Are you burnt out? Working with women leaders — both individually in the C-Suite and in women in leadership programs in companies big and small — puts me in a place to hear their concerns and challenges.
It’s almost universally acknowledged in each conversation I have that burnout seems to come as a part of package in our careers. I’ve lost track of the number of clients and audiences who have shared various levels of burnout, overwhelm, stress, exhaustion, tiredness, lack of focus, brain fog, depression — all the feels.
As much as I hate to admit it (and don’t most of us hate to admit it?!) I very recently had a wake-up call that really made me really understand on a personal level where my clients were coming from.
Earlier this year, my SheNoters ( coolest female keynoters and dearest friends), accused me of being ‘burned out’ — I was mortified. In fairness to them, I was a blubbering mess of ugly crying when they said it it to me.
They were right; I felt like a failure and a bad human. I was making careless mistakes in my calendar, lacking sleep, gaining weight, traveling like a crazy woman, and worrying about friends and family members who were suffering horrible cancers and illnesses. And in the midst of this I thought, “that’s just life.”
Burnout was for everyone else, not me (have you ever thought that)?
Stopping life wasn’t an option, so I just keep going; that’s what we all do, right?
Thank goodness for girlfriends who speak the truth in your life when you need to hear it. Consider me your newsletter girlfriend this week — you may be burnt out too.
Are those around you burned out? If you are feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, tired, or just blah — I see you. Here’s what you can do.
We don’t always realize burnout or stress takes a crazy toll on our physical, mental, spiritual, and relational aspects of life. So pay attention.
We don’t always realize burnout or stress takes a crazy toll on our team productivity, profitability, and accountability. So pay attention.
We never know what someone is going through; let’s BE KIND and extend grace to everyone, even yourself.
As we all know, life has a way of catching up with you, and in the midst of the past three years it’s easy to dismiss it all because of what we’ve all experienced. But more and more of my clients are noticing the toll that it’s all taken on them as individuals and as organizations.
It’s time to start taking action.
My wakeup call from my dear friends has prompted me to:
- Read books – Burnout was so helpful.
- Scheduled doctor and specialists visits – yes, all the checkups we need to stay healthy, including an overdue annual physical, blood tests — you know all the things.
- Talked to a therapist – one of my dearest friends is a doctor and therapist and she gave me the most incredible insights and advice.
- Changed food choices – eliminated foods that weren’t fueling my body and focused on clean food (with some champagne and fries as a treat occasionally).
- Ran more – running clears my head; it’s the one time I’m not connected to devices or decisions, and it allows me to sort out ideas or concerns on the run.
- Meditated longer – as a huge advocate for meditation, instead of a quick 5 minutes each day, I decided to go deeper, spend longer, and prioritize it first thing in the morning.
- Continued journaling – I write in two books: the 5 Minute Journal (shown below; I have the pink one…obviously), and a blank journal for free thoughts. Both help start the day in the best head space.
- Revamped my morning routine– I have always worked out and meditated before starting work, but realized I was missing reading and easing into the day, so I set up a little reading nook in my office to journal and read before the day starts. Here are some of my favorite things to help your morning routine along.
- Edited my calendar – this was really hard, and I had to delegate more and allow more preparation time for client work and also schedule more follow-up time from client’s events.
- Declined invitations – this one was hardest as I love people, but had to really focus on what I could and couldn’t do socially (especially given the intensity of my travel).
- Walked more – when I am home, I tried to add more walks each day and added Bala bands too.
- Used car services or Uber more – so I could rest or catch up while commuting.
- Scheduled more play time – changed my calendar to allow for more play; sometimes that’s just leaving work early on a Friday, jumping in my car, turning up the music really loud, and heading out to do errands or lunch. My car feels like my own private disco (sorry to the people on the freeway if they don’t like my choice of music #SorryNotSorry!).
As a result of all these changes our team is happier, sleep is better, weight is moving (so damn slowly), and I’m better able to enjoy the incredible life I live surrounded by amazing humans (my mum finally heard those magic words “cancer free”!), and travel to exquisite locations because of exceptional clients.
The famous philosopher Ferris Bueler once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
What PLAY are you scheduling for you this week? What can you do for yourself this week?
I hope it’s luxurious and special.
I’d love to hear your plans! Share with me by sending me a note!