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My 3-Part Burn-Out Cure

What does it mean to be a success? In your own eyes?
How do you know when enough is enough? 

A couple months ago, I was watching the news when Hillary Clinton stumbled as she left the 9/11 memorial, because she had walking pneumonia. 

It reminded me of the story in Arianna Huffington’s book about how she literally fell, face down on her desk, collapsing from fatigue, and waking up in a pool of her own blood with a fractured cheekbone. 

A few weeks ago, I saw Elizabeth Gilbert do a phenomenal talk in NYC, while on book tour for Big Magic. One of the pivotal stories she told was about how she had gotten so desperately burned out and exhausted on her tour, that she literally smashed herself into a sidewalk post in Germany.  

One day last Spring, I had been running on empty for so long, that I up and left my laptop in a taxi. (Fortunately, it was returned by the next passenger, thank Goddess.)  

Almost every woman I know has driven herself to the veritable ledge – the outermost edge – of what she is capable of handling, physically and emotionally.

What is up with that?
What are we trying to prove?
What gives?

What drives us to go further, faster, never stopping, pushing the limits of what is humanly possible? And what is there to do about it?

Women, today, are more overworked, stressed out, and burned out than we have ever been. 

Why is that?

Well, women have been ignoring our pleasure for centuries. We were taught to take care of our husbands, take care of our kids, take care of our bosses and coworkers – but we were never taught to take care of ourselves. We were never the priority. 

Instead of learning to nourish ourselves, we have learned to ignore ourselves. 

Of course, there are consequences. We end up stressed, overworked, burned out and resentful. And when a woman is stressed, her body produces stress hormones, like cortisol. Too much cortisol manifests in countless undesirable experiences like depression, irritation, sadness, loneliness and anger. It creates inflammation in the body, which contributes to so many diseases. 

Now, when a woman has a pleasurable experience – which could be an orgasm, or singing along to a favorite aria, or sweating it out in a spin class, or eating the most delicious french fries – she floods her body with nitric oxide, which turns on neurotransmitters such as beta endorphin and prolactin. 

When a woman chooses pleasure, she creates health in her body, and her light is back on. She is turned on and tuned into her power, rather than her deficits.  

The problem is that none of us were taught that pleasure is a vital nutrient. Rather, we were taught to ignore pleasure and place all of our attention on what our culture values the most: a job well done.

We live in a patriarchal culture, where the masculine and men are valued more than the feminine and women. 

To be clear: the masculine is good. The feminine is good. It’s just seriously out of balance right now.

It’s like cardio without strength training, like day without night, or eating only protein with no veggies.

Imbalanced masculine values of our patriarchal culture include: 

  • Nose to the grindstone
  • Man-up
  • Win at all costs
  • Profit is the goal
  • Don’t feel. Be logical and practical.
  • Go at it alone, emphasis on the Individual’s gains, not the good of the whole

Meanwhile, we’ve lost sight of what I call the values of the feminine. In fact, many of us have never ever even learned the values of the feminine, or we have deliberately pushed away the values of the feminine. I’m talking about qualities like:

  • Tapping into our Intuition and Creativity
  • Striving for Connection, Community, Sisterhood
  • Recognizing the Interconnectedness of everything and everyone
  • Experiencing Emotional range – or simply, feeling 
  • Receiving, surrender

It is not easy to live a pleasurably balanced life in a desperately imbalanced world. As a result, Sisters, we are burned the f*ck out! Burned, fried, and crispy.  

Of course, the real solution is healing our cultural imbalance, in our individual lives and collectively. Let’s keep at that one. 

In the meantime, though, I wanted to offer a few of my personal strategies when I start to hit the wall of depletion. These are my go-to’s when I need to shift my perspective and start tipping my scales in the direction of pleasure. 

My 3-Part Burn-Out Cure: 

  1. Be stupid. The leap into the ludicrous is vastly underrated. This week when I found myself stressed, I decided to imitate my two-year-old neighbor, Henry, and I threw myself on the floor, kicked and screamed and had a temper tantrum. Full on. Banged on the floor with my fists, kicked and screamed, the works. It was really fun. I even stroked my own hair at the end, when I was running out of steam.

  2. Be sexy. There is nothing that brings a woman back into her right mind quicker than when she feels hot. For every woman, this might mean something different. As soon as I put on something skin tight or off the shoulder, I feel sexy. Lip gloss has helped me out of more than a few rough afternoons. When you are burned out, not a single shred of your being will want to be sexy. Don’t let that stop you. Sexy, just for you, is a foolproof instant cure for whatever ails you.

  3. Be soulful. Connecting with your inner divinity through meditation, song, prayer, dance, or placing yourself in the hands of mother nature will immediately pop you back into your own radiance. There are many ways back to sanity, and connecting to our own higher power is the ultimate power source.

Now, I want to hear from you. . .  

In the comments below, tell me your top strategies when you’re feeling burned out – what have you tried? What has helped the most? The least? How can you get a little stupid-sexy-soulful today? 

xo,
mamagena_sig

 

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  • Laura December 14, 2016, 7:11 pm

    Love Love and maximum Respect Mama Gena!

    Burn out… I get up, put on some music, take a walk, allow myself to wander, take a shower or a nap in the middle of the day, take a dance class (West African is amazing for shaking shit up and out of your body), allow a freak out, hug myself, love myself more, let go <3

  • Adora November 30, 2016, 8:54 pm

    I used to know and have good self care. Now as a single mother to a 2 1/2 year old I feel shot down by life. I can barely remember what it feels like to feel true joy and self love. I miss myself. I’m a healer who’s not doing her healing work because there no time or money for me to even receive close to the healing I need to be back in balance. I long for the day I am happy to truly be alive again. To feel my sensuality. To dance and feel passion. To make love. To feel love in my heart. To no longer be bitter, angry, and alone.

  • Nicaela Callimanopulos November 26, 2016, 3:58 pm

    Moving energy and connectingly soulfully and with my spirit are the best remedies for remembering the parts of myself I forget!

  • P November 24, 2016, 8:40 am

    How to brighten up when one has been in a foreign country for the past 5 years with absolutely no friends at all ? With all efforts ( thousands ) to find great work , do more have fallen flat . When no doors open even after repeated knockings? Burnt out completely . Nervous , no self power , anxious , no faith in life . Could someone tell me where do I begin , to begin to rejuvenate , heal and shine ?

  • Bridj November 23, 2016, 3:40 pm

    This is just what I needed to be reminded of. What has worked? Sometimes telling myself a few jokes (the cornier, the better), or going to talk to my sisters about what’s going on in our lives and the world, or attending a special gathering. Soaking up the presences of children, without trying to intervene or be their authority (my own children & nieces), What has not worked? Venting works far less than I like to believe. And venting to the wrong person or group can be a disaster.

  • April November 20, 2016, 7:04 pm

    Luv this! Silly, Sexy and Soulful….
    Silly – just spending time with friends and stupidly laughing,
    Sexy – self pampering, pedi & mani, sexy bra & panties
    Soulful- reading , getting my ass to an AA mtg, journaling
    I work 2 jobs and still struggle financially but it’s getting better the more true I stay to myself. Life is too short I know this 1st hand ..so I try to get the most out of every moment

  • Georgina Edwards November 18, 2016, 9:03 am

    I find that just giving myself permission to have a nap. I get into my bed, read some beautiful spiritual literature and meditate into sleep. I used to think that was really lazy, now I realise it means when I carry on the rest of my day, I’m really rejuvenated and not worn out.

  • Robin November 16, 2016, 11:09 pm

    As a caregiver and woman I realize we must give back to ourselves otherwise burnout can occur. I disappear from work sometimes and nurture myself by clearing out clutter and getting organized. It allows more positive energy to enter my life. It eliminates chaos from the body, mind, spirit and personal environment. It’s not always easy to purge but the reward is visually pleasing and you can stop thinking. Be a human being not a human doing! I also get a massage whenever I feel skin hunger. If your irritable and frustrated it is renewing and replenishing. We all know there is no substitute for the human touch!

  • Kellie November 16, 2016, 3:17 pm

    Great article. I focus on bringing beauty and comfort to my surroundings! This brings me to a state of relaxation that makes me want to get out and enjoy Mother Nature.

  • Karin Bellantoni November 16, 2016, 11:09 am

    **It is important to understand that once you have physical symptoms of burnout you must get all your blood work done and find a good healer who can work with your biofeedback, nutrition and herbs. This is a SERIOUS condition and can be confused with depression. A proper diagnosis is essential.

    Here are my tips to help you avoid burnout:
    1. Create a morning routine- Routines are a way of sending a message to your unconscious that you are back in charge.
    Stick to the routine unless you fall off and then just get back on. Accountability buddies are great for this.
    2. Go to bed earlier and get up earlier. More better rest helps alot. When you introduce a new thing (morning routine) you want to make space for it so….
    3. Stop thinking about having to and should and only do what must be done for two weeks. Give the shoulding all over yourself a break. Nothing will suffer without you and guilt sucks the life out of you. When the two weeks is up you create a new routine and integrate back in what you must while seeing what you could delegate, outsource or forget.

    • Katie Lynn February 25, 2017, 5:23 pm

      Love love this, thank you.

  • Elena November 16, 2016, 11:02 am

    When I feel down – I pray! I meditate! I take a bath! I read a love novel! And go for a long, long, long walk! The most helpful always is my dogs! They give me love anytime I need! Thanks God I have them!

  • Mae November 16, 2016, 7:56 am

    I’m stuck. Physically, emotionally, mentally. I try the looking sexy. I need to except my age, but I always have the weight of the world on top of me

  • Laurie irwin November 16, 2016, 7:26 am

    How timely this writing is for me. I have realized that you do not have to have a stressful job, a family and on and on. Sometimes you can just get burned out on lonliness, getting older, wishing things were different,etc. Supposedly I have no stressors in my life but I am burned out on just staying happy because I am me. I try not to create dramas and just move through life with love but learning a new way of living is incredibly stress producing. I appreciate all of Mama Gena’s words and everything that all of you have shared. We are a brilliant bunch of women and I can see it in your words and faces and feel it in your hugs.

    IMy spring cleaning partner of 3 years passed away a couple of months ago and I miss her more than I can ever say. She knitted me a scarf (with her daughters help) and everynight I wrap it around my neck and feel embraced by love.

    I am embracing all of you now through all your trips and falls and your journey through your life

  • Nancy November 16, 2016, 6:38 am

    Consequences of personal neglect: stressed, burned out, “cortisoled” to the max yielding to depression, irritation, sadness, loneliness and anger. The last few years of this condition have created inflammation in my body, spending weeks of time & $ “doctoring” to find answers. Till starting to read Mama Gena’s blog, just about ready to give up. But … a lingering spark or ember in this old body tells me to reconnect to the spirit … the woman/mother/sister/tigress within … to reignite the missing fire of this SHE-RA … as I miss her so much! Thank you for helping me find a path toward personal happiness and peace

  • Jenna November 15, 2016, 11:45 pm

    This is perfectly timed for me. I’ve been exhausted at work and inadvertently hurting myself, just this morning I fell off my stairs, thinking I was at the bottom step when I was really 2 or 3 up still, stepped out and ended up on my left side on the floor. I didn’t think much about all the injuries, all the women in my family are pretty accident prone so things like this happen on a regular basis. What was a bit strange is that the most recent spate of injuries have all been happening to my left side. I finally read this blog post after I got home from work and it was like someone had turned on the lights for me. Thank you, so much. (I’m going to go curl up on the couch with my dog and my adult coloring book now.)

  • Kellie Sue November 15, 2016, 7:40 pm

    Thank you, Mama Gena. I’m going through the ending of an 18 year relationship. I’ve been sleeping on his couch for 2 months now, because my normal flow of $$ has been weirdly MIA for the past year and a half (oddly around the time he began having his current affair). So. I. Needed. This. The last thing I feel is sexy. I feel like I have rejection energy all over me and it’s affecting everything in my life. But I do know that this too shall pass.

  • Yummie Penelope, The Queen Guinevere November 15, 2016, 7:03 pm

    Mama
    I have been so deliciously creating my own destiny that I find myself open mouthed and really juiced up and wet.

    My ex-fiancee who is delicious, has decided to betrayed me in retaliation for me wanting some space from his neediness 24/7…exhausting..

    Turning around the table and dancing on it, naked and with suspenders on and red lipsticks: I lost my job and decided to celebrate in Tuscania for two magical weekends- and cried and laughed my head off with the process of facing and standing my ground and observing patriarchal structures falling off of me…
    off off off- yes, patriarchy no longer exists- what it is now, it memory and needed to be shredded…agree?! eh?!

    so…went to Berlin…went to many places…yoga teacher training…you name it…

    dedicated to Spirit
    fully dedicated to Spirit

    here is what happened the weekend: King Arthur came all the way from his busy travels to be with me! He took me to Camelot…where the super duper moon was blue and the ocean was spraying at me fresh during the night…and he took me to dinner, to walks, into his protection, into his amazing arms, into his full attention, into his caring, into his kindness, into his respect for me, into his love for me

    and the first days and nights was terrifying to me…i felt so afraid…i would literally shake in my golden throne… he would just say: relax, baby…everything is okay…
    my body would fidgety..and I just did not know what to do- i would dress hiding my body…with scarfs…two…

    then, one night…i asked him to get some shoes out of my car for me…he asked me which ones…i said: you pick! and he came with the sexiest shoes he found…

    i turned that into a sign: got into you my suspenders, red lipsticks and full make up like a Hollywood star…and my little navy blue dress and walked down the Castle wooden stair case… He stood up…and look at me- and breath out: you looked voluptuous tonight¬!

    I monalisa smiled at him and spent the rest of the evening, RE CE VE ING…
    I RECEIVED EVERYTHING, the light , the candle lights colors on the window, the sound of the ocean on the background, the waiters looking at me a bit nervous trying not to stare at my beauty, the carpet, the strokes of the paintings on the walls, and i looked at his eyes, finally and his adoration for me…just feels absolute enlightenment! and i kept feeling everything with my cells…
    As if existence has turned into light! colors and sounds

    and everything and everyone was magnificent and amplified beauty every where…and silence in between words, and silence in between songs, and the sound of the silverware..

    i do not remember what we spoken- i remember his beautiful face, starring at me and at my breasts…in the feeling of my pussy…

    i still feeling and feeling more when writing this now…hmmm

    so….what a prrr penelope to do!

    He was opening the elevator for me and i asked facing my back to him- Arthur, have you brought pijamas with you?

    He automatically said: Yes, Guinevere

    So, How about a pijama party and a movie? – i quietly said…

    He said: Sure…

    He asked me: my room or yours?

    I said: his

    So, we both walked to mine…I asked him to come in…he walked to my room for the first time and congratulated me for feeling like home even the bed was made…and all my things that i love are always around me…

    Thanks for your kind words, Arthurr

    Got my pijamas…and we walked to his room…with the varanda facing the ocean…and the blue supe dupe moon upon us…

    And he change his clothes to pijamas…i went to the bathroom and change into pijamas and left my suspenders ON

    and we watched the movie and I cuddled in his arms, and he touched my leg then he put his leg on top of mine…

    and ever so softly…he careessed me…i felt as if I was the most precious diamond …i felt A STAR and I AM…it changed me…I AM A STAR NOW and I SHINE STAR LIGHT

    so, the movie ended..and i said good night…
    and just more and more magical moments of Queen Guinevere and king Arthur continued to being created …

    BEautiful, Magical, Free, Relaxed

    Walking home, my sistergoddess called me and we shared a drink using for the first time, my new gift for myself- brocade glasses champagne and wine…and I shared with her my magical experience and she was so happy for me and she shared her magic with me too…we both danced through google hangout for hours…dancing on the super moon, last night…and wow wow wow…that was our contribution for our Mother Earth….we danced and we rocked our world!!!!!!!!!!!

    Yes

    Just BE
    Just BE
    Just BE
    and BEING RECEIVERS of LIGHT from everything, everyone, everywhere
    MAKING LIGHT where there was darkness
    MAKING LOVE with everything and everyone
    MAKING PEACE
    MAKING STAR out of nothing
    MAKING MORE LOVE
    MAKING MORE FUN and ENJOYABLE
    MAKING WORK FUN FUN FUN
    AND WORK IS FUN

    i will write a book about that…

    I AM A STAR and YOU ARE A STAR and WE ARE ALL STARS.

    I love you, MAMA
    I love you, SISTERS

    Girls on Fire!
    Penelope

    I AM STILL STAR LIGHTING…everything

  • Anna November 15, 2016, 5:31 pm

    Yes the last week has left me drained and depressed and the uncaring attitude of so many people to our pain is… Time to reset

    • Ruby Red November 17, 2016, 7:25 pm

      Anna I send u a big hug. There is nothing I can say that will make this horrific situation better. We will be more able to deal with it when we regain our strength and get ready to fight back.

  • SG Jules November 15, 2016, 4:15 pm

    Love it !.. Be stupid or assimilated, working on it 🙂 … at the end of the day today, last class, I met head on with a tough little Miss of a gal,18/19 years old or so and “the absolute Leader” of the pack… well, I don’t let my students charge their cell phones anymore… why, simply because I don’t feel like letting them do it anymore ! The Miss persisted and I put my fist down, literally, slammed it on my desk, it felt good, she threatened to have her dad come to meet me (to set me straight, in sorts) I said I’d be thrilled to meet him,… total silence in the classroom…..she mumbled that she’d give me a “Kinder Bueno” for Chistmas instead and unplugged her damn phone, lol. Thanks, I’m currently actively working on avoiding “burn-out !! XO

  • Eden November 15, 2016, 3:45 pm

    Thank you Mama Gena. 《3 Sacred Self-Care, Silly, Sexy, and Soulful . I love this advice.

  • Shakaya November 15, 2016, 3:23 pm

    You’ve just described the heart of my mission~
    ESC = EXQUISITE Self Care.
    This isn’t about mere pampering…
    it’s about fortifying ourselves as a channel of the Divine that we ARE.
    ESC is VITAL to a woman’s health, beauty, wealth, turn-on and her GLOW.
    Depletion energy isn’t attractive to… well, anything.
    When we take exquisite care of ourselves we are magnetic to our desires.
    Self-care isn’t selfish! It’s SACRED.
    AND the most generous way to live because then we have more to give.
    THIS is how I transformed my Slavegirl into Earth Empress 😉

  • Mary St George November 15, 2016, 2:28 pm

    Great suggestions Mana Gena, I find getting into a natural setting such as a botanical garden, or a quiet area in a park helps to erase the tension and appalling noisiness of city living.A good de stressing accupressure massage also works wonders. Sometimes I write stories that are based in other environments of calm and beauty, perhaps in other places and centuries , and that makes me feel happy and energised again. Recognising when one is over stressed us the key and then actively taking steps to stop and soothe seems to be effective for me????

  • Erin Delaney November 15, 2016, 1:40 pm

    Fabulously wonderful suggestions! Women as fully expressed women…..not women as fully expressed men. That’s there job. And they need our full expression as much as we need it. The planet desperately needs it! Let’s be Silly (aka stupid), Sexy (in whatever your version of sexy is – in any moment) and Soulful….PLEASE! (Thank you, I needed to read this today)

  • Vanessa C. November 15, 2016, 1:07 pm

    Love this, love YOU! Thank you for pioneering this movement forward. So needed in our world today!

  • Emily Shaules November 15, 2016, 1:02 pm

    Yes, oh yes!!! I loved this post, Mama, and have been telling all my friends (as well as my newsletter list) about your book. What perfect timing it has for the world right now. Keep shining like only you can!

  • Sharon Taylor November 15, 2016, 12:55 pm

    I feel sexy and empowered and renewed by: my regular meditation practice, my regular yoga practice, frequent rides in the mountains on my motorcycle and allowing myself the absolute luxury of a very sensual, very generous lover. These things ground me, enliven me, empower me and allow me to shine my light into the world.

  • Rehana November 15, 2016, 12:26 pm

    I feel that as hard as I try, I never complete anything, I don’t drive results and am
    certainly not successful. I have a lot of guilt, shame and embarrassment that I hold in my body, especially over the past week. Waking up to Mama Genas words gave me strength and I want to share.

    I recently quit my job working at a Womens Wellness Center to work with what is perceived to be one of the best technology schools in the country. I had been getting tired of massage and wanted to pursue my passion: building out a micropayment system for refugee women.
    After three months of being micromanaged by a 50-year old supervisor who repeatedly told me I was incompetent, denied me to send out emails on behalf of my own project, and had the type of energy that would send piercing daggers to those who he felt were inferior to him, I felt incredibly disempowered and bound. After one of my connections had offered a high paying contract for us to roll out his solution/system I was very excited. I had always dreamt of this for my organization. With 4 years of field experience and relationships with people on the ground, I suggested that we be separately contracted (not me subcontracted under his consulting company).

    He became mad thinking that I could think we were actually equals and begun bullying me even more. Thankfully, the contract didn’t go through but from then on things started to fall apart. I stopped taking direct orders from him and doing everything that he asked me to do.

    Last night, after many years without dancing, I decided to take a dance class. I arrived home happy and sexier than before and then I got a message from my “supervisor.” He told me that he had suspended my project and that I was to refer all contacts to him. I was told not to step foot back on campus and that I had to confirm to him that I am not going to now, or in the future, ever do anything related to this project…

    I feel shut out from an entire campus of students, professors, engineers that I had built relationships with and once again, I feel that men are blocking my ability to succeed.

    HOWEVER, I really feel like this all makes sense. Over the weekend I attended Mama Genas, The Experience. Since then I have started feeling a major shift in myself and my energy. I signed up for the Mastery program without having a job or knowing how I am going to pay for it. But I am truly ready to make a change. I want to be a bold, badass, strong, powerful Goddess… and I know it is not gonna happen by doing the same things over and over.

    • Shakaya November 15, 2016, 3:27 pm

      You’ve got this Sister Goddess Rehana!

  • Jackie Giurato November 15, 2016, 12:13 pm

    Hi.
    I believe that we were told by the women’s movement that we could do it all, and then found out that it was really hard to work full-time, raise children, and deal with all the mundane house-hold maintenance tasks required. As a result, we were truly tired. Those lucky enough to have husbands who participate in child-rearing and house-keeping may have been a bit less tired, but in my reality the bulk of the work still fell on the woman’s shoulders.

    For me yoga, reading and writing work. Recently, I have rediscovered knitting. I love the colors and textures of the yarns. But best of all is that I found S-Factor Pole Dance Studio in New York where under the watchful, nurturing gaze of their skilled instructors I was able to tap into a playful sensuality and deep emotional and physical release for which I yearned without fully realizing it. Thanks to one of the instructors, Ilov, I stayed with the program despite being “pole-challenged” and complaining of being “too fat” and “too old.” Being in her class once a week is like going to temple with the space to pray in my own way with the support and encouragement of my fellow classmates.

  • Ruby Red November 15, 2016, 11:38 am

    Right now after this unspeakably horrific “election” ( I’m using quotes because Hillary Clinton was actually elected by the majority) my depression and stress is through the roof. Dressing sexy is really not doing it for me. Once I get out of my pajamas, all I want is my motorcycle jacket or a pants suit or my combat boots. One could say that has its own powerful sexy vibe, but right now, anything conventionally sexy is a real turn-off for me.

    • Erin Delaney November 15, 2016, 1:34 pm

      Love this!!!

    • Eden November 15, 2016, 3:39 pm

      I agree!! Accepting and radiating our sultry smooth feminine nature is beautiful. Often I feel that it’s power is magnified by stepping into a role that is my own masculine protecting my feminine. Badass on, no knight required.

  • lomo November 15, 2016, 11:26 am

    Thank you – i would add that the “Imbalanced masculine values of our patriarchal culture” are also inherent in White Supremacy – naming this and how we are all affected is power full. As a white womyn i continuously explore at how i play a role in perpetuating white supremacy by enacting these healthy practices. And how i all ways have the choice to choose slow sweetness as we work and play for racial and economic equity. Full of pleasure, joy and power. Much desired in these times: nourished by our ancestors who have all ways been doing liberation work….we can learn and honor them with our resilient fiere tender love manifested!!

  • Shivani Grail November 15, 2016, 11:18 am

    Thanks for opening this subject. I’m there now! Began a new biz, hubby on a career path and my Mother in the dying process.
    Feeling exhausted even after a nights sleep.
    Took up S Factor dance and “climbed to the top of the pole. Pure Exhilaration! It was Only For Me! ????
    Yes, need to get on supplements and better diet. Thank you.

  • Rachel November 15, 2016, 11:16 am

    To be honest I don’t know how to reset. It’s almost impossible for me to. Following today for ideas.

  • Katharine Hill November 15, 2016, 10:37 am

    Thank you once again, Mama Gena. You’ve hit the nail on the head. I too am angry and just ripped off a letter to my local paper. I said I’ve been feeling like Flat Stanley and the steamroller keeps coming. Lots of vigorous sex, dancing, and speed walking required!!! Oh and maybe a nice long soak in my bath afterwards.

  • Susan Bernardo November 15, 2016, 10:36 am

    Mmmmmm, thank you for this! About eight years ago, I was a broken anxious overstressed wreck. My marriage was a mess (I didn’t realize then that my husband was having an affair & a baby with another woman and gaslighting me!). I collapsed, could barely mother my kids, had to let go of a lot of volunteer commitments and focus on getting my self back to myself. I went into self-care overdrive, deferred maintenance! Talk therapy helped a bit, but the best tools were process art, nature, ecstatic dance, gratitude journals, a retreat to Esalen – these helped me regain my strength . Once my ex was out of the picture, I took a lover and rediscovered my sensuality, which had gotten buried under layers of “shoulds.” My new mantra became “relax, receive, radiate.” I am with a loving, nurturing, deliciously masculine new partner now, who loves to please me. I have a fabulous new career writing books to help children cope with loss, separation and trauma – a beautiful transmuting of my own feelings and painful experiences. And I still regularly use all of the above expressive arts when I began to feel out of balance or find myself worrying that I am “not enough.” And… Your blog posts are always such a beautiful and timely reminder to follow joy, pleasure and my intuition – thanks for being a guiding light!

  • M November 15, 2016, 10:36 am

    These recommendations are wonderful and I promise to try them all! However, I want to speak up because I’ve been recovering from a severe Burnout/adrenal insufficiency for the past year. This disease is not mental; it has physical manifestations in the body that affect multiple systems. To heal requires rest and reset, but also concrete chemical interventions (in the form of supplements and diet) so that the body can recover! I went without treatment for waaaayy too long, and made myself a lot sicker, because I thought burnout was only happening in my brain. A great book I can recommend (despite the cheesecake title) is: Feeling Fat, Fuzzy, or Frazzled? …If you are feeling “off,” or like you’re continually pushing yourself upwards on the down-escalator (putting in more effort than ever but achieving less), you might want to check it out. Love you, Mama Gena, and thanks.

    • M November 15, 2016, 10:38 am

      PS, I would characterize Mama Gena’s recommendations as great Burnout PREVENTION! …Don’t let yourself get to the point that I did! xoxox