2. Compassion in Action

Introduction

In this section we will look at how to act with compassion in response to a someone’s distress. It turns out that coming from a mindset of compassion greatly adds to our ability to parent and our own life satisfaction. Our goal is to be able to lessen our child’s distress while maintaining our well-being.

Simply put, compassion is concern for the well-being of others. It includes both the awareness of others’ distress and a desire to lessen it. At the same time that we want to lessen another’s distress, we also understand that we cannot “fix” another person’s pain. This section helps us explore what compassion looks like in action.



Applications

Circle Agenda

Circle Agenda for Section 2, In-Person   Spanish Version
Use this agenda if you are leading your group in a session in-person.

Circle Agenda for Section 2, Virtual   Spanish Version
Use this agenda if you are leading your group in a session virtually.

Handouts to Support Content Covered in Circle Agenda

Compassionate Action Steps   Spanish Version
It is helpful to have a few copies of this visual in the center of the circle for every remaining section.

Emotional Regulation Plans   Spanish Version

Strategies to Keep Calm   Spanish Version

“Just Like Me” Cards   Spanish Version
These are formatted so you can print four cards to a page. This format helps when printing these for a group of participants.

“Just Like Me” Cards for Sharing Virtually
This document has the “Just Like Me” activity formatted to a full page, best for when sharing this exercise with people virtually.

Moving from Empathy to Discerning Best Next Action   Spanish Version
This is a supportive document can be provided to participants when explaining the Compassionate Action Steps. Included are examples of prompts caregivers can ask to help support others during step number 5, discerning best next action. 

Master PDF of all Materials Needed for this Section

Section Two Master PDF (English Version)   Spanish Version
Use this document to help make printing all materials needed for this section easier. 

1. Why We Gather and Where We Are Headed

Introduction

In this toolkit we will explore ways to maintain a compassionate presence in our interactions with our children, family members and those we count on to support us. Throughout this toolkit we will explore our role in alleviating our family members’ distress while maintaining our own well-being. In other words, we will focus on growing our compassion resilience.

Our first focus in the toolkit is to outline the content covered in the Parents and Caregivers Compassion Resilience groups, discuss group agreements, family goals and give participants a chance to get to know each other. 


Applications

Circle Agenda

Circle Agenda for Section 1, In-Person    Spanish Version
Use this agenda if you are leading your group in a session in-person. 

Circle Agenda for Section 1, Virtual   Spanish Version
Use this agenda if you are leading your group in a session virtually.

Handouts to Support Content Covered in Circle Agenda

Full Content Outline    Spanish Version

Value’s List   Spanish Version

Self-Compassion Visual   Spanish Version

Self-Compassion Scale   Spanish Version

Master PDF of all Materials Needed for this Section

Section One Master PDF (English Version)   Spanish Version
Use this document to help make printing all materials needed for this section easier. 


Links

Dr. Kristin Neff’s Website on Self-Compassion

Online Self-Compassion Scale
This assessment is referenced at the end of the circle agenda for Section 1. Scoring is easier when completed online, so it is recommended you send a link to this assessment to your participants following the group. If you are leading your group virtually, you can put this link in your chat box during this session and if time allows participants can complete it during group. 

D. Supporting Change Efforts of Others and Ourselves

Introduction

Whether we are growing our compassion resilience to prevent compassion fatigue or to address existing compassion fatigue, this intentional shift often includes changing attitudes and behaviors that no longer serve us well. The Stages of Change offers a model for people to understand the complex path towards successful change and how to support our own change efforts as well as the change efforts of colleagues and those we supervise. This model identifies effective action and responses at each stage to avoid the unintended negative consequences of mismatched efforts.

James Prochaska, John Norcross and Carlo DiClemente are the researchers and architects of the Stages of Change model. It is also known as the Transtheoretical Model. The model assesses an individual’s readiness to act on a new, healthier behavior, and provides strategies, or processes of change to guide the individual through the stages of change to Action and Maintenance.


Information

The Stages of Change Powerpoint provides an overview of the Stages of Change model. View the slides in the mode that allows you to read the notes for each slide or as pdf.


Applications

Leadership Activity

What’s the Stage? What’s My Response? This brief activity lists statements to practice identifying the stage they represent. It will build leaders’ ability to identify what stage someone is at so they can choose effective supports for that person’s desired behavior change. Pages two and three provide a chart that takes the statements from the What Stage activity and suggests helpful responses to support that person in their current stage of change.

Staff Activity

Navigating Your Way Through the Stages of Change handout that describes each stage and gives self-help hints for those looking at their own change behaviors and hints for how to help others as they navigate change.

Individual Reflection Worksheet The individual names a target change and goal behavior, identifies the stage of their current change, and completes questions based on their stage of change.

12. Compassionate Engagement with Families & Other Caregivers

Introduction

“Engagement is often viewed as synonymous with involvement. Involvement in services is important, but real engagement goes beyond that. Families can be involved and compliant without being engaged. Engagement is motivating and empowering families to recognize their own needs, strengths and resources and to take an active role in changing things for the better. Engagement is what keeps families working in the sometimes slow process of positive change” –Sue Steib (2004).



Applications

Key Activity

Compassionate Connections with Families or Caregivers 

Wellness Practice

Bringing It All Together Through My Hands — An activity to summarize compassion and self-compassion found in the document to distribute in the information section of the toolkit

Supplementary Activities/Handouts

Responding to Challenging Interactions with Families – handout and possible role-play activity

Communicating Difficult News to Clients and Their Families

Stages of Change Applied to Family Conversations

Adopting a Strengths-Based Approach

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

Additional Resources

Family members often become caregivers outside of the health care setting, and offering support is essential. The Schwartz Center offers various links to resources to help family caregivers.

The article “Few hospitals dedicate space for family caregivers, but that could change” discusses supporting family caregivers through dedicated spaces and other resources, and the importance of family caregiver well-being on client well-being.

The core concepts of Patient- and Family-Centered Care are used widely in efforts to better engage families in the delivery of care. To learn more about incorporating such an approach into your work in order to better engage with families consider visiting the Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care website.

11. Wellness and Resilience Strategies: Heart

Introduction

In the compass model the four sectors, Mind, Spirit, Strength and Heart, not only contribute to your overall wellness, but also provide guidance on strategies to help build your compassion resilience. Heart is one of the sectors. This section will take a deeper look at our emotions and our relationships—both with ourselves and with others. We will be invited to focus on our self-compassion as we seek to be compassionate in our relationships with clients, their families and our colleagues.



Applications

Key Activity

A Self-Compassion Exercise (10min) Dr. Neff
If Self-Compassion Scale was completed in Section 2, use developing an emotional regulation plans listed in the Supplementary Activities/Handouts section as your key activity asking staff to complete one for themselves.

Wellness Practice

Mindful Self-Compassion Break

Circle Agenda

Staff Circle Agenda, Section Eleven 

Core Content Visual

Colleague Conversations – 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

Developing an Emotional Regulation Plan

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

Fostering Relationship Building among Staff

Additional Resources

Article discusses, from the perspective of nurses, workplace relationships, specifically trust and how it contributes to feeling accepted and valued by colleagues.

This article offers a brief introduction and tips for developing better communication skills through structured dialog and communicating your trust distinctions.