Compassion Resilience for
Parents and Caregivers
Parenting and caregiving are both rewarding and challenging, and there is no recipe or guidebook!
WISE and Rogers InHealth compassion resilience work began with individuals, primarily in schools, healthcare settings and youth-serving organizations. Teachers and nurses would share how helpful this was for them as parents and caregivers. This feedback prompted the development of the parent and caregiver compassion resilience toolkit.
The toolkit's content incorporates research and best practices related to resilience, positive psychology, compassion fatigue, family development, and mindfulness. Parent advocates, family specialists, and child educators were involved in shaping and piloting this toolkit.
What is Compassion Resilience?
Compassion combines the consciousness of others' distress and a desire to alleviate it. It is an essential quality needed to best support the needs of our children and family.
Resilience is the ability to recover and continue facing adversity without being overwhelmed or acting in dysfunctional ways. If our goal is to lessen our child's distress while maintaining our well-being, we can seek to grow our compassion resilience.
Compassion resilience is maintaining physical, emotional, and mental well-being while responding compassionately to suffering people.
Compassion resilience for parents and caregivers is:
- Caring for ourselves while acting with compassion in interactions with children, family members, and those we count on to support us;
- Practicing skills to effectively engage in compassionate action with and towards children, family members, and those we count on to support us;
- Identifying, preventing, and minimizing compassion fatigue within ourselves.
Think of this resilience as a reservoir of well-being that we can draw upon on difficult days and in difficult situations. This toolkit will explore the protective factors that build and maintain compassion resilience for parents and caregivers.
Why Build Resilience?
Few parents know every aspect of parenting, including behavioral challenges presented to us by our children. Parenting can be overwhelming and lead to burnout if parents lack resources to build skills, support resilience and alleviate the symptoms.
A focus on compassion resilience enhances our capacity to empathize with our child's suffering, supports our ability to parent by our values and goals, and builds our life satisfaction. Children may also benefit from mindful, compassionate parenting by learning how to handle challenges and act with compassion through our modeling.
This toolkit helps us recognize compassion fatigue and its consequences, hone our family values and goals, develop robust skills to manage expectations, set boundaries within our family, and practice real-time and ongoing self-care. If you want to know more, please book training through Community Children's Center today.