mindful

The Power of Establishing Boundaries to Prevent Burnout

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Do you ever feel mentally and/or physically exhausted after a long day at work? 

If so, you may be experiencing burnout.

It’s not always easy to pinpoint which activity or general feeling may be causing your burnout. 

You may feel like your to-do list is unreasonable, or you may be pushing yourself past your limits. 

But the good news is these feelings are preventable and don’t have to last forever. 

By learning how to set boundaries, you can appropriately manage your needs and, in turn, prevent burnout.

Communication 

Declining opportunities you don’t feel comfortable accepting is a form of boundary setting. 

It all comes down to communicating your needs. 

If your coworkers, friends or family don’t know how you feel, they may not know how to support you. When in doubt, honesty is the best policy. 

Ask For Help When You Need It

If there is something you need help with, don’t be afraid to ask for it.

Not all tasks are meant to be done completely independently. 

And not all tasks can easily be figured out solo.

Accepting that you don’t know everything can help you better respect your time and honour your boundaries.

It’s easy to assume that your peers may not be able to help your event. But they may pleasantly surprise you.

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International Day of Transgender Visibility

By: Tanya Kramer – LPC

The day to honor the Transgender Community was started in 2009 by Rachel Crandall, a US-based transgendered activist. 

Since 2009, this movement has grown with the help of social media to recognize and honor the transgender community all around the world.  

President Joe Biden officially proclaimed March 31, 2021, to be the International Transgender Day of Visibility in the United States. 

This day celebrates the resilience, contributions, successes and accomplishments of the transgender community. It’s also a day to recognize the important work that still needs to be done to achieve trans justice.

The International Transgender Day of Visibility celebrates places where transgender and gender-nonconforming individuals thrive. While also acknowledging the areas of continued oppression resulting in continued work for visibility and reform.

To learn more about the history of the International Transgender Day of Visibility, take some time to explore the National Today website.

To learn more about this day and access resources you can use in your local school, take some time to explore the GLSEN website:

To learn more about the Human Rights Campaign along with resources specific to transgender individuals, explore the Human Rights Campaign website:

To learn more about the resources available through Transactive Gender Project at Lewis and Clark, explore the following website:

Here are some resources to share or access yourself to continue the movement:

  • Book “Gender – A Graphic Guide” by Meg John Barker and Jules Scheele
  • Book “The Gender Creative Child” by Diane Ehrensaft, PhD
  • Book “The ABC’s of LGBT+” by Ashley Mardell
  • Book “Good Boy – My Life in Seven Dogs” by Jennifer Finney Boylan
  • Podcast “Gender Reveal” with Tuck Woodstock
  • Podcast “Gender Stories” with Alex Lantaffi
  • Youtube video interview with Micah Rajunov – who also wrote the book “Nonbinary Memoirs of Gender and Identity” along with Scott Duane

For individuals seeking Gender Affirming Medical Care, follow up with one of these resources:

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Embracing Our Emotions

Trying to fight or ignore emotions can give them even more power.

While facing and accepting them head-on can help us better understand and embrace them. 

Welcome Your Emotions 

Have you ever tried naming your emotions? 

Certain emotions can often feel a little confusing, and it can be hard to differentiate if they are positive, negative or somewhere in between.

Take note of what your body is trying to tell you.

You can do this by assessing the situation you are in and simply stating exactly what’s on your mind.

Sometimes saying exactly what’s going on in your head out loud can help make those thoughts easier to understand. 

Say Thank You

When friends come to visit us, we thank them.

Why can’t we do the same thing with our emotions?

Every emotion has something to teach us – and we can thank them for that. 

Here’s an example. Let’s say you’re starting to get worried about a deadline at work.

You can thank your worry for keeping you on track and on top of your deadline.

After all, all feelings visit us for a reason! 

Listen And Learn

Emotions do so much for us. 

They can help us dig deep, stay safe, set goals and step outside our comfort zone. Taking the time to really listen to them can teach us valuable lessons. 

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National Religious Freedom Day

National Religious Freedom Day on January 16th is a time to commemorate the signing of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom drafted by Thomas Jefferson on January 16th, 1786. 

This statute became the basis for the establishment clause and led to the freedom of religion in America. It meant that people of different faiths could freely express their own religious beliefs. Giving everyone the right to believe in a religion, change their religion, or choose not to follow any religion. 

Today, we can remember and celebrate this day by recognizing the diversity in our communities and in the world. We all have a right to practice our religions but must also remember to mutually respect each other’s beliefs, even if they are different from ours. There is no one right way to experience and express religion, so this day is a reminder to respect all of the different ways that people express their beliefs, as long as they are not harming another person or group.

Religion is often an important part of people’s culture and a way that they can experience a connection to their community, family and ancestors. ​​Religion can be a key factor in the cultural identity of many people, influencing their behavior and traditions. Prayer, rituals and art are some of the ways people show their involvement in a particular religion. 

We can learn about the rich history of religions that have helped to shape humanity by reading relevant books or watching videos about these topics. 

Understanding and empathy are two key concepts to focus on National Religious Freedom Day. 

For more information, visit the resources below: 

Religious Freedom Day | Guidebook

Religious Freedom Day Resources For Educators 

Religious Freedom Day Resources For Parents

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Understanding and Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

Do any of these thoughts sound familiar?

“Everyone is better than me.” 

“I can’t do anything right.”

“Sooner or later, my peers will realize I don’t know what I’m doing.”

The above are common thoughts associated with imposter syndrome. 

Those who experience imposter syndrome often feel like they are underqualified, inexperienced or simply not good enough. 

Remember, a thought is not a fact. 

Just because something feels true doesn’t mean it is. 

It all comes down to shifting your mindset. 

Recognize All Efforts

All of your accomplishments are a result of your hard work!

You got hired because you were the best candidate for the position.

You got a good mark on that test because you put the work in.

It’s so important to be mindful of how we think about ourselves and be our own cheerleaders. 

The next time you catch yourself experiencing some self-doubt – finish the following sentences. 

“Today, I am proud that I…”

“I can’t believe that I achieved…”

“Wow! … really paid off.”

Redefine Success

There is no set-in-stone definition of success.

Success comes in many forms and means different things to different people.

Our journey to finding success isn’t measured by what we achieve. 

It is measured by our progress. 

Instead of thinking about how much you have to do, think about how far you’ve come. 

“Success is a process for all of us, and as long as you are making consistent progress towards your goals – sincerely giving your best effort more often than not – then you are already successful and deserve to feel proud of yourself.” – Hal Elrod

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It’s Okay To Make Mistakes

Mistakes are not a bad thing. In fact, they are one of the best ways to learn. 

Not all life lessons can be learned in a book. Some of the best lessons take place via trial and error.

Don’t be afraid to look back and reflect upon past mistakes from time to time.

In fact, you would not be the person you are today without all of your experiences both positive and negative. 

Accept The Past

Nothing we do can change the past, and no one knows for sure what tomorrow has in store. All we can do is embrace and appreciate the here and the now.

There Are No Instructions

Now, there is no ultimate secret instruction book for life. If there were, we’d all be following it.

Yes, we can go into situations with good intentions and a solid plan, but that doesn’t guarantee that everything will turn out exactly as anticipated. 

We may not be able to control events that happen in our lives, but we can control our attitude.

A bump or two in the road doesn’t need to stop you from moving ahead.

Turning Lemons Into Lemonade

It’s not about forgetting that the past ever happened – it’s about turning lemons into lemonade. 

Be grateful for all the twists and turns that have brought you here. 

There are many paths you could have taken – but this is the one you’re in now. 

Just because something feels a little difficult right now doesn’t mean you’ll feel this way forever. Every day is a new day. 

“Don’t live your life regretting yesterday. Live your life so tomorrow you won’t regret today.” – Catherine Pulsifer

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3 Secrets to Sleeping Better at Night

Ever have one of those nights where you spend more time staring at the ceiling than you do sleeping?

Yes – those nights are not fun.

We all have tough nights from time to time, and that’s okay. But you know what they say. Tomorrow is another day. 

Go Easy On Yourself

When you can’t sleep, it’s so easy to get nervous and start calculating how many hours/minutes you have before your alarm goes off.

Even though it’s much easier said than done, the best thing you can do is try and relax and see where the night takes you.

Even if you don’t end up getting as many hours of shut-eye as you’d like one evening, there is always tomorrow.

Ditch The Devices

Texting, watching a video or reading the news before bed can take a toll on your sleep.

It’s so incredibly easy for time to fly by while texting a friend or playing on your phone. A few minutes of intended before-bed screen time could easily turn into an hour or more. 

On another note, watching or reading something stressful can make it that much harder to relax and unwind. 

If you’ve gotten into the habit of spending time on your phone before bed, that’s quite alright. All you need to do is replace that with another habit.

You practice light stretches, read an easy book or journal. 

Listen to Your Body

Paying attention to the tell-tale signs of tiredness can work wonders for your sleeping patterns. 

If you feel your eyelids starting to get heavy or a yawn coming on a couple of hours before you typically go to bed, don’t try to fight it.

Even if your mind is still awake, lean into what your body is trying to tell you. Get comfortable, lay down and let your muscles relax. 

This technique also works in the opposite direction. 

If one evening you don’t feel tired, respect that. Trying to sleep when you aren’t tired can be very frustrating.

Instead of hopping into bed, you can participate in a relaxing activity until you start feeling tired.

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Tackling and Overcoming Work From Home Hiccups

Little hiccups throughout the workday are inevitable. It’s all about how to handle them.

Lack of Energy 

Sitting in front of the computer for hours on end can take a toll on our energy and bring on fatigue. 

We get it – when you’re in the zone, time can fly by. One minute it is noon, and the next, it’s almost dinner time! 

That isn’t always a bad thing. 

You have to remember to set aside some time to walk away from the screen and move your body. 

Practicing gentle stretches or walking around the block a couple of times a day can increase energy levels and prevent fatigue. 

Internet Difficulties

Internet difficulties happen all the time, and unfortunately, there isn’t much we can do to prevent them. 

Even though glitchy WiFi can be very frustrating, it doesn’t have to impact your mood. 

The very first thing you can do is call your team and let them know what’s happening, so they aren’t wondering where you are.

While you wait for things to get back on track, you can spend some time working on projects that don’t require the Internet, such as editing Word documents.

Remember, you have experienced technical difficulties in the past, and chances are you will again. 

Try and be patient; you’ll be back on track before you know it. 

Distractions

No matter where or when you work, little distractions will always pop up.

Not all of them can be prevented – but a handful of them certainly can.

Muting social media notifications, only checking email twice a day or purchasing noise-cancelling headphones can help limit distractions and keep you in the zone.

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