Life is Challenging
It’s important to look after yourself and not fall into burnout. Life is a challenge at the moment, many are grieving for lost lives, jobs,freedom, loves and passions, I invite you to take notice of how you take care of yourself. Are you saying yes to everything? Are you run off your feet? Is everything a blur? Do you even know what day it is? Emma chats to Colleen about her interesting career journey and reminds us how important it is to be conscious of our mental health and who we are in the world.
Burnout Lessons and Leadership
Tea with the Queen is one of the podcasts I love listening to because Emma has a range of interesting female guests. She talks with them about leadership and how they’re energised by what they do. They discuss their ups and downs and what they consider success, while giving us tips and strategies along the way.
Burnout is real and we, as women have to notice it ourselves, because we (in general) are people pleasers.
What about you?
Do you say, ‘yes’ to everything, because you know you can do it and do it well? Do you think that you’re the only person who can do it to perfection? I’m speaking mostly to women here however, there are more men who have the people pleaser gene than you realise. In my practice, I see both men and women who are workaholics as well as perfectionists, but don’t know it until we start to talk.
Symptoms of burnout
Do these sound familiar?
- sense of failure and self-doubt
- feeling helpless, trapped and defeated
- feeling alone in the world
- no motivation
- negative outlook on life
- reduced satisfaction
- reduced sense of accomplishment
What follows is the experience of my client’s in the therapy room, you might recognise the symptoms.
In the therapy room
When we sit down in our therapy room and talk about a typical day. The day where you’re up at 4am, out the door by five. You drive to work, and set up what you need to do all day. You write list after list, because there’s so much in your head – You don’t want to miss a thing. Now your employees or co-workers turn up, and you’ve already had a cup of coffee and been busy all morning.
This is only the first two to four hours of the day, and I’m exhausted looking at what their morning looks like. Not only are they satisfied they’ve done this exhausting amount of work they’re tired, fatigued, making a ton of mistakes, not sleeping well, getting headaches on a regular basis, irritable and impatient.
They’re suspicious that people are undermining their decisions. Not noticing these things can lead to depression, debilitating self-doubt, self-hatred and self-medicating with alcohol or drugs. It’s like falling down the proverbial rabbit hole, and not having the Alice in Wonderland experience.
They don’t realise that they’re already living a life of burnout until I let them know about what burnout is and that it’s damaging to their health.
People who are more susceptible to burnout are high achievers and perfectionists – those who feel their work isn’t good enough. They’re not appreciated. They could be in a role that doesn’t suit them, or they’re incapable of doing. Or, they’re overloaded with work in impossibly short time span. You’ve heard of prevention is better than cure. It applies here, people who are happy, find the best time and space to work.
They want to come to work and do the best they can.
Why I love this episode with Colleen on tea with the queen
The podcast is Tea with the Queen with Emma McQueen, have a look at season 2 episode 16 – Colleen Callander.
Colleen talks of her burnout, and what it was like for her. She left school at 16 years old. After a holiday job with Susanne, a clothing retail company, she was asked to work full time because they recognised her potential. This excited her immensely. Colleen had an amazing work ethic, and soon became CEO of Suzanne. She then was approached by Sportsgirl to be CEO there. She loved it, and worked herself into the ground. This episode is about leadership and burnout, but I think it’s relevant to all people who are people pleasers and workaholics, and even grieving, who don’t notice that they’ve tipped over into burnout.
Feeling needed, important and validated, is an addiction. Colleen talks about doing things for yourself. Don’t look to others for approval. I totally believe in this concept. I’m forever saying ‘you can first build you up, physically, emotionally, and spiritually so you can live your best life the way you want it to be’.
Change your story, change your life
When we change our story, we change our life. We interrupt the story of not being good enough, not being thin enough, can’t do it. Change the self talk.
Colleen has set boundaries for herself and these are her tips:
- Say no.
- Share the load.
- Be kind to yourself.
- Have the 80/20 rule for work life balance.
The wrap up
Listen to what Caroline says about her journey to her happy place. I encourage you to listen to this episode, between Emma McQueen and Colleen calendar. It’s an exciting journey, engaging, inspiring and fascinating conversation. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, because I can see in my clients, the burnout and trying to grieve at the same time, is so difficult.
I hope you find it as helpful as I did. Are there any podcasts you enjoy listening to? Let me know [email protected]