Career issues and personal life challenges are hard to distinguish from each other. At Thrive, we work with you to discover, re-discover, and connect with parts of your identity as the basic platform to finding achievable and fulfilling work.
While career consultation often stops here, our approach is to then provide tailored microskill coaching to help achieve stronger and more satisfying professional relationships. Examples of coaching include difficult conversations with employers and coworkers, as well as more effective interviewing strategies. Remember: How you say things is often more important than what you say.
In other cases, men I work with have the job they want, but are suffering from chronic stress. They complain of headaches, interrupted sleep, poor digestion, exhaustion and strained personal relationships.
I help my clients to understand that stress is basically good, as it helps mobilize the body to endure short periods that are highly demanding. It becomes a problem, however, when we get stuck in a constant state of stress. As our adrenal glands constantly pump out the stress hormone cortisol, our bodies are not allowed to relax and properly regenerate. Unfortunately, when men start to perform worse at work they often double down on their effort, making the problem worse.
A common ‘firing order’ for stress and burnout comes from a colleague who put it best:
I took on extra work, which cut out time to prepare food and relax. I started to feel a bit rushed and ate on the go, heading into meeting with an upset stomach. I later returned home after the sun had set, meaning that I had to skip my workout. After a high pressure day with an improper diet and no exercise, I felt agitated and didn’t sleep well. The next morning, I hit the snooze button and didn’t have time for a proper breakfast. Following a week of cutting corners on my self-care, I started to wonder why I was so exhausted. “Why do I feel so drained?” In a state of constant stress, my thoughts began to disorganize. “I think I really blew that presentation.” I couldn’t see the simple chain of events that had let me here. I ended up analyzing everything, trying to figure out why I felt so rough. “Am I drinking too much? Is it the weather? Is there black mold in my walls?”
If this colleague was my client, our basic starting point would be to understand the order in which things make our self-management fall apart. While this usually provides relief on its own, the second step is understanding how earlier life experiences contribute to stress response, need to perform well, self-defeating thoughts, as well as the availability of support resources.
Whether you are planning for your career, looking for change, or battling stress, I look forward to the work that we may do.
-Your Thrive Consultant
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