As the Sunday Scaries set in and you have to face down another week of feeling overworked and overlooked, you feel helpless.
You used to believe you had a purpose in the world, but now you’re just taking up space, just surviving.
You dread getting up in the morning, and by the time you get home at night, your brain feels like a fried egg.
All you have the energy to do is melt into the couch.
It feels like you’ve lost control over your own destiny, so you’ve resorted to self medicating with coffee, wine, and chocolate cake.
And of course… that’s not working.
You’ve fallen prey to the toxic culture that insists we should all be maximizing our earning and achieving potential
ALL. THE. TIME.
When you’re not AT work, you should be reading books that make you better at your job.
You should be at networking events.
You should be earning new certifications and claiming new accolades.
(Those things rarely pay off in higher compensation, by the way.)
You should work twice as hard as the men in your office for the same level of recognition.
(which, by the way, doesn’t actually work.)
And even if you’re not actually doing those things, the guilt and shame of not doing them when you feel like you’re supposed to can be just as draining.
Basically, the pressure is too much,
and it totally makes sense that you're cracking under it.
Take a second to imagine…
What life will look like in five years if nothing changes.
What life will look like in ten years if nothing changes.
What life will look like for your beautiful children when they’re grown and on their own… if nothing changes.
In 2019, World Health Organization (WHO) classified burnout as an official medical disorder and included it in the International Classification of Diseases.
So whether you’re experiencing full blown burnout now or are just well on your way, these are some of the health risks you are can look forward to:
Type 2 diabetes
Coronary heart disease
Whether your symptoms are physical, psychological, or a combination of the two, you could end up hospitalized.
I’ve seen it happen to friends and family first hand.
If you are struggling with mental exhaustion and your physical health, you will never live up to your potential as a beautiful human with a body, mind, and soul.
Not just your earning potential.
But your potential capacity for love.
Giving your family a wife, sister, daughter, mother, friend that you’re proud to give them.
Someone who steps up and does the good in the world she’s been called to do.
A woman worthy and deserving of moments of joy in her everyday life.
A person who does not need to earn her own health.
Had a simple self-care strategy proven to reduce symptoms of burnout, anxiety, and depression, that’s actually freaking FUN to do
Chose to FINALLY prioritize YOURSELF in an intentional way, rather than hoping to steal a few minutes for yourself once in awhile, if everything just works out
Could FEEL your energy, confidence, and fulfillment levels increasing week by week, until finally your life feels like YOURS again.
Got reacquainted with your intuition so that every decision you make about your career, family, and life from here on out feels like a full body EFF YES.
Gained the confidence you needed to pursue your SOUL’S TRUE PURPOSE, within or outside of your career.
Could FINALLY grasp the one thing (SINGING!) that’s always felt like it was missing, and make it a permanent, integrated part of your new JOY-FILLED life.
Singing an hour a week is shown to decrease job burnout.
Singing gives you a buzz (yep, like a drug!) because of a little organ in your ear called the sacculus.
Singing can reduce symptoms of depression because it produces endorphis and helps create new neural pathways.
Singing is social and increases your feeling of community and belonging.
Singing activates your sense memory (hearing) and can take you back in time like a Delorean, which means you can easily call on joyful moments anytime you need a pick-me-up.
Singing is an aerobic exercise and increases circulation.
Singing is mindfulness in action, and mindfulness is a POTENT self care practice.
Singing is cathartic, and can aid in processing big emotions or working through big life events.
Singing is the thing that’s been missing.
The thing you’ve always wanted to do but never believed you deserved to try.
The constant ache.
The void in your soul.
And by giving yourself the gift of singing, you are giving yourself the ULTIMATE gift.
There is no better self care than self acknowledgement.
Singers who work with me say...
I spent years chasing my dream of being a singer songwriter by following other people’s guidelines. College was a must. A backup plan was required. Being a responsible, financially stable grown-up with a planner full of obligations was the only way to prove your worth – at least in the way I’d been brought up in the world.
All of that well-intended advice led me from a music degree in college to a cublicle in corporate America. I worked right in the heart of downtown Nashville like I’d always dreamed, but I was too glued to my spreadsheets and my coffee cup to have the time to notice. The longer I worked at that job, the less I began to feel like myself.
I wasn’t singing anymore. Wasn’t writing anymore. Wasn’t attending concerts or making friends in the industry.
Because, I thought, I’d “grown up” and “grown out” of my desire to be a musician.
I began to think maybe it HAD all been childish whimsy, like everyone always says about a kid with a big dream.
But a few years in, as I moved slowly up the career ladder at my company, I started to realize how absolutely miserable I was. And it made no sense to me in the moment. I had a steady job, I was recognized for my skills and was being given greater responsibility and coveted promotions. Outside of work, I’d met and married my husband.
On paper, everything was perfect.
But I couldn’t drag myself out of bed in the morning. I arrived at work later and later as time went on, which, when you’re the manager, is no good at all.
I’d make it through the day, throwing back coffee and chocolate cake from the market across the street.
Then I’d drive home, sink into the couch, and stare at the ceiling.
I used to tell my husband there were “overlords” in my brain. It felt like I’d lost all control over the way I felt – the “overlords” did that for me.
What I know now was that I was SO busy, and SO overstimulated by my responsibilities and the ways in which I had to carry them out, that my brain and my body literally couldn’t process everything. They couldn’t keep up. I was in a constant state of overwhelm, and I thought it meant I was weak.
I thought about leaving many times, but didn’t know where else to go. I thought I HAD to have a professional job but nothing else I was qualified for sounded any better than what I already had. I didn’t know how I’d get my spark for music back, even if I wanted to.
But finally we decided to have a baby, and I at least had enough sense to know I’d never be able to care for a newborn feeling the way I was feeling. And so, I told the world (and myself) that I was quitting to be a stay at home mom.
I was really quitting to regain my sense of peace.
In the time since then (2015!), I’ve found my way back to music. Along the way, I started researching burnout and the ways in which music can help.
Because I know that while some women feel as though they have abandoned their dream to work in a “socially acceptable career,” there are many others who deep down love the work and the mission of their chosen fields.
Either way, we are not precluded from overwork or obligations at home.
Either way, we need outside sources of JOY, CREATIVE OUTLET, and FULFILLMENT.
And for those of us who have always F*CKING LOVED to sing – well, the choice is obvious.
There had been a year in the midst of my time at a desk when I had taken voice lessons with a professional coach twice a month, and l know deep down that’s the only thing that got me through.
Now I know the many ways and the many reasons why.
And I created Sing For Your Self to share them with women like you.