Book Talk Sunday: Burnout: The Secret of Unlocking the Stress Cycle

Sundays seem like a good time to talk about the books I’ve read! I’m not going to give ratings, or stars, or gold crowns. I’m just going to offer a few of my thoughts.

Burnout: The Secret of Unlocking the Stress Cycle by Emily Nagoski, PhD, and Amelia Nagoski, DMA

Published:   Ballantine Books, 2020

Length: 304 pages

Categories: Self Help / Personal Development / Non Fiction / Psychology / Feminism

Blurb:

Burnout. Many women in America have experienced it. What’s expected of women and what it’s really like to be a woman in today’s world are two very different things—and women exhaust themselves trying to close the gap between them. Sisters Emily Nagoski, PhD, and Amelia Nagoski, DMA, are here to help end the cycle of feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. Instead of asking us to ignore the very real obstacles and societal pressures that stand between women and well-being, they explain with compassion and optimism what we’re up against—and show us how to fight back. In these pages you’ll learn

• what you can do to complete the biological stress cycle—and return your body to a state of relaxation
• how to manage the “monitor” in your brain that regulates the emotion of frustration
• how the Bikini Industrial Complex makes it difficult for women to love their bodies—and how to defend yourself against it
• why rest, human connection, and befriending your inner critic are keys to recovering and preventing burnout

With the help of eye-opening science, prescriptive advice, and helpful worksheets and exercises, all women will find something transformative in these pages—and will be empowered to create positive change. Emily and Amelia aren’t here to preach the broad platitudes of expensive self-care or insist that we strive for the impossible goal of “having it all.” Instead, they tell us that we are enough, just as we are—and that wellness, true wellness, is within our reach. 

My Thoughts:

Who couldn’t use some help dealing with burnout and stress? Life can elevate stress levels at the best of times. Add in a global pandemic and…yikes. Our lives have changed, and continue to change. This book was written in the Before Times, but it’s definitely worth reading in the Now Times. It’s the first self-help book I’ve ever managed to read all the way through to the end.

I learned human Giver Syndrome is a thing and what it means, and things make so much sense now.

Human givers must, at all times, be pretty, happy, calm, generous, and attentive to the needs of others, which means they must never be ugly, angry, upset, ambitious, or attentive to their own needs

emily nagoski and amelia nagoski, burnout

By understanding societal norms and living with the daily expectations of what it means to be female, we can avoid disappearing beneath the weight of those expectations. Recovering from the weight of being everything to every one before looking after ourselves can be a daunting task and I was happy to find practical advice.

I wanted a book about stress that centred on the female experience. I wanted relatable content and practical advice. I feel like I got both those things with this book. I feel like I have a better understanding of how necessary it is to acknowledge feeling burnt out, and how to develop strategies to deal with both stress and with stressors.

I felt seen reading this book. I found resources. I found strategies. I would definitely recommend it.

Until next time…

Anyone else feeling stressed these days? Have you read Burnout? What did you think?

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A Pair of Pink Sweatpants Hits The Trash

Mr. Jeffries, you may not think we're cool but, believe me, we're okay with that.

Mr. Jeffries, you may not think we’re cool but, believe me, we’re okay with that.

You know how it is. You go to the mall and you get a little crazy over the sheer volume of clothing stores and choice of retailers. You think there has to be some way to narrow it down. Some way to shop for your teenage son or daughter but have it be a little less intimidating. If only you knew what stores to skip and not waste your time on, let alone your hard-earned money.

So thank you Mr. Jeffries of infamous Abercrombie & Fitch fame for narrowing that choice down so succinctly. Not that you care we won’t be shopping at your stores as we can hardly be accused of ‘cool’ in this house. We’ve never quite gotten the hang of ‘cool’, thank goodness. We’ve always just kind of done or worn whatever we wanted.

So, we’re not going to waste any sleep over your words. Or your opinion. But those pink sweatpants? They’re in the garbage. Just my little way of sticking it to the man. Funny thing? No one’s noticed they’re gone. Or cares we won’t be shopping at your stores. Ever. Again.

A Message to Abercrombies by Sara Taney Humphreys / Huffington Post

So, Dove Has This New Commercial…

So, there’s a new video going all kinds of viral because of it’s message about female beauty. How we see ourselves versus how others see us. It emphasizes how critical we are of our appearance. Let’s be clear on this. Our appearance. Not our inner beauty. Or our smarts. Or kind acts. Or anything else but our hair, chin, eyes, and shape of our face. What we see when we look in the mirror.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iswiKQbtwXQ

The message? How we think of ourselves in terms of appearance affects every aspect of our lives. And most women don’t appreciate how beautiful they are. Ergo, we’re not as happy or confident as we should be.

Well, there’s a shocker.  Not like our insecurities haven’t turned the health and beauty market into a multi-billion dollar industry or anything.

The answer? Celebrate our natural beauty. Buy Dove products.

Because let’s be clear on something else. They want us to use their shampoos and lotions, etc. And great on them. We all need those things. And there’s nothing wrong with a message that suggests we should be kind to ourselves when we look in the mirror. To appreciate the beauty staring back at us. We all have it. And if watching their video inspires you to look for some of that awesomeness the next time you’re in front of a mirror — wonderful!

But Dove is also owned by the same company (Unilever) who sells Axe. So there you go.

We need to find the self-confidence to know we’re beautiful because of who we are, what we believe, and the things we do. Because we are unique. We are individuals who are more than the sum of our physical parts.

Because we are not here to be seen. We are here to be heard.