Embracing The Night: Self Care for Social Workers During Daylight Saving

December 7, 2023 @ 8:03 pm

In the delicate balance between aiding others and maintaining personal well-being, it’s essential to remember that self-care is not selfish. As the world adjusts its clocks, seasoned professionals and aspiring individuals are presented with a unique opportunity to embrace the darkness and discover the light within. This guide, crafted by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), serves as a beacon for social workers navigating the challenges of their noble profession. It is a gentle reminder that amidst the demands of assisting others, there lies solace in adapting self-care routines to the changing seasons.

Join us on this journey of self-discovery and empowerment as we explore the practical strategies and invaluable resources provided by the NASW’s comprehensive guide, “Self Care for Social Workers.” In prioritizing mental and emotional well-being, social workers can weather the challenges of their field and thrive in the midst of them.

Self Reflection

Podcast Episode: Justice and Joy: Self-Care in 2020

As the sun sets earlier and the shadows lengthen, social workers can reframe the darkness as a canvas for self-reflection. The longer nights provide a natural opportunity to pause and look inward. Longer nights can be a time to assess personal boundaries, acknowledge burnout signals, and identify areas needing attention. The podcast episode “Justice and Joy: Self-Care in 2020” explores the intersection of self-care and social justice, providing insights and inspiration for incorporating reflective practices into our routines.

Creating Warmth in Making Connections 

Podcast Episode: Self-Care and Avoiding Burnout

The longer nights need not be isolating; instead, they present an opportunity to create warmth and foster connections in the shadows. Social workers, often immersed in the struggles of others, can use this time to strengthen their support networks. Our connections with friends, family, colleagues, and support systems are lifelines in the challenging landscape of social work.

The NASW podcast episode on “Self-Care and Avoiding Burnout ” focuses on empowering social workers with strategies to maintain their well-being and prevent burnout. The episode delves into recognizing the signs of burnout, emphasizing the importance of setting boundaries and implementing self-care practices.

Honoring Boundaries in the Darkness

NASW Publication: Burnout and Self-Care in Social Work: A Guidebook for Students and Those in Mental Health and Related Professions

Social workers, driven by empathy and compassion, may struggle to distinguish between work and personal time. Compassion fatigue is an occupational hazard in social work. The NASW publication “Burnout and Self-Care in Social Work: A Guidebook for Students and Those in Mental Health and Related Professions” is a comprehensive guide to recognizing signs of compassion fatigue and establishing crucial boundaries in our professional and personal lives.

Navigating Feelings and Engaging in Social Justice Work

Related Article: That Discomfort You’re Feeling Is Grief – Harvard Business Review

Allowing ourselves to feel our emotions is an integral part of self-care. The article “That Discomfort You’re Feeling Is Grief” from Harvard Business Review provides insights into understanding and navigating emotions. Additionally, engaging in social justice work that aligns with our values becomes a source of fulfillment and self-care.

Cultivating Rituals for Tranquility

Podcast Episode: Faith-Based and Secular Meditation

Social workers can create rituals that usher in tranquility during the lengthening nights. These rituals provide moments of respite and rejuvenation. In the NASW podcast episode on “Faith-Based and Secular Meditation,” the discussion centers on meditation’s decisive role in supporting social workers’ well-being. Listeners gain an understanding of how meditation can serve as a grounding and rejuvenating practice, fostering resilience in the face of the challenges social workers often encounter.

Carving out moments of peace in the darkness promotes mental well-being and resilience. These rituals serve as a reminder that self-care is not a luxury but an essential practice for those who tirelessly care for others.

Growing through the Night And Additional Resources

New York Times Article: How to Stay Sane in Brutalizing Times

The darkness outside can be a backdrop for personal growth. For further insights into maintaining sanity in challenging times, the New York Times Article: How to Stay Sane in Brutalizing Times offers valuable perspectives and coping strategies. 

In embracing the night, these resources serve as guiding stars, highlighting the path to self-care for social workers. Remember, prioritizing your well-being is a gift to yourself and a foundation for providing the best care to others.

 

 

 

 

References

https://www.socialworkers.org/Practice/Infectious-Diseases/Coronavirus/Self-Care-for-Social-Workers

https://www.socialworkers.org/News/Social-Work-Talks-Podcast/EP61-Justice-and-Joy-Self-Care-in-2020 

https://www.socialworkers.org/News/Social-Work-Talks-Podcast/EP17-Self-Care-and-Avoiding-Burnout 

https://www.naswpress.org/product/53663/burnout-and-self-care-in-social-work-2nd-edition 

https://hbr.org/2020/03/that-discomfort-youre-feeling-is-grief

https://www.socialworkers.org/News/Social-Work-Talks-Podcast/EP43-Faith-Based-and-Secular-Meditation 

https://www.nytimes.com/2023/11/02/opinion/sunday/resilience-bad-news-coping.html