Work Environments, Self-care, and Professional Wellness


Week four Class one

Assignment one Due June 19

Work Environments, Self-care, and Professional Wellness

Work environments can help to mitigate vicarious trauma by cultivating an atmosphere where worker self-care is a priority. Employers can offer workers memberships to fitness centers, access to counselors, debriefing sessions after traumatic incidents, and mandate regular work breaks. These types of opportunities can provide workers with the necessary support they might need when working regularly with trauma survivors or during traumatic events. Workers who engage in self-care activities in their professional and personal lives can increase their overall wellness and effectiveness as a trauma-response helping professional. In contrast, work environments can influence the development of vicarious trauma by ignoring the needs of workers and neglecting self-care. Work environments requiring extended work hours with minimal breaks, or forcing workers to manage extremely large trauma cases can leave their workers vulnerable to vicarious trauma.

For this Discussion, think back to work environments you have experienced. Choose one organizational practice which promoted self-care and wellness and one practice which inhibited self-care and wellness. Consider the self-care and vicarious trauma implications of each.

Master’s Students

Post by Day 3 five ways that you think organizations, for instance counseling centers, could support a healthy work environment. This work environment would be protective against vicarious trauma. Offer specific details about what the work place would do to support employees and how these efforts would be helpful to those employees. How would leaders of the organization know that their efforts were paying off? Identify yourself as a master’s student at the beginning of your post. Identify yourself as a master’s student at the beginning of your post.

Peer responses should be posted by Day 5. Please respond in the following way:

  • Ask a probing question
  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.
  • Offer and support an opinion.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience.
  • Make a suggestion.
  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.

Assignment two

Due June 23

Application: Best Practices

Elevating your insight and awareness related to self-care and wellness is important since healthier trauma-response helping professionals will ultimately be happier and provide better service provision to clients, supervisees, students, and communities. Now that you have explored work practices that inhibit or promote self-care and wellness in this week’s Discussion, it is now time to delve deeper and study best practices in this area. As a future counselor, counselor educator, and supervisor, knowledge of these best practices will help you lead programs and supervise students in a way that minimizes environmental contributions to vicarious trauma.

For this Application Assignment, select an interview from the media carousel in this week’s Learning Resources and consider best practices for promoting professional wellness for that work setting. (agency, police or fire station, school, etc.) Think of how each practice might be applied and the potential benefits for trauma-response helping professionals to promote self-care and wellness. Select one or more work-setting specific articles from this week’s Learning Resources to inform your answer.

The assignment: (2–3 pages)

Use the Media Carousel “Trauma-Response Helping Professionals” to select an interview. Please select a different interview from the previous week.

  • Briefly describe the work setting in the interview you selected.
  • Identify at least 3 stressors related to this work environment.
  • Explain three best practices for the work setting you chose to promote personal and professional wellness.
  • Justify your response by providing evidence-based research from current literature for the inclusion of this sort of environmental practice. Be specific.
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