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Re: Service and Exhaustion

Mar 26, 1998 04:12 AM
by Murray Stentiford


>I am in a helping profession and also find myself drained in helping
>situations. It seems the more intense the encounter(s), the more
>re-energizing time I need. Recently, I experienced such an intense
>encounter that, although the outcome was positive for the
>participants, it seems to have knocked out part of my immune system
>and I was down with a nasty cold for a few days.

Stress certainly impacts on the immune system, as I have proved to myself
several times by going down with either a cold or some other kind of
infection, usually just after the stressful time has passed. You kind of
keep going on adrenalin while the pressure is on, but there's a price to pay
afterwards. A strong experience doesn't have to be negative to cause stress,

I think that Thoa and you and I are agreeing that it's good to have
realistic expectations of what we can do and to give ourselves the time and
space to recoup inwardly after a lot of outward activity. Then to watch out
for the negative messages against doing this that are floating around. It's
finding the right balance, is it not - not always easy to do.


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