Is BURNOUT a status symbol these days?

Posted On Jul 29, 2021 |

How many people we can hear these days talking about burnout? Or about their busy-ness: not having time to meet friends, read a book, watch a movie or just rest?
Our Milica raised this question few days ago inspired by a post of Brene Brown on LinkedIn:
"It takes courage to say YES to rest and play in a culture where exhaustion is seen as status symbol". So our team decided to dive in this topic and share some thoughts.

People are not machines, they have feelings, thoughts, attitudes, but they sometimes act like they are. Until their wellbeing is attacked.

Here is my personal example, two weeks ago in a peer coaching session my topic was: How to try to have 30 minutes for myself without doing anything, planning next step, reading something, scroll on the networks... And I have to admit that I was not so successful in it next days.

Has busy life became somehow a must? Do we feel ashamed if we take a little time for ourselves? If we say NO to some new obligation or task?
Here is what Tijana and Milena have to say on this.

"For me - one of the most shocking realizations was when once filtering through a yoga database with over 5000 different classes to choose from -  the single largest category in ‘your focus’ filter was ‘learn to relax’. When and how did it become so difficult to stop, to reflect, to relax? In a typical yoga asana practice,  it is often said the only ‘obligatory’ pose is a so calls ‘shavasana ‘ -  where you ‘just’ lay on your back, absorb effects of your practice and let the energy settle. Often even just 3 minutes is enough and even for this most practitioners need support from the teachers with phrases such as ‘allow yourself this time to rest’. 
It is similar in coaching. For many of us coaches, it is sooo difficult to stop and allow your client even 5 seconds to think something through… most of us feel guilty in those moments  of ‘not using the time in the most  effective way’! Another challenge - not to have an agreed action at the end of a session, casually called ‘homework’ - to bridge the time between two meetings with something concrete, measurable to do! 
It s definitely seen as a positive trait to always be in action, always striving, achieving. How is it that we now need to ‘learn to relax’? Should not that be a most natural action to ‘ know’? Should we not focus a bit more on just being instead of constantly doing? That in my view would help beat burnout


 what do you think?", shares Tijana, who is instructor of yoga, beside being a certified coach.

Milena Nikolić, coach and psychologist would say it is a bit of a trend in business, being exhausted and burnout.

"At the same time I see a new trend emerging on the horizon.
Something more towards 'It is cool to take care of yourself and be unavailable sometimes.'
To add on what Tijana mentioned, the traces of what is latter burnout syndrome, we can witness  everywhere. From everyday business, yoga, coaching, everyday life, etc.

I have met burnout. Both personally, as individual, and quite many times as professional in my client. For me it was a lack of different roles managing skills. 

While family and business were growing simultaneously, not longer babies but still needed a lot of care. I wanted to be at my best wearing all different hats at the time. The learning was - 'It is OK to give what is your optimum at the moment'.

Working with clients I witnessed different narratives.
- CEO being in burnout and unintentionally creating a burnout culture,
- a burnout led to career change and prosperity
- woman small business  owner/leader understanding that her dealing with her wellbeing is helping the company grow,
- CEO employing coach with a mission 'helping leaders spread their own horizons", shares Milena different aspects of her experience with burnout.

In next few weeks we are preparing several articles/interviews with our alumni's on several topics connected to mental wellbeing coaching.
Exploring burnout more but also how coaching can help dealing with it is what you can expect next from our alumni coaches and psychologists Dunja and Katarina.
Stay tuned :)