How going through burnout three times helped me find my purpose in life

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Jun 24, 2019
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Strong, capable, fearless. Able to do anything, take on all the responsibility, do all the things. That’s the image I wanted to give to the world, from childhood to my recent adult life, I wanted you to think I had it all together.

Slowly and secretly I was losing my energy, motivation and enthusiasm for life. Until not once, not twice, but three times, I experienced complete burnout. Physical symptoms of pain in my body, lethargy and putting on weight. Mental symptoms of brain fog, apathy and low mood. Blood tests and scans always coming back negative, nothing wrong with me, so why was I feeling so terrible? At the time it felt easier to believe that there was something ’wrong’ with me, rather than face the truth.

The truth is that change has to happen from the inside out. Healing from burnout is an inside job.

Burnout has many different faces; for me it was perfectionism, people pleasing and seeking external validation that led to behaviours that didn’t serve my physical and mental wellbeing.

I tackled the obvious changes first, the ones I actually have qualifications in: nutrition, exercise and sleep. I experienced massive shifts in mood and energy when I dealt with these, but there was still something deeper. My mindset and the way I thought about myself.

Accepting that I was chronically stressed and really couldn’t deal with all the things I’d taken on was the first step. Slowly and steadily I entered the unfamiliar world of personal development, reading books and trying new things to help me.

The biggest shifts came when I got help from a coach. Being able to talk to someone who didn’t have a vested interest in my future and who was completely objective enabled me to gain clarity, to feel confident in the choices I was making, and to take on a completely different path.

So here I am, still on my own journey of exploring what works for me and what doesn’t, but making small and consistent changes to keep me feeling good. 

Turning that long and drawn out period of unhappy time into a positive, I now find myself uniquely placed to help women prevent and heal from burnout. Having trained with Barefoot as a Personal and Business Coach I initially tried to sweep that period of time under the carpet. But as I progress with my healing, and see others going through the same things, I realise that sharing what I went through helps remove the stigma of not being able to do it all.   

If I hadn't been on my own journey, I wouldn't be able to help women with the lifestyle changes to support their recovery or recognise the signs, symptoms, thoughts, patterns and behaviours that sneak in to undermine their healing.

My purpose? To help women heal from the inside out, to live the life they want with clarity, energy and motivation.

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Ellie Guest

Wellness Adventurer, Ellie Guest Wellness

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