Counselors who listen to a client or student sharing a story of abuse often remain calm and nonreactive as part of the counseling process (Izzo & Miller, 2009). However, maintaining such controlled empathy takes tremendous mental and emotional effort in order for counselors to absorb a traumatic story while knowing they must respond therapeutically. This effort can become mentally and emotionally exhausting. Counselors and other trauma-response helping professionals must be cognizant of their potential risk of developing vicarious trauma and be capable of assessing their own symptoms.
For this Assignment you take the Professional Quality of Life Scale (Stamm, 2010, p. 26), a brief assessment instrument developed to promote self-awareness of vicarious trauma. It measures compassion satisfaction, which is the pleasure you derive from your profession, risks for burnout, and your exposure to extremely stressful events. Together, these three components help determine your risk for developing vicarious trauma and the impact of controlled empathy.
Assignment (2–3 pages):
- Describe your results of the ProQOL.
- Describe and explain two areas you need to further develop to address or prevent vicarious trauma and explain why you selected each.
- Based upon the current literature, justify two strategies you would use to develop those areas.
- Explain how your use of controlled empathy might influence the development of vicarious trauma and how this might impact the treatment process.
- Be specific and use examples to illustrate your points.
Support your Assignment with specific references to all resources used in its preparation.
Stamm, B. H. (2010). The concise ProQOL manual (2nd ed.). Retrieved from http://proqol.org/uploads/ProQOL_2ndEd_12-2010.pdf
Note: ProQOL version 5 can be found on page 26 of the manual