Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Compassion Fatigue and Pinterest

I know...weird title, huh? I promise the two are related.

A month or so ago, I finally asked the Facebook world what this "Pinterest" thing was. A friend of mine filled me in, invited me to join, and into the Pinterest world I entered. Sort of. I thought the premise was really neat, but I wasn't sure how to use it. I kept putting off figuring it out.

This past weekend I was a little under the weather; so while Carter was sleeping and everyone else was at church, I laid in bed and jumped into my Pinterest page. WOW!!! I became hugely addicted. So many ideas! And, my Pinterest boards didn't have to be like anyone elses, so I could organize, create, pin, etc. in my own personal way. I L.O.V.E. that you can pin anything you see on the Internet, but also "steal" anyone else's pins for your own boards. It opened up a whole new world to me.

Pause the Pinterest story.

Part of our experience as houseparents is something called "compassion fatigue." It's a unique type of fatigue that comes from taking on the emotional stresses of our kids and their backgrounds, diagnoses, etc. If not handled well, then compassion fatigue can lead to serious burn out.

To combat compassion fatigue it is important to, of course, take care of yourself - exercise, eat right, get lots of rest, etc. It's important to find and maintain healthy adult relationships. Also-finding a creative outlet will help combat compassion fatigue!

Now to connect the two subjects: Pinterest has become my creative outlet! It is giving me something to think about, to be "outside the box" with, and to distract myself and my emotions with for a period of time. There are also several things I've found that would be fun to do with the kids- being my creative outlet as well as good quality time together. This may possibly even by therapeutic for the kids. It is a blast!!!

I decided to try to do at least 1 project a week. This may vary due to what is on our schedule or how simple/complicated the project is. Plus, some of what I've found is new recipes, so I may try more than one in a week!!

This week I tried two things. I found several printables of different types of weekly to-do lists. The way I have to maintain things around here has been a challenge for my normal type of list-making, so I am trying several different versions to see if something works best.

My second project this week was a fall decor project for our cottage. There may be another one or two more of these in the next couple of weeks, but this is where I started. Here's some pictures of the final product!!

What fall projects do you have planned?


Chelsea said...

Aw, this turned out great! I think I'm finally going to cave into pinterest. :) So far Taylor A. and Sarah T. have asked me for help on their pinterest projects, haha!

Sidenote - totally understand the compassion fatigue. Along with experiencing it with family, I'm experiencing it with many of the international students here. It's hard to manage when you pair it with all of the physical fatigue you experience caring for others!

Glad to hear you found a creative outlet. :)