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August 12, 2006

Taking A Break Is Important

A vacation is an important way for therapists to take care of themselves. I try to schedule several weekend getaways and a week or two away from work and home during the year. Taking time off rejuvenates me and prevents burnout.

What are the signs of burnout? For me there is a dwindling desire to go to work. I sleep later and get to work later and later. I find I am less empathic toward my clients needs. I have less patience with people, in general. I get behind on my paperwork.

When I get home I don't feel like doing anything. I hate to vacuum, so that chore gets done less frequently. I'm less likely to put things away when I'm done with them and the house gets cluttered. Then I start to hate my house and want to move because it feels dirty and messy. A vacation motivates me to get the house clean. I don't like coming home to a messy house. I'm much more likely to relax when I don't have housework to come home to.

When I'm on vacation I like to lay around and read a lot. I also like to get out and "commune" with nature. During this most recent trip I didn't get to read as much as I'd like. However, I did get out see some sights in beautiful Kentucky. We toured historic Mammoth Cave. I consider myself to be relatively fit because of the nature of my work. However, there is nothing like a cave tour to remind you how you don't use your body. I plan to spend the remainder of the weekend reading and letting my legs recuperate.

Posted by linda at August 12, 2006 8:40 AM

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