Create your own system of care: Tips, tools and insights for student support professionals

Taking time for yourself can really make a difference

To all the college and university student support professionals out there, we see you. We hear you. We applaud you for working long, tiring and yes, rewarding days helping others. And with this series of short videos, we’re here to turn the tables and provide you with a bit of support. Our Create Your Own System of Care series is designed specifically to offer self-support tips for student support professionals. It’s our way of reminding you that taking the time to take care of yourself is critical in the work you do supporting others — and giving you some tips to help you get you going.

Video 1: Fill your own glass first

Student support professionals are known for their empathy and compassion, often encouraging the students they work with to take the time and space to “fill their glass” and recharge. Ironically, these student support professionals often forget to do the same recharging themselves.

In our first of four “Create Your Own System of Care” videos, InsideTrack Crisis Support Specialist Lula Torres walks through techniques to help you understand and address the times when giving support can feel difficult. In order to fill our glass – and recharge enough to help fill the glasses of others – Lula encourages us to ask ourselves, “What are the things that bring you joy?”

Video 2: Holistic Self-Support Tips

In our second of four “Create Your Own System of Care” videos, InsideTrack Operations Quality Manager Jennifer Crawford discusses the need for holistic self-support and shares eight easy-to-implement tips that allow you to create a little bit of space and give yourself more bandwidth. As she explains, “Student support staff are good at putting their own needs aside. While that can be useful in a crisis or stressful situation, it’s important to regularly take time to check in with yourself.” One of our favorite pro tips from Jennifer? Step away from your computer and “be silly!” in the midst of a tough day.

Video 3:  The Solar System of Care

In our third of four “Create Your Own System of Care” videos, InsideTrack Crisis Support Specialist Dreya Williams explains the Solar System of Care model they created as a way to “view self-care as both preventative and tangible.” Dreya explains that the solar system component relates to the fact that “you’re on a journey, and you’re asking yourself questions around different elements of self-care.” As you’ll see, each planet relates to a set of thoughtful questions you can ask yourself to expand your own self-care system.

Video 4: Remember to Breathe

In our fourth and final “Create Your Own System of Care” video, Lula Torres wraps things up with a simple and powerful reminder to breathe. The importance of simple self-care acts like this can make a positive impact throughout your day.

Wrap-up

Remember, taking care of yourself is what allows you to support and take care of others. We hope you’re able to work some of these tips into your daily routine as a way to relieve stress, recharge and re-set. With minimal effort and time, you’ll quickly be able to create your own system of care — one that will benefit you and the students you support.


Healing-centered engagement is another excellent way to take a deeper look into self-evaluating and supporting others. In this recent post, the expert who coined that term, Dr. Shawn Ginwright, shows how changing the way we work with those dealing with trauma creates pathways for healing — and ramps up the impact you can have in your work.

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