Posted by Marjie Sokoll

Shofar“There is nothing so wise as a circle” – Rainer Maria Rilke

We are now in the Jewish month of Elul, a special time in Jewish tradition for taking an inventory of our lives over the past year; a time for cheshbon hanefesh, or literally “an accounting of our soul.”

Coincidentally, I was delighted to read in the July issue of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) News a column written by CEO Angelo McClain who also emphasized the importance of taking an inventory of our personal and professional wellness to reduce the likelihood of burnout and compassion fatigue.
McClain reminds us to “refuel, recharge, and replenish.” He writes, “focusing on social worker wellness is a win-win-win situation, because social workers with lower levels of stress are more productive in their work with clients and more committed to the organization.”

Similarly, The Boston Globe reported this summer in “Mindfulness enters corporate mainstream”that “as employers look for ways to ease the anxieties of overworked employees, workplace mindfulness is spreading from Silicon Valley campuses to old-school corporate America, with Fortune 500 companies like Target, Nike, and General Mills joining tech giants such as Google, Apple, and Intel in offering meditation and yoga classes.” Pausing for self-reflection and introspection is clearly an important value for enhancing our sense of well-being.