I work with a lot of people who face incredible amounts of pressure at work and/or home, and I really wish I could fix those unfair circumstances for them but I can’t. What I can support people with is developing an understanding of how their lifestyle and personality interact with those challenging circumstances in a way that is no longer workable for them and may be clashing with their personal values. When people reach the point of seeing that they have a choice to keep doing things like that (no judgement if that’s what they choose) or to practise taking steps in an uncomfortable but values-focused direction, that’s one of the most rewarding parts for me.
Certain personality traits tend to be linked to a higher risk for burnout (and difficulties adjusting to chronic health conditions), as described in this article: https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/burnout-prevention-and-recovery.htm. My mission is to support people who are at risk of burnout to prevent this where possible, or to recover from it as best they can by finding a better balance across different life areas. If you know me personally, you probably won’t be surprised to hear that I identify with many of those risk factors but you might be surprised to hear of how certain I am that I would have become unwell in one way or another if I hadn’t slowed down, stuck to my boundaries and adjusted my self expectations. People like me don’t tend to show that anything is wrong, and we may not even see that there is a problem until we are faced with physical symptoms, which we’ll try continuing to push through for a while. We may even be praised for how well we are coping, how efficient we are and our lack of sick days, whilst the reality involves some suffering and missing out on fun in our time off. But that’s not me anymore. Yin yoga is one piece of the puzzle for me but it isn’t enough on its own. When I teach, I drip feed the kind of changes that are worth considering so that people know they have a choice.