The Self-Care Mindset®

If you’re familiar with my backstory, you might know that IMPERIA exists because I burned out in my 30s. Hard. 

I had one of the first food blogs back in 2003, and co-created the world’s first food podcast channel in 2006. The years that followed included way too many work hours, a few too many time zones and countries, and almost no regard for my self-care.

I’m a workaholic by nature — not because I’m trying to escape something, but because I’m the kind of creature that requires a passionate love for her work. When I’m in, I’m all in. And when I’m in creative flow, it’s nothing for me to work 12-hour days for 7 days straight, simply because I’m enraptured by the work. 

However, that kind of creative flow also puts me on red alert, because if it lasts too long, I put myself back on the dangerous precipice of burnout. In those moments I let my inner circle know what’s in play so they can check my behavior.

As I ended 2022, I noticed that familiar malaise appearing, just on the fringes of my consciousness. I put a lot of miles on my body last year, both physically with travel and mentally with creating the next phase of IMPERIA. I’m also on a biologic for autoimmune issues stemming from the first burnout, so I’ve gone through 2 rounds of my body rejecting those. One nearly gave me a stroke, and the other made half my hair fall out. It’s been rough, y’all. 

Another burnout is not an option right now, because it will quite literally take me out. 

Thankfully I have a dear friend named Jeanette Bronee, who was with me at the United Nations in 2019 when we launched our first IMPERIA cohort. Because she knew my backstory, she stayed on top of me about my well-being as we got things off the ground. She even came in as a guest speaker for our first cohort, and provided invaluable insights for women who put themselves last in pursuit of bringing their vision to life (sound familiar?).

I’m so grateful Jeanette has put her wisdom into book form, because the entire planet needs to get on board her train. And you would be wise to add her new book, The Self-Care Mindset, to your core library (it’s now part of ours), because it will change life — not just yours, but those of the humans you interact with every day. You know, like your employees and stuff.

The Jeanette in My Head is always reminding me to ask myself “What do I need so that I can…?” You’ll see this again and again in the book as a guiding question to help you understand what self-care looks like when it’s the first thing you consider.

This reinforces the underlying theme Jeanette is really driving home: 

Self-care is not a way to recover from our lives — it should be the pillar at the center of our lives so we don’t need to recover from living!

With incredible tools for re-framing our thinking, our internal check-ins, and the way we interact with the world, The Self-Care Mindset can literally become your operating manual for The Way Forward. Each chapter ends with a set of questions so you can do the work in real-time, pausing to consider the big picture and the small steps that support it.

Do yourself the greatest favor and pause to read this book. You’ll thank me later.

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Wednesday Wisdom takes a deeper dive into the core concepts of IMPERIA’s work, helping to strengthen you from the inside out as you scale your vision.

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