Do you cringe when the phone rings?
Have you lost your patience?
Do you feel like you are at the end of your rope?
Feel like crying?
Are your friends annoying you?
Are you isolating yourself and staying away from people?
Is your work suffering?
Do your coworkers make you crazy?
Do you have a negative attitude?
Are you making poor or rash decisions?
Do you get mad at the dry cleaners? Yell at the pharmacist? Hate the paperboy?
Do you feel scattered and not focused?
Having nightmares and aren’t rested when you wake up?
Are you a caregiver caring for a loved one?
If you answered “yes” to several of these questions you may be experiencing a condition known as Compassion Fatigue. The good news is that becoming aware of Compassion Fatigue can help you deal with your situation quickly. Recognizing it is only the first step, but a huge one!
Becoming aware of the concept of compassion fatigue will help you cope with it. Most people understand the concept of burnout. People can become fed up with certain working conditions. They can become so bored with the tedium of their job that they just can’t stand it anymore. With burnout, you may experience the same irritation and lack of patience as with Compassion Fatigue but they are very different in their root cause and different in the way you would deal with it. The biggest difference between Compassion Fatigue and burnout is that with Compassion Fatigue you are dealing with traumatic events day in and day out and with burnout you are not. With Compassion Fatigue, people are overloaded with emotions because they are experiencing trauma second hand. They may feel that they cannot “care” for another moment. They may feel that another crisis will just put them over the top.
So, what do you do if you think you may be experiencing compassion fatigue? First, it is important to know that you are not alone. There are thousands of people just like you experiencing the same thing. Second, it is just as important to acknowledge, accept and learn about compassion fatigue. Finally, you can take action and learn how to take care of yourself first so that you can take care of your loved one.
You may not be able to eliminate Compassion Fatigue but you can certainly learn ways to deal with it successfully.
For more information about Compassion Fatigue, click HERE.