Viewing posts categorised under: Burnout
When faced with corporate burnout and her own threatened state of wellbeing, Neroli Jones, founder of PS embarked on a journey of personal discovery. She identified four key quadrants that underpin our wellbeing – and realised that it is not until these are in balance, that we can expect to feel a complete sense of health. These pillars, she names - the Physical, Mental, Purposeful and Emotional.
"I call this our Wellbeing Compass"
When our Wellbeing Compass is in balance, we can navigate successfully through the pathway of life's highs and lows with ease, effortlessly. On the other hand, when it is not balanced, that is when the problems start.
Until now emotional wellbeing has been quite overlooked, with much of what we see in the news focused on mental health. The emotional impact on our lives has traditionally been sidelined or neglected altogether. If mental health is that of the mind, emotional health is that of our feelings and the related aspects of that – our relationships with others and with ourselves.
A few years ago, when Neroli was caught in an unexpected downward spiral, her health alerted her to a crisis point before she had worked out that apart from addressing the obvious physical imbalance, it was the emotional side of things that really needed attention. Being a high achiever, placing unrealistic demands on her body, she'd turned to pushing herself harder in an attempt to improve her fitness and physical health. This, in fact proved not to be the answer and had she listened to her body in the first instance, the crisis might have been easily avoided.
It was not until Neroli acknowledged her body's cry for attention that she could flip the paradigm and start to give it the love it so desperately yearned for. So, baby steps of self-kindness were taken to get her health back on track; wellbeing became her utmost priority. We are not programmed to be kind to ourselves and it is often seen to be a form of self indulgence, but this illuminating journey helped to navigate her pathway to wellbeing, big breakthroughs and quantum leaps. Learning to love ourselves where we are right now, not where we could be / should be / are expected to be – but right here.
Emotions are simply feelings with a judgement attached. Once we understand this, the rest falls into place.
Emotional wellbeing is about truth – the truth of now. It’s about self-acceptance without judgement and it’s about love. More often than not, we feed ourselves a diet of toxic lies. Our relationship with ourselves is the most profoundly complex relationship we will ever navigate and yet we spend most of our time developing or managing relationships with others, outside ourselves.
Emotional wellbeing focuses on your relationship with you…. ask yourself regularly – how does this (person, event, conversation, activity – whatever) make me feel? Do I want more of that or less of that? How you feel
tells you everything.
You actually do know what you need, you do
know what makes you happy, but you do need to invest the time to listen. That's called emotional wellbeing.
To understand your personal wellbeing and discover how balanced you are, go to the Paradigm Switch compass tool
and spend a few minutes to reveal where you need to focus on improvement. You might be quite surprised at the results. The PS Compass will point to the quadrant that needs most work, so you then can be directed to the best suited therapies.
Recently our CEO Neroli Jones, had the privilege of attending a prestigious HR summit in the Gold Coast which proved to be enlightening on many levels, one being the growth and acceptance with which meditation and mindfulness has been accepted into the workplace.
What might once have been judged as all a bit too ‘out there’ or ‘kooky’ within this environment has now become widely embraced as a proven technique to manage stress and enhance productivity.
INCREASE YOUR PERFORMANCE BY CALMING DOWN
The term “stress” was coined in 1942 by neuroscientists and was identified as a common life event placing physiological overload due to undue pressure. This potentially leads to long-lasting effects on our health and behaviour. Source
Think of an ocean that can be choppy on the surface, but is always calm underneath. In a similar way, stress works on the surface, on our frontal lobe of the brain provoking the fight/flight reflex. If we are to bypass it, we need to delve deeper. Sadly, we live most of our lives on the surface. This is where meditation comes in, allowing us to access this calmer part of our brain, by shutting down the limbic brain and frontal lobe.
Stop being busy by staying on the surface
While our fight or flight activation was important for survival, traditionally it was intended to be used only once a month or so. However today, in 2017 we tend to live there far too frequently - just like having our foot on the accelerator continuously, without using the brakes! Meditation helps us to take a break and heal.
With meditation our mind forces the body to slow down, allowing it the time to heal. Meditation lowers the body metabolic rate by 24%, while sleep lowers it by only 8%. When we meditate we cause the heart rate and lungs to slow down, as well as dropping our body temperature. This means less wear and tear on our body organs and cell mechanisms, less toxic chemicals are produced, more energy is saved and the natural processes of repair and rejuvenation are allowed to flow easily.
MEDITATION GIVES US PERSPECTIVE
As meditation is soothing our overheated metabolism and slowing down body function, it allows us to look inside and see how we have allowed ourselves to speed up in the first place. We are given a new perspective by becoming aware of our roles, how we have been taught, trained a
nd conditioned to act in set patterns without perhaps questioning them. Meditation first teaches us to be aware, and then gives us the capacity to slow down, take control, and focus.
Meditation promotes mental clarity and coherence, as shown when we have an MRI that can measure transcendental consciousness - a state of restful alertness or meditative state. The body is allowed time to repair, the mind can focus and our general state of wellbeing is brought back into balance.
It is no wonder the workplace has joined the rest of the world and is implementing the power of meditation. What works on an individual level is just as effective in a workplace.
Running from one activity to another everyday has become second nature to us. In fact, many of us become quite stressed and disorientated if we find ourselves with a sudden 20 minutes to spare, don’t we?
But taking time out of your day offers enormous benefits for the health and recharges our stress and anxiety levels. We used to say “stop and smell the roses” which resonated with us for centuries. Ever wondered why?
We have energy peaks and troughs cycling through 90-minute periods during our day. “Taking a 20-minute break between each of these allows us to get more done, at a higher level, in less time and with energy left to spare.” Advises medical practitioner, Dr Jenni Brockis
Students are urged to tune out or recharge intermittently, before neurotransmitters that send the brain messages are depleted and burnout is experienced. This is especially important for those with ADHD, Dyslexia or Anxiety Disorders.
The brain gets fatigued just like our bodies, so a digital detox allows your brain some welcome recharge time, as well as reducing stress levels. Aim for a 15 minute digital break after every 2 hours’ work, to gain greater focus and clarity.
A good way to give our bodies a break is by reducing our intake of toxins. Consciously remove processed foods containing artificial additives, colours or preservatives from your diet to give the liver a rest. A break from alcohol and coffee will also “treat” your precious temple to a rest; you will feel healthier and have noticeably more energy as a result.
At work, moving away from the desk, standing up and taking a few stretches every few hours, will come as a welcome relief for your back and neck and revitalise you on even the most sluggish of days.
Sleep is probably the most under-rated body regenerator, where a minimum of 6-8 hours a night is recommended for happy healthy bodies.
Studies show encounters with nature
help alleviate mental fatigue by relaxing and restoring the mind, which ultimately contributes to improved wellbeing, work performance and satisfaction.
Combine some pr
ecious moments amidst nature with mindfulness – consciously becoming aware of the moment, harnessing the mind into the present – even just a few minutes a day can powerfully reduce stress and anxiety.
One last thing - take a few minutes to do something nice. Praise someone, notice how people support you and say Thank You!
Time out :)
It doesn’t just happen at work…
Workplace wellbeing is only one part of the spectrum – personal empowerment and optimum health and wellbeing options are extended via our PS Compass portal
Because we’ve been there…
Neroli Jones - senior media professional now CEO of Paradigm Switch, PS Works, PS Compass and PS Sanctuary. Business leader in strategy, change, communications and analytics. Burnt out corporate leader who successfully navigated her own paradigm switch…
PSWorks is led by a team of business professionals who source the very best qualified practitioners and therapists to provide one easy answer to sourcing onsite health and wellbeing solutions.
Because of what we’re not…
We’re not general medical practitioners.
Nor are we just alternative – we’re preventative in that we take a helicopter view of overall health and wellbeing and design treatments and programs that address areas of concern and potential.
Workplace wellbeing has moved on - have you?
It’s no longer just about having a gym or offering fresh fruit and an annual flu shot, biometric testing or charity runs – cutting edge workplace wellbeing is about resilience, mindfulness, collaboration and personal empowerment for professional performance vitality. And that’s what we do best…
Neroli Jones founded Paradigm Switch for a reason.
Find out why here...
Health Burn Out Ignites Paradigm Switch
Neroli Jones founded Paradigm Switch after suffering from severe corporate burnout.
Here, we’ve taken her aside, for a chat….
Q. What prompted you to form PS?
NJ I was the classic super high achieving senior executive who crashed and burned. I suffered a total adrenal collapse, my immune system went totally hyper, I started reacting to lettuce and my thyroid began to cark it. In the end, I found it hard to get through a day at work just physically and don’t start me on my brain fog. Something had to give, so I resigned my job and took almost a year off to do a long anticipated 4WD trip around Australia. The trip was amazing and every leg of the journey helped me to heal and grow stronger.
I came back and knew I had to find a new job but I just couldn’t bring myself to even seriously look for anything: My heart was just not into it.
My health had been a priority, and I was just putting the polishing touches to my health, when I met a fellow traveller and we started a conversation that went something like this…
“Really?!? Me too!”
“There’s got to be a better way…”
“What if we did something like?”
And that’s how Paradigm Switch was conceived.
Q. What have been your greatest hurdles to overcome?
NJ I’d be lying if I didn’t say financial issues were a major obstacle – we’re totally self-funded and independent and anyone who has started their own business knows, it takes a minimum of 12 months to get up and running. Unfortunately, I didn’t know that when we started.
But we made it. If you can get the first year under your belt. We’re in our third year now, and going strong which is such a joy.
Other than finances, nothing major – we’re a great team here at PSU, we work with only the most amazing health and wellbeing professionals and our clients love us and we love them.
Q. How did you progress? What helped along the way?
NJ With integrity – always sticking to our purpose and intention and just taking each step by step. Celebrating the signposts and milestones and knowing what we were setting out to do was well worth the journey – keeping clear and focused. We had a solid business plan, we had an awesome brand, the most wonderful people around us –our practitioners, our own team, our providers and suppliers and with our fellow travellers.
What helped too was, of course, walking the talk. We have set about creating an alternative company culture well clear of the normal corporate culture that had seen me facing a health crisis. I choose a healthy work-life balance, work hard but respect flexibility of hours, and offer the same lifestyle balance to the team.
Are we productive? Outrageously so. This new paradigm for business gives us a warm, supportive and vibrant company culture, which delivers the best results from all of our team, in a balanced environment.
We give ourselves permission to meditate and exercise before we hit the office. And when we’re at work, our energy flows and we enjoy a laugh along the way, supporting each other over the bumps.
Q. Give us a highlight in working at PSU!
NJ One of the best bits is that we regularly consult with our Intuitive counsellor, Barbara Callan on our business – we give her a list of 4-5 questions every six weeks or so and she does a professional reading and report for us. How could you take a wrong turn with that kind of help?
Q. What’s on the horizon?
NJ I’m so excited health + wellness are becoming much more talked about in Australia now. We’re a long way behind the rest of the world – particularly in view of our workplace wellbeing programs and penetration. But that change curve is upon us and we’re thrilled to be out in front alongside some other wonderful organisations.
In terms of personal wellbeing, awareness is growing fast, about the difference between seeing a regular GP when you’re sick, and proactively supporting your health by consulting with an alternative practitioner. Most of us have forgotten how well we are designed to feel and how central to feeling joyful, wellness actually is.
An holistic approach to health positively impacts every area of your life; your relationships, your emotional resilience, your sense of energy and purpose and of course, your physical vitality. Our bodies are brilliantly designed to heal themselves, but often need some help to reach a stage where they can truly begin.
Q. How do you relax?
NJ Meditation is a key part of my morning. I wouldn’t start any day without it. Being outside – anything outside in nature makes me happy. I love gardening and growing my own healthy produce, paddling a kayak, sailing and salt water. Hanging out with family and friends, exercising and here’s my secret – I love playing Candy Crush Saga. I use it for mindfulness training. It sounds like an oxymoron, but I promise you, I’ve learned so much on training my mind, my wiring and in using the colours, spatial and numeric reasoning, intuition and feeling – I’m working both sides of my brain. Perfect!