Mum nodding off as kids run around making noise

2020 hasn’t exactly been the year we’d been hoping or planning for. Many of us are experiencing greater anxiety around job security or home working.

Add to that, homeschooling and grocery shopping, lockdown and a sense of uncertainty in the future, this year has increased our workloads, reinforced many of society’s expectations of us at home and work, strained our relationships and well, frankly, left us running on empty.

It’s knocked our self-belief and momentum to achieve, as well as making many of us question our values and aspirations. It turned up the volume of our Imposter’s voice as it speaks more harshly to us.

Did you know women are 60% more likely to burnout then our male counterparts as we rely on adrenaline for our Super Woman heroics? 

I know how easily I can justify to myself prioritising deadlines, saying yes to a friend’s ask or going that bit extra on a client deliverable or making space in my diary for someone else. 

All those things make me feel good about myself, valued and valuable.

But it comes at a cost.

Eating ready meals or snacking on chocolate biscuits as a quick fix. Skipping an exercise class or run. Ditching date night. Falling asleep during bedtime stories or on the sofa. Not having time to shower or wearing that “messy bun” again. Patchy sleep, waking with a spinning mind. Snapping over nothing. Catching every cough or worse that’s going around. 

Life living in Superwoman is unsustainable and her 3 friends are never far behind. Oh here they are. Hello Bitch, Martyr and Victim.

Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.

ELEANOR BROWNN, AUTHOR

Leveraging our empowering Women’s Powertypes can help us manage our boundaries from Queen, feel connected through Sorceress with Warrioress delivering on all fronts and Mother supporting those around us who are struggling with the ongoing impacts and uncertainty of COVID. All helpful in some way to manage your exhaustion.

None of these will enable you to show yourself radical self care to fill your vessel to overflowing.

I mentioned last week that one of the blockers to achieving greater consistency is not meeting our needs. We need to lean into our Lover Powertype to replenish our spirits and our bodies.

Lover delights in giving and receiving pleasures – yes in the bedroom, but also through our five senses. She tends to our physical, psychological and relational needs – our nourishment, our exercise, our mental wellbeing, our connection to others. Food is enjoyed with mindfulness of the colours, textures and tastes. Dance and movement has Lover revelling in how unique and special our bodies are. Indulging in self hand massage whilst waiting for the next zoom call to start brings vitality to her. She enjoys a quiet aromatic cup of tea, whilst letting her mind drift and step out of the storm.

Each action filling or refilling our empty vessels to give us the capacity to serve others without depletion.

One of my coaching tools is to create a simple one pager of our needs and how we serve them daily, weekly or monthly. I invite coachees or workshop participants to explore and trial new ways to meet their needs, as well as build consistency around them to fill and refill their vessels.

Replenish before you pick your battle was one of my consistency tips last week. 

Today, I invite you to reflect on one small action you could add from Lover to your day by pleasuring your senses. One small action you could commit to without guilt or cost. 

Then apply the nudge theory from October Shares – put it in your phone reminders, put a post-it note on your mirror, place the hand cream on your desk, pop your journal and pen next to your bed, set yourself up for success and consistency. 

Pick your battle and do it every day.

Let me leave you this other less well-known quote from Eleanor Brownn. I wonder if it might help us radically care for ourselves a little easier as we refill our vessels.

The OTHER Serenity Prayer: Grant me the serenity to stop beating myself up for not doing things perfectly, the courage to forgive myself because I’m working on doing better, and the wisdom to know you already love me just the way I am

ELEANOR BROWNN, AUTHOR

Women enjoying fresh cup of tea in peace