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A Day of Rest

Therapists need time off too. Yes, I know, you think that a therapist is like a friend. They give you advice when you call them and tell them your problems. They give you a safe place where you can be painfully transparent and leave you feeling heard and supported. They are there with a hug when you are just at at your wits end, and they hold your secret pains in confidence. Yes, a therapist can FEEL like a friend, your best friend, but they aren't.

A therapist is working hard to help you. They hear your complaints, and they give you solutions. They give you a safe place in an otherwise difficult world, and they care. But therapists need a day off from caring for others. They need to take care of themselves so they can return to the job of caring for others.

This is my motorcycle (pictured). It is how I recharge my batteries when I'm feeling depleted. Yes, therapists can get down, get depressed, and feel anxious in their own lives. We are human after all and experience many of the challenges of our clients. We can struggle with finances (few therapists get rich unless they are friends of Oprah). We can have health concerns and may even be caring for a loved one. 2020 brought grief to many therapists who were dealing with family member's overcoming Covid or grieving the loss of someone to cancer. We can be triggered by our client's stories that sound very similar to our own, and yes, we can struggle with our own relationships.

This is why I direct all of my therapists to take time for themselves. They must find ways to love themselves, their children, and have focused time with their spouse. They must shake-off the worries of the prior week so they can reengage compassion for this week. They need to be aware of their own emotions, so they don't get burnout. And they need to have clear thinking in order to provide the best care for their clients.

God rested on the 7th day. If the creator of the heavens and Earth took time off, so should we.


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