ED: The following is a excerpt from the story, “Rabbis Share Sneak Previews of Holy Days Messages” which ran in our Rosh Hashanah Sept. 7 issue.
Rabbi Jason Weiner
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
A recent study on factors that predict burnout among health care workers revealed a startling insight that is profound and crucial for anyone who works in professions with high stress or burnout: The strongest protective factor against burnout is “compassion satisfaction.” This means if a person finds a sense of purpose and meaning in their work, they are less likely to burn out.
Indeed, finding meaning and living with a larger purpose in our lives is what we are called to do on Rosh Hashanah. The “judgment” aspect of the day, according to the Mishnah, is on all of humanity, not just Jews. That’s because it’s the anniversary of the creation of the world and the day God looks at each of us to see if we are living in accordance with our own unique missions. And if not, don’t worry. As the anniversary of creation, it can be a day to take advantage of this and renew our goals to become more in accordance with who we want to be and what we can contribute to the world. In this way, Rosh Hashanah can be a time of ensuring personal fulfillment, thus protecting us from fatigue and burnout.