The Lighthouse and Counselor’s Self-Care


By Edward Oriole, LCPC

The strength of the therapeutic alliance between the counselor and the client, remains the best predictor of successful clinical outcome. Our foremost task, as therapists, is to maintain a model of good mental health for our clients, our peers and our support staff. Interacting with individuals, day in and day out, who are struggling with mental pain, affords us the opportunity to demonstrate that healthy model. This may take a toll upon our own individual psyches. There is no training inoculation that counteracts the effects of “burnout.” At The Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center we recognize that the delivery of mental health services is hard work. Although we all maintain different levels of resiliency, our desire to “fix” may obscure the depth and breadth of those resiliency levels. The stressors and storms of clinical work demand ever present vigilance regarding our emotional strength.
Happily there are internal protocols in place that assess and measure all of the staff’s emotional strength. C.E.O. Dr. Ray Kadkhodaian, Clincal Director Reverend Jean Kadkhodaian and Practice Manager Bridgette Allen, are relentless monitors of The Lighthouse staff’s emotional wellness. This is augmented by peer review among the staff therapists and the steadying influence of both our psychiatrist, Dr. Hooshmand Kadkhodaian and our nurse Sally Kadkhodaian. Here are some of the signs that are identified and addressed in order that The Lighthouse staff burns bright and not out…..


I personally maintain a ritual at the end of my office day: I change the water in the flower vase. I tidy my desk. I check my appointment calender for the next day. Finally I thoroughly wash my hands. The clear water in the vase, the tidy desk and the handwashing are a deliberate, ceremonial end to the work day. My tasks are accomplished and the office is ready for tomorrow’s duties.
At The Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center, Dr. Ray and Jean concept of “family” has removed the danger of a counselor negligence of their own self-care. All of use are vigilant to the three signs of “burnout.” The result is a superb level of care delivered uniformly to all of our clients.

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