Looking for ways to stay passionate about your job and avoid Activity Director burnout or compassion fatigue? Keep reading!
Activity Directors are in a unique position. They bring a lot of fun, life, and meanging to a senior living facility or care home. It is a role that genuinely makes a difference in the lives of the seniors you work with. As a result, being an Activity Director is a wonderfully rewarding job! But to clarify, the reward-factor can depend a lot upon how healthy the work environment is. Unfortunately, a healthy work environment isn’t always the case.
That is to say, being an Activity Director isn’t always all fun and games. Activity programs are at the lifeblood of most senior living facilities. Yet, activity professionals tend to be paid lower wages and are required to work with smaller budgets, when compared to other roles in care facilities.
Activity Director burnout can be prompted by things like:
- A lack of clarity and boundaries around job responsibilities
- Juggling too many roles at once – marketing, food service, transport, activity planning, caregiving, etc.
- Feeling undervalued and unsupported by other staff and management
- Stifled creativity and loss of passion
- Difficulty navigating and meeting the requests of families, residents, and staff on their own (if not working with an activities staff)
- Heavy caseloads and dwindling resources
Whether you are feeling fresh or a bit fried, you’ll want to remember these 7 tips for staying passionate about your job. You can download a copy to keep here.
To avoid Activity Director burnout:
Evidence the Value of Your Work
Whether you find a software solution like StoriiCare, or you become a whiz at record keeping, consider which data points your supervisors would want to see and track them. Bringing activity-related analytics to the table can provide data-driven evidence of why you need more team members or a budget increase.
Visit Another Facility
We all need a little inspiration to reignite our own creativity at times! Visit another residence and see what their Activity Directors are doing. Speak with residents, look at their activity calendar, find some ideas that excite you, and then incorporate them into your program.
Practice Team-Building with Non-Activity Staff
Protect yourself from the “it’s me and me alone” feeling. For instance, ask staff to go brainstorm ideas over a coffee. Take some with you the next time you go to a craft store to ask for their input. Try to think of ways you can show them how valuable your work is and how important their cooperation is. Above all, find a common goal and collaborate.
Look for Validation
Find yourself always worrying about what went wrong? Reflect on what went well, too! Look for the smiles. Pay attention to body language and positive behaviors of those you serve. These can remind you what you’re good at and why you do this job. Concentrate on the positive to self-validate your achievements and nourish your self- esteem.
Learning sparks introspective thought that provokes one to look for better and more current strategies to improve delivery. Similarly, mind stimulation through continued education provides a pathway that may prevent that “same old same old” mind set. Find a new certification class. Take an online workshop. Attend a conference.
Give Yourself Permission
It’s okay to schedule something each day or week that interests you! This gives you something to look forward to. Additionally, it can serve as a reminder of what made you become an activity professional in the first place. Regularly tapping into those feelings will help you stay passionate about your job!
Find a New Solution
Having a shiny new tool in your toolbox not only provides relief, but efficiency, too! Software providers like StoriiCare can make your job easier and save you time by giving you the tools to quickly record resident activities, create calendars, connect with famililes, engage residents and much more.
StoriiCare Can Help
StoriiCare is an Activity Team’s DREAM.
No more laborious paperwork. No more hours spent perfecting a calendar display.
StoriiCare offers various packages to accommodate budgets of all sizes. Each allows users to:
- Build custom calendars easily on any smart device
- Quickly mark attendees all at once
- Record information about participants (like mood, engagement level, etc.)
- Export calendars for email, printing, or sharing on a TV
- Use media albums, playlists and other tools for engagement purposes
Add on features that suit your needs from there.