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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 117-124

Exploring burnout in clinical psychologists: Role of personality, empathy, countertransference and compassion fatigue

1 Clinical Psychology Centre, University of Calcutta, India
2 Department of Applied Psychology, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Ms. Bidisha Bhattacharyya
Clinical Psychology Centre, University of Calcutta, Rajabazar
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/iopn.iopn_62_21

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Objective: Clinical psychologists, as professionals, come across various people and their problems frequently. Regular exposure to information which are distressing, stressful, and sometimes traumatic can create health issues and burnout, which is a psychological syndrome of emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment, in them. A number of psychological variables can contribute to the burnout of clinical psychologists. The ones taken in this study are personality, empathy, countertransference (CT) and compassion fatigue. The study had been conceptualized to find the relation and contribution of the mentioned variables on burnout of clinical psychologists. Methods: Fifty one clinical psychologists participated in the study. Maslach Burnout Inventory, NEO Five-Factor Inventory, Questionnaire of Cognitive and Affective Empathy, Assessment of CT Scale and Compassion fatigue (CF), and satisfaction self-test for helpers were used for assessing the constructs. Relevant statistical analysis were performed. Results: Findings show that there are significant correlations between personality variables, i.e., neuroticism, agreeableness, and conscientiousness with other variables, i.e., compassion fatigue, empathy, and CT. Some of the personality variables are correlated to burnout. Empathy, CT, and CF contribute significantly to burnout. Conclusion: The study shows the probable indicators which can cause burnout in clinical psychologists, and which, if correctly addressed, may help in the maintenance of sound mental health among professionals.

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