Clinician Thoughts

It’s been a while. Yadda yadda yadda.

Won’t be cross-posting this to Facebook; this is mostly for me to write my current thoughts and handwriting will take too long and require too many hand cramps.

Today’s supervision topic was about how I was feeling with clients and work and if those feelings were a result of my becoming a better clinician, my feeling burnt out/jaded, and/or my feeling depressed. To be honest, I don’t think we found an answer and came to the conclusion it was probably a mixture of all three.

The first is that I was able to recognize how I was showing up in a session with a client and that I had acted in a childish manner (without the client knowing). Even though I knew I could get away with it (acting childish and the client not knowing), the fact that I knew I had acted in such a manner did not sit well with me.

The second is that I noticed I was offering to meet with clients less often or even offering them to discontinue therapy all together. I told myself it was because there wasn’t more for us to do in therapy, that the goals I wanted for them didn’t seem realistic and to be honest, weren’t really goals they had expressed themselves of wanting. Who was I to impose my wants into their treatment? Besides, they were stable and managing their basic needs. But then I started to wonder if I was pushing them away because I just didn’t want to work with them anymore, that I was too tired of trying to find a way to help them improve their quality of life (knowing full well that it would be with my idea of ‘quality’) when they just weren’t in a space to help themselves to do it. So why? Why keep trying? And why was I moving into this frame of mind in the first place? Was I thinking like this because I had finally begun to realize that treatment goals in community mental health were much more basic than I had originally thought they were supposed to be?

And the final nail on the coffin is that I spent all of today in an irritable mood. I had slept enough the night before. I ate. I was hydrated. Yet I was so disconnected from everything that was occurring around me with no seemingly good reason why. Though to be honest, I had been feeling quite irritable at work for a few months now and thought it was just me finally wising up to all the shit that people did at work.

I still don’t know what’s going on. I hope this feeling is temporary. I know I can do a few things that will help and I also know I’m working on a few other interventions to see if that will make some difference. I won’t really know for sure but I guess first things first is that I need to start checking in with myself. I had missed all the signs that were indicators of my not feeling well (e.g. eating and craving more sweets, feeling more irritable at work and in life, etc.). As a colleague once told me, I need to be friends with my brain.