Stress Management, Realistic Expectations, and Viewing the Workforce as a Family Unit

>> When people look at us three years
later, they say why did you guys burn out?

Well we may be a little fried, we're not totally
crisp because we had some built-in mechanisms

from the beginning that we valued and they
forced many of us to kind of benefit from.

Massages were great, some of us
used acupuncture but it was built

in and that was an important piece.

So we had the Q wave, we had the training but we
also built in the support by having those folks

who were out there doing stress
management-- with survivors it was staff.

I think that we have to be very much aware
of how long we allow people to do this work

because it is seductive and exciting,
but as administrators we have to be aware

of the balance that we have to make
sure we have available for our staff,

and that's why providing the stress management
or having the training was very important

so that our staff did not get too enmeshed in
the work and forget to take care of themselves;

and that's a lesson that I hope to keep
with me as I'm working now statewide

and I think that was very important.

And another magical part about all of this that
the folks that we worked with were our support

and while we were administered as we got
to know people, we celebrated birthdays,

we cried with them when they lost folks, we
were happy when they were able to return home.

It turned the works place into
not just a place to come to work.

They enjoyed the camaraderie and they had
grown to kid of respect each other and I think

that each of us again will take to the other
jobs and hopefully kind of like recreate

that comfort zone in our new environment.