Mental Wellbeing and Positive Psychology for Veterinary Professionals A Pre-emptive, Proactive and Solution-based Approach

Mental Wellbeing And Positive Psychology For Veterinary Professionals A Pre-Emptive, Proactive And Solution-Based Approach

By Laura Woodward

Mental Wellbeing and Positive Psychology for Veterinary Professionals A Pre-emptive, Proactive and Solution-based Approach PDF delivers a practical, hands-on guide to mental health and resilience for individual members of the veterinary professions and for those managing entire practices. Divided into 6 sections, the text offers valuable tools, including meditation, mindfulness, and positive psychology, to help readers grapple with the mental challenges presented by veterinary practice. The author has also included a series of case studies and anecdotes from her experience in counselling members of the professions, including a new-graduate vet, a specialist surgeon, and a head nurse, as they encounter issues like anxiety, compassion fatigue, fear of failure, imposter syndrome, and grief. By learning in advance about the common hurdles they will face during their careers, the reader will discover how to prepare for these in positive and proactive ways. Readers will also find: A thorough introduction to effective strategies for dealing with the difficulties of the veterinary professions, including mindfulness, empathy, and emotional intelligence Comprehensive explorations of meditation, including body scan meditation, breath meditation, imagery, and mini-meditations Practical discussions of specific challenges faced by veterinary practitioners, including moral injury, client complaints, burnout, imposter syndrome, and a loss of confidence Fulsome case studies, including a veterinary nurse’s journey to mental wellbeing Dr. Laura Woodward is well positioned to write on the topic, as both a working veterinary surgeon and an accredited counsellor and has crafted a text that is perfect for veterinarians, veterinary nurses, and practice managers. Mental Wellbeing and Positive Psychology for Veterinary Professionals will also benefit veterinary students, student veterinary nurses, and teaching staff seeking a comprehensive resource for veterinary mental health

Table of Contents

Part 1 Strategies 

Mindfulness

What Does ‘Mindfulness’ Mean?

Paying Attention to the Present Moment

Non-judgement

Mindful Living

Mindfulness: How to Do It

An Introduction to Mindful Meditation

Mindful Meditation: Paying Attention, on Purpose

Mindful Meditation: Non- judgement of Emotions

The Case for Mindfulness versus I’m Already Too Busy

Mindfulness in the Veterinary Practice

Mindfulness and Management

Emotional Intelligence

The Five Competencies of Emotional Intelligence

Self- awareness

How Do I Become More Self- aware?

Self-regulation

Motivation

Empathy

Social Skills

Empathy

The Three Types of Empathy

Leadership and Empathy for Line Managers

The Evidence- based Case for Leadership: Empathic Concern versus Empathy Alone

Acceptance and Proactivity

How Do I Do It?

What’s Not Helpful

What Is Helpful

The Empathy–Profitability Link

Secular Buddhist Concepts

Basic Elements of Secular Buddhism

The Four Noble Truths

The Nature of Impermanence

Attachment

Positive Psychology

The Three Circles of Control

Reference

Part 2 How to Meditate 

How to Meditate: Part 1

Introduction

Gain Control of Your Mind

Mindful Drinking

Mindful Breathing

Mindful Body Scan

Loving Kindness Meditation

Hand- on- Heart Meditation

How to Meditate: Part 2

Observe an Emotion

Anger

Anxiety

How to Meditate: Part 3

How to Meditate: Part 4

Opening Shutters Meditation

The Fortress

The Heavy Bucket

Climbing Up the Branches of a Tree

Conveyor Belt Meditation

Part 3 Difficulties and Applying Strategies 

Anxiety

Fear of Failure

The Dalai Lama Advises

How Do I Stop Fearing Fear?

Disputing Irrational Beliefs and Doing Our Cognitive Homework

Change Your Language in Order to Change Your Thought Process

Exercises for Attacking Shame

Imagery and Role Play

Desensitisation

Loss of Confidence

Perfectionism

Imposter Syndrome

Feel Like a Fraud?

What Can I Do?

Recognise Your Expertise

Remember What You Do Well

Talk About It

Compassion Fatigue

What are the Symptoms of Compassion Fatigue?

How Do I Prevent or Recover from Compassion Fatigue?

References

Lack of Assertiveness

Empathy

Motivation

Social Media and Doom Surfing

How Do I Stop Doom Surfing?

References

Yearning, Striving and Wishing Things Were Different

‘Letting Go’ of Striving

What is Striving?

Blissful Happiness

Moral Injury

What Can We Do About Moral Injury?

Moral Courage

References

Identity

When Being a Veterinary Professional is Your Whole Identity

How Do You Know if Your Identity Has Become Enmeshed with Your Career?

Start Small

Bullying

Cancel Culture

How to Refrain from Punitive Actions

Conflict and Client Complaints

Team Dynamics

Team Dynamics and Difficult Colleagues

Team Dynamics and Helping Colleagues

Depression

Anger

What’s Normal?

Knowing How and When to Express Your Anger is a Skill Worth Developing

Sleep on It

Grief

How to Grieve Mindfully

Competitive Grief

Comparative Grief

The Emotional Burden of Error

Guilt 1

Fear 1

Isolation

Guilt

I Feel Guilty

What is Guilt?

Misuse of Guilt

Helpful Guilt

Misplaced Guilt

When Your World Falls Apart

References

Euthanasia and Suicide

References

Chronic Pain

References

Burnout

The Three Dimensions of Burnout

Emotional Exhaustion (Focus, Language and Posture)

Depersonalisation

Disconnection from Purpose

Summary of Strategies to Combat Burnout

Neuroplasticity and Reversing Burnout

The Evidence Base

Suicide, Burnout and Chronic Stress

Recognising Burnout

Mindfulness and Burnout

References

Management and Mindfulness

Mindfulness as an Evidence- based Tool to Prevent Stress, Burnout and Depersonalisation

How Do We Promote Mindfulness Training in Our Practices?

Reference

Suicide in the Veterinary Professions

The Perfect Storm in Vets

How Do We Increase Our Production of Oxytocin?

Understanding the Steps Towards Suicide

References

Part 4 Therapy 189

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy

Mindfulness- based Stress Reduction

Evidence Base for MBSR

Aims of MBSR

References

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Cancer

Animal- assisted Therapies

Communication

Collaboration

Respect

References

Part 5 Case Studies 

Introduction: The Counselling Process

Ann (A New Graduate Vet)

First Session

Acceptance

Second Session

Homework

Third Session

Summary

Ben (An Experienced Vet)

First Session

Second Session

Third Session

Summary

Darren (A Specialist Vet)

First Session

Second Session

Third Session

Summary

Claire (Head Nurse)

First Session

Second Session

Summary

Part 6 Positive Psychology 

Gratitude

What Gratitude Isn’t

Grateful for Nothing

Reference

Kindness

Small Acts of Kindness

Random Acts of Kindness

References

Mindful Gift Giving and Receiving

How to Practise Mindful Gift Giving

Mindful Receiving of Gifts

Pride and Profitability

Self- focused Pride and Other- focused Pride

Positive Psychology

Enhancing Self- focused Pride

How Do I Notice the Mini- victories?

Enhancing Other-focused Pride

References

Stubborn Optimism

What Can I Do?

Resilience

Mindfulness and Resilience

Positive Emotion

Engagement

Relationships

Meaning

Accomplishments

References

Two Ways of Looking

How Mindfulness Can Improve Cardiac Health

References

Self- compassion versus Self- care

Mindfulness

Loving Kindness Towards Yourself

Hand-on-heart Meditation

A Sense of Common Humanity

Being Ready for Some Good News

Why We Tend to Ignore the Good Moments

Three Practices to Help Us Notice the Good News

The Use of Language

Internal Monologue

External Words to Self

External Words to Others

Exercise and Work–Life Balance

Mindful versus Mindless Exercise – Your Call

Lacking in Motivation? Find an Exercise You Actually Like

Reference

Learning from Our Pets

Lesson One – The Importance of a Good Routine

Lesson Two – Feel What I Need to Feel When I Need to Feel It

Lesson Three – How to Truly Be Present

Resolutions and Intentions and Mindfulness- based Eating Awareness Therapy

New Year Intentions

Postponing Mindfulness and Self- compassion

Index

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