In our culture, we as women are taught to dim our light, to censor our expression, to play small.
We’re taught to hide our brilliance, lest we outshine our partner, our parents, or our friends.
There are a million ways we hold ourselves back from being our truest, biggest, most fully expressed selves.
And psychologically it makes sense.
Many of us hold deep deep fears in our bones, from our own traumas, from our mothers’ traumas and from the culture we live in that tells us in so many ways that a woman who shines, a woman who embodies her power and her confidence is not safe.
The women who stand out, who speak up, who don’t play small are most vulnerable and likely to be knocked down emotionally or physically.
But you are strong and brave and you’re ready to remove this patriarchal residue that’s dulling your shine.
It’s time to stop hiding and playing small. It’s time to step into your power and share your skills and gifts with the world.
I have a confession. I was not always the bold, bright leader that I strive to be today.
For several years of my twenties after my yoga teacher training I stopped getting my hair done, gave up makeup and avoided jewelry.
I donated a lot of my pretty things and basically wore organic cotton t-shirts and leggings. I even tried to stop washing my hair and "break my addiction to lip balm" (yup, google it.)
FYI Greasy hair and chapped lips is NOT a good look on me, or anyone for that matter.
I thought that to be a good person, I had to trade wearing nice things, enjoying life and watching TV for being an ascetic mindful vegetarian, or in other words, be something other than who I am.
I'm glad to report that period of my life is OFFICIALLY OVER.
Not that there's anything wrong with those things. I think we can all swing into extremes in the name of trying to improve our selves and our lives and sometimes we just need to find center.
I believe the true juice of personal development work...
What does pleasure have to do with burnout? The answer is simple: EVERYTHING!
Many of us high-achieving perfectionist types experience resistance to pleasure. We think that we have to check everything off on to do list before we deserve pleasure.
How can I possibly think about feeling good when I have so many things to do!?!
I am here to remind you that you are worthy and deserving of pleasure no matter what. But trust me, I know how hard it can be to actually remember that and truly believe it!
When you consciously choose to connect to yourself in a pleasurable way, you encode the message that you deserve to feel good. When you continue to show-up and choose pleasure, you learn to prioritize yourself over all the other things that lead us to burnout, like overachieving and over-giving. You learn to put your own oxygen mask on before helping others.
But pleasure doesn’t just help prevent burnout by teaching us to prioritize ourselves, it also heals it. When you experience...
Wherever you are in the cycle of burnout right now, I hope that the steps I’m sharing today provide a sense of direction and inspire hope that you can once again feel vital, alive and lit up by life.
Today we’re getting into the second half of the six steps. These are the real deal inner work you have to do if you don’t want to spend the rest of your life feeling burnt out. If you didn’t catch the previous post in this series, here’re the first three steps:
Without further ado, let’s get into the rest of the six steps.
Step 4: Worthiness no matter what
Full-disclosure: Separating our self-worth from our productivity is real hard, especially for high-achievers. Lemme tell you why. Most of us are trained from birth that how much love, support, and praise we get is conditional on how well we achieve and perform. Our school systems, our parenting strategies and...
Last week I shared the reason why burnout hits women hardest (tl;dr patriarchy). And as I was writing out the six steps to end this cycle of burnout I realized it was A LOT.
So I decided to just share the first three steps this week and the last three next week.
Before we dive in, I want to remind you that the end-goal here is sooo much more than just not burning out. It's about recovering aliveness, joy, and energy. It's about rekindling your enthusiasm and passion for life. It's about truly living the biggest, fullest, most wholehearted life possible.
So let's get into it, shall we?
1. Reconnect to your body
The hectic pace of modern society and value we place on intellectualism and logic keeps us in our heads most of the day.
Right now, take a deep breath into your belly. How does that feel? Are you aware of sensations in your body that you weren't aware of before? If so, you were probably just stuck in your head until I reminded you to breathe!...
Women today are breaking gender norms at every turn. Women run companies and countries. Women lead organizations and steer political campaigns. Despite this freedom, women are facing burnout and chronic illness at alarmingly high rates and many feel too exhausted to truly enjoy their lives.
The current popular usage of the term burnout is broader than its original definition. According to the psychologists who first helped define the term in the 1970s and 80s, burnout means experiencing emotional exhaustion and apathy or cynicism about one’s job, combined with a decreased sense of accomplishment and fulfillment.
While the term as defined here applies only to work life, humans are complex beings and I believe burnout can impact our lives outside of work, including our roles as parents and individuals. I see a lot of overlap between the definition of burnout and chronic fatigue syndrome, which impacts women at a rate 3 to 5 times higher than men. Other chronic illnesses like ...
What feels scary and out of your comfort zone?
For me, being seen, sharing my voice, speaking up, asking questions, posting on social media has been a huge edge.
It's something that starting a business has pushed me to do and I'm so grateful for that.
The way we grow is by doing new things outside our comfort zone.
But it's a bit more complex than that.
Human brains evolved when we lived in groups and depended on one another for survival. Doing something against the status quo meant the possibility of being kicked out of the group, which meant certain death.
This fear is still deeply programmed in our brains. When we address it, we clear the unconscious blocks to our desires and make attaining our goals much easier.
We need to know that we will still be loved, still belong, still, be safe if we try something new.
That we'll be celebrated if we succeed and taken care of if we fail. That no matter what happens we're still worthy.
So if there's something you've been wanting to try but...
This week has me confronting how we continue to live our daily lives as the world burns, floods, melts, freezes. I’ve heard vulnerable accounts of how emotionally taxing and traumatic this week has been. The stress of living through climate change and evacuating from fire after fire has taken a toll.
I’ve seen research showing increased stress and suicidality in farmers living in drought-prone regions. I’ve seen the disastrous impacts of colossal weather events on largely developing and under-resourced countries.
I now understand why apocalyptic stories seem to be gaining popularity. The generation of kids growing up today are used to this. They’re used to wearing smoke masks to play outside, evacuating from natural disasters and rehearsing active shooter drills.
How do we go about living our daily lives when these types of events are the new normal?
Taking care of our nervous systems is incredibly important. Why? If you don’t help yourself get back to...
On average, women today have more freedom than ever before in recorded history and yet we are more stressed, overwhelmed and exhausted than ever.
Along with pursuing success in demanding careers, women still do the majority of housework and emotional labor in their families. We’ve taken on more and haven’t given anything up which is leading women to face exhaustion and burnout in alarming numbers. This impact is compounded for women of color and women who otherwise fit outside of our heteronormative white culture.
During the 7 years, I worked at Google, I was diagnosed with a digestive disorder, an autoimmune condition, and Chronic Fatigue. Studies show that these particular conditions impact women at rates rate 3 to 5 times higher than men. When I read these studies I wanted to scream and demand the world tell me WHY??? I know so many women in my community who have faced these same diagnoses and yet no one seemed to know why these illnesses tend to impact...