Transcript #130. The “Big Burnout”: Post-Pandemic stress and other factor affecting your wellbeing at work

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[00:00:00] Renata: Hi, I'm Renata Bernarde. And this is the Job Hunting Podcast, where I interview experts and professionals and discuss issues that are important for job hunters and those who are working to advance their careers. So make sure that you subscribe and follow and let's dive right in. 

[00:00:30] Renata: Natalie Moore and Lisa Saunders are the ultimate work wives stain. They have a keen interest in workplace well-being and in their own words, they decided to team up because two brains are better than one. And they went into business together to improve workplace well-being through their company. Own your health collective, Natalie and Lee help women achieve holistic health and well-being for work and life. They also offer corporate health and wellbeing training in the workplace. And you can [00:01:00] learn more about them by following the links provided in the episode, show notes, or the description below if you're watching on YouTube. In this episode, we start by discussing the importance of setting goals and the importance of working together as a team, what your strengths mean and how you can blend strengths with your teammates to maximize your opportunities. 

[00:01:21] Renata: The big burnout. After two years of the pandemic. Catching up with all of us. It's so interesting because we're kind of at the end of the pandemic movie into an endemic mode, but so much of my time is spent helping clients cope with the funk that they're feeling and the lack of energy. And it's not surprising to me. 

[00:01:42] Renata: I think it's very common, but it's not very well understood. So we talk a little bit about that and then we move into talking. The company and wellbeing. You know, the programs that companies are offering to not only keep their employees but to attract employees. This [00:02:00] 2022 is the year of people changing and moving around and companies are really mindful of that. 

[00:02:06] Renata: And we talk about the importance of building good habits. The second half of our conversation in this episode is all about menopause at work. And this is a great, great conversation for not only women of all ages, but men, men that have women in their lives, wives, and daughters. Coworkers team members, menopause interns, or hormonal imbalances can really negatively affect women in the workplace, their career prospects, and their ability to advance and companies are really mindful of that more and more. There's much more grounds to cover, but with the help of organizations like. On your health collective from Natalie and Lisa, we are getting the message through of how important it is to prepare, uh, for women's hormonal imbalances at work. And in the end, I also give my [00:03:00] three reasons to love perimenopause. I have been going through perimenopause for a few years now, and I kind of have a silver lining there. So, if you stick around, you can hear what I have to say about that. Listen to this episode and I'll touch base with you at the end of it again.  

I guess the first thing I'd love to know from you is to tell me about your careers and how come you two ended up together. I can sense, say what's that term? That Annabel Crabb uses the work wives, a work-life story coming up. Have you read that book? It's a lovely book. I'll put the link in the episode show notes. 

[00:03:42] Natalie: And I have to say, actually I have a seven and a half year old, and every time my phone rings, she says to me, is that Lisa? 

[00:03:52] Natalie: She has gotten used to us. Yes. Being working wives. Definitely. Look, we have both been through things. Through [00:04:00] a pretty big career change over the years. And I won't take Lisa’s thunder, but for me, I fell into packaging manufacturing actually, and in sales most specifically, but, uh, I had about 10 years in, in sales roles, working with major corporates, supporting them around their projects and packaging. 

[00:04:19] Natalie: And you know, after I had my daughter, I realized it just wasn't for me, it just wasn't fitting. My values or the way that I wanted to live or work. And so I thought, you know what? I actually had a moment in the bathroom at my work. And I said, please do God give me a sign. That there's something really special out there for me. 

[00:04:38] Natalie: And I had a bit of an epiphany. I'm a very keen, crazy runner actually. And I thought, you know, what, how do I bring my passion of running into a business that. Lights me up. And that was sort of the beginning where I come up with this idea to create a subscription box for runners, because I loved motivating people to run and talk about running. 

[00:04:58] Natalie: And so I was boxing up all these [00:05:00] health foods, sports, nutrition, and then I'm, then that morphed into goal-setting with. Because everyone was saying to me, how are you working? Because I was still working four days having a baby running, marathons, doing this little side business. And I thought, how will you not? 

[00:05:16] Natalie: So, you know, I went through this process of then running goal-setting workshops and to, I guess, really cut a long story short. I then went and studied health and wellness coaching. I've also then done yoga and meditation teacher training. And, you know, that's, I guess how Lisa and I ended up together because we found a synergy within our work. 

[00:05:36] Natalie: Um, we had complimentary passions may around wellness and mindset, at least around nutrition and food coaching. And, you know, we just, we decided that, you know, two heads are better than one head and, uh, we came together and created only one. Collective, but it's been a journey that we've both been on in, I guess, changing our careers and really finding that theme that lats us [00:06:00] up and makes us feel good, you know, inside and out. 

[00:06:03] Natalie: What about  

[00:06:03] Renata: you Lisa create  

[00:06:04] Lisa: change as well? I started off my Curry in the property, valuations and management area actually. And also I was good at it and I did it for quite a while, but I never really loved. And I always was interested in nutrition and I always tell the story about how I used to drag my mom into health food shops since that's, when it was like a toy shop for me. 

[00:06:23] Lisa: So I always had that keen interest in nutrition and food. You're paying multi-site backgrounds. So food is always featured very heavily in the way. A few things happen. I had my kids and the culture that I went back to at work was just different. It didn't align with mine anymore. My values and I wanted to be, I had my children a little bit later in life, so I wanted to be more available for them, had a breast Kansas game on a 10, 14. 

[00:06:48] Lisa: So that really rocked my. And I started unbeknownst to me. I started to enter into perimenopause in my early forties and had some pretty full-on rude rages ranges and moods and [00:07:00] anxiety. And so I actually finished up in that area and did a diploma of food and health coaching and started my own business. 

[00:07:08] Lisa: Met Nash through a mutual friend. She came home one day. She rang me. It was quite light, late myself is everything okay? She said, I've just been somewhere and I met this girl called Natalie Moore. You need to talk to her. You guys are like so aligned. It's not fun again. Okay. So I reached out to net and we met over a few times as a bit of a support to each other. 

[00:07:26] Lisa: We had our respective businesses then, and, um, we used to throw things at each other about, you know, what do you think of blah, blah. And then we actually did an expose together in 2019 in March, 2019. And that was hugely successful. And we thought, you know what? We should just take this further. And that's how only how collected  

[00:07:42] Renata: was. 

[00:07:43] Renata: Oh, that's such a great story. I love a couple of things that you've said both of you, first of all, goal setting, it's so important. It's so embedded in the coaching that I do. And personally, I have goal setting to sank for as a theory that I was [00:08:00] introduced very early on in my life that has really helped me personally. 

[00:08:05] Renata: So I love dash and I find that it's very common for. Sportspeople and people that enjoy athletics, which is not my case for me. I had to kind of create goals for me that were about my life and my values and where I wanted to live and how I wanted to progress with my career and whatnot. But if you come from that athletics background, it's such more easily done and such a great transferable skills. So if you're listening and like Natalie you've been running or achieving goals outside of your career, you know, cool. Say that, transferring that to Korea goes, cause that works too. And the other thing I loved about your story is this idea of joining for us. 

[00:08:48] Renata: When I came out of the corporate sector to start my own business. The first thing I did was to find people to collaborate with first of all, because I didn't want to be lonely. And I feel like so many of us step out of the [00:09:00] corporate sector to engage in work that we love as sole traders or on their own companies. 

[00:09:06] Renata: But then we isolate ourselves. So the fact that you were humbling, And smart enough to, you know, work together and scale is fantastic. So good on you. Do you want to sort of comment on those things? Cause I really liked both of those aspects of your stories. The may,  

[00:09:23] Natalie: the goal settings, Bain, a huge part of my life. 

[00:09:27] Natalie: And I have to say, I only got into. When I was 25, so mid twenties. So I'm 40 now, so about 15 years, but it was that introduction to setting a huge marathon goal and then working towards that, you know, week by week. And I, yeah, I've definitely been able to translate that experience with my running into business and into life as well. 

[00:09:48] Natalie: So yeah, it, yeah, big part of my life and I can't ever talk enough about actually having goals and working towards those goals. And  

[00:09:55] Lisa: I think that the beauty of what you say around going into your own business and [00:10:00] having someone else to be able to share, do that with is really, you know, we're very lucky because we both bring to the business different skills. 

[00:10:07] Lisa: So that's got a great sales background and I'm happy to get into the detail and do the financials and all that, you know, so we're really complimentary about what we bring in. So, and it's much easier doing it with two than one and it's not lonely to, you can bounce things off each other all the time, and I'll be working in one room and I'll go net, blah, blah, blah, blah. 

[00:10:28] Lisa: And you know, like it's just these come to you. It's really, it's great. You know, we probably interrupting each other a bit with that, but  

[00:10:34] Renata: yeah, that partnership is great. I have a couple of people that work for me as contractors and I don't have a big team anymore, but they are great. And I keep asking them, please tell me when. 

[00:10:46] Renata: Please give me feedback. Don't just do what I say. Tell me if this is the right way to go. And sometimes when you are higher contracts, is they want to please you. So they want to just do whatever you ask them to do. When I actually want the constructive [00:11:00] feedback and I want to tap into their expertise. So I'm always asking them for. 

[00:11:04] Renata: So, well, Dan, what do you think the strengths that you bring? I mean, Lisa you've tapped on that before that you have complimentary skills and they blended together, make you a great team. But if you think about your individual strengths that you have used in your career and that you're still working on right now, what, what are. 

[00:11:24] Renata: Um,  

[00:11:25] Natalie: yeah, look for me. I think it's that honesty is a huge one for me. And I'm very big on, on strengths and the character strengths and, and honesty always comes up as my top character strength, but being not just honest, but being true to you, you know, that's, that's really put me. Um, argue the years and I can, you know, really reflect a look at times where I wasn't honest with myself or living in alignment to myself. 

[00:11:51] Natalie: So, you know, being honest with myself in terms of how I want to show up the work that I want to do, the interactions that I want to have living by your values. Really [00:12:00] important.  

[00:12:00] Lisa: So one's going  

[00:12:00] Natalie: to say, and just, you know, just remembering that way, human, I think. And I've really come to appreciate that over the years and working in the line of work that we have, but building relationships authentically, you know, mindfully being in someone's presence. 

[00:12:16] Natalie: And, um, you know, there are definitely skills that we've built and, and, and still continue to nurture today. And. What can we, that wants to, and, and  

[00:12:25] Lisa: I would say to empathy as well, and, and having that empathy to listen to others and understand where they're coming from. And I think for me, those things started to really sound out, um, W quite loud to me around the time that I changed careers because that empathy wasn't there. 

[00:12:45] Lisa: When I went back to where I was, the culture definitely wasn't a fit. I was, you know, crying out for help at that point in my career. And there just was nothing. I got nothing. I got. So, um, it's not [00:13:00] you and you've gotta be true to yourself. Well, this isn't aligning with me and I need to move on from it. So, and then we've taken that into our work life now and what we're doing. 

[00:13:10] Renata: I love that because sometimes people do the via character strengths and I use them in my coaching as well, by the way. And they. They look at the results of the top five, let's say and think about it as it relates to them, but not how they relate to the world. And it's important to understand it as you sadly say, if empathy is not. 

[00:13:33] Renata: All around you, it will make you so unhappy. Whereas for someone else that has empathy down, you know, as number 16, they can work in a more sort of political, aggressive environment and not feel as unhappy as you felt. And Lisa, Natalie, you mentioned, um, your top one was honesty. I find it really interesting when I do the character strengths test with my [00:14:00] clients. 

[00:14:00] Renata: And they're surprised by what comes at the top. And especially because I work with senior executives, they like where's leadership. Leadership is not at the top. And, you know, I mean, it's really, it's funny. My. Number one or number two, depending on when I do, uh, the test is, uh, appreciation of art and beauty. 

[00:14:22] Renata: And that serves me never, like, I always felt like, what the hell? Like I am an executive  

[00:14:30] Lisa: growing up. Well, we'll just see what. I'm looking at or not. 

[00:14:39] Renata: So a lot of my clients feel like that whatever comes at the top, we have the tendency to look at the, but I'm off that, um, that what spits out of that result. I remember feeling like that as well. I'm like, what the hell? You know, appreciation of art and beauty, what the hell is that? And, um, but also feeling a [00:15:00] sense of relief, you know, I felt aren't you relieved that this is the reason why you're so pedantic about things on the wall and the colors, or. 

[00:15:12] Renata: Your couch or, you know, if, if somebody buys linen that you don't like, like if your poor husband went out and bought linen and you hated it, that's the reason why it means so much to you. And it doesn't mean so much to him. So that's what I tell people. Like, if you get results from any type of assessment, really reflect on it and. 

[00:15:35] Renata: Yeah, sort of understand it from the point of view of how you relate it to the world. And even if it doesn't serve you professionally, guess what eventually it will, because this really helps my clients. You know, usually, I mean, if you're not watching this on YouTube, you may not see what's behind. But just look at any photos of mine, uh, on Instagram, you will see my background. 

[00:15:56] Renata: People come to me and they're so upset and [00:16:00] sad and lost their jobs or hate their jobs. And just coming into my zoom office and seeing this, I hope brings them a little bit of joy. So 

[00:16:11] Renata: I found a way for, for my top strengths to serve me somehow. 

[00:16:18] Natalie: Um, I guess, embracing this learning that we have with curiosity as well, isn't it like it's not, um, being, you know, closed off to possibilities. It's all looking at honesty and saying, well, yes, I am honest, but hang on. What does that actually look like in terms of how I show up, how people see me, how I interact with the world with nature yet, it's very powerful when you deep dive and, and, um, and, and continue to evolve and learn. 

[00:16:43] Natalie: You know, we always say to clients we're forever a working progress when. We obviously epitomize health and positive wellbeing, but we are human as well. And, you know, we will fall off the wagon and it is forever working progress. And having that open, [00:17:00] curious mind is really powerful. And do  

[00:17:02] Lisa: you know what a lot too, is that the conversation you was talking about with the values to Renata, it brings out things that maybe were there. 

[00:17:10] Lisa: That you haven't really delved into, you know, you were talking about the art. It's like, they've always been there, but they bring it to the forefront and it's actually a real, there's a real peacefulness in being able to say, you know what, I've actually always felt like that, but I've never known how to bring it out. 

[00:17:26] Lisa: Or if it was, you know, that inner critic, you know, just smash it down that can't possibly be. Well, you know what my value is, and it actually can really relate, bring quite a sense of relate to some people connect.  

[00:17:38] Renata: Oh, yes. For me it gave me a lot of relief because I come from a country with deep political, um, and social. 

[00:17:47] Renata: Problems and to have such shallow interests like fashion and interior design. To me personally, I don't think people were judging me, but I felt bad about it all my [00:18:00] life. I felt bad. I should be worried about something else. And I overcompensated by being a student activist by being very involved in politics at a young age, because I was overcompensating. 

[00:18:11] Renata: Because my heart was in what I thought was frivolous pursuits and you know, and I, and I'm like, this is built in my DNA. There's really nothing I can do about it. You know, it's my character strength. Yeah. I can help the world in some way, you know, even if it's helping my friends decorate their houses, which is what I opened tend to do, 

[00:18:38] Renata: but look, um, I want to go into the topic of wellbeing and I had the intention of starting straight into menopause, but I think maybe we can start a bit sort of progressively towards. Uh, talking about menopause because this week has been such an interesting week for me. I've just come out of a session, uh, where we were discussing [00:19:00] burnout. 

[00:19:00] Renata: Like really, um, not just I'm burnt out this week. I have been burnt out for two years and I cannot cope. There are people that are feeling deep in their guts and their brains, the consequence of excessive amount of working hours, working from home and coping with. Everything that comes from being in lockdown kids and all of that. 

[00:19:29] Renata: And even though we're coming out of it in most countries, this podcast is listened all along around the world. So I'm not sure, you know, if you're listening, if you're still in a lockdown or you're coming in or you're coming out or whatever. Um, but even in Australia, Been in more preventive, new, normal life. 

[00:19:47] Renata: It's catching up with us now, you know, when you're, um, I don't know if you've studied this in psychology. When people are served that have that survivor syndrome, like you've [00:20:00] survived and then you breathe and then you realize that your body. Needs to break down and, and reset and you know, the lying flat, uh, terminology that we're using today for the people that came out of employment, for example, and just are not feeling strong enough to go back in. 

[00:20:23] Renata: Again, there are a lot of young people that are going through that. A lot of people my age, and maybe your age doing their fifties, that are going through that as well. So. Tell me about your journey in this space, working with individuals and organizations in trying to maintain well-being at work. I'm really curious to know what sort of work you guys are doing. 

[00:20:50] Lisa: Next thing, working specifically with quite a few people and you go, yeah.  

[00:20:54] Natalie: Yeah. And it's funny, Renata, as you were talking, I just took a deep breath in [00:21:00] because I think, you know, there is, there's a lot happening and I really feel, we both feel that, you know, the last two years he's really compounded into this moment right now. 

[00:21:11] Natalie: And, you know, we've sort of gone from naught to a thousand overnight. But yet we're still dealing with the baggage of the last two years as well. And you know, there's, there's a lot there to process and a lot to sort of, I guess, look at what, what we're really feeling. Um, so, you know, for us, we very much talk about wellbeing from a whole health perspective. 

[00:21:35] Natalie: So we created our own framework, which, um, you know, isn't, is it new if people looked at it, but it is based on a lot of positive psychology tools out there. And we really want to hide in around, know the self. So coming back to who you are, who, who each individual person is their biology, that physiology, um, and then looking at the pillars around that person. 

[00:21:59] Natalie: So your [00:22:00] physical, your mental, your emotional. Spirit to house. And you know, they're not new terms individually, of course not, but we very rarely bring that emphasis, um, together as, you know, one sort of entity that we should look at, because what happens in our physical health impacts our spiritual health that impacts our emotional health, our relationships that then impacts our mental health as well. 

[00:22:24] Natalie: So when we're working with workplaces and individuals, we basically show them our framework. No, it's the circle in the middle of the self, in the middle, and then the four outer circles, all joining together and all made up of different elements. And we encourage people to look at that, that framework and pick one and say, which one is it that perhaps you're not nurturing as much as you want to be right now. 

[00:22:49] Natalie: And then let's throw down and say, okay, well, what does that look like? What do you want? And let's pick physical, for example, because that's probably the one people relate to most, which part of your physical health [00:23:00] not nurturing? Is it the food? Is it the sleep? Is it the movement? Okay, well, let's break that down further then. 

[00:23:05] Natalie: What do you want that to look like and what we stay in, educating people around the different pillars and choosing one in particular is that we naturally see a flow on effect into other things. 'cause when we're thriving physically and we feel well, or even get a good night's sleep prime example, you know, we are then more aware of, okay, am I, am I living life to my values? 

[00:23:27] Natalie: You know, am I nurturing relationships as I want to be? Am I. Using my brain and nurturing my mental health as much as I really want to be as well. So that's a big part for us is very much around coming back to the whole person and looking at it as a, um, as a whole health message. And then really importantly as well is really, you know, defining what health and wellness looks like for you. 

[00:23:53] Natalie: And that's why we always bring it back to the individual. What do you want your health to look like? What do you want [00:24:00] to feel like, how do you want to show up to people around you when you go to work? How do you want to feel? How do you want to show up? And then, you know, from there, we then give you strategies around that and, you know, through mindfulness, through movement, through food, through emotionally. 

[00:24:15] Natalie: Um, you know, but it's, it's very individual and really, you know, we encourage people to come back to themselves. What is it that you want? And then let's look at, okay, what do you need from there? And how can we support you through that?  

[00:24:29] Renata: Um, that's the dream, isn't it? I wish everybody had the education to reach out to you and to, you know, tools and resources out there. 

[00:24:41] Renata: I find that some times people. Caught up in the rat race and they don't, um, have the, have the timing brackets quote, unquote, to go in and introduce themselves to, to this very, sometimes effective rituals that you do every day. [00:25:00] And, and I can see that you are also w working with corporates, because if you are going top down, You know, if you have the organization advocating for wellness, that is such a powerful way of introducing it to professionals, because then it's embedded in the culture it's embedded in the organization. 

[00:25:24] Renata: The organization is telling you to take a break to, um, to do things like my, my son, um, did an internship in the. When he was at uni and he said, oh mom, it's really funny. If I, if I stay at my desk for too long, somebody will come and massage me or tell me to get up and go to 

[00:25:46] Renata: such an American thing. Like if you're listening and you knew from the U S I mean it with, you know, the best thing endangerment, but in Australia, we don't. I mean, I don't, I don't think I've never seen anything like that. And, um, [00:26:00] Yeah. So I guess I I'm glad that he was introduced to this and an early age. 

[00:26:04] Renata: Hopefully it, um, it's these with him, but have you been successful at working with organizations so that they can introduce this to their, um, teams? Yeah.  

[00:26:17] Natalie: Interesting question. And, um, you know, I think over the last two years, that's really highlighted, um, a gap as well, in real tangible health and wellbeing strategies within workplaces. 

[00:26:29] Natalie: When we joined forces, how, you know, the first thing we said is we don't want to be a tick and a flick or nice to have. We want to actually be there embedding health and wellbeing into the culture. Again, coming back to that humanness, we're all humans, how wellbeing is part of us in our working life and in our personal life. 

[00:26:49] Natalie: Um, so we've, we've had a little bit of success in terms of, you know, running some longer programs and, um, you know, introducing, you know, key term. [00:27:00] You know, changing the language, getting people to look, you know, beyond just, you know, a one-off workshop, you know, because that's great in the moment, but how do we actually turn this into sustainable health and wellbeing? 

[00:27:14] Natalie: Um, you know, culture you're creating that safe. Yeah. Safe and changing. So, um, yeah, you know, there's a long way to go. And, you know, I think if there's a silver lining from the last two years is that, you know, there's been renewed focus around how important it is to support employees, but there's still a long way to go in terms of really making this part of, um, life and work and  

[00:27:40] Lisa: cultures. 

[00:27:41] Lisa: And, and it's that mindset because Nat mentioned that ticket. And, um, it's the mindset of actually doing a longer programs through the corporate workplace that we're probably finding the most resistance around at the moment. Um, you know, everyone, we will live, we live in a society where we [00:28:00] want it quickly. 

[00:28:01] Lisa: Um, you know, we talk to people one-on-one, um, we do a lot of work with women, as you know, and, um, the coaching that we do is not quickly it's, it's, it's just small and manageable. And at the end of the day, it all comes down to that habit that you have around how you conduct your day. And it's those changes in habits. 

[00:28:24] Lisa: Whether they be big things, a little things. Which is where we see the success happening. So whether it's an individual basis or in the workplace, we need to, that's the kind of change that we need to instill that it's not all quick. We just want something so quickly or that it's not coming up or it's not doing what you said. 

[00:28:41] Lisa: It's just like be patient. And that's probably one of the biggest things that we find is really, um, sabotaging people's or. Um, mindset around what we do.  

[00:28:53] Renata: Um, that's such a good point, you know, um, I'll share with you how I coach [00:29:00] clients and maybe this might be something you want to reflect on because the first module we do is a long-term. 

[00:29:08] Renata: Scenario planning and really identifying with as much detail as you can, how your future is going to be 20 years from now. And not just by imagining it, but writing it down. Like what's my day, like what time do I wake up? What do I do that day? You know, I have a speech that I need to write and there's a whole bunch of exercises that we do in this first module, so that people it's part of that goal setting. 

[00:29:37] Renata: Thing that we mentioned before, but it's just cementing and crystallizing your preferred future. And that is such an empowering thing when you're working with that immediate needs that you have, because if you're moving towards this future 20 years from now, it's something happens that kind of mocks up your plans for [00:30:00] the next week. 

[00:30:01] Renata: It's not as important anymore. All of a sudden you have this great future ahead of you. You have, uh, you know, a vision boards that, you know, I have two in front of me. I have a long-term vision board and a short-term vision board, and that keeps you grounded. So if you lose your job, if the pandemic happens, Somebody gets sick. 

[00:30:22] Renata: It's okay. It's just something that you might have to incorporate as your, another stepping stone towards that preferred future. And I wonder if this is something that organizations and individuals can also do in terms of the work you're doing the wellbeing space. Um, In terms of, um, wellbeing for women. 

[00:30:45] Renata: What have you, I mean like you, uh, Lisa, I also, um, started perimenopause at the age of 41 for me and did I did straight [00:31:00] away because it was very clear. The signs were clear and my mom and my grandmother, both of them also same age 41. So it was like, You know, tick, tick, tick,  

[00:31:10] Lisa: it happens to all the genetics is playing out for you nicely. 

[00:31:13] Lisa: They 

[00:31:17] Renata: it's really funny. And I have a sister she's younger than me and she has Ms. And, um, she was, we were on the phone a few years ago and she was like, oh, I'm having all these issues. I think my Ms is getting worse. And it's funny when people, it's not funny that she has Ms at all, but it's interesting when people. 

[00:31:36] Renata: Um, have a chronic disease and then like go into menopause or get catch a cold, whatever it may be. They don't really know what's, you know, the chronic disease and what's just something else. And they're like, darling, this, this cold men are pies. You know, it's really not Ms. I'm pretty sure I'm not a doctor, but I can tell you if you're waking up [00:32:00] at 3:00 AM in the morning, your head. 

[00:32:01] Renata: Flushes guess what? It's not. So we had that conversation and it started early for her as well. I suppose that is a terrible thing for women in the workforce. Isn't it. As soon as we give birth and the kids get it, you know, Older and get into high schools or whatever. Gosh, we have something else to deal with. 

[00:32:26] Renata: And it's so annoying at a time when you're about to feel free and have more time to yourself. All of a sudden you're getting palpitations. You're not feeling a hundred percent. Your brain is foggy. Like I really felt it. And my rational being was trying to manage it. Whilst my reptile brain was just not coping with it. 

[00:32:54] Renata: And I think for the past decade, I found it really hard to, [00:33:00] uh, sort of keep up with work. And I think opting to have my own career and setting my own time. Was a consequence of basically too much menopausal symptoms. If I look back, I kind of, I'm not blaming it. I think it's actually a blessing that I have my own business, but gosh, it's much easier to manage my symptoms now that I work for myself. 

[00:33:25] Renata: So I, I, what have you researched? And what do you understand are the issues that women face when they reach that age? Wait, hormonal imbalances can affect their careers. I  

[00:33:41] Lisa: think. Um, so some of the issues, I suppose, even just talking about the symptoms of the, the biggest one is what you just alluded to the hot flashes. 

[00:33:50] Lisa: Um, You know, that sleeping and how that impacts them so heavily. You know, we all know that if we haven't had a great night's sleep for one night, how that can really mess [00:34:00] us up. And unfortunately, so many women experienced this night after night, and then, you know, they're trying to do their work the next day and I'm finding it really hard to concentrate. 

[00:34:12] Lisa: Their energy levels are terrible. Um, and then there's all the silent stuff. Like, you know, the heart palpitations, the, um, You know, the, the slate de deprivation, all of those types of things really, um, affect the female. And it actually has a big effect on the company as a whole. Doesn't it? Because, you know, you've got these really well educated or experienced women that are going into the next level of their working life and bang. 

[00:34:41] Lisa: It really hits them. And look from my perspective, I, um, I mentioned before the anxiety. Definitely a drop in confidence really does come about with a lot of women. And whereas they've been confident to do things in the workplace previously, they start second guessing themselves. And, [00:35:00] and I remember thinking back in my early forties that I started doing that and I'm, and I'm thinking. 

[00:35:06] Lisa: Well, well, my second guessing myself about something I didn't know, you know, really really know I'm back 10 52. So in my early forties, I didn't really realize that's what I was going. It's very, um, and it's only through a change of career and research and study that now I'm obviously very aware of it, but that confidence is a real biggie and, um, And that's why some women actually ended up leaving the workforce and they don't have that support and, and women in the workforce. 

[00:35:36] Lisa: They're not really looking for, um, a solution from their workplace, from that perimenopause and menopause perspective. They're looking for support for all of these symptoms that they can be fit, you know, they can be feeling. So, um, it's a real, Beaky actually in the workplace and why women are leaving. Um, I don't, you know, there's, they do talk about, there are stats out there saying, you know, [00:36:00] there's more women than ever doing, having their own businesses now. 

[00:36:03] Lisa: Um, it'd be awesome to see more research behind. Why are they starting their own businesses? Is it because I just want to do that. And that's just the next calling or like yourself that, you know, you're having these symptoms and it's forcing you almost to actually be able to manage them better, to be able to do our own thing, which then leads to other issues too, because it can be a lot, you know, you, and I know it can be a lonely existence where you're not having that. 

[00:36:30] Lisa: Interaction with other people you're not learning from other people. Um, and then you, you don't really feel like going out and networking because you feel so miserable and horrible at the time, too. So there's so much leak, you know, leads on from, from how you're feeling. Yeah.  

[00:36:46] Renata: And, and, you know, from my experience, um, with clients that are going through perimenopause, I find that the lack of confidence then leads them to accept jobs that are lower pay rate. 

[00:36:58] Renata: It leads them [00:37:00] to not advance in their career and fulfill their dreams and achieve the goals that they had set out for themselves years. Prior. Um, and they feel that that lack of energy, you know, I don't feel like I have it in me anymore. Uh there's this lack of energy and, um, like Julisa, sometimes they don't see this as hormonal imbalances. 

[00:37:23] Renata: They just think that they're just old. At 43 at 44. And I'm like, you can still be a CEO if you want to. You know, but I, there there's this feeling like, no, I'm too old for it now because there's, they're not sleeping there. The brain is foggy. Yeah. They, they don't have, uh, an energy that they used to in the past. 

[00:37:48] Renata: And, you know, they are not managing that hormonal imbalance in any way, shape or form, and all of a sudden their career starts crumbling down. So what, [00:38:00] um, have you been able to achieve, or how have you learned in terms of best practices for organizations to support their female? Employees. Have you seen anything working in terms of addressing menopause at work? 

[00:38:16] Lisa: Look, um, there's a few examples in Australia, but I think, um, the UK is really leading the way in this area. And, um, you know, they're talking about an empowerment they've recently introduced. Um, menopause education in the school curriculum, which is something we desperately need to do here. Um, you know, women and men need to be really aware of these life cycle that we go through. 

[00:38:46] Lisa: You know, years ago, women were probably living to their fifties, maybe sixties, we're living another third of our lives. In menopause. Um, so it's really something that we need to be, um, supporting in the workplace. [00:39:00] And I suppose one of my biggest beefs is I see things, um, you know, on LinkedIn from people that are saying, oh, we're great where we've got this parental leave. 

[00:39:09] Lisa: We've got all these different types of leads. But we have nothing that's being talked about in relation to menstrual leave, uh, Mr. Lee policies or menstrual policies, menopause policies. Um, so yeah, that's, that's something that I would love to see more of, um, as well, um, net, did you want to come  

[00:39:29] Natalie: in? I was just going to say, I think there's a huge education piece, you know? 

[00:39:32] Natalie: And, you know, it starts really with the woman herself because we have countless conversations with clients and, you know, so many friends, family that I know about paramedical Z is my 72 year old mother. When I said I was, um, you know, working in peri-menopause. She said what's that, you know, she, all she knew was menopause. 

[00:39:52] Natalie: She didn't know, you know, the umbrella term around ParaMed pause.  

[00:39:55] Lisa: Okay. Actually, we both had a conversation with friends in their thirties. That [00:40:00] you know, will be on a wall. We talk about, and I know, oh, what's peri-menopause. So  

[00:40:04] Renata: can you explain for the listeners, like there will be people in the audience that don't know the difference. 

[00:40:09] Renata: Can you contrast?  

[00:40:12] Lisa: Yeah. So the perimenopause is the, is the lead up into. Menopause. So it can be two years, five years, 10 years. It really depends on the individual and then menopause. So, and you can have these host of symptoms that happen that, you know, we've been alluding to as well. So there's over 30 symptoms that, um, women can experience. 

[00:40:34] Lisa: Some of them might, um, experience one or two, some none lucky then and some quite a few. And then you move into menopause and menopause is that, um, that day, that precede or that, that occurs 12 months after. Your last period or ministration. Um, so basically, um, the, a lot of women don't often don't [00:41:00] realize or, um, you know, can't remember. 

[00:41:03] Lisa: Um, but basically it's that 12 month mark anniversary, the symptoms that we talk about may keep going. Like would subside it really EAs very individual. So, um, you know, we taught in the school curriculum around, you know, biology around having a baby, how to get pregnant, uh, having a period, menstruating, straining, all that kind of stuff. 

[00:41:23] Lisa: But that seems to be where it stops. It. Doesn't talk about these other things that can happen or that will happen in, um, you know, in a woman's life. And funnily enough, when we've presented to corporates around, um, menopause in the week, It's astounding. How many men that are in that discussion that saying I have just load so much information and it's great because now I can, I can understand what my wife, my sister, my mother is going through. 

[00:41:55] Lisa: Um, so it's not just as powerful for women. It's powerful for men, for [00:42:00] everyone in the workplace. And in fact, um, there was an article that I posted about it on LinkedIn a few weeks ago, around a company whose name escapes me in the UK. That have putting a menopause policy and menopause training within, um, their training at work. 

[00:42:17] Lisa: And they were saying just how wonderful it is, especially for the managers that have employees that are going through a menopause and perimenopause, just to be able to understand it and help them through it. A lot of managers won't actually put up their hand or approach others for fear of saying the wrong thing or not understanding it. 

[00:42:37] Lisa: But how powerful is it that if we can be training. Corporates in the corporate workplace around what it is, what you can do, the policies you can be putting into place and simple things that you can be doing. Because at the end of the day, a lot of this comes back to the lifestyle, things that we do. Um, you know, those pillars that we talked about and yes, there's medical, um, [00:43:00] help, um, that can, that women can be receiving. 

[00:43:02] Lisa: And we know you've had. Dr. Fedder McCann on the podcast. And she's a very big believer in marrying the two, the lifestyle options, as well as the medical options. And I think that if we sort of just look at it, look at it simply, um, we can be doing so much in the workplace around supporting women so they can stay at work and they can revise. 

[00:43:24] Lisa: The CEO role that they've got their eye on or whatever, whatever it looks like to them, that was a long, no,  

[00:43:32] Renata: that was a great answer. And if there are men listening, bless you, you know, keep listening because I think as you said, Lisa, if you're a leader of men and women yeah. You know, uh, you are going to, um, want to bring the best out in them and, and make sure that they are achieving and performing at the highest level as part of your team. 

[00:43:57] Renata: It's really important to understand, uh, [00:44:00] what's going on behind, um, in their lives and, and, and. You know, they may not be addressing it with you, but it can be something that you suddenly start to acknowledge and understand and manage as well. What would be your best tips for women in the workplace that may have started feeling the symptoms or want to be prepared for what's ahead. 

[00:44:25] Renata: Uh, how do you think that they should address it? For themselves and for the work, should they bring it up with their employers, for example, should they just keep it to themselves? How do you usually, um, what are your usual recommendations for women in that situation? So  

[00:44:46] Natalie: there's a whole psychological safety piece there as well. 

[00:44:49] Natalie: For workplaces that, you know, leaders, they need to create. A safe environment for women to talk about it because, you know, we hear so many, you know, whispered conversations [00:45:00] about menopause. So really that's an important piece. Um, and again, it's coming back to yourself. It's about learning about your body. 

[00:45:10] Natalie: And knowing what you're going through. So I'm 40, I'm not in perimenopause, but part of what we do and part of my passion is, you know, educating women before they get to peri-menopause, you know, my, my life up until a few years ago, it was all about, you know, uh, Falling pregnant when I'm there. Or I worry about my menstrual periods, you know, when I have to. 

[00:45:33] Natalie: So it's about that education because the more we know about our body, the more that we can then, you know, I feel, and he, uh, the subtle changes that are happening within us. And, you know, we are so busy. We have conditioned constantly in autopilot. The little things happening in our body. So, you know, really coming back to ourselves, understanding our body, understand our cycle first and foremost, and [00:46:00] you know, really tuning into those changes. 

[00:46:02] Natalie: And then, you know, in a workplace context really piggy-backing off, you know, if there was. You know, someone that you could talk to in a safe environment about what you're experiencing, you know, particularly if menopause isn't front of mind in the workplace, or even spoke, spoken about at all, finding that person that you could perhaps talk with. 

[00:46:24] Natalie: Um, we hear a lot and something that we very much advocate too, is creating that support network within the. Women just want to know that, you know, there's a level of comfort that other women are going through it. And I think, you know, I liken it as well to being a business owner too, that you want to have comfort knowing that there's other people who are feeling, thinking, doing what you're doing. 

[00:46:47] Natalie: And very much the same thing in a workplace context. If you haven't got that leader that you can comfortably talk to, where can you create. You know, a support network that you guys can talk to each other, or even if it's [00:47:00] through messenger, you know, just being able to reach out and share what it is that you're experiencing. 

[00:47:05] Natalie: So really, you know, it's that education, it's that connection. And, um, you know, really talking and trying to, I guess, openly share what you're experiencing.  

[00:47:18] Renata: I have a story to tell, sorry, I didn't mean to say something, Lisa. Um, I, I I've done this, uh, my throughout my life. And then later I found out that this is a thing, but I don't know if it's as common as I would like it to be, which. 

[00:47:38] Renata: Women in the corporate sector who have, who work on a very tight calendar and has have all of their events and board meetings and everything, uh, booked a year ahead. Uh, as you know, some of us used to have, or still have, I used to merge my menstrual cycle into that. [00:48:00] And if I had the control over when events could happen, let's say board meetings, um, Was head of governance for a couple of years in one organization. 

[00:48:11] Renata: I was a CEO of another one. If I was planning out my, my board meetings ahead of time, guess what ladies? I would try to avoid the times when I was grumpy. We, we, as women, we go through. Uh, ebbs and flows with our energy levels that has a cyclical sort of monthly cycle. If we're lucky and we have more regular menstrual cycles, which I was, uh, you know, my, my, my cycles were very, um, very great that they were easy to, to do, uh, lock down into my calendar. 

[00:48:46] Renata: And I was once locking, um, board meetings. Uh, for an organization that I worked for and my, my boss at the time said, yeah, well the, can it be the next week? [00:49:00] And he, and I said, I preferred that it, you know, that it was in this week, if that's okay with you. And he's like, do I want to know why? And I'm like, no, I don't think you'll want to know. 

[00:49:11] Renata: I can tell you. If you want me to be a specific, he was a guy. I said, no, right. Then, you know, like, you know, if you have the control, just take it, don't take it for granted because I'm working in a high, stressful on, you know, high-performance stressful environment when you are not feeling a hundred percent, which undoubtedly you will be, you know, once a once a month, then if you can take control over that, then. 

[00:49:42] Renata: Make sure that you use it, especially as you advance in your career, it gives you more and more opportunity to take control. And if you don't have control, then remembered that you don't have control and that, that day, or that couple of days, you need to pace yourself.[00:50:00]  

[00:50:01] Lisa: No, no, I, I, when you said I have a story, she's going to talk about her cycle because it's really funny because not funny, but it's, um, we actually do work in that area and we have a program called the female advantage and what that does, it's a 28 day. Program that takes you through your cycle and the ebbs and flows that you talked about. 

[00:50:24] Lisa: Um, it like we liken it to the seasons of the year. So the each cycle has four seasons as well. And how your energy might be, how your movement might be. You know, you would avoid some meetings at some time and you would pair up and actually definitely, you know, have those meetings and another time the food that you might eat, um, it's all. 

[00:50:46] Lisa: And, and if you can be so well connected to your body, like you had just explained, Renata it, leading into perimenopause where your, um, cycle actually becomes a little bit irregular, but you can [00:51:00] still stay to about where you are and, and how your energy might be at that time. And then leading into menopause. 

[00:51:06] Lisa: Also, it's such a wonderful thing to, to be, um, to be doing an acknowledge and actually live by because it really does have its benefits. So I'm really happy to hear that's how you used to manage it.  

[00:51:18] Renata: The good thing about working with other women. Yeah. The cycle synchronize. So then it's the calendar for that ear serves everybody. 

[00:51:30] Renata: Oh, funny. Uh, Natalie Elisa. Is there anything else that we haven't touched today that you want to bring up? I'd love to, you know, sort of touch on anything that you really wanted to talk about that I haven't asked you?  

[00:51:43] Natalie: Probably a key message for us and especially in. It really fades onto your, from your story. 

[00:51:49] Natalie: And also that female advantage work that we do, you know, perimenopause menopause is another face within our life. And, you know, we sort of feel that, you know, [00:52:00] everything that's happened to lead us to that moment really comes to the surface during perimenopause. And it's a great time to reflect and, and grow and, you know, set some new intentions for say the next 20, 30 years. 

[00:52:14] Natalie: Ahead of us. And so, you know, we, I guess really want women to look at this phase with, you know, this peri-menopause power I'm coming into my power and I can define what this phase of life looks like, feels like how I show up. And, you know, I've mentioned that a few times in our conversation, but, you know, Um, you know, menopause has been so synonymous with, you know, a gray Haggard, all woman and, and it's, it's not, you know, and I guess talking to us where we're at different spectrums, but you know, my whole perception around what pre-menopause is, is very different to what it would have been, you know, a few years ago. 

[00:52:52] Natalie: So it's, it's looking at, you know, the spice of life with it, a lens and opportunity lens, you know, coming back into us that, you [00:53:00] know, It's the death of one part of us, but it's the rebirth of the next phase. And you know, how do I come into my power during this?  

[00:53:09] Lisa: I like to call it, finding your way. And we actually have a one-on-one coaching program that is, takes a dig deep dive into perimenopause and menopause. 

[00:53:19] Lisa: And it's all about finding your brilliance because we, again, we tend to concentrate on all that negativity, but we want to flip that and have a look at it. Okay. Yep. There's not some great stuff happening, but let's look at all the good stuff that can be happening. And what does that look like to you individually? 

[00:53:37] Renata: I'm going to list three things that I think are great for the phase that I'm in now. I was always cold all my life and it's wonderful to feel warm. 

[00:53:53] Renata: Sometimes I yell, my husband is working in next door. He has his office next to mine. And sometimes I out, is it [00:54:00] really hot or is it just me? Like, you know, like, I'm like, wow, look at this, like this warmth from within after nine years of this, I'm a bit annoyed or. But at the beginning, I was so amazed about how hot I could be. 

[00:54:15] Renata: And I had never, before. The second thing is that I have lots of great white pants and I've just bought a white bikini. So I'm very happy. Like I wouldn't have happened two days ago, a decade ago. And third is, um, if you are able to pace yourself, manage your energy levels, the things you can achieve at this age, when your kids have grown up, when you are, you know, um, uh, free of. 

[00:54:48] Renata: You know, so many things, less mental load. Oh my goodness. I feel so energized by it. And I think that that's, you know, so the three [00:55:00] positives for me, I'd love to hear from the listeners. If you're, if you found the, send me an email or write me a note on social media, um, and let me know if you have. Oh, the positives to add to this great phase of our lives. 

[00:55:15] Renata: I'd love to hear from you and I'll share with you, Natalie and Lisa as well. When I hear back from, from the audience, now I'm going to add all of your contact details, profiles, website, LinkedIn, everything to the episode, show notes. So everyone, if you're listening and you want to get in touch with Natalie and Lisa, just look at the episode, show notes and the links will be there for you. 

[00:55:40] Renata: Ladies. Thank you so much for your time today. It's been wonderful to get to know you a little bit more. I hope that we keeping touch we'd love that  

[00:55:48] Natalie: definitely would love that.[00:56:00]  

[00:56:09] Renata: I hope you enjoyed my conversation with Natalie and Lisa was, it was a pleasure to have them please connect with them on social media and, uh, look at their website and also connect with me if you haven't yet. Why not? I have a newsletter that's weekly for people that are interested in jobs. People that are career enthusiasts and know how important it is to always be mindful of career being career ready and being career, um, switched on. 

[00:56:45] Renata: I hope you enjoy this episode with Natalie and Lisa, please connect with them on social media and on their website to learn more. We have all the links in the episode, show notes and talking about that. Please connect with me if you [00:57:00] haven't yet. I am, of course, on LinkedIn I'm on Instagram. I've just joined link Tik TOK. 

[00:57:05] Renata: Apparently I'm doing quality while I'll even do. I don't have any followers. I have lots of views. Um, and it's a brand new account. So if you're on Tik TOK, um, I'm there two now I've been told I have to, um, what else? I'm on Twitter. Um, and most importantly, I have a very good news that if I may say so it's a weekly newsletter for job hunter, job hunters and Korea enthusiasts. 

[00:57:29] Renata: So please sign up for. The newsletter, the link is in the episode show notes. Okay. Let's start again. Last time. I hope you enjoyed this episode please. Okay. Sienna, last time. I hope you enjoy this episode with Lisa and Natalie, it was a pleasure to talk to them. I had a great time. Please connect with them on social media, check out [00:58:00] their website. 

[00:58:00] Renata: I will have link to those below in the episode, show notes or the description if you're watching on YouTube. Um, if you have not linked with me on social media, why not, you know, sign up for my YouTube channel. I am on all. Social media platforms. I think I'm on Instagram. I'm on LinkedIn. Of course. I'm on tick-tock I'm on Twitter, Facebook. 

[00:58:24] Renata: This podcast has a private Facebook group. Um, yeah. So all of that, the links are in the episode show now. Of course. And if you want to work with me, check out my website. It's also in the episode show notes. It's Renata bernardi.com, R E N a T a B E R N a R D e.com. And yeah, enough of self promotion. I love having you here and I look forward to seeing you again, next time. 

[00:58:54] Renata: Bye. For now.[00:59:00]  

 

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