Burn Bright

The Power of A Pause

August 05, 2020 Kelley Anne Season 1 Episode 15
The Power of A Pause
Burn Bright
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Burn Bright
The Power of A Pause
Aug 05, 2020 Season 1 Episode 15
Kelley Anne

This week's episode focuses on using the power of taking a pause to enhance productivity and get things done. It asks you to evaluate what season of your life you in and to plan your day accordingly.

As always you find the podcast on Instagram and join our new Facebook Group: Banishing Burnout: Self-Care for the Selfless Professional.  Until next week take care of yourself and take care of each other.

Show Notes Transcript

This week's episode focuses on using the power of taking a pause to enhance productivity and get things done. It asks you to evaluate what season of your life you in and to plan your day accordingly.

As always you find the podcast on Instagram and join our new Facebook Group: Banishing Burnout: Self-Care for the Selfless Professional.  Until next week take care of yourself and take care of each other.

Welcome to the burn by podcast, a podcast dedicated to helping big hearted, creative women, battle burnout, and live happy, healthy, vibrant lives. I'm Kelly Ann, a fellow big hearted creative, a licensed therapist, and a proud quirky millennial. Welcome back to today's episode. I'm so glad you're here. If you're new, welcome for the first time.

If you've been listening since the beginning, mom, I love you.  today. Days, episode is all about the power of. Pausing.   I really wanted to talk about this today, just because part of this podcast is me talking about what's going on in my life and being transparent.

And also seeing if there's other people out there who may be experiencing what I'm  going through. It's a way to connect and talk about. What pausing is doing for me and why it's so important that we take time and pause. So  I want to talk about  things that pausing brings to your life and why we should be doing it more often but to talk, talk about that, I first have to say that. There's a lot of people who may be during this season of their life are able to slow down, but there's probably an equal, if not greater amount of people, who've never felt more frazzled, more overwhelmed, more. More of more like they're juggling multiple roles, whether you're a mom and you have children, and you're trying to figure out homeschooling or returned to school options for your children.

If you have a partner figuring out how to not work on top of each other, now that a lot of people will have full time, day jobs. Are forced to work from home and create new and unique office. The spaces that are now kitchen counters and dining room tables . There's a lot to navigate right now in this crazy space that we are living in.

And. It seems like pausing is almost impossible at this juncture. And yet I feel like that's the one thing that we need to be doing. But first that pausing is the last thing that really any of us have the space to do right now. And I want to honor that and talk about my own struggles with pausing, but also come back to maybe because of all of this pausing has never been more needed.

And so as we talk about the things that pause and gives you, I want to make sure that I talk about in a way that is actually feasible for even the most busy person with who's juggling so many different responsibilities and crisis. These maybe all at once.

May 1st start by saying hi. My name is Kelly and I'm a workaholic. I have always been someone who just works and works and works. And it's not, it is to some degree to be fair. It is part of just who I am. Like, it doesn't matter the job I'm going to get in there and work cause I'm like a workhorse. And I, I also chose a career that involves people.

So. When I am working, I don't think about it as, Oh, I'm working for me. I think about it in a lot of ways about I'm working for the betterment of this person when I was doing direct practice therapy or I'm working for the betterment more times than not have a program that I'm really passionate about.

And so, because of that, I have this like drive to consistently work and work and work and perfect and perfect and perfect and push and push and push past limitations of systems and companies. And. To sometimes my own detriment of people and myself, but I just always feel like I have to be busy and working really hard.

 I've always tried to toward working really hard, then if it's something I'm passionate about, I just go extra. I always tell people, jokingly, some people do the least, I am constantly trying to do the most and every day.

And it can be a brutal, punishing pace . And  when I think back to when I burned out. I was still working at a punishing pace, but because I  didn't feel like the job aligned with who I was, and I had totally let down my boundaries, as we've talked about before with what prevents burnout.

And I had no compassion for myself and I had no idea what was going on. It just seemed like burnout was kind of inevitable. And even though I've never had a job since like that, And what I've been doing lately is nothing like the terrible, toxic, horrible job. That is my job. When I worked in a prison system, I.

Still work and work and work and work. And I have said on this podcast and others, that when you love what you're doing, you don't burn out. You just get tired, you get exhausted, but you don't burn out in the clinical sense and the, the pathological sense. But having said that I've been reflecting a lot.

On that statement. And while I still believe it to be true, I don't think people who love what they're doing burnout. I do think that there is still a gap between burnout and doing the most. And there are,  unintended consequences of not taking a moment and taking a breath. And looking around and observing.

And so while I'm doing something that I love, I also have to wonder, and also acknowledge that maybe taking a pause. Even when you're doing the things that you love or when you're doing the things that are driving you crazy, there's still benefits to it.

And so this past week, I have really just been thinking about my doing the most Snus and how I really need to just inject some pausing into my life. Not because I feel like I'm burned out or I feel necessarily like things are going in a direction where I will be in a puddle on the floor. Like I wasn't 2009, but more so, because I want to make sure that I.

I'm focused and that I'm not missing anything. I'm not missing the important things of life. And if there's anything that this time that we have is kind of taught us it's that life is really precious and circumstances and realities change almost overnight.  

And so, as I reflected back on what was a brutal week, and I started feeling sick, which I don't usually feel sick. I had a very stressful week at work and my day job, which I like, but there's things like don't really love about my job and. I had all these things lined up for me to do, and I'm going to take time off and then fill it up with six different outcomes I needed to do.

And I got to Friday and I just was like, physically not feeling great and just. I'm like looking at the list going, what am I thinking? I am not in a space to be doing any of this. And I close up my scheduler and planner, which I have multiple of those. Cause I love me a planner and I just turned on Netflix and I watched in marathon style. halt and catch fire, which is such a great Netflix. Binge.  the show is about computers and about the tech world,  but underneath it all, it's this amazing story about what it means to be a creator and the pitfalls and the. Pleasures of making something out of nothing and bringing into the world. And as I marathoned through catch and halt fire all weekend, to its conclusion, I thought I need a break  this is what my body was telling me I needed, and this is what I needed.

yet I realize that not everybody gets to have a break, so I don't want to minimize people who are just trouncing.  but I do want to also encourage you to take time to pause, because it's going to give you an opportunity for so many great things .

 What I realize is all the times when I have paused and taken a moment, I have been able to really reflect and. Assess what's going on in my life. There are projects and things and people that I've gotten attached to, then I'm just thinking, why are you still holding on to this project when it may not even be the best project for you?

And taking the moment to pause, allowed me to reevaluate my schedule. And so if.

And so the first thing I think, even though I appreciate that many people do not have the privilege that I have to take pauses. I think it's really important. That even if you are running around all day long drowning and just white knuckling it, I am telling you though, every fiber in your body is probably telling you, you don't have time for this.

I am promising you that if you pause things will get better. And the mountain of things that you're buried under will not collapse on top of you and take you out that actually pausing will be able to allow you to move forward and get the things done that you need to get done in your day. And why, how is that even possible?

Because pausing gives us an opportunity. It allows us to. Reflect and reassess where we're going, what we're doing, what things in our life need to be on the, to do list and are important and what things are not. And I know I can speak for myself that in the past, I get attached to ideas and projects and all kinds of time traps that.

I'm convinced of at the time, my enter into them are great ideas and great things to be doing. And then when I take a pause, however, and I'm reassessing it because it was very clear that it's just like, why am I doing this still? I know it was important to me. At this point in time, but now that I've actually stopped for a minute and looked at my life at my circumstances, how many hours are on a day?

I'm realizing, I don't think this is useful.

And it is astonishing. How much, just taking a moment, clearing a little mental space in my brain allows me to reassess my, to do list. And it's not that I. Cut big stuff off of my list, but it helps me get rid of some of the things in my day that I am putting energy into that are not at this season of my life.

Profitable. and when I say profitable, I don't mean financially necessarily. Although sometimes that's the case, but it might just be like energetically and emotionally profitable. And so when I take a pause, I have this opportunity actually reflect on all the weights and measures I'm putting on myself and whether or not those are weights, I need to carry.

and so pausing gives us an opportunity to think. Back on what are the things that we really need to get done? What are the competing roles and needs in our lives right now? And determining which ones we're just putting on the list, because they've always kind of been on it versus they're useful to have right now.

And so my challenge is for you out there to really think about your, to do list day to day. In the big sense of the word, what are the things and projects and commitments and people that you have in your life that maybe six months ago, all those things were great. But now that you're looking at your new life and the changes that have happened, some undoubtedly not great, some may be.

Do those things still fit on your list? Do you owe people anything are there in your life that you're like, why am I putting all this energy into six months ago? It made sense today. Now that I have the space to reflect it. Doesn't. And so if I'm not chasing after a friendship of someone who's not giving back to me or trying to make a relationship fit, when it doesn't.

What time is that going to free up in my life? What time am I getting back? That I can enrich myself and put into. Relationships that are being maybe strained as a result. You know, maybe my family's really important to me, but I am chasing after friendships or constantly being the friend that everyone goes to.

So I find myself giving hours of time to a friendship. That's one sided and my family is missing me. And I'm not spending time with them. And then I'm feeling stressed about it. So taking a pause can give me an opportunity to re evaluate that friendship and that connection and think maybe now's not the time to continue to put the same, a level of emotional investment as I have before, and then free up my heart and my space.

And time for the people that I do feel value me. And I do feel like this back and forth and reciprocal relationship. Same thing with your time and projects or commitments, maybe there's commitments and projects that we've taken on that six months ago. Heck 90 days ago were great and made a lot of sense.

But when we take the power of the pause and we look at our list, It's like, I'm not even sure why I'm doing that or I'm not understanding or seeing the use of it. Now. I know for me, I've been thinking about, as I've invested in my business, I am a person who again, does the most, just all the time and I have this amazing, instagram feed, and it's really nicely done. It's beautiful. I love the colors. I help pick them out. And I love my content. I write all my  content for Instagram, and I love that thing. I love me some IgG. but it became clear to me when I took a pause that while I continue to have on my, to do list, do Instagram.

It continuously falls off the list or ends up happening at like six o'clock in the morning or 12 o'clock at night and extremes I'm rushing to cram something and get it out. There's no consistency. And it dawned on me. Why is this a thing that I am insistent? I do. I understand why 90 days ago it was a priority for me from a business lens.

Like I needed to do Instagram. And I know I could tell you every benefit to why, if you are like me and having a lustrous side hustle, as I call it, if you have a business that you're passionate about, Instagram is the thing. It is so beautiful and useful and all of it. So I understand why I was invested in it and I understand why I love it so much, but in this season of my life, Today, why am I putting Instagram consistently on my, to do list it's causing me anxiety and disappointment.

Cause I can't get it done. And then realistically in the season of my life, how, how important is Instagram versus my Facebook group or  this podcast that I love so much. What am I doing? And so I would have it on the list. I would do random graphics for it, random quotes, just all this random time was going to Instagram.

And I still didn't feel like I was getting anything done because I really wasn't. And so taking a pause on Friday into the weekend and beyond it became clear. Huh? I need to let that go for now. If I have a free moment, put something up to post focus on regramming stuff. I need to let it go.

And I need to focus on the other things that are more profitable to me and this season. And I don't want to not respond to people's text messages and not call my family and not connect with people I love because I promised myself I would do Instagram batching of content. I don't want to do that. And taking it off the list, this and was released for me.

And I see all this to say, especially for the people who are like, I don't even like Instagram Kelly, could we move on to a new topic? And I don't want to hear a bunch of first world problems. Cause I got children and I got a partner and I have sick parents and I have all these other things going on in my life.

What is your struggle with Instagram? I have to do with anything, any of those things. And I say that to say that. There are projects in your life. Believe me, even the most busy role, like all the roles, doing all the things that are critical, like you just can't get out of it. You don't get to stop being a mom.

You don't get to say, Oh, you know, I realize it's not profitable, but grid parent in this season of my life, even with all the things that you have to do that are non negotiables that cannot come off of your list. I promise you. If you take a moment to pause, you will find opportunities where they have things that have creeped onto your list that are as silly and as a relevant as my Instagram story.

Sorry, I just told you. In your life, whether it be social committee that you're just like, why am I still doing this? I don't need to do this right now. Now. Or many products checks you've taken on  all the things that you could be doing or your desperate attempt to keep everything the same while we're in the middle of a pandemic.

And you're trying to still do dinners, gotta be at six o'clock at all times. It doesn't matter that you're like fighting projects or you have something new coming up or online schooling is taking a little longer. It must be done at six. And when you realize maybe we could just have dinner at seven.

Maybe I don't need to make a three course meal for dinner. Okay. Every night, like I used to, if I was a cook six months ago, maybe I need to let go of the need to do that. Like that's not profitable for me. This season of my life. I needed to get me an instant pot and become a one pot meal guru that needs to be where I am in the season of my life.

And even that decision. Gives you back time that you can attend to the other things on your list that are non negotiable. So taking a pause gives you an opportunity to really refine and evaluate what needs to be on your list and what needs to get off of it as soon as possible. Like yesterday. And that's kind of what I realized when I took a pause, I was able to really reflect on  what am I? Life is not serving me. What are the projects and ideas, beliefs, and, and people that I have in my life that don't serve me. And I've just kept them in more out of routine than actual utility. And so my homework for you , my gentle nudge to you is to think about that really think from a place of, in this season of my life, how many of these things, I am not going to be able to sustain because my life has changed. And how many of those things just don't make sense anymore  a lot of the ideas that I had, I had all kinds of dreams, dreams for 2020.

Let me tell you I was dreaming big for 2020. And, you know, 2020 is kind of a dumpster. Fire but. How much of that energy of all the things I was going to get done in 2020 that even though I get on Instagram promise you, it's less than I'm going to mention Instagram.

I get on it. And I preach about reevaluating, your goals. How many of those beliefs and thoughts. Have I carried with me into August, even though my life has radically changed. And some of those things just aren't even feasible or doable. Right. And so the power of the pause goes  such a long way to helping us reprioritize what matters and what doesn't and give ourselves a break, frankly.

 As I have been researching, one of the things I've been doing, I'm working on a course on productivity.  is taking a pause. Also helps you be more productive, like it allows you to look at your list and , if you're like me, I looked at my to do list and I was like, this is insane.

Why do I have this many things that I need to get done? And what is the concept of a day off? Because I don't know what one is because I'm always working. And even though the work I do brings me joy. I'm also in the midst of a pandemic. I worry about my parents who are immune compromised. Both of them. I have competing interests in needs right now, and I don't want to be throwing away time on something that really isn't profitable to me, emotionally, energetically, and even potentially financially.

And as I've taken time to reflect, and I will be taking more of it as I decide to take time off, I really put energy into growing and meditating on what I want to get out of this current season. Like, what is my reality right now? And what are my goals? I just want you to make space to do the same for yourself and even.

Though you have so many things going on and we all do. We have so many worries and stresses. I am begging you to take the pause because it will make things clearer in the end. And when you can take some of those extraneous and extra things off of your, to do list, when you can get clear and focused on, okay, I may have thought this worked, or it may in fact have been something that worked for me in the past and you let it go.

You make room for the things that are important and you don't start every day, overwhelmed with guilt for not getting things done or overwhelmed by a task that really you can't accomplish. And then you can get back to being focused on being good at your job. The main core of your job, being a good partner, being a good mother.

If that's. Your role in life. And if you're like me and you're just doing the mostess and you have a little more bandwidth than the average person, because you're not partnered and you don't have children at this point in your life, it might just be the, and it's taking up time for you to create better connections or spend time with the good connections you have.

Take care of yourself, physically. Reach for some goals that you might want just taking the pause may allow you the space to think about and do those things. And that in itself is completely valuable and important. So

take your pause. Look it as an opportunity to, Or flecked reevaluate, reassess. And  I promise you, you will feel lighter and your days will be richer.

And so my challenge to you for the week is to get out a sheet of paper. And take 15 minutes to write down. What are the things that are most important to you in this season of your life? You don't have to future cast five years from now, your lifelong goals of getting a business up and running or moving to this state or this country, or I'm going to get married. Those are all important goals.

I'm not telling you not to write about them, but I mean, right now in this season, in this , what is most important to you? And journaling about it. If you're a bullet person, bullet out those things and write a little bit about why they're important, but yeah. Write it down and then take that list and put it up again, your, to do list for each day.

Because if  this is a season of my life where I've been promising that I am going to stay better connected with the people I love. That's something I have realized in this pandemic, as I know, personally, for myself, family members have had this and been in the ICU with COVID-19.

That family is precious and the people in my life that I love, I need to work on nurturing those relationships. When I take my to do list, I am going to be very, very judicious and territorial about what I put on it, because outside of the bare bones of what must be done, I need to fill my to do list with calling a friend, making sure I check in on my parents.

And all of a sudden it tweaks what becomes important to me and what things I need to get checked off my list.  so that time you take 15 minutes, that power of pausing to think about what are the things make a list of five priorities that are important to you right now in this season of your life.

And then start looking at your day to day planner. If you have one or your phone or your calendar or whatever it is and saying, do, are those things corresponding to my today list is staying financially stable important to me, which means I need to make sure that my work things get done. So maybe I don't take unnecessary calls from people or get stuck into like, Gossip story is with my coworker and,  compromise my work performance.

so taking that list, right. If what's important to me and matching it up to your day to day to do and making sure they're in sync and where they're not aligning them,  I promise you taking the time to do this exercise is going to bring clarity and inevitably give you more time back in your life to do the things that are important.

So do me a favor and let me know if the exercise works, I know it will because I use it for myself and it has cleared.

It opened up my weeks hours of magically reappeared back on my calendar. Once I got clear about what was important and got rid of a lot of the stuff I was putting on my to do list that were distractions from what is important to me in this season of my life and who knows two months from now, those things may go back on the list, but for now I'm focused on what matters to me in this moment.

And in this time, And so taking time to write those things down and match them up with your daily to do's is the first step to reclaiming time and productivity and redefining it in a way that actually is aligned with you and get things done.



 so that's it for this week's episode. I want to thank you for joining me on the burn bright podcast.

You can find me on Instagram at burn bright podcast, and it lets burn bright.com for more info on self care, mindfulness and burnout prevention. 

you can find this podcast on a host of platforms, Apple and Google podcasts  and Spotify, just to name a few. And it would mean the world to me, if you would subscribe and. If you have time to leave a review so that you can get notified for each new episode as it comes out on Wednesday, and I can continue to bring you fresh content.

So until next week as always take care of yourself and take care of each other, .