Managing Burnout as a Social Worker
Social workers take on an important role in our society, helping some of the population's most vulnerable people overcome challenges in their daily lives. They might work with abused children, adults suffering from addiction, bullied students, or people recently diagnosed with an illness.
Although social workers make a difference in people's lives, it can sometimes feel like a thankless job. Due to limited organizational resources, social workers often take on high caseloads and extra responsibilities, so it comes as no surprise that burnout is a real problem in the social work industry.
But exactly what is burnout in social work? In short, this phenomenon involves feeling drained after considerable and consistent stress. Social work burnout symptoms include emotional exhaustion and depersonalization. Left unchecked, social work burnout can lead to a hindered ability to accomplish work.
That said, social workers don't need to surrender to the feelings of exhaustion associated with burnout. In this resource, experts suggest strategies to prevent, manage, and defeat burnout.
Tips on Preventing and Managing Burnout as a Social Worker
Social workers can only provide adequate care for others if they first properly care for themselves. Many methods for preventing or managing burnout involve recognizing the symptoms, looking out for yourself, and taking care of your needs.
Feeling especially stressed one week? Practice self-care by taking your favorite book out to a park. Struggling to handle an impossible case load? Talk to your boss about lessening your responsibilities.
Our experts provide eight useful tips to manage and prevent burnout, ranging from small, everyday practices to more significant changes in your career.
Meet Our Experts
|Briana MaryAnn Hollis is a licensed social worker and self-care coach. She has been featured in ThriveWorks and FabFitFun. Briana writes about mental health, self-care, self-improvement, and self-discovery on her blog Learning To Be Free.|
|Director of North Shore Center, Dr. Michael Mazius specializes in the treatment of children with Attention Deficit Disorder, Academic Underachievement Syndrome, and stress and mood disorders. Dr. Mazius also provides marital and family therapy. Dr. Mazius is active in working with school systems providing teacher consultation and is active in the North Shore and Waukesha communities, speaking to parents on a wide variety of topics pertaining to child development, parent-child attachment, and neuroscience-informed parenting. Dr. Mazius is an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Psychology at UWM-Milwaukee.|