A lot of the people with whom I work have some level of burnout. There is an entire trajectory of it and trying to help people find their way along it is both a privilege and pressure. The most important thing is that we do is to stop the decline, make it less bad and then when things are a little more stable, make a plan to move forward. When I say move forward, what I really mean is to go gently. GENTLY with grace enfolding our thoughts, words and deeds.

We want to move to less burnout, grow towards the light and move towards more joy. We need to learn how to be able to discern where the decisions that are pivotal are to our well-being. That often means we must learn to say, NO THANK YOU to things we really want to do or don’t want to do! It might mean doing less or concentrating on the things that are significant to us whilst letting other less important things go.

Parking

Recently I have been using the phrase ~ “Let’s park that for the moment!” I heard an academic talk about her research and she had to PARK things because there were too many things on which to focus. ONE thing at a time was her professional ideal and there was much to be learned from it.

Parking things is hard for people with burnout. They are often working very hard, contributing to all kinds of good things and loving many people. They are over-extended because they are such generous souls. One of the things we must learn together is that it is perfectly wise to PARK a few things for a while and then come back to them. We don’t have to do everything at once. It might have been possible for us to carry a huge life-load in previous years but that is rarely sustainable. Parking is actually good.

Give yourself permission to park something today. Give yourself some peace. That starts to evolve the people-pleasing into peace-making.

Being aware that we are often scooped up in the vortex of our perception of other peoples’ needs can be a dangerous thing for those who give too much. We often anticipate their potential needs before they do and then wear ourselves out trying to take care of everyone and everything.

 

Lessons

Sometimes the greatest lesson is that we must attend to our needs before someone else’s wants. That takes time to learn and discernment in practice, but it can be done. Anyone who really cares about you will want you to be looked after and not run ragged. Remember that. If anyone is pressuring you, then they have their own agenda and are putting themselves first at your expense.

When you can examine your intentions behind your decisions you become much more able to discern what is wise to do. When we make wise choices over and over again, we can notice that our mental, physical and emotional health is much less volatile. We can embrace our spirituality with joy and find time to value rest and balance in our daily lives. 

So at this time of Easter, remember that new starts are available to at all times.

There are times in life when we are running on empty and needing to manage a crisis. But life cannot be a continuation of that state. It only leads to ruin. Sometimes we have to park the people pleasing and be clear that demands need to be put into a priority order. Sometimes we have to allow ourselves additional rest to recover from disappointing behaviour, upsets and over-work. We need to park ourselves up for a while before we are forced to park.

Each morning, we can wake with a renewed sense of hope and peace. Peace needs work.

 

My Conclusions

I’ve seen even the most ardent pleasers evolve into a more balanced position in their lives and make more peace for all they encounter and here is the greatest revelation: people pleasers are the good women and men who are trying to take care of too much. The taking care is admirable and we must cherish that intention greatly. However we must cherish if enough to make it manageable. Cherishing needs our attention. Parking peacefully might be a liberating force for you my friend. I pray so. Endeavour to Park well, Park when needed, Park with joy, and most importantly, Park for peace. Amen.

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