2. What Are We Talking About?

Introduction

In the first section we underscored that compassionate action requires intent and skill. This section of the toolkit provides further definitions that are foundational to all else found throughout the toolkit. We will be introduced to the wellness model we will use in the toolkit and the concept of compassion fatigue. Activities will help us explore our beliefs about self-care and self-compassion.



Applications

Key Activity

Fatigue and Resilience in the Wellness Compass – Reflection

Wellness Practice

STRENGTH and MIND: Want More Energy? Consider Gratitude!
Practicing being grateful, among many other benefits, increases your energy. It turns out that our minds are wired to focus on the negative as a survival strategy. The three good things practice helps rewire your brain to notice the good in your life. You can start now by thinking of three things for which you are grateful and what role you had in them. Research shows writing them down has a longer positive effect on your wellbeing.
Then choose a time of day, every day, to set your mind on gratitude. Give it time, enjoy exploring gratefulness. Hopefully you too will find added positive energy for the important work you do.

If you want to take this concept further, see what the Greater Good Science Center suggests.

Circle Agenda

Staff Circle Agenda, Section Two

Core Content Visual

Self-Compassion – Use this Visual and Display in Staff Break Areas
Posting this visual in common staff areas will serve as a reminder of content covered to staff and perhaps serve as a future conversation started for deeper reflection among staff members. 

Supplementary Activities/Handouts

What Were Your Childhood Messages About Self-Care?
This is an activity you could facilitate with your teams in addition to or in place of the circle agenda to explore personal messages about self-care.

Self-Compassion Scale
This activity supports content covered in the Core Content Visual and document to distribute listed in the Information Section of the toolkit. The Self-Compassion Scale is also referenced in Section 11.  

For Easy Printing

You can find all documents in this section included in this pdf for easy printing. 
The documents included are numbered individually, not as one document. 


Links

Links Specifically for Leadership

Conversations about Compassion
This conversation guide outlines five different conversations related to compassion and gives the resources needed to facilitate these in small groups. In section one you were asked to facilitate a discussion with the leadership team about the instinct humans have to be compassionate. For this section, facilitate a conversation with the leadership team and/or other small group or team within your school on the third topic, self-compassion. As a substitute, you can use the Kristin Neff article for the basis of your group discussion.

Additional Resources

Self-compassion article, Dr. Kristin Neff
This article give more information on self-compassion according to Dr. Kristin Neff.

For the animal lovers among us, this blog provides a wonderful overview of compassion resilience in the context of those who work in animal rescue.

1. Compassion in Action

Introduction

In this toolkit, we will explore ways to maintain a compassionate presence in our interactions with students, families, and colleagues. The rationale for this work as described in the introduction, points to many positive outcomes for us and others. It turns out that coming from a mindset of compassion greatly contributes to our job and life satisfaction.

Simply put, Compassion is concern for the wellbeing of others. It includes both the awareness of others’ distress coupled with a desire to alleviate it. At the same time that we desire to alleviate another’s distress, we also are confronted with the reality that we cannot “fix” another person’s pain. Throughout this toolkit we will explore our professional role in alleviating student, colleague and other’s distress while maintaining our well-being, in other words, we will focus on growing our compassion resilience.



Applications

Key Activity

Compassionate Action Steps – Scenarios for Discussion 

Video: Excerpts from Section 1 Activities 

Wellness Practice

An Invitation to Accept and Let Go of Resistance

Circle Agenda

Introduction to Staff Circles Agenda
This is a great place to start if your team is not use to receiving training in a circle format. Even if your team is use to circles, there are components of this agenda that would be helpful to include in your first Compassion Resilience circle, such as setting group agreements.  

Staff Circle Agenda, Section One
This document arranges the core content in section one into a 45-60 minute agenda. It is one of many ways to facilitate the content in this section. Please make revisions to fit the needs and time restrictions of your group.  

Core Content Visual to Display in Common Staff Areas

Compassionate Action Steps – Use this Visual and Display in Staff Break Areas
Posting this visual in common staff areas will serve as a reminder of content covered to staff and perhaps serve as a future conversation started for deeper reflection among staff members. 

Supplementary Activities/Handouts

Tips for Moving from Empathy to Engaging the Person in Discerning Best Action

For Easy Printing

You can find all documents in this section included in this pdf for easy printing. 
The documents included are numbered individually, not as one document. 


Links

 

Within this section of the toolkit

Brene Brown Empathy video

Links Specifically for Leadership

Conversations about Compassion – The Compassionate Instinct
Topic two on pages 13-15 of this guide focuses on compassion as a human instinct. Facilitate a conversation using the questions on page 14 related to the compassionate instinct in the school setting.

10 Principles of Organizational Culture
Use this article with your leadership team to discuss organizational change and how these principles apply to your school.

10 Principles for Organization Culture Visual