Every day as a ABA technician is different. Every day can be stressful AF especially when you have a client with physical aggression, tantrums or verbal aggression. I’ve been asked so many times “how do you handle these situations?” or when hearing what I do for a living people will say “wow, I could never handle that”. Most of the time I nod and say “yeah it’s tough but it is SO worth it” There is literally nothing more reinforcing than seeing a client excel after starting therapy. We’ve all seen it so many times, am I right? Clients will start with tough behaviors and be discharged with no problem behavior (or minimal) and a dramatic increase in skill acquisition. Those are quite literally the best cases because they are extremely reinforcing and let’s be real, it’s great to see the science of ABA working. But what do you do when nothing seems to help? How do you handle those days when everything you do is seriously the most aversive thing ever?
Here’s a list of my personal favorite ways to handle those days and how to keep going when times are tough AF: -read a book (a non ABA related book) I love to read. It’s probably my favorite hobby. I tend to pick historical nonfictions (I’m a nerd) but choose whatever you like best (maybe that new Instagram famous personal development book we all know we have on the back of our bookshelves)
-take a bath with essentials oils or bath bombs. Pretty typical millennial answer. I’m obsessed with oils and bath bombs and find relaxing in the tub with wine is the best way to end a day.
-talk it out with the BCBA on the case Sometimes you just need to vent a little and try to figure out what you can do to help the situation. Your supervisor or BCBA on the case is the best resource to bounce ideas off of.
-Draw, color, paint or do something creative! Pinterest is my best friend on stressful days. I love getting creative to release stress. Get out your wasabi tape and gel pens, gal pals.
-Clean! I go on cleaning streaks after a super stressful day. There’s nothing better than a clean house and the feeling of accomplishing something.
-Cuddle in and watch a movie Cuddling with my dog, cat, boyfriend, body pillow, stuffed animal (yes I have a stuffed animal I sleep with). Get comfy and snuggle in. Relaxing and watching my fave superhero movie is the best way to come down from a heightened stress-filled day. Hopefully this list helps y’all find ways to hand those long, overwhelming and seemingly never ending days. We’ve all been there, trust me babe! Have any other ideas to add to my list? Comment below and help your fav millennials out!