Burn Out, Mental Fatigue & My Story

ROA_8253.jpg

I have been experiencing burnout & mental fatigue since I can remember. It really took shape when my mother became a single mom when I was 12. Her empowering GO attitude was always there but took a turn for overkill once she was supporting my sister and I on her own.

Days consisted of waking up, sprinting around the house, eating breakfast with her hair still in a towel, getting ready for work, making lunches, rushing us to school on two wheels because {why would you ever get to school on time haha}, school for us, work for her, after school sports for us, waitressing at night for her, dinner late night standing up {IDK why but this is a thing in my family, we eat standing up?? HELLO RUSHING MENTALITY RIGHT THERE}, Home and in bed for her around 11pm just to do it all over again in the morning.

{Doesn’t this just give you stress reading it?}.

We lived like this all of my years from 12-18 when I moved out. THIS was the way to live. Cram your schedule, get as much done as possible & celebrate like no tomorrow to ease the pain of all the SH** happening.

At 16 I got my first job and was responsible for taking care of myself. Basic necessities were met {well sometimes…I feel like I need to write a book}, but other than that, gas, car, college, etc. was all on me.

I moved out of my moms house at 18 and started life the only way I knew. Do whatever you can to make the money to live life, go to college, support yourself and make it all happen. So what do you know…the GO attitude was the only way.

I was a full time college student working 3 jobs {nannying 4 days a week, working at a school 3 days a week & waitressing at night} just to get by. School work suffered, life was ALWAYS rushed and burn out was FRICKEN REAL. Not to mention Chris was at college 3 hours away so fitting that into the schedule as much as I could was everything!

If you guys have been following for a long time you know that BL began because of all of this, BL was my outlet to a life of stress, burnout & fatigue.

BL was the catalyst that made me look at my life & STOP the visible stress. Quit the jobs that I hated, stop running 100 miles/minute all the time, sit when I ate {LOL}, take life a little slower.

BL helped me recognize the external factors that were causing burn out at the time! For a few years it helped me recalibrate to a more calm way of living and I am SO thankful for the internet & other peoples blogs that I used as inspiration to start my own & turn BL into a business.

Where it took a turn for stress-ville was when I decided to make BL my full time job. At the beginning it was nothing but fun, inspiration & goals on goals on goals. I had mood boards & vision boards & affirmations & pinterest boards, ALL THE THINGS of what BL was going to be. Now I’ve got to say I have accomplished SO much of those things and when I look back at those early day boards I TEAR UP for the incredible things I have been able to dream and then really put into action on this journey.

The inspiration boards started turning into real life and that’s when you set the bar HIGHER. That’s when you work your little tail off to turn 5 clients into 10 & 10 into 20…You get the point. The goals got bigger and the workload left me questioning everything.

This fun & outlet of a platform that I had created to connect with women & coach them through their wellness journey to become the healthy, happy, fulfilled individuals they longed to be was becoming a machine.

Kinda like the guys on wall street {I’m just stereotyping here and guessing on what I believe wall street to be so excuse me if you actually know someone there and it isn’t like this at all} BUT it became somewhat of a mental basketcase of a space. You release a new program and TONS of women sign up {IT’S A SUCCESS, YOU’VE DONE IT, YOU’RE HELPING ALL THE PEOPLE, THEY GET IT & BUY IT AND WANT IT, HOORAY, YOU’RE CHANGING THEIR LIVES WHICH WILL CHANGE OUR WORLD}. THEN you launch another program and NO ONE buys it, not a soul comments on it, gets it, buys it. You’re left confused and a little hurt cause hey you worked SO hard on it, put your hours and inspiration and truly blood sweat and tears into it and people just aren’t on board {NO blame to anyone here, that’s just the nature of being an entrepreneur}.

So you go back to the drawing board to find THE thing that people need in their lives, THE thing that people want to help them change their lives…which in turn creates ENDLESS thinking about your current project, analyzing why it didn’t do well, giving yourself space to think up another program/project all the while doing all the other necessary things to RUN A FUNCTIONING BUSINESS. Does burn out ring a bell??

SO you try another program, hope, pray, wish, do everything in your power to make it work…nail the marketing, share all over your newsletters, add to your Instagram, Pinterest about it, post flyers, mention it to friends to share about, hire a business coach to help you hack it all {btw you guys she was incredible, shout out to Amber Lilyestrom & team, I learned so much about myself & BL to get to this point & doing what’s best for my health from investing in this course}, go to personal development to up level yourself {is this making you see the machine of it all yet?}.

And it lands with people but not as good as the first time, so the marketing starts all over again, the self doubt & WORK HARDER mentality comes creeping in & you’re left a little confused but hopeful/yearning for the goals to be met & the vision board to come to LIFE.

I lived this way year after year after year trying to turn BL my passion project into a space of coaching women to change their lives. The intentions were so pure, the programs and content and events were incredible {if I do say so myself}. But wanna know what wasn’t?

The anxiety and the constant racing mind and the burn out, insomnia, stress, the list could go on. The feeling of having to SELL instead of HELP. The feeling of having to hit THE number in order to keep BL afloat instead of craft programs & projects just because I wanted to, just because I thought they would make a difference.

This GO mentality that I thought I had run away from when I started BL, when I left my corporate job to make the scary jump and pursue it came flooding back in, created an unhealthy relationship to self & changed what I loved so deeply into a marketing, business, wall street machine that left me overworked and underpaid {a person can only take so much before they stop and evaluate} {at least guys on wall street are paid the BIG bucks haha}

You guys know I’m always real with you and I’m sharing so deeply and in depth because if there’s ONE person here that benefits from hearing this, my work in life is done.

Over the years of doing BL I have had MANY and I mean MANY break downs. Many times of “is this right”, “I want to keep going but it feels misaligned”, “I love my people but financially this just isn’t making sense”. Thank gosh for the bestest husband, partner & friend out there, also shout out to Caitlin my intern/ content manager/ friend who has heard me and worked tirelessly with me to make BL what it is. BUT I kept going because the goals were on the vision board, hard work was easy for me and I wasn’t raised to be a quitter.

The turning point came just this past week when I was standing in the grocery store in line with a cart FULL of groceries ready to pay. I had had spinning anxiety that day for the launch of The BL Community but rallied like I always did and pushed through. I inserted my card into the card reader & the women told me “sorry hun, this card was declined”. Sheer anxiety came over me “Oh whoops, it must just be the card, let me try another one” I said… “I’m sorry love but this one seems to be declined too”. Now I’m really panicking.

I hadn’t been this stranded in a grocery story counting the change in my wallet since college. Oh come on, you guys know it the pulling up your bank acct app while you’re in line to make sure you can cover it all. {monkey covering its eyes emoji}

“How about you move to the windows over there, figure this all out with your bank and I will suspend your order until you’re ready”.

I moved over to the windows, sat there fishing through my wallet so frazzled it wasn’t even funny. I finally calmed myself down enough to remember I had Chris and I’s savings card {our joint acct} in my wallet, went back up to the register & used that to purchase. I walked my way to my car in utter disbelief.

My hands were shaking, my heart was pounding, my eyes were dilated. I was beginning to have a straight up panic attack in the Hannafords parking lot.

THIS was the moment it all clicked. THIS was the moment I realized maybe the external GO habits of {working 3 jobs & running from thing to thing} was gone but the INNER GO mentality was not. The mindset & anxiety of running BL was now shoving me into burn out, mental fatigue & anxiety all over again. I calmed myself down, went home & just sat on the hammock.

After a long good cry, journaling and saying affirmations, sitting with myself, literally on the verge of praying {I’m not religious or a prayer} I realized reevaluating isn’t quitting.

Taking some space and time to evaluate what I want this to look like isn’t quitting. I took that time, some much needed beach time with with my sweetest husband to ever live and I made a decision.

….

I have decided that I yurn for the days when BL was F U N. For the days when I share what I wanted with you all, for the days when we connected on EVERYTHING, not just wellness programs or recipes, or what bulletproof latte to drink. I yurn for the days when this experience was REAL. When this was curated by what I had tried and loved or what I had seen success with, NOT what I thought you would want to buy, NOT what I thought would hook you and sell you.

I have made the decision to stop offering coaching programs through BL & pull back to SHARING genuine content to change your lives for the better. Genuine podcasts and blog posts and events and products that I feel will help you become the best version of YOU. GO BACK to creating relationships with all of you like you’re my friends {not that this ever stopped, but it felt harder to continue when selling programs was my main focus}. I have decided to turn BL back into my passion project that allows me to connect with women all over the world and help them change their lives by sharing the favorite ways I have changed mine.

No one panic, this doesn’t mean BL is shutting down or changing or becoming different. This just means all of my coaching programs are done as of October 1st, 2018. & this will give me so much more time to genuinely share and connect with all of you on a deeper level through in person events, ebooks, podcasts, blog posts, vlogs/ video’s & SO MUCH MORE.

I just want to say thank you to all of my clients past and present that have made BL what it is today. Because of all of you I have been able to do what I love {connecting with all of you and helping you shape your lives} for the last 3 years. My life would have never been the same without the hundreds of women I have coached and programs I have led. All of you are truly my real life best friends and I can’t wait to continue this journey of connecting even more on a more real and genuine way from here on out.

You all light up my life and I am so grateful for you. Here’s to an exciting new chapter & experience for all of us <3

Bringing this post to a close I want to challenge every single one of you reading this to EVALUATE your life & if you’re experiencing this type of burnout you’re not alone…& no it’s not normal {this was something I told myself for YEARS until I broke out of it}… How does it look, where do you want to be, will the current way you’re “doing life” get your there? Will the job you hate help you be a happy person, will the terrible boss help you get to a stress free life? EVALUATE IT ALL & make the necessary small changes to make your life the way you envision it being. Sometimes it just takes a good swing in the hammock and a long cry/ some time at the sea to figure it all out. TRUST yourself & your intuition. Trust that you do truly no best even when others are telling you differently & no reevaluating, changing, down right stopping is never quitting. It’s all doing what’s best for YOU.

P.S Chris and I have some exciting news coming soon so keep your eyes peeled…My palms are sweating writing this but hey new beginnings right? {pps NO I’m not preggers <3}

All my love and huge hugs,

Lauren