How to Conquer Burnout and Thrive During a Home Renovation

If you’ve undergone any type of home renovation, you know what it looks, sounds, and feels like.

Blankets of sawdust everywhere.

The banging and buzzing of hammers and heavy machinery. 

Your patience thinning with each unreturned call to the contractor.

Money draining from your bank account for those unexpected expenses that pop up.

The endless list of factors to deal with and decisions to make is enough to trigger severe signs of burnout.

I get it! I’ve been dealing with home renovations and restorations for seven months now. Here’s my story and the strategies I’ve been using to avoid burnout and maintain my sanity throughout the process.

The Renovation Saga

This saga starts in June 2019 when we were installing hurricane impact windows and replacing our window treatments. We thought that was all until…

July 2019 greeted me with not one, but TWO separate leaks that rained down on our laundry room, hallway, and master bathroom, bedroom, and closet. The plumber fixed the leaks, but the cabinets and carpet were so waterlogged and moldy, they needed replacing. 

But guess what happened when I told the insurance company I was falling ill from the mold? 

They didn’t believe me! 

Instead, I had to hire a mold inspector out of pocket to prove my case, and the insurance company finally approved our claim. 

Great! We can finally get this moldy carpet out of here and install brand new hardwood floors.

Then our project manager GHOSTED me. 

He was supposed to get back to me with quotes and a plan of action. But after constant requests for updates, I didn’t hear back from him for over a week. 

I reached a boiling point. Enough is enough, I thought. I felt I had no choice but to assert myself with an email outlining my demands and expectations with a 24 hour deadline or they would lose my business. 

I was reminded that standing up for yourself is the best course of action. I received an immediate response from our project manager, and the renovations were set to start in December 2019.

While we were excited about our new hardwood floors, more stress and inconvenience awaited us.

Our project manager informed us that it would take less than three days to finish the installation. During this time, my husband, my cat, and I stayed in a hotel.

But there were delays. The finish date was postponed three times.

Our three-night stay in a hotel turned into an entire week. But they still were not finished by the end of the week.

Even so, it was time to return home and attempt to live my life alongside the noisy renovations. (Yet our hardwood floors are now complete!)

If you’re going through a renovation similar to mine that makes you feel like the world is turning upside down, I empathize with you. When you’re feeling lost or helpless, use the self-care tips I’m about to share to strengthen and empower yourself.

Renovating your home can be costly, exhausting, and stressful. Protect yourself from renovation fatigue with these three self-care tips. Click To Tweet

How to Prevent Renovation Burnout (Or For Whenever Circumstances Feel Beyond Your Control)

#1 Stay Empowered With a Morning Routine

During a renovation, you can often feel at the mercy of the chaos and construction around you. 

This renovation disrupted my daily life — I was displaced from my home, negotiated with insurance adjusters and contractors, and my home was transformed into a construction zone.

At times, I admit, I felt helpless.

To stay empowered, I maintained my morning routine.

A morning routine helps to center you. It prepares you for the busy day ahead.

Here are some morning rituals I practiced, even when I was staying in a hotel:


Before I have a chance to feel  bombarded with the upcoming day’s responsibilities, I go to my happy place.

Every morning, I visualize myself at my beachside house. The waves gently lap at the seashore. The tropical flora dances gently in the ocean breeze. I sway peacefully in a cozy hammock tied between two palm trees. Everything is tranquil. 

I’m home. 

Even when your home is a cluttered and dusty renovation site, you can still retreat to your inner sanctuary through visualization.

Practice gratitude 

When your patience is thin, and your endurance is low, close your eyes and remember what you’re grateful for.

If I ever felt like renovation fatigue was about to kick in, I thought about how supportive my husband has been for me. I genuinely believe this difficult, but shared experience has brought us closer together.

When renovation burnout creeps up on you, take a moment to practice gratitude. It may help to remember that having a home that is undergoing improvements is a blessing and a privilege. While the process may be stressful, know that you’re creating a better home for you and your family.

Massage on essential oils

It’s often difficult to carve self-care into your daily schedule, especially during a renovation.

That’s why I recommend applying your favorite essential oils during your morning routine. Aromatherapy can trigger your body’s relaxation response — your mind and body calm down, your heart rate slows, and your cortisol levels reduce.

Also, sensory self-care is a great way to kickstart your morning. Massaging essential oils on yourself directly targets your senses of smell and touch, telling your body that it’s time to wake up and start the day.

When you face the rest of your day from this mode of calm groundedness, you’re better protected against stress and burning out.

#2 Call to Your Higher Power 

The fastest path to burnout is doing everything yourself. You can feel empowered and independent, but you’re not invincible or immune to burnout.

That’s why those who desire perfection and control falter during a home renovation. You might even feel stripped of power within your own home.

Strangers are tearing down walls or hammering new floor panels into place. 

Contractors don’t respond to your calls or emails. 

Or you’re forced to move out of your home for a few days.

When this happens, try handing the situation over to your higher power — even for a few moments.

Liberate yourself from the stress, anxiety, and exhaustion of a long-term renovation by praying or reading your favorite texts.

Know that you need not endure this trying time alone. Your higher power is always there, watching over you, empowering you, and supporting you.

#3 Ask Yourself What Adversity Can Do For You 

This renovation has tested my patience and resilience. 

While my morning routine certainly helped, it sometimes wasn’t enough.

I had to dig deeper.

I needed to shift my perspective towards this renovation.

If I had asked myself what this renovation was doing to me, my response might be that it was stressing me out. It was inconveniencing me. It was interfering with my holidays. 

However, my thoughts change when I ask myself a different question. 

What was this renovation doing for me?

This renovation offered endless opportunities to practice patience and gratitude. It allowed my husband and me to bond over this experience. It also revealed my mental toughness and resilience when I thrived during this renovation nightmare. And I got new hardwood floors!

So, the next time adversity happens in your life, ask yourself what is it doing for you? 

It’s challenging at first. But stick with it, and you’ll discover strengths and benefits you didn’t realize earlier.

To receive additional advice and tips on thriving and staying burnout-free, click here to sign up for my mailing list.

What’s Next

We installed our new windows in June 2019. It’s been seven months since then, and my home is still undergoing renovations and new surprises.

Our hardwood floors are finally installed, and they look great! 

However, we’re still navigating through the aftermath — decluttering, organizing our belongings, and cleaning the thick layers of dust throughout our home.

Even so, I continue to practice my morning routine to empower my spirit, sharpen my focus, and protect me from burning out. 

Renovations can be stressful, and self-care is often the first thing you sacrifice when you’re trying to get everything done. However, you could quickly burn out when the renovations chip away at your resolve and patience.

That’s why I want to remind you to love and care for yourself, especially during a long-term renovation. Instead of succumbing to burnout, care for yourself with my free From Burnout to Balance 7-Day Self-Love Challenge.

During these 7 days, we’ll look at what’s really going on beneath the signs of burnout and I’ll give you simple strategies for how to turn things around so you can get on the path towards balance and enjoying your life (again). 

If you’re ready to break out of the burnout cycle and desire to be…

  • Relaxed and confident, knowing you’re tending to the most important priorities
  • Energized, clear and focused
  • Calm, easy-going and peaceful
  • Sleeping like a baby and waking up rested
  • Engaged, inspired and passionate about your life 

Join me by clicking here to sign up for my next From Burnout to Balance 7-Day Self-Love Challenge. It’s Free!

How to Declutter Your Space and Prevent Burnout

You’re driving home, exhausted from a long day at work. You walk through your front door, only to be greeted by…

Stacks of mail sitting on the kitchen counter… 

Newspapers and magazines laying around the living room…

Half-finished projects on the dining room table…

Hampers of laundry in the hallway…

Piles of paperwork covering your desk… 

UGHH… right?

Clutter is like standing in quicksand. You’re slowly sinking and you can’t escape.

And if you let clutter swallow up your life, you risk burning out – fast!

There are many different types of clutter you’ll encounter — physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. 

In this article, we’ll be exploring physical clutter and how it causes burnout. I’ll also share a few tips on how to declutter your physical environment to assist you in avoiding the signs of burnout.

Clutter is like standing in quicksand. You’re slowly sinking and you can’t escape. And if you let clutter swallow up your life, you risk burning out - fast! Click To Tweet

What is Clutter?

Physical clutter is the accumulation of stuff in your life. It often creeps up on you without notice. Maybe you have certain places where you mindlessly leave your things – items of clothing, pieces of mail, receipts… Slowly, things pile up and before you know it, you’re drowning in clutter.

Eventually, your home becomes a source of stress rather than a sanctuary from the outside world.

Is Clutter Bad For Your Health?

Visual clutter is a physical reminder of an unfinished task. Stacks of dishes are reminders to wash them. Piles of unopened mail are reminders to open and review them. When you put these tasks off, they take up space in your brain and cause extended stress.

Your brain loves organization, so a messy environment conflicts with your brain’s desire for efficiency. When this happens, your brain signals your body that you’re stressed and anxious. 

Clutter also creates unnecessary friction in your life.

How often are you late to work because your car keys were buried underneath all the clutter? How much time do you waste trying to find an important document when it looks like your desk was hit by a whirlwind?

Your health can endure if this happens a few times. 

But if this happens regularly, you may experience symptoms of clutter stress syndrome. You can start feeling anxious whenever you walk through the front door or guilt over being unorganized. And if you let clutter take over your life, clutter stress syndrome can lead to serious burnout.

When you declutter your home, you remove the visual reminder. Your space feels lighter. Also, energy flows more gracefully through your home when it’s not obstructed by unsightly clutter.

How to Declutter Your Space and Prevent Burnout

Are you ready to alleviate clutter stress syndrome and start enjoying life again? If so, I can’t wait to share these tips with you.

#1 Organize Physical Clutter in 15-Minute Bursts

Planning a full-scale decluttering and deep cleaning of your home can feel overwhelming. Depending on the size of your home, this project may take an entire weekend.

Rather, build a smaller daily habit of tidying up.

Set a timer for 15 minutes of dedicated cleaning. Do your best to avoid distractions. You’ll be surprised how much you can accomplish if you focus intensely on one task for 15 minutes.

Focus on putting away out-of-place items and clearing surfaces. This will have the greatest visual impact.

Do you have a similar tip to build the habit of decluttering into your life? Share it below in the comments. I’d love to know!

#2 Does It Spark Joy?

Marie Kondo is an organizing consultant and author of the popular book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.

In her book, she teaches people how to simplify their lives by decluttering.

One tip she teaches is to take inventory of all your belongings. Next, pick up each item and ask yourself, does this spark joy?

If not, remove it from your life. 

The philosophy behind this tip is to practice intentionality with your belongings. The items you surround yourself with should serve you, spark joy, or inspire. This tip might be especially helpful if you’re prone to hoarding items.

One thing that sparks joy for me is a gift from my husband: a rose quartz angel figurine. This beautiful angel reminds me that a higher power is always supporting and guiding me.   

How about you? Comment below one thing that sparks joy in your life.

#3 Don’t Forget the Digital Clutter

Digital clutter is important to address because much of our lives are spent on the internet. 

Businesses are moving online. Social media is making it easier to communicate. You can even shop for groceries on a mobile app.

However, digital clutter is easier to accumulate because there’s no physical accumulation in the real world.

When you’re using your laptop, look at how many browser tabs you have open. If there are over ten tabs open, ask yourself if it’s necessary to jump between those different sites.

Can you better sharpen your focus if you had only two or three tabs open?

Take a look at your digital files. If you’re a student or if you work online, how are your documents organized? Are they scattered on your desktop or haphazardly placed in miscellaneous folders?

This unorganized approach can leave you feeling stressed or annoyed when you can’t find the file you need. While this may not seem like a monumental issue, remember that burnout isn’t always isolated to a single incident. Sometimes, it’s an accumulation of small things over time.

Take some time to organize your digital files. You’ll thank yourself later when you can easily access them because they’re correctly labeled and stored.

Decluttering Can Improve Your Well-Being

Clutter often weighs us down and can shorten the path to burnout.

After you declutter your environment, you might feel lighter — as if a burden was lifted from your mind and body. 

However, it’s easy for clutter to creep back into your life. Do your best to transform the above tips into daily habits for yourself. Similar to practicing consistent self-care, don’t forget to give your physical space your time and attention. Regular self-care and decluttering are essential for burnout prevention and your overall well-being.

Decluttering is just one way to fortify yourself against burnout. For more tips on burnout prevention and management, be sure to sign up for my email list.

The Power of Self-Compassion to Avoid Burnout

When you express compassion towards another person, you wrap them in a kind and caring energy. Within that energy, that person feels your love, empathy and desire to ease their struggles.

For many people, perhaps even for you, it’s easy to express compassion when your loved ones are undergoing hardships.

But can you direct that compassion inward?

When you’re tired, overwhelmed, and feeling the signs of burnout, can you express love and forgiveness towards yourself?

It can be a little difficult, right? 

You might even feel guilty about practicing self-compassion. And this guilt likely stems from internalizing a few myths about self-compassion.

What Self-Compassion Is Not

It isn’t self-indulgent

Self-compassion isn’t a convenient excuse to “treat yourself”. Rather, it’s a deliberate practice of directing kindness inwards, especially when you’re scattered, forgetful, and drained from overworking yourself.

You aren’t a stone wall, immune to the daily hustle and bustle. You’re human. You feel things. You need things. You desire things.

You especially need time for yourself to avoid burning out.

It isn’t selfish

Love and kindness is an infinite resource. When you enjoy it for yourself, you can create more and share it with the people around you.

You’re entitled to appreciate and celebrate yourself. I encourage that you do so, and often.

When you love and care for yourself,  your improved well-being helps you recover and shields you from  burnout.

It isn’t for the weak

Self-compassion is for the strong.

When your inner and outer worlds pull you in every direction, highlight your flaws, and drain your energy, it’s difficult to be kind to yourself.

But having the strength to express kindness and forgiveness to yourself when you’re feeling burned out…

That demands incredible strength and resolve.

How Does Self-Compassion Help You Avoid Burnout?

Burning out often leads to feeling guilty because you know you can do more or do better. This adds to the frustration and other symptoms that accumulate after pushing yourself too hard for too long.

At this point, you’re exhausted, stressed, and desperate for a solution. 

Self-compassion protects you from reaching this critical breaking point, by encouraging you to take care of your body and mind.

Expressing kindness to yourself teaches you to accept your short-comings. Forgiving yourself gives you permission to learn and grow from your stumbles.

Expressing kindness to yourself teaches you to accept your short-comings. Forgiving yourself gives you permission to learn and grow from your stumbles. Click To Tweet

What are some challenges in your own life right now? What events are leaving you drained or stressed? Keep these in mind as you read through the following tips for practicing self-compassion.

4 Tips on How to Cultivate Self-Compassion

#1 Practice Mindfulness

When you’re feeling overwhelmed, sit down in a comfortable chair and close your eyes.

Listen to your body

Do you feel any tightness or heaviness? How about any aches or tingling? Notice them and accept they exist.

How about your mind? 

Do you feel like your thoughts are scattered? Are you experiencing moments of self-doubt or guilt? Notice them and accept they exist.

Be fully present within your body and mind. This self-compassion exercise helps you accept your thoughts and feelings without assigning judgment.

Self-compassion isn’t about fixing yourself. Rather, it helps you notice your struggles and accept that they’re a natural part of life. 

#2 Forgive Yourself

Perfection is a myth.

The faster that sinks in, the quicker you’ll recover from mistakes.

If you’ve set your New Year’s intention but you’ve already fallen off track, take a moment to accept that you’ve stumbled. Forgive yourself, and then take small actions to get back on track.

The trick to preventing burnout is shifting your perspective.

Don’t judge yourself for the number of times you’ve fallen. Rather, celebrate each time you practice self-compassion by forgiving yourself and standing back up.

#3 Make Space for Your Inner Advocate

You’re probably deeply familiar with your inner critic. 

Sometimes your inner critic is helpful. She points out areas where you can improve. But sometimes she is overflowing with pessimism. She fills your mind with self-doubt and worry.

It’s time to introduce your inner critic to your inner advocate.

When your inner critic faults you for unfinished errands or pushes you to overwork yourself, your inner advocate will be your voice of reason.

Each time your inner critic slings negativity at you, let your inner advocate shield you with reminders of your strengths and achievements.

You’ve done so much to get to where you are today. Your inner advocate can be your spokesperson for self-kindness and encouragement.

#4 Give Yourself a Break

Try driving a car without any gas in the tank. It just doesn’t work.

It’s the same when you burn out. Your body and mind won’t function the way you need them to.

Self-compassion gives you permission to take breaks when you need to.

And it doesn’t have to be a week-long vacation; it can be a night to yourself. 

Practice sensory self-care by running a warm bath with candles. Massage on your favorite lotion. Eat a wholesome meal.

These brief moments of self-compassion teach you that breaks are necessary to your well-being.

Love Yourself Today

Self-compassion is challenging. It’s difficult to accept and love ourselves, especially when we’ve fallen short of our goals.

You build self-compassion into your daily life by prioritizing it and making it a habit. To form a long-lasting habit, you practice it deliberately and consistently.

Self-compassion is no exception. When you practice the above tips everyday, it becomes easier to recover from your mistakes and to forgive your shortcomings.

To help you create the habit of self-compassion, I’m gifting you with my free From Burnout to Balance 7-Day Self-Love Challenge.

During these 7 days, we’ll look at what’s really going on beneath the signs of burnout and I’ll give you simple strategies for how to compassionately turn things around so you can get on the path towards balance and enjoying your life (again). 

If you’re ready to break out of the burnout cycle and desire to be…

  • Relaxed and confident, knowing you’re tending to the most important priorities
  • Energized, clear and focused
  • Calm, easy-going and peaceful
  • Sleeping like a baby and waking up rested
  • Engaged, inspired and passionate about your life 

Join me by clicking here to sign up for my next From Burnout to Balance 7-Day Self-Love Challenge. It’s Free!

How New Year’s Intentions Can Help You Beat Burnout

2020 has arrived and if you look around, you’ll see people setting New Year’s resolutions for themselves. 

But you might feel a little skeptical.

You’ve already set resolutions for yourself in the past, only to be greeted with failure and disappointment. 

You’re not alone either.

Surveys have shown that 80% of people don’t fulfill their New Year’s resolutions. People quit, often after experiencing signs of burnout.

Maybe it’s time to try something different. Instead of setting a resolution, try setting a New Year’s intention.

The Difference Between a Resolution and an Intention

Setting a resolution is often related to external goals. It’s usually accompanied by a grand statement that everything will change.

New Year, new person, right?

We start the New Year, engines roaring, but fizzle out after a few months.

Life gets in the way. 

Work is demanding. Chores need doing. Errands need running.

You put self-care and your resolutions on the back burner as you burn out. And another year flies by, your resolutions still unfulfilled.

However, an intention is much more than a resolution to achieve an external goal. It runs deeper.

An intention is a guide for identifying your core values and using them to design the life you want to lead and to become the person you want to be. 

An intention is a guide for identifying your core values and using them to design the life you want to lead and to become the person you want to be. Click To Tweet

Do you want to live more deliberately by spending more quality time with yourself and your loved ones? Maybe you want to live more eco-consciously by caring after nature’s bounty?

An intention will help you make that new identity and way of living a reality.

Giving voice to that intention will help you to manifest it.

Before learning how to set a New Year’s intention, be sure to sign up for my mailing list to receive practical advice on managing burnout throughout the year.

Are you ready to set your New Year’s intention(s)?

Let’s get started.

How to Set an Intention for 2020

#1 Write Down Who You Intend to Be

It isn’t enough to just want to make a change in your life.

Your intention needs to describe the type of person you intend to become in order to manifest that change.

For example, if you want to create more balance in your life, your intention could be, I am somebody who practices self-reflection.

Your intention should embody your new identity.

#2 Align Your Actions with Your Intention

The first step defines who you want to be. This step explains how you can become that person.

Under each intention, write down habits that type of person would have. 

If you want to be somebody who practices self-reflection, your list might look like:

  • Practices meditation for ten minutes every morning
  • Takes a 10 minute break every afternoon to calmly and quietly reevaluate their priorities
  • Journals every evening

Don’t leave anything to mystery. Because if you don’t know what to do next, you’ll do what’s comfortable: slipping into your old habits when life gets busy and you start burning out.

#3 Rewrite Each Intention into a Daily Affirmation

When you repeat your daily affirmations, you are setting into motion a different reality. Every day, you choose to make better choices. You choose to improve yourself.

So, rewrite your notes from the first two steps into affirmations you can say aloud every day.  Since practicing self-reflection is my New Year’s intention, here’s how I would express that in an affirmation:

“Reflection is important to me. I invest time in reflection and introspection to gain a deeper perspective of myself and my life. To do this, I meditate for ten minutes every morning, take a 10 minute break every afternoon to calmly and quietly reevaluate my priorities, and journal every evening before I go to sleep.”

Once you’ve written your affirmation, commit to this habit: repeat it to yourself every day, 5-10 times in the morning and again in the evening.

During times of extreme stress or anxiety, return to your affirmation(s). Never lose sight of your intention(s), even when life gets challenging.

Your intention(s) will manifest into spoken word. Spoken word will manifest into daily habits. Daily habits will manifest into fulfilling your intention(s).

This 2020, Prioritize Yourself

As you work on your New Year’s intention(s), I want to share three tenets to guide the process:

#1 Be Kind to Yourself

When you’re first learning how to practice mindful breathing, your mind often wanders.

The trick is to forgive yourself each time it happens. Then you invite your awareness back to the act of breathing, again and again.

Carrying out your intention is similar. As you take steps to manifest your intention, you’ll probably stumble.

And that’s okay. Be kind to yourself. Forgive yourself each time you stumble. 

True manifestation of your intentions happens only after you get back up each time you fall, again and again.

#2 Say No to Others. Say Yes to Yourself.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of being a people pleaser.

When you live for others, you forget to live for yourself. When you try tending to everybody else’s needs, it’s easy to burn out.

New Year’s intentions are more than self-care and personal growth. They’re also about leading a life that aligns with your core values and priorities. 

Your time and energy are limited resources. When you give them away, there’s less of each left for pursuing your intentions and nourishing your own body and soul.

This year, set boundaries. Each time you say no, you’re saying yes to your own well-being and intentions.

#3 You’re at Choice

When other people fail at their resolutions, you may start doubting yourself.

But here’s the truth: you are always at choice. 

You can choose to move forward or you can choose to stand still. You have the choice to create positive change in your life. 

The decision for better always rests in your hands.

This Year Will Be Better

Take a look in the mirror. Envision who you are at the end of 2020, if you carry out your intention.

That’s the person you want to be.

When  you say your daily affirmations, know in your heart and soul that you will become that person.

Your New Year’s intention is a long-term commitment to your personal growth. It’s a step towards living a life that aligns with values and priorities specific to you.

As you work to fulfill your intention, it’s very common to become derailed by self-doubt, criticism, and burnout. Whether life gets in the way or you’re not seeing the results you want, you might want to give up on yourself. You might even feel unworthy of the amazing intention(s) you set for yourself.

When this happens, return to my first guiding tenet: be kind to yourself. To help you get back on track, I’ve created my From Burnout to Balance 7-Day Self-Love Challenge, where each day is a reminder to love yourself AND that you are worthy of your intentions.

During these 7 days, we’ll look at what’s really going on beneath the signs of burnout and I’ll give you simple strategies for how to turn things around so you can get on the path towards balance and enjoying your life (again). 

If you’re ready to break out of the burnout cycle and desire to be…

  • Relaxed and confident, knowing you’re tending to the most important priorities
  • Energized, clear and focused
  • Calm, easy-going and peaceful
  • Sleeping like a baby and waking up rested
  • Engaged, inspired and passionate about your life 

Join me by clicking here to sign up for my next From Burnout to Balance 7-Day Self-Love Challenge. It’s Free!

This Christmas, Discover Your Sanctuary

The holidays can often feel like a whirlwind. 

You get swept up in a gale of parties, gift-giving, and errands. Always on the go, you bounce from task to task, checking things off your list.

It can feel overwhelming. And if you’re unprepared, you might experience signs of burnout.

Most of us can’t hop on a plane to the islands when the holiday stress kicks in.

But I have good news: you don’t have to.

There’s no need to retreat to an external destination. You can find solace within yourself.

This Christmas, you can retreat to your inner sanctuary.

Why an Outer Sanctuary Isn’t Enough

Many of us have physical places we retreat to.

Our bedroom. Our place of worship. The park. We often find serenity in these special physical spaces.

However, these places aren’t always guaranteed to deliver peace.

For example, my home has always been my sanctuary. However, with renovations underway, my sanctuary suffers from invaders. This holiday season, it’s more a source of unwanted noise and stress.

But I learned that I didn’t have to despair. I didn’t need a physical space to retreat to.

When this happens, I know that I can always return to my inner sanctuary.

What Sanctuary is to Me

My sanctuary is found within my heart-space. It’s a place of serenity that I can always go to.

When life outside is stressful. When everybody is demanding my time and energy. When I need to desperately escape it all, I know that I can re-center myself within my sanctuary. 

During the holidays, my sanctuary soothes me and prevents overwhelm. In this state of mind, I reconnect with my inner guidance. 

How to Discover Your Inner Sanctuary

#1 Calm Your Body and Mind

First, find a comfortable place to sit. 

Close your eyes.

Now, take a deep breath through your nose to the count of five. 

Exhale through your mouth to the count of ten.

As the breath empties your lungs, feel the fatigue in your body melt away.

Let the world around you dissolve.

#2 Envision Your Inner Sanctuary

Picture in your mind a place where you feel peaceful, happy, and safe. 

It might be a place you visited when you were young, like a park or field you played in.

It could also be an imaginary place, like a fantastical forest or lush meadow.

There is no right or wrong answer. 

Your sanctuary is yours to design.

Your sanctuary is yours to design. Click To Tweet

#3 Immerse Your Senses

Whichever destination you choose, immerse yourself entirely.

What sounds do you hear? Maybe you hear birds chirping or waves lapping against the shore.

What smells do you notice? What textures can you feel?

Delight your senses. Experience every detail. Be present in this moment.

#4 Notice Your Appearance and Actions

Are you wearing a faded summer dress that catches the wind? Or maybe you’re wearing a sharp pantsuit that makes you feel unstoppable.

Your clothes should reflect how you want to feel within your inner sanctuary.

Calm. Inspired. Confident.

Now, imagine what you’re doing.

You could be following a daisy-lined dirt path, the sunshine kissing your skin. Or you could be engaged in a hobby like painting or writing. Or maybe you’re just floating, carried by the waves.

Choose an activity that calms or energizes you.

What are you doing in your sanctuary?

#5 Color This Experience

Mentally capture your inner sanctuary, as if you’re taking a polaroid picture.

If this polaroid picture were to take on a color, what would it be? Yellow? Green? 

For me, my sanctuary would take on a yellow tint. How about you? What color is your sanctuary?

Now imagine this color symbolizing everything you feel within your sanctuary: serenity, safety, happiness.

#6 Return to Your Breath

Now, return to your breath.

Imagine the oxygen you breathe is pigmented with that color. 

Each inhale fills every cell within your body with that color. The feelings of joy and fortitude that your color carries touch every organ and extend to each fingertip.

And as you exhale, feel the color and every emotion settling into place. Each breath fills, soothes, and grounds you.

This is the transformative power of your inner sanctuary.

#7 Regularly Visit Your Inner Sanctuary

Your inner sanctuary isn’t just a retreat for when you’re feeling the symptoms of burnout.

It can also be a daily practice. When you practice consistent self-care, you feel more clarity and gain mastery over your emotions.

Before I give myself away to the day’s responsibilities, I visit my inner sanctuary every morning. I start my morning at my seaside cottage. I’m swaying slowly on a hammock tied between two palm trees. The warm sunshine paired with the cool ocean breeze energizes me. 

I feel at peace.

Share your inner sanctuary with me. What does it look like? How do you feel when you’re there?

Discover Your Sanctuary Today

The holiday hustle and bustle can quickly consume our time and energy. If we don’t take time to practice self-care, we can suffer from holiday burnout.

This Christmas, the perfect gift isn’t always something you can buy off the shelves. Perhaps, the perfect gift is unlocking that space of zen and serenity within yourself.

That place is your sanctuary, and it’s waiting for you to discover it.

If you want to learn more about how to create a life of peace, purpose, and power, click here to join my mailing list and receive weekly support.

Preventing Holiday Burnout Part 2: 5 Tips for Spiritual Self-Care

‘Tis the season to be jolly.

Or not.

For many, it’s the most joyous time of the year. For some, it’s also the most stressful.

And here’s why.

Imagine all the day-to-day responsibilities you’re already busy with. Now imagine stacking all your holiday stress on top: shopping, planning, decorating. 

It can get overwhelming!

If you don’t prepare properly, you’ll fizzle out fast. That’s why it’s important to always be on the lookout for signs of burnout.

In part 1 of this 2-part series on preventing holiday burnout, I shared physical, mental, and emotional self-care tips. 

However, even those self-care practices might not be enough. The picture is incomplete.

To effectively prevent holiday burnout, you must also practice spiritual self-care.

What is Holiday Burnout?

Before we dive into holiday burnout prevention, let’s start with the basics: what is burnout?

Burnout happens when you keep pushing your limits until you’re finally running on empty. When you reach this point, your body and mind break down.

Burnout happens when you keep pushing your limits until you’re finally running on empty. When you reach this point, your body and mind break down. Click To Tweet

You’re probably familiar with the symptoms of burnout.

The tension in your muscles. The clenching in your jaws. Shallow breathing. Brain fog. Restless nights.

Holiday burnout is when you experience all of this plus the stress and anxiety of preparing for the holidays. In fact, one in three Americans experience burnout during the holidays.

Burnout recovery requires ample time and deliberate self-care practices.

That’s why I advocate for burnout prevention. Last week, I shared how you can fortify your mind, body, and emotions during the holidays. 

Now, let’s focus on strengthening your spirituality and nourishing your sense of adventure.

5 Ways to Prevent Holiday Burnout Through Spirituality and Adventure

#1 Cultivate Self-Compassion

During the holidays, we’re often too hard on ourselves.

We feel frustrated if we fall behind on holiday errands. Or disappointed if we don’t give the perfect gift. These emotions might leave you feeling unworthy of love or joy this season.

The next time you feel like who you are or what you’re doing isn’t enough, practice affirmations. Tell yourself:

I am enough and I love the person who I am.

Don’t let negative self-talk trigger your holiday burnout. Rather, give yourself the gift of self-compassion. Affirmations are empowering and provide gentle reminders to be compassionate to yourself, so you will feel more deserving of love.

#2 Practice Gratitude

It’s difficult to enjoy life when you’re occupied with everything that seems wrong. 

I don’t have the perfect holiday gifts! or I keep getting buried under all these holiday errands!

However, the holidays are meant to be filled with love, family, and joy.

Remember that the next time a negative thought slips into your mind. 

Pause. Let it flow. Then say something that you’re grateful for.

When you practice gratitude, you retrain your mind to think more optimistically. You will also discover that your life is touched by countless blessings this holiday season.

#3 Study Your Faith

What faith do you practice? 

Is it Christianity? Buddhism? Maybe it’s Judaism or another religion.

Whatever your religion is, the holiday season is the perfect time for renewing your spiritual self through your faith.

When was the last time you studied your religious practices? Or the last time you had a conversation with your higher being?

If your anxiety is spiraling out of control, it may be time to rely on your higher power. Pull out your favorite scripture and read it aloud. Reflect on how you can apply it to your life. Faith and prayer can support you through the holiday rush. 

#4 Revel in the Sunshine

In the holiday hustle and bustle, we’re often so busy checking off our holiday lists that we forget to take breaks.

If you’re feeling the holiday overwhelm, try walking outside and feeling the sunshine on your face.

Sensory self-care is a wonderful way to calm your system and soothe chronic stress. Your body will appreciate the warmth and vitamin D gathered from the sun.  

Also, fresh air and sunshine has been linked to improved mood. Sunshine helps you produce more serotonin, which can soothe your holiday stress. 

Nature has an abundance of healing properties to offer. Open your senses and welcome it into your body.

#5 Practice Deep Breathing

During the holidays, your attention is pulled in every direction. Work, holiday errands, and caring for your family can stretch you thin.

In the midst of the holiday chaos, don’t forget to pause and breathe.

Deep breathing can collect your scattered attention and center it within your body.

Try it now.

Take a slow, deep inhale as you count to five. Feel your belly expand. Experience the rising in your chest. Savor the cool air rushing through your nose.

Now exhale even slower as you count to ten. Feel your shoulders, your chest, your belly, slowly lowering with gravity’s pull.

Feel the difference?

In just a few moments, you can tap into yourself and discover true peace during this season.

Don’t Let Burnout Dampen Your Holiday Spirit

If you’re reading this article and thinking to yourself:

These tips are all about preventing burnout. But I’m feeling anxious and exhausted in this very moment. Help!

Remember to practice the deep breathing exercise we learned earlier. Inhale to a count of five. Exhale to a count of ten.

Imagine each exhale pushing the stress and anxiety out of your body. 

Next, I want to help you combat your burnout today by drawing from my first tip: self-compassion.

I believe the best way to express compassion inward is to take care of yourself. That’s why I’d love to send you a FREE gift: “From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.” 

This practice has been shown to:

  • Increase mindfulness, well-being, self-confidence, and personal power
  • Increase your ability to concentrate
  • Cultivate a greater resilience to stress, a positive mindset, and a sense of hopefulness and calm
  • Decrease stress and stress-related symptoms like frustration, mood swings, feelings of overwhelm or lack of control, anxiety, depression, low energy, headaches, body aches and pains, muscle tension, chest pain and rapid heartbeat, insomnia, and frequent colds and infections
  • Reduce or even stop worrying

In just ten minutes, you can practice self-compassion and slowly heal your burnout.

Click here now to download your “From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.

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