What’s the difference between an over-achiever and a high-performer?
This question has been rattling around in my brain and I finally had a chance to sit down and reflect on this today.
Here’s what I came up with:
Over-achievers think if they want something done well, they have to be the ones to do it.
Over-achievers don’t trust themselves, so they force themselves to work instead of trusting their natural ebbs and flows of attention and energy.
Over-achievers work to compensate for a part of them that feels incomplete – if I could just do one more thing, maybe I’ll feel good about myself, maybe I’ll have worth.
Over-achievers are driven by fear – if I don’t do this well, then I won’t be safe.
Over-achievers don’t have a clear sense of what’s important to them, so they often give more of themselves to work then they might actually want to.
High-performers know that they’re actually not the best at everything.
We had our final closing call for the 2021 cohort of Radiance Collective just last week and I am so incredibly in awe of the magic that happens in this community.
We don’t heal patriarchy and capitalism on our own.
We can’t heal from hustle culture and proving our worth on our own.
We need women to see us, feel us, hear us and cheer us on when we get scared and want to run back to self-sacrificing and settling for less than we deserve in life.
I know it’s scary to commit. These same women were scared to join such a long container and give up ninety of their precious minutes every week. And guess what?
That resistance transformed into desire
None of us missed a call that wasn’t already agreed to be taken off the schedule
And not from an icky bootcamp-y you must show up or else vibe but honestly from desire – from knowing this was a space that we could show up to in all our moods, states of fatigue and glorious celebration.
I want to share some of the...
As much as I live, breathe and embody my work, I am absolutely still bumping up against old patriarchal conditioning in need of an update.
I was on a call with my coach earlier this week as I was grappling with places I felt stuck in my life and she asked me:
If there is no success and no failure, what is there?
My achiever brain short-circuited (Enneagram 3 here anyone else?) and through some muffled sobs I managed to say “Yeah, what else is there?”
I heard myself say that and then I cried for the part of me that truly didn’t know what else there was to life other than awards and achievements.
A slave to success and terrifed of failure. What a shitty way to live.
What if we took both options off the table?
There’s no way to mess this up and there’s no way to do it perfectly (no one is going to give you an A+ at the end of your life!)
I realized I had been feeling uneasy about ending this year because I was grading myself on an out-dated rubric that...
The patriarchal way of achievement and success runs deep.
As a high-achieving woman, it can feel like the only options involve burnout and overgiving, but I want to assure you there are more options than those you’ve been shown.
Are you ready to find the secret menu?
I’m leading a free workshop next week and I want you to be there! Especially if this programming sounds familiar…
Put your head down they said
The benefits are unparalleled they said
Keep saving they said
Start a family they said
Buy a house if you can they said
Keep climbing the ladder they said
One day it will all pay off...
How's that working out for you?
See, the way you've been shown to do life and get what you want isn't the only way.
You've been shown the patriarchal way of achievement and success
Which to be honest, isn't a great fit for most women
We can trace the origins of patriarchy back to the original separation and hierarchy of mind over body.
If you've checked the...
If you've been following my work, you know I teach about patriarchy and its lasting effects on the health and vitality of women.
It's easy to see why patriarchy makes us sick and makes it hard to be a woman.
We feel not enough, everything tells us we’re not enough, so we keep trying to compensate, work harder, hide our true self, be professional, and it’s making us sick and exhausted.
Thousands of years of patriarchy might have you feeling pretty down about being a woman and truly make you feel like you need to change yourself in order to be successful.
Add in navigating shitty bosses, uneven relationship dynamics, traumatic experiences and being a mom in this society...it can just make you mad with the injustice of it all.
I hear you, loud and clear.
But what I’ve learned in the past five years of studying patriarchy and women’s empowerment is that there are real systems and structures at play that require vast change AND systems have more control over us...
I need you to believe it’s possible.
It’s possible to feel better. It’s possible to follow what you know is meant for you. It’s possible to do what you’re most called to do, and be well taken care of. The choices you’ve been presented with aren't the only options.
It's okay if you've never done anything like this before. It's okay if you're a little bit scared
It's okay to jump anyway.
I know some of you have been wondering what we're actually up to in Radiance Collective so here is my attempt to explain...
The thing is it's also magic.
Without fail, like 90% of our calls this past year in this program, the check-ins the women shared tied directly into the topic I had in mind for that week.
This program is an experience of stepping into a container where we decide:
We decide you get to rest and heal your burnout
We decide you get to meet the love of your life
We decide you get to learn how to take amazing care of your body, mind and spirit
So a lot of people have been reaching out recently to ask me some version of the same question – how did you leave your stable job to follow your dreams?
Because this question is essentially my life story it feels like an impossibly huge question to answer, but I will try ;)
In 2012 I was working for YouTube at Google and felt meh about my life so I started taking every single personal development class Google offered – Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, Emotional Intelligence, Negotiation, Yoga – you name it, I took it.
But perhaps what started it all was a course I took called Search Inside Yourself, which at the time I took it was a seven week intensive growth course with meditation, mindfulness, intimacy and visioning components.
I can remember the place I was sitting in the classroom, not unlike a medium-sized university lecture hall, on Google's Mountain View campus, when I was led in my first guided visualization practice and I saw my life vision –...
There are a lot of coaches out there and it can be hard to tell which one is right for you.
Here’s what sets me apart:
I know what it's like to be where you are.
I worked for Google for seven years and for five of those I knew my career path was not in the corporate tech world.
I know what it's like to finally achieve real financial security and simultaneously know it's not the right fit.
I'm a high-achieving people-pleasing perfectionist in recovery. Since I was a kid I've been praised for being meticulous, diligent, and a good lil rule follower. (insert curtsy emoji)
Fun fact: I regularly signed myself into detention in high school so I could focus and get more work done
For much of my life I did waaaay too much without even realizing it. I worked full-time while getting my master's and was confused why I was burned out, exhausted and ill...
I'm really sensitive. It's hard for me to focus on myself when I'm around other people – hence the voluntary detention ;)
Has this question been tumbling around in your head recently? If so, this one's for you.
Though no one can answer this question for you, I hope the following words will provide some opportunities for reflection and food for thought in your process.
Feel the feels first
Remember that this is a process. If you're in an emotionally activated state around your job, my guidance would be to not make a decision right now.
Call in support, feel the feels and process as much of the unfelt stuff as you can – perhaps feeling unseen and undervalued, perhaps anger or grief about the state of being a working woman at this time and all the responsibility you're holding.
Once you can move some of that emotion, you may find that clarity comes. Or it might not be clear yet, it's okay.
The dream job won't fix everything
I have supported clients who've shared that once they got the "dream job" they still didn't feel good. They then realized they needed to shift their own relationship to work in...
Last week I wrote a blog post about how my body shape isn’t an issue for me right now, even though I’m heavier than I’ve ever been.
And since writing that piece I'm noticing these changes happening organically in my life.
I've been paying even more careful attention to moving my body, stretching, and taking care of myself in ways that feel good.
I’ve been meditating, journaling, getting into nature and eating and cooking delicious food for myself. Pretty cool, huh?
Sometimes all it takes is saying the thing out loud we've been hiding from and really truly accepting ourselves just as we are, in order to be able to change.
This is a famous psychological paradox – that we can only change that which we first accept.
And let me tell you it feels SO MUCH BETTER to approach change in this way.
Have you experienced something similar?
Or perhaps you're stuck fighting where you're at rather than accepting what’s real right now.
If you're curious about how much...