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“Bite-sized” self-care strategies that any therapist can easily practice.
For mental health professionals who must regularly guard against compassion fatigue and secondary traumatization, intentional self-care isn’t just essential; it’s a survival tool. If therapists don’t take proper care of themselves, they can’t do their work effectively.
Taking up an exercise program, going on a vacation, turning to supportive social networks, while helpful remedies to the stresses of the job, are not always feasible and the results are often only short term. Synthesizing the latest thinking in mindfulness, neuroscience, energy medicine, and spiritual disciplines, Simple Self-Care for Therapists offers immediate relief in doable, bite-sized nuggets—easy exercises that can be seamlessly integrated into your current workday routine with little fuss.
Over 60 restorative practices are presented—tools for (1) grounding, (2) energizing, and (3) relaxing—organized as antidotes to the most common pathologies that therapists suffer: vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue, and burnout. Bush, a therapist with over 25 years of experience, walks readers through the descriptions and simple implementation of each practice, with illuminating stories from her own professional experiences.
Whether you’re in a staff meeting, conducting a therapy session, writing a progress report, or attending a workshop, these convenient exercises can be dipped into as needed. A go-to resource of self-care tools, every therapist, no matter their background or approach, now has the ability to prevent stress, avoid internalization, revive their spirit, and restore a sense of well-being.
About the Author
Ashley Davis Bush, LICSW is a licensed psychotherapist in southern New Hampshire, specializing in couples therapy and grief counseling. Her work for the past 25 years –both as a therapist and as a writer – is designed to inspire others toward whole-hearted living.
Ashley holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from Smith College and a Masters in Social Work degree from Columbia University. She has a certificate in Contemplative Studies through Smith College School for Social Work and has advanced training in Emotional Focused Therapy for Couples (EFT). Ashley worked in community mental health in New York City for ten years and has been living and working in southern New Hampshire since 1997.
Ashley is a frequent public speaker and workshop teacher. Since 1992, she has delivered keynote speeches to professional and community organizations across the country and has taught workshops on the subjects of grief and loss, relationships, parenting, personal empowerment, mindfulness, transitions, stress management and inner peace.
Bush’s approach is unique in that not only does she take the journey with us . . . but she also breaks each exercise into bite-size chunks. . . . Her conversational and inviting tone, descriptive stories, and real-life examples can help us implement self-care on a micro-level. — PsychCentral
The dialogue feels less like a self-help book and more like a workshop. Providing the intellectual space to absorb and utilize proven techniques to improve the self is where this really makes a significant impact for the professional community at large. — Somatic Psychotherapy Today
A wealth of micro self-care practices, eminently practical and immediately useful, all anchored in solid science and masterful clinical expertise. Each stand-alone practice is easy to incorporate into mini-moments of nurturing, grounding, gentling, and invigorating throughout the day. The entire book is superbly organized and a breeze to read, every exercise deftly illustrated by true-to-life clinical examples and generously referenced to a treasure-trove of experts in the field. Respectful of divergence in temperament and circumstances, Simple Self-Care for Therapists is a true gift to clinicians everywhere.
— Linda Graham, MFT, psychotherapist and author of Bouncing Back: Rewiring Your Brain for Maximum Resilience and Well-Being
Simple, clear, and effective. If you want to be the best healing professional and human being you can be, this treasure of a book is an essential companion. — Elisha Goldstein, PhD, author of Uncovering Happiness and cofounder of The Center for Mindful Living