Caring for Ourselves: A Therapist's Guide to Personal and Professional Well-Being

Pages: 173
Item #: 4316138
ISBN: 978-1-4338-1147-0
List Price: $19.95
Member/Affiliate Price: $19.95
Copyright: 2003
Format: Softcover
Availability: In Stock
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For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories


Ellen Baker addresses a topic that is vitally important to therapists, offering a positive approach to enjoying their chosen profession, being the best they can be at it, and tackling or preventing burnout. A skillful group facilitator, Dr. Baker leads the journey towards self-awareness and self-care among psychology professionals, a group that is characteristically attuned to caring for others. This uplifting and thought-provoking book demonstrates a way to balance personal and professional lives by tending physical, emotional, and spiritual needs, and the need to feel connected.

Filled with a rich assortment of observations by therapists who share their own challenges and triumphs in their self-care journey, the book examines the conflicts and deterrents to self care that can often lead to distress, impairment, or burnout. Readers are also invited to participate in journaling exercises that systematically peel through the layers of this complex issue by individually exploring topics ranging from exercise and body image to vicarious traumatization, coping, replenishing and seeking personal therapy. This invaluable book offers therapists a positive, proactive approach to enjoying one's chosen profession and being the best they can be at it.

Table of Contents



  1. The Concept and Value of Therapist Self Care
  2. Therapist Self-Care Needs Across the Lifespan
  3. Tending to Our Self
  4. Tending Mind, Body, and Spirit
  5. Professional Challenges
  6. Connecting With Others



Author Index

Subject Index

About the Author

Author Bio

Ellen Baker, PhD, is a psychologist in private practice in Washington, DC. Previously, she was on staff at the Veterans Administration Medical Centers of Washington, DC, and Palo Alto, California, and the Washington Women's Medical Center. Dr. Baker has trained in psychodrama at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, DC. She is the coeditor of Experimental Therapies for Eating Disorders (1989) with Lynne M. Hornyak. She has served in the governance of the District of Columbia Psychological Association and the Division of Independent Practice of the American Psychological Association (APA; division 42).

For over 15 years, Dr. Baker has written, consulted, and led experiential workshops on therapist well-being. She has a particular interest in personal journal writing as a means of therapist self care, and as an expressive art form. Dr. Baker also serves as an APA media contact, providing interviews for numerous broadcast and print venues around the country on the therapeutic benefits of personal journal writing. She also hosted a series of workshops at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC, on journal writing as a folk art form.

Dr. Baker received her PhD from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1976.