I'm going to share something about my work that I sometimes try to keep a bit of a secret! Whenever I work with someone who wants to lose weight, I actually start my work with them on all the other things. I've found by approach things in this "through the backdoor" way, that I can actually more quickly discover what's actually at the root, causing the extra weight, and help my clients reach their natural weight much faster!
One part of the unravelling of this mystery is looking at how we are taking care of ourselves. I've been doing that with some of my friends and colleagues as well. I hope this story from Marianita Love Pabalate and her journey to overcome exhaustion helps you gain awareness on how my approach really looks at the WHOLE you!
Let's get started by jumping right in. This series is about personal stories of extreme exhaustion, and how they affect us and our lives. Unfortunately people throw around terms like "exhausted" or "burned out" like a badge of honor. When you hit a point where your energy was so low that you really considered it serious, how did you know?
Physically after the lack of sleep and body fatigue, I always feel heavy. It felt like I'm dragging my every step. I have no motivation to move. And my gut was unbalanced, it was not happy. Mentally, my mind was blank, empty. No matter which of my go-to creative inspirational thing I do, nothing works. It feels like all my creative energy has been literally sucked out of me with a vacuum and I deflated.
Thank you for sharing. I got inspired to ask others to share their story with exhaustion when I faced my own diagnosis of adrenal fatigue. It's a sad reality that so many people face that or have a lifestyle that is sending them down that path. After you realized you needed things to change how did you go about it?
First thing I did was accepted the fact that I am tired and exhausted. That I should stop working, for now, get my mind off work, do not touch any pencil or paintbrushes nor my planner. I reflected. Went back to gratitude, for all the things that are happening, happened, and about to happen. I went back to my values. My values were definitely not being met that's why I reached the point of burned out. I then realized which ones I need to attend to.
Was it a smooth journey?
I wouldn't say it was a smooth journey. Because controlling myself to not work, not worry about work, and just relax was hard. I always had the urge to keep moving, whether it's laundry, cleaning, errands, etc.
You've been through a lot. You've been to what I call "the pit of despair," where everything feels so overwhelming or demanding that you kind of want to throw in the towel. And yet I know for myself that it was not depression. Depression, of course, is its own dark place, but fatigue is different. For me, I still wanted to do the normal things... But felt like it was just too much work. What advice do you have for someone who feels fatigued or even simply worn out on an ongoing basis?
Do not ignore signs and do not ignore your values. These are our guiding principles. With this chaotic and demanding world, we had always gone with the flow of constantly moving. If we can regularly check in with ourselves, ask the real hard questions like "How are you REALLY feeling?" It can help us limit the burned out feeling.
Was your weight a concern during this time in your life? If so, how did overcoming the fatigue change what was going on with your weight?
Weight was not a usual concern, other than when I know I've been overworking I don't eat regularly. Over time I can lose weight. Or stressed that I eat random unhealthy binges. Or time when I do not consider my wellness because of lack of inspiration which coincide with lackluster feeling about myself and business, I could gain weight.
Is there anything you can say was a silver lining to the experience you had with fatigue/exhaustion?
It just further reminded me that I need to check in with myself regularly. And that I should always put myself first, my wellness, and love on myself first.
OK, now for a few fun questions! Where do you live and what do you do there-for work and for fun?
I live in Los Angeles, CA. I am a freelance illustrator and I have my own business with my art inspired pieces. Just like other city dwellers, I like to see friends hang out at a cafe, venture out to new restaurants, visit local museums and events, drive up to nearby cities for getaways or drive to the mountainside.
What is a surprising food you just love to eat?
I like bitter foods. I like dark chocolates, the 90%+ kind, and dishes with bittermelon.
One thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I still enjoy watching whimsical animation movies and cartoons, even those made for kids.
Thank you! Where can people find you to learn more about you?
Marianita Love Pabalate, artist and owner of RipeMangoes.com
I know I don't usually talk too much about the environment, but I am a lifelong tree hugger!!! And certifiably a minimum of 51% hippie.
In fact, I think everyone should be at least 25% hippie. (Not the self righteous, or lazy part.)
We should all be the part that is idealistic, inspired, passionate, and environmentally friendly.
Even my sister, who used to get SO MAD when I burned incense in my room, is now 25% hippie. (But neither of us burn incense now.)
In fact you don't need to be a hippie, you can just be hip. Because making choices that benefit all of us tend to benefit the environment.
I'd love to share with you some of the fun and surprising ways you can be hip and hug trees.
Shopping at the farmers market is an environmentally friendly thing to do. And of course it's a great way to eat healthy food, enjoy the weather, and meet and support your local farmers!
Wherever you shop, choosing lots of fruits and veggies is a great and simple step to nourish yourself and also lower your impact on the environment. Keeping your fruit bowl full makes it easy to choose a healthy and delicious snack on the go and minimize the processed food you eat and the waste that goes along with it!
Cooking your own food from scratch is an incredibly environmentally friendly thing to do! Imagine it...baking your own sourdough bread...fermenting your own kimchi...drinking homemade kombucha...Yes, being a foodie is good for the earth!! Doesn't that make you want to be hip???
Getting rid of clutter is an environmentally friendly thing to do - it helps us buy less, it is an opportunity to recycle old items into reuse by another person (so they can avoid purchasing something new and therefore minimize their environmental impact).
Reducing your stress is good for the environment, too. This may not make sense immediately, but the way we treat ourselves directly correlates the way we treat the environment. As a society we deplete ourselves and consume too much in our personal lives. We basically do that to the environment, too. Taking the time to contemplate and draw firm boundaries to protect yourself will allow you to be your best self, which allows you to help others, which allows us to protect our environment.
How we live our daily life and the simple choices we make are the foundation for our own healthy life and the health of the environment. If we can live a life in alignment with our values most of the time, with plenty of room for fun and relaxation included, and of course with the grace to forgive ourselves for the short cuts and mistakes along the way, we can live a life that feels great and protects our world for the future.
I am so excited for the second in a series of guest posts from my fellow Boss Moms! What I love about Lauren is that she is very honest about how the same struggles affect ALL of us, and giving clear examples and steps to overcome them. Like this post on perfectionism... who hasn't fallen into this trap before? I hope you enjoy her insights!
PERFECTIONISM: ONE LIE & A TRUTH - BY LAUREN COPELAND
Perfection is a bad boss. As in, a micromanaging boss that is always breathing down your neck. I remember when I first considered becoming a Life Coach, and a thought that crossed my mind was, ‘I’m too introverted, why even try?’. There was NO way I had all the traits that a perfect coach needed.
I mean seriously, what does a ‘perfect’ coach even look like? I didn’t know. However, my inner critic was whispering that it was anything but me.
Perfection is lying to us.
The lie? That we can and have to ‘obtain’ it (perfection).
But there is a truth.
The truth? Perfection is not something we obtain. It is a PERCEPTION.
A perfect workout looks different for you than it does for your best friend. A perfect dinner looks one way for me, a different way for you. Maybe yours is a frozen lasagna, hot out of the oven with no kids whining over the chunky tomatoes; while mine might look like a 4-course meal with an epic dessert. The truth is, is doesn’t really matter! We beat ourselves up over perceptions, and sometimes we let it scare us enough that we never even get started in the first place.
I can think of a million conversations that never started because I was fearful of sounding ‘foolish’.
I can think of a thousand workouts that never began because I didn’t have ‘enough’ time.
I can think of hundreds of projects that were never finished because they were not turning out ‘right’.
Do you have some things coming to mind, too? Perfection makes life HARD. It eats at us. And it wears us down until we give up, walk away, or stress ourselves out never being able to get things good enough.
But what if perfection didn’t have to be our boss? What if we chose, right now, what side of the perfection perception we want to be on? (That’s a tongue twister, huh?)
What would it look like?
What would you choose?
Life CAN be perfectly imperfect. What if we let go of the lie, and started chasing the truth?
Send that email you still think isn’t good enough (even though you’ve tweaked it 10 times).
Start that project you’ve been putting off because you don’t have ‘all’ the supplies.
Wear that shirt you love, even if Sally at work probably won’t like it.
Do that workout even though you only have 10 minutes instead of 30, today.
To help you quickly discover what perfectly imperfect means for you and your life, I put together this simple guide sheet, so that you can get started chasing the truth, right now! Grab it HERE!
There is power in answering the tough questions and digging deeper. And there is unmeasurable power and peace that comes from finding perfect imperfection for yourself. I’ll see you on the other side of perfection! (And don’t forget your guide sheet!)
XOXO – Lauren