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Counselor Education and Supervision


Christian J. Dean


The counseling profession seeks to support and enrich the quality of life of the general public by providing effective clinical services. Many counselors struggle with practicing self-care regularly, increasing the risk of burnout. When counselors provide services while experiencing burnout, they risk harming clients being served. The conservation of resources theory suggests that there is an increased risk of maladaptive coping and burnout when there is a decrease in resources used to protect someone from experiencing stress. A quantitative survey research study using a nonprobability convenience sampling was used to explore the relationship between counselor burnout, life balance, and self-compassion among fully licensed and provisionally licensed counselors throughout the United States with at least 2 years of experience (N = 331). Two canonical correlation analyses were conducted to determine (a) if there was any significant relationship between the subscales of the Juhnke-Balkin Life Balance Inventory, measuring life balance, and the Counselor Burnout Inventory (CBI), measuring burnout, and (b) if there was a significant relationship between the subscales of the CBI, measuring burnout, and the Self-Compassion Scale, measuring self-compassion. Both canonical correlation analyses indicated a statistically significant relationship. Particularly, professional counselors are experiencing poor work-life balance, decreased attention in their personal life, decreased quality of their relationships, negative work environment, and lower levels of self-compassion. The potential social change impact from this research study is that a better understanding of how to mitigate and/or prevent experiences of burnout in counselors may improve counselor’s quality of life, mitigate turnover, counselor burnout, reduce client harm, and increase the quality of clinical services.