Can Meditation Help Avoid Burnout?
Meditation helps nurses focus and regain control of their careers and personal lives, and many nurses experience deep relaxation when meditating. Meditation has a rich, vast history and is one way to engender a relaxation response, which can help nurses deal with their stress (Everly & Lating, 2013).
Model used for illustration purposes only.
Stress is culturally and personally defined, so what is considered stressful to one nurse may not be stressful to another (Goldsmith, 2007).
- What is the long-term effect of chronic exposure to high levels of stress; more specifically, what is the negative effect to one's health and well being?
- Will exposure to long-term stress inhibit the ability of caregivers to interact in a positive manner with other staff, or suppress the ability to respond well to patients' physical and emotional needs?
According to the American Institute on Stress "Compassion fatigue has a more rapid onset while burnout emerges over time. Compassion Fatigue has a faster recovery (less severe, if recognized and managed early)."
The hippocampus is known to be critically involved in learning and memory processes (Squire, 1992), and in the modulation of emotional control (Corcoran et al., 2005; Milad et al., 2007) while the insula has been postulated to play a key role in the process of awareness (Craig, 2009).
To sum it up - meditation has been practiced for over five thousand years in cultures throughout the world. The rich history of this graceful practice alone is impressive, and now the studies confirm it's worth. The Mayo Clinic recognizes meditation as a valuable method of reducing stress. With regular practice, meditation has proven to bring a sense of balance, harmony, peace and overall satisfaction in life. It gently connects the body, mind and spirit. And if you are lucky enough to be in the noble career of healthcare, it might even bring you back to that deeply satisfying place of caregiving with joy.
“We make a living by what we get, but a life by what we give.” ~Winston Churchill
Celebrating Over 40 Years: www.DASAmeditation.org