Follow the Yellow Brick Road … to Recovery!
Prevention is a key element in addressing burnout and compassion fatigue. Taking a proactive approach can stave off the potential for secondary trauma to have a significant impact later. J. Yassen posits that there are three levels of prevention: primary, secondary, and tertiary. The first layer of prevention encompasses education, awareness workshops and trainings, and self-care plans. The secondary level includes support groups, supervision, and consultation services. The last level involves more specific interventions such as debriefings and personal therapy. Self-awareness is an important self-protective behavior and can help educators maintain a healthy balance of empathy. Mindfulness helps individuals regulate emotional states that possess a particularly negative valence. There are ways to help educators initiate self-care planning; one such way is described by J. Middleton. Divided into four quadrants, this framework explores possibilities for self-care before, during, right after, and later/ongoing when working with individuals who have experienced trauma.