Self-Care for Counselors

As school counselors, we are often tasked with meeting everyone’s needs. But with COVID-19, we also need to meet our own needs. It’s easy to say we know that we need to do self-care, but how often do we as counselors actually care for ourselves?

Change is difficult for many people, especially when the outcome is unknown. This is why it’s important to prioritize yourself and your mental well-being right now. Here are some self-care suggestions:

  • Try setting aside time to read, enjoy the outdoors, bake, journal, draw, or do a grounding activity. Use a video conferencing platform to talk with family and friends. Use a calming app to help manage any feelings you have or talk with someone who knows you and can help support you through these difficult times. Remember that it’s OK to have a multitude of feelings.

  • Create a routine that fits your new schedule. Having children or a spouse or significant other who is also at home can also affect your schedule. Talk with the other adult(s) in your home about their expectations of working from home and how you can create a routine that works for everyone. Be flexible as things change for your children’s schooling, your work schedule, or your significant other’s schedule.

  • Be realistic. It’s OK if you don’t finish everything you had wanted to accomplish during the day. In these uncertain times, it is perfectly acceptable to not be as productive as you were in your previous work setting. Remember that you are balancing different tasks now that you need to work from home. Find the positive in what you were able to complete.

  • Remember that you are not alone in this. Every day new information comes out, and it takes time to process what you’ve learned and figure out what it means for you. As you care for yourself, you may find a new strength within you that helps you cope with society today.