Based on my personal experiences working in high-stress, highly-emotional situations, and the many years extensively studying people's stories of survival, I understand the dangers that researchers and activists may face when they are constantly dealing with, and thinking about, violence, abuse, and trauma. If you are a researcher or activist who works with vulnerable populations, conducts research about violence or trauma, or otherwise constantly thinks about upsetting or depressing topics, I highly encourage you to explore the ways in which self-care can help you manage your emotions and protect your psychological and physical wellbeing.
Self-care can take a variety of forms; please visit the Compassion Fatigue Awareness Project and the Headington Institute for more information. Remember: the work that you do is important, but it is also important to take time for yourself and avoid burnout. In order to help others, you must make yourself the top priority!