How Spot, Recover From, And Avoid Burnout With Kate Reuter
TRANSCRIPT AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED [00:00:00] Hey, Hey, today's guest. Kate Reuter is a coach for a high achieving entrepreneurs who wanna eliminate burnout and chronic stress so that they can optimize their performance. Become more resilient and live a wildly satisfying. Hey, Kate, welcome to the show. Kate: Hi, Diane. Thank you for having me. Diane: So let's start with a little intro to you and your. Kate: Absolutely. Let's dive right in. I love it. So I am a certified coach for entrepreneurs who are on the verge of burnout and they have hidden income plateau. I work with them to leverage mind and body intelligence. And in doing that, they learn to optimize their performance, become a more resilient leader and finally break through their income ceiling. Diane: So let's define burnout because I have my own burnout story and I can remember leaving my corporate job when I was burnt out. And at the time saying to someone, I don't know if I'm burnt out or if I just hate my job, Kate: Mm. Great question. So the simplest answer I would give is it is a feeling that you feel energetic. In your body. And some may say that's kind of an emotional experience. It could be argued that burnout can be felt physically, mentally and emotionally. So it's a great question because I do think it warrants a little bit of a deeper dive and more curiosity and questions into how do you know, how do you know you're burnt out? So you just gave a perfect example of something your brain was offering you, which is maybe I just hate my job. So those are the kinds of questions that I like to ask anyone I'm speaking to is like, well, tell me why, how do you know that? Is it something you're feeling physically, emotionally, or is it something you're thinking? And then from there we can sort of determine what next steps are. Diane: For me, when I think back on it, like, I don't think I realize this obviously at the time, but when I think back on it, it was just this intense [00:02:00] feeling of almost hopelessness. Like it felt like there was just nothing I could do to approve. The situation that I was in and it became all of those numbing behaviors of food and drink and partying till all hours versus facing the situation. So. What would you tell someone like, as like a mini checklist, if someone's listening to this going, I don't know if I just hate my job or I'm burnt out. What is that kind of feeling that someone's looking for? What are they perhaps asking themselves? What is like their mental state? Like how can they start to get some context around am I stressed? Am I burnt out? Am I just tired? And I need a really good. Kate: Yeah. So actually the three questions you just asked are questions that I would ask. Them is, well, what does it feel like the solution might be right. That's a great question to ask. So that we can get more specific into creating awareness of whether it is something that's just physically going on. Is it an emotional feeling or is it something that we could adjust or. Find resolution for, with mindset, right. Using our brain. And the way that I make and help clients make this discernment is to use a five step tool. So it is called the model comes from the life coach school where I was certified. And it's a tool that we used to kind of slow everything down into, get into the moment so that we can look. What are the thoughts that are creating some of these feelings? And then from there we can look at, , what are some next steps to solve for it? And so the solution is not always the same, right? Depending on the person. My curiosity leads in my coaching. So one of the first questions I would ask someone like you is, what do you want out of your job, right? Do you want to stay in your job? Right? What is the goal that you're after? If you could choose any result, you want wave a magic wand. What would it look like instead? Would it [00:04:00] be that you would stay at the job and you would just feel more motivated to be there? You would be excited about it. You would love it again, or is it, I wish I had a different boss. Right? Is it a person that seems to be getting in the way? So we really wanna get specific about what is that obstacle that is creating this sense of burnout. And so that is the structured part of my coaching. What I like to do next, after we get that clarity. Is dive deeper. So we may actually dive into some emotional release. Of those feelings, that feeling of hopelessness feels terrible, but just like you gave the example, I would turn to snacking or avoiding distracting ourselves with bad habits. So common so that we don't have to feel that feeling of helplessness or hopelessness rather. So that is something that we would have a look at. Is, are you actually allowing yourself to experience that emotion? Giving yourself, grace, this is where I'm at right now. Or are we trying to mask it or numb it with bad habits? Sometimes the solution is surprising in that we just need to allow ourselves to be human. And experience what it feels like to just feel that burnout and that sense of hopelessness. I know it doesn't sound very fun. but you would be amazed. Diane, how many clients that when we just allow them to experience an emotion fully, they actually release. So it processes fully through, right? We take away that resistance and the avoidance of the emotion that we're. So many of us are taught to do with emotions. Right? Shove it down, ignore it. And we let it be there. And process through. And when that happens, it can create space and like a lightness and a relief and [00:06:00] open ourselves up to energetically, open ourselves up to bring in motivation to adjust some of the things that are going on mentally for us that might actually help us turn the entire situation around. So I know it sounds like a multi-step process, but it is so breakthrough that literally it's where that resilience. Comes in. Diane: so. My burnout went, I'm super burnt out at work. One of my friends is. A really senior HR executive and so an executive level coach. And she forced me to come up with, I think we had plan a through F by the time we were finished and F was me quitting my job. And I went through everything before I just went, okay. Threw my hands up, walked out and then went and traveled. Like it was my. I was moving from city to city so fast until I reached a point where I went on a retreat in Bali. And I always joke with my friend who led the retreat that I went on a retreat in Bali for nine days, and I cried for eight and a half. Kate: Mmm, so that Diane: emotional release that you're talking about. I think as a really like type a individual, my solution to burnout was to find the solution to burnout, which was to leave my job and then put everything into that solution when probably what I actually needed more than anything was raised. Kate: Was rest. Yes. You hit the nail on the head, right. And with high achievers type a personalities, those of us who are, are very ambitious and we, we like to accomplish things. We're doers. Uh, we do tend to burn out faster. We also tend to not listen to our bodies and when they tell us. It's time to rest. And we often think that, well, we need to escape the entire circumstance or environment we're in, in order to solve for this. But what if the solution was to create a sort of body like experience inside your body, and to have that kind of release . Tell me how you knew things had [00:08:00] changed after. Diane: So I think the thing is coming from a really masculine banking environment, I always say to people like no one does personal development stuff with you. All of your training and all of your development is geared towards you doing your job better. So no one had asked me even the simplest questions about myself and my life goals and things like that. And I think that's what really just completely cracked me open. The difference that I noticed, I would say afterwards to before was 100% pace. I was much more comfortable. I'm not very good at doing nothing, but I was much more comfortable with allowing open ended plans versus very kind of like timeline specific to do list generative type of behavior. Essentially the behavior that probably burned me out in the first place. Kate: Mm-hmm . It's so fascinating. How much. Our energy and our emotional state drives what we're actually doing. So for instance, right, starting in the job, being in the corporate environment it's and with your personality type and work style, right. It's likely that you felt an immense amount of perhaps pressure maybe even obligation to show up in do do do, right. And then you got to a point where that shifted from pressure to that hopelessness. right. Diane: Yeah. And , it was over a really, I wanna be clear. It was over a really long time. Like I was with the bang for over 10 years. Like it wasn't like day two. I was like, woo I'm burn. I'm burnt out. You know? And it's kind of sneaky. Kate: Yes. Diane: Like you don't just wake up one day and me like, oh, I'm so burnt. Kate: Mm-hmm. Diane: For me, it was all three of those elements. It was physical, it was mental and it was emotional physically. I was exhausted. I hadn't had more than two weeks off in a row in, I think 13 years, by the time I left [00:10:00] mentally, I wasn't challenged by what I was doing. I was frustrated by my career stalling and then emotionally, honestly, it felt like it didn't matter if I got up and came to work the next day, cuz there was always another human who could just slot into my job. And that was the end of it. I think people think you burn out when you have like a really hard month or something, but it is actually so drawn out. That you don't notice it. Kate: Yes, so sneaky like that, and that's more likely to happen if we're not in tune to our energy level and asking ourselves the right questions from a preventative standpoint, right? Like what is happening with me emotionally right now? What can I do about it? What is my body telling me typically will ignore. And we'll just keep going. And we also think that we can fix it by doing more, Diane: A hundred percent. Kate: and that actually perpetuates the spiral downward to the point that typically we end up at some sort of rock bottom moment. And you may have had one that stands out to you. Diane: I always talk about being at my friends house where had I, I had. On my dream trip, I had just been to see the polar bears in Canada and I was transitioning to Mexico and I was at her house to drop off winter clothes and pick up summer clothes and move on. And I can remember sitting on her so far, just sobbing and her being like, finding it really hard to be sympathetic to you right now, because I'm on this like dream vacation, right. Where the reality was. I was like, I dunno where my life is going. I'm exhausted. I am doing all these amazing things, but I just feel exhausted And I think in the like online world in particular, there's so much kind of dangerous content around, like self-care being a bubble bath. Kate: Hmm. Diane: Whereas I feel like where we're talking about preventative. Sure. Maybe like introducing a bubble bath that some self care is [00:12:00] helpful preventatively, but I feel like once you're on that slope, you have to be more drastic than that. Kate: And taking a bubble bath or taking actions to support self care while it feel goes in the feels good in the moment isn't going to change that opinion or that question you had in your brain. Do I hate my job? that's not gonna solve for that. So what, what we do is we wanna get to the bottom of what is truly creating this misalignment. What is creating the emotion and what is the emotion that's happening for you then that next step, right? Which is kind of what you experienced when you took off and went to Bali is the emotional release. You created space for new ideas, for new feelings. And energy in your body so that you had clarity of what you wanted to do next. So one of the goals is that we want to make big decisions, especially right about our career, about relationships from a feeling that feels good. If we can, right. Something that feels like feeling inspired, motivated, or just clear on our goals, that's where we wanna make decisions about. Do I leave my. Do I start a business, right? What's next for me? Not from a place of stress, hopelessness. Fear. If we can avoid that. So part of this work is actually taking responsibility and control for how we can shift the energy within us so that we can make better decisions about our future from places that we feel good about. I have a lot of clients who will leave their corporate job as they launch and grow their business. And I always say to them, don't leave your job from a place of frustration or stress. Leave it from a place of. Determination clarity, excitement. Right? Because it's gonna be more likely that you have your back on the other side, if you make it for reasons that feel really good. Diane: Yeah, a hundred percent running to something [00:14:00] you're excited about is a lot easier on you mentally and emotionally than running from something like it took me so long, even in my business journey to acknowledge how much I took from my corporate. Kate: Mmm. Diane: like all of the skills I use today are from my corporate job. Like that's where my experience comes from and it translates into small businesses. But when I decided to start a business, I avoided touching anything that felt like corporate had given me anything beneficial. I wanted to live in that story of like this terrible ending Kate: right. Diane: That took a really long time. Leaving under those circumstances took years for me to put behind me, took loads of coaching, loads of work for me to really move from that. Versus when I see someone be like, oh my God, I'm leaving my job because I'm so excited to do this in my business. I can't even begin to understand what that must feel like. Kate: The beauty of what you just shared about the story that you were telling yourself about your experience in corporate is so critical because we get to decide. How we perceive even something that's already happened in our past, right? Your experience in corporate didn't change at all, but your perception of that and the value that you took away from that changed because you decided you wanna wanted to believe something different. So likely while you thought maybe it would be a good idea to. Lean on how terrible corporate felt and how, you know, dreadful it was that story may not have been serving you as you were launching your business where you could in instead believe this is what the value I got from it. This is what I learned. These are the takeaways, and this is now the value that I'm gonna bring to someone else. It certainly feels a lot lighter and better for you. Would you agree? Diane: A hundred percent. A coach one said to me, like, if you're gonna blame [00:16:00] something or blame someone else for something, you also have to give them credit. Kate: Mm. Oh, I love that. Diane: and, and so for me, that was my journey with corporate was being able to get to a position where I could give credit to what I had taken from the experience. I will say one advantage of having been through burnout is that I am very conscious of how it feels. Almost to the point where my body will shut down. Like if I even start to like dance in that direction, it's like, my, body's got like muscle memory of what that feels like. And I will find myself like Velcro to the sofa watching Netflix just like enforced rest. That is obviously, you know, I don't wish for people to go through burnout to be able to burnout. From an avoidance perspective. And I don't mean like avoiding your feelings. I mean, like how do we avoid burnout in the very first place? If somebody was to write themselves like a mini checklist, right. If someone's listening to this and they're like, why would you need a checklist for this? This, this episode is probably not for you. If you're listening and you're going, okay, I need a checklist so that I make sure that I don't burn out. Chances are you're on the path to burnout. Right. Kate: Yeah. Diane: So I really wanna make sure that we're serving. Type a high achievers who I can feel are already probably headed in that direction and who are gonna wanna do in inverted commerce. More can we give them some healthy dos to replace their, let me muscle through, let me hustle harder vibes. Kate: Yeah. So one of the things I teach in my program is how to self coach, and we do that with that five step model. Journaling, that is an option for those who like to put pen to paper and it would be one. Thing they could try each day would be to put pen to paper and ask themselves a few more questions, right. To get to sort of the bottom of what is going on for them physically, emotionally, mentally. So one of those questions would be what is the, what is the emotion I feel [00:18:00] right now? And I always challenge clients is think of one word, a feeling that feels that you feel right now, right. Choose one emotion. That represents the feeling that you feel, and maybe burnout is as far as they can get, but maybe it's like you experienced was like hopelessness. Right? So get to the bottom of what the emotion is. And then when we have clarity on what that emotional vibration is in their body, ask themselves, why do I feel this way? We have between 12,000 and 60,000 thoughts a day in our brain. So sometimes it can be challenging to narrow down. What is the belief that's creating this feeling? For us, what is it? Is it a thought about the job? Is it a thought about. Just physically being tired that I need more sleep. We really need to get clarity on the why of the situation, because burnout doesn't feel the same for each person. And it might happen on a different timeline. Like you said, some people think it's a month thing for you. It was about 10 years. So we wanna get more clarity and ask ourselves more questions. So part of it is knowing which are the right questions to ask. The other thing I could recommend is that on a daily basis, we all should be checking in with ourselves is how do I feel today? Right? What is my energy level, creating more awareness. Many of the listeners of this podcast might already have some methods that they're entertaining. Around mindset or personal development checking in with themselves. And so I would say that's a great start, right? To lean on that. A lot of times what I find leads to burnout as well is that even when we have these tools, we forget to keep using them. We stop using them, right. We put the journal on the shelf and then we haven't picked it up in three months. And all of a sudden we're feeling all of this weight and this dread, and we kind of wonder what happened. It's because we've spent so much time in the doing. And not checking in with our energy, with how [00:20:00] we're feeling, staying in tune with our body. There's so much wisdom in our intuition and asking ourselves questions and giving ourselves just two minutes of quiet time alone to be with ourselves. So many, especially type a personalities don't make the time to do. And when they do, they see a difference. So that can be one, a great preventative measure is don't forget to check in with yourself and give yourself a little bit of quiet space to just be, doesn't have to be meditation. It could be journaling. It could be just turning inward and asking yourself what is happening for me right now and resist the urge, right? To sort of want to escape or check out and distract ourselves or scroll on the phone or watch Netflix and things that we all do when we really. Don't see the benefit of being with ourself in that moment, but there's so much wisdom. Diane: Yeah. And I always say to people. they tell me that they're feeling exhausted or that they're like edging on that burnout thing. You probably feel like you don't have time to take that day of rest to journal, to even just sit there and think for two minutes or meditate for 10 minutes or whatever it took about 18 months for me quitting my job to me, feeling ready. Not having dealt with all of my like stuff, but for me, feeling ready to actually think about what's next. So I just wanna put that context in there for people that if you're listening to singing, this is really nice. I don't have time for that right now. If that's your thought, you need to do it more than anybody else who's listening, because that is your potential alternative. You need to ask yourself, where would your business be in 18 months, if you weren't able to function in it for 18 months. Kate: Mm. It, it is a reprioritization. but what I'll argue is that if you realized, as you were walking out the door, that you forgot to brush your teeth that morning, right. And you care about oral hygiene, would you make the time to take two minutes to go back up and brush your teeth? Right. [00:22:00] And we don't think about that this type of internal work in the same way, but it is absolutely. A a priority in order to prevent the consequences, right. Of continuing to ignore, ignore, ignore what our body is telling us, and then find ourself in that rock bottom moment or feeling hopeless. So we have to change our opinion of how valuable this work is. And like I said, so many clients who have done it. They feel that weight lift and then they just forget to keep it up. Right. It's just like any habit we have to make it just like brushing our teeth. Diane: I have to like brush our brain twice a day. Kate: The work is never done. Yes. Diane: Well, I know that we've talked in a lot of different directions, cuz burnout always goes in a lot of different directions and I know we've talked about preventing it and avoiding it and how to get over it to a degree. I know you probably have a resource that people can just really help set themselves up for success. That doesn't include burnout. Kate: Yeah. So I do have a, an ultimate success guide on my website. But since this conversation we touched on the model, the five step model and burnout. So specifically I would love to offer a sort of a practice worksheet that I have. And so. If you want to visit me on LinkedIn, I spend a lot more time there these days, and I'm happy to send that worksheet just directly to you. No email required, but just a worksheet that can help some of your podcast listeners begin to self-coach in this way and ask these questions. And there are tons of self coaching questions that I have as well. So, you can use them together and. Get started on at least two minutes a day of this kind of work, which can give us this awareness that we need to start preventing it in the future. Diane: I love that. Yes. I think everyone should run. Don't walk, [00:24:00] go and ask for that. So to finish up, I always ask my guests the same couple of questions. First of all, what is your number one lifestyle boundary for your business? Kate: Oh gosh, this has actually shifted in the last few years with some of the new tools and awareness. I have myself. So I will say it used to be that my business would ultimately always support my core values. Diane: mm-hmm Kate: That anything I was doing in my business is somehow in support of my core values. I will say now with the knowledge I have around this internal wisdom and in inner knowing is that I'm always listening to my intuition and letting it guide me. Diane: I mean the original boundary was pretty good. Kate: It's still in place, but the new one that I am working on now, myself and this came out of knowledge I have of my human design chart. I am a manifesting generator. So having some clarity on the tendencies I have, and my ability to intuitively know certain things. But maybe have not been practicing that for many years is now to. Awaken that a little bit more and pay more attention to that. For me, there's always a clear sort of yes or no. When I ask myself the right question. So I have been working on letting that guide me and it's so much more fun and it feels so much lighter that way. Diane: amazing. Okay. Finally, what is the worst piece of cookie cutter advice you've been given as an entrepreneur? Kate: Oh, that is a really good question. So the worst piece of advice is simply, we'll just think a different. because that is not always the solution. It can be in many cases, but it's not always the solution. Diane: And for me like that one is kind of like, don't think of a pink elephant. Kate: Yes. Diane: the only thing you can think of is a pink elephant. Like you can't even begin to have another thought because you're so busy thinking this thought, Kate: And the reason I say this too, is that if [00:26:00] we tell ourselves that we just have to think something different, but that doesn't feel accessible to us. It often leads us to feel like something's wrong with us, right. Inherently wrong creates all these layers of pain that are not necessary. So yes, sometimes it is an option for us to modify our thinking. But not always, it's not that simple. Diane: Yes. I love that this has been great. I've. Enjoyed digging into obviously a topic that I'm super passionate about. I know people will wanna carry on having the conversation. I know people will want to grab that one pager from you. Just remind them again, where to find you on Kate: Yes, absolutely. The name you can search is Kate Reuter and the last name is R E U T E R. Diane: Awesome. Thank you so much. This has been. Kate: Diane, thank you so much for having me.
How are you feeling? Are you exhausted or stressed or burnt out? If you’re struggling to answer any of these, here’s the helping hand you didn’t know to ask for.
Kate Reuter walks you through how burnout happens, what to look for, all the things I got wrong and what you can do instead
The internal work needs to become something we do daily even when there isn’t a problem nagging at us.
We talk about
- Defining burnout
- What to do if we feel we are burning out
- My own burnout story as a case study in what not to do
- How to avoid burnout
- The thing to be careful of in the burnout phase
- Kate’s lifestyle boundary for her business
- The worst cookie-cutter advice Kate’s been given on her lifestyle business
Kate is a certified coach for organizations and high-achieving entrepreneurs who want to eliminate the burnout and chronic stress that is stealing their joy and stagnating their income. Her framework, Elevate to Epic helps entrepreneurs who are ready to break through their income ceiling leverage their mind & body intelligence so they can optimize their performance, become more resilient leaders, and live a wildly passionate and more satisfying life.
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The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this podcast episode and article are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article or episode. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this article. Diane Mayor disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.