting or a group practice, these things will affect you.

Number 1. Productivity and caseload requirements.

If you’re part of an agency or a group practice, you may have productivity requirements or restrictions on what type of clients or patients you can see. This can lead to burnout.

In private practice, even though you may have a little bit more control over what your caseload looks like, you have income requirements, you have a certain number of people that you need to see, or a certain amount that you need to charge in order to make the income that you need to make.

Either way, you’re going to be balancing what’s healthy for you versus these requirements, and they often don’t align.

Drop an emoji in the comments if you have ever felt that way!

Number 2. Workplace culture.

We all know that even groups of caring, helpful professionals can be toxic. Workplace culture, morale, and judgment from others can all contribute to a negative environment and ultimately burnout. Low morale due to workplace culture and stress can create a lot of problems within your team, and management that’s disconnected from client and staff needs and challenges can definitely be stressful to work for.

We also receive a lot of judgment from professionals, and colleagues, who believe it’s unethical to make a great living or to be creative in the ways that you serve others.

Number 3. Compensation, billing, and insurance.

Graduate school and continuing education are expensive, and now you have to fight to be paid. Whether you’re at an agency and you’re dealing with a low salary or you’re in private practice and you’re fighting with insurance, our profession is known for being underpaid.

Let me tell you a little story.

When I was in graduate school, I will never forget the very first day of class, our professor said, “Well, we hope you’re not here for the money.” Ouch. And I just remember sitting there thinking, Well, I know I’m not going to be driving luxury cars, but does this mean I’m gonna be eating ramen? You know, how poor am I going to be, exactly?

So from the very first day- day one, minute one, we’re being asked to sacrifice for our profession. These things really go deep and they can keep us burned out and feeling stuck.

Number 4. Constraints on your time.

You legit do not have time.

Between work and your family, your time is all spoken for. It can be really hard to find the time that you need to take care of yourself to prioritize your self-care: getting movement, eating right, and taking time to do the things that you enjoy. What do you do when you literally do not have time in your day?

So sometimes self-care IS a bubble bath or a manicure, but sometimes it means confronting toxic systems that don’t work for you anymore and you really have two choices.

You can stay and try to make change from the inside and try to be part of the solution, or you can move on and look for a different environment.

Either way, you’re going to need some things to help you get through this journey.

  1. You’re gonna need support from like-minded people. Believe it or not, not everyone is going to be okay with you bucking the system, putting your needs first, and saying no to toxic systems and environments. You’re gonna need like-minded, brave, and creative people who can cheer you on.
  2. You’re also going to need boundaries. You’re going to have to get comfortable with putting your needs first and with saying no.
  3. You’re going to need self care. If you’re going to take down toxic systems and make big changes, you’re gonna need self-care, and
  4. You’re also going to need a sense of humor. While gallows, humor, cynicism, or a lot of negativity (if you’re finding yourself feeling really extra spicy and snarky), can be a sign of burnout- laughter and humor is so good for you. Make it a point to spend time with people and do things that make you laugh.

If you related to any of this at all, put a number one in the comments so that I know you stopped by and that you’ve been there too!

I’m Michelle Risser. Thank you so much for stopping by. I’ve taken you through the four external barriers that keep therapists and helping professionals stuck, and the things that you’re going to need to overcome them.

I post a video every Monday, so please let me know if there are any future topics that you’d like me to touch on. I love talking about chronic stress, burnout, prevention, optimizing your self-care, building self-care micro strategies into your day, and diversifying your income streams. Let me know if any of that is interesting or if there’s anything else you’d like for me to talk about. I’d love to hear from you.

And finally, if any of this resonated for you and you’re wondering if you might be possibly getting towards burnout, I do have a free burnout assessment HERE.

And you’re also more than welcome to reach out anytime. Just reach out to me at Michelle Risser Coaching on Facebook, and I’d be happy to talk with you. I’d love to meet you and chat.

I’ll talk to you soon, have a wonderful day!

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