Personal Health

Personal Health

Part A - Worker self care is critical to effective social practice

Worker self care with regards to social service practice is critical. Self care means looking after the mental and physical well being of oneself, to be able to provide the best outcome available for clients and the organisation. It also means maintaining a stress free and happy home life.

Self care is critical for effective social service practice as workers are often exposed to the uglier sides of human behaviour. This can drain energy levels or subconsciously alter a worker’s values or belief systems. Workers can suffer burnout and lose interest in even basic self care, such as appearance or hygiene. Unfortunately, work related stress could also be brought home and impact detrimentally on a worker’s family and home life.

A social worker needs to take time out often to assess feelings and reactions to the high emotional demands of their profession. They must make sure subconscious issues are not impairing their judgement. If a social worker is not ‘self aware’, stress levels could rise to a critical point preventing their ability to provide effective solutions for clients. This high stress level with regard to social work is referred to as ‘burn out’. Burn out is a collective term encompassing many stress related issues including exhaustion, which can lead to disinterest in or loss of excitement for the job. It could result in a worker becoming disorganised, forgetting deadlines or client details. Social workers suffering from burnout may forget or develop disinterest towards protocol and fail to follow correct procedures. As a social worker operates within strict guidelines and rules, failure to comply could land workers and employers in serious trouble, especially if the protocol is legal.

Social Workers must maintain a high standard of presentation as a professional look will encourage clients to believe this person helping them is in control of their own life, is organised, and...

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