Thriving as an Impact-Driven Woman: Strategies for Managing Stress and Preventing Burnout

"In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will just be leaders." — Sheryl Sandberg


As women continue to break through barriers and excel in their careers, start new businesses, inherit and amass greater wealth, and focus on their well-being and lifestyle, many find themselves feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and just busy.

Hear it from me, the risk of burnout is high for impact-driven women, who are often juggling multiple roles, responsibilities, and commitments.

The good news is that there are strategies that can help women not only manage their stress levels but also prevent burnout from taking over their lives.

How do I know?

Because I was there for almost 4 years… working full-time and schooling part-time to get my MBA and CPA, CMA designations.

Successful on the outside, but struggling on the inside, I felt a deep desire to escape life to find life.

burnt out woman

Escape Life to Find Life

“You travel not to escape life, but so that life does not escape you.”

When we slip into autopilot and stay in our comfort zone, nothing changes.

I may have felt the need to escape, but what I was really doing was saying YES!

Yes to me.

Yes to putting myself first.

And that’s what I did.

I escaped – I traveled – I went retreat hopping and had my own eat, pray, love moment.

I reset, recharged, and reconnected.

And for the first time in a long time, I felt alive.

Lembongan, Bali

5 key challenges that impact-driven women may face when it comes to mental health:

1. Work-Life Balance: 

Does this even exist?! My view is that if you often struggle to balance your professional and personal life, it would be wise to pay attention to that. I say this because those of us at the top place high demands on ourselves in addition to our jobs and responsibilities. You may find it challenging to find time for self-care, hobbies, and personal relationships, which can contribute to stress and burnout. It happens to the best of us.

2. Discrimination and Bias: 

You may face discrimination and bias in the workplace, which can negatively impact your mental health. You may experience gender-based discrimination, such as unequal pay or limited opportunities for advancement. These are all factors that can contribute to feelings of stress, anxiety, and low self-esteem. It’s important to get to the root cause of these feelings.

3. Imposter Syndrome: 

Imposter syndrome is another common challenge. This is the feeling of inadequacy or self-doubt, despite evidence of one’s competence and achievements. This can lead to anxiety, stress, and burnout as you feel you are not meeting expectations, despite your success and accomplishments.

4. Social Isolation: 

Maybe you are experiencing social isolation due to the nature of your work. Spending long hours at the office or working remotely, limits your opportunities for social interaction and support. This can lead to feelings of loneliness, depression, and anxiety. You are choosing this path and only you can choose to live life differently, which is why we are encouraged to seek out communities and clubs, reconnect with our hobbies and things we used to love doing as children.

5. The Pressure to Succeed: The pressure to succeed in male-dominated industries can be overwhelming. Speaking from experience in the financial service sector, this is true. It’s how we’ve been raised. You may feel the need to work harder and longer to prove your worth, leading to increased stress and burnout. In North America, there is this perception, this culture of being the first in and last out in certain industries – sales, marketing – those types of roles. Perhaps it is changing, but I was so fortunate to have amazing male mentors who promoted his management team.

Getting sidetracked, but I guess I will just say: Choose your mentors wisely. I’ve had a few amazing ones in my life as I mentioned. Both male and female mentors whom I still keep in touch with today.

Take a moment to evaluate the above and see if they appear in your life. While you’re at it, evaluate your mentors and role models, as well as your inner circle. Are they lifting you up and challenging you in a good way?

No matter where you are, it’s time to take action and evaluate your current situation to see what changes, if any, need to be made.

Schedule a 90-Minute strategy session and let’s come up with some clear next steps you can take toward your mental fitness, happiness, health, and fulfillment.


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