Burnout: Excerpt From Emily And Amelia Nagoski

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Burnout: Excerpt From Emily And Amelia Nagoski
Burnout: Excerpt From Emily And Amelia Nagoski
Video: Burnout: Excerpt From Emily And Amelia Nagoski
Video: Burnout: The secret to solving the stress cycle 2023, February
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In the publishing house "Mann, Ivanov and Ferber" the book by the bestselling author "How a Woman Wants" Emily Nagoski and her twin sister Amelia is published. The title Burnout: A New Approach to Stress Relief gives a pretty accurate picture of the book's content. But Emily and Amelia don't focus on burnout in general, but on how women experience it (spoiler alert - patriarchy is largely to blame), and also tell you how to deal with this problem. We publish an excerpt from the book.

Fairness test "Tall tree"

The social privileges and discrimination that set the course of our life can be represented in the form of a simple natural image - a tree. Growing in an open field, it rushes up to the sun and grows tall. A tree growing on the slope of a cliff also tends to the sun, therefore it grows at an angle to the root system. The steeper the slope, the more the trunk is curved. And if we transfer a tree to level ground, it will look completely different compared to the one that has always grown here. We can guess the circumstances in which the tree grew by looking at its shape.

White males grow up in a flat open field. White women grow up in hilly terrain, cut by ravines, because the field is not for them. Colored women are assigned rock ledges above the ocean, under stormy waves and salty winds. It is not given to anyone to choose the landscape on which we grow. If you were born on a cliff in the middle of a raging sea, you have no choice. Cling with roots or fall into the sea. If you transplant you from a ravine or from a cliff to flat ground, then the trees that have always grown there may wonder why you are so strange, why it is so difficult for you to adapt to society, to trust others and even your own body. Why is this tree so crooked and knotty?

Because it was required by the conditions in which it grew up. This tree fought against hurricanes, gravity, erosion and, in spite of everything, grew strong and green. Of course, it will look strange on the plain. Battered by storms, dried by the winds, it can offend our aesthetic senses. Is this what a normal tree looks like? But it looks organic to its home area. And a tall, slender tree from the plain would not have survived a day on a rocky slope.

Simple question: How many white parents teach their children to keep their hands in sight and be super polite when stopped by a police officer? For African American families, this is the norm. Black parents raise their children differently because the social landscape demands it. The police are much more suspicious and hostile towards blacks. One wrong move - and you risk getting a bullet in the forehead. But for whites, these fears look ridiculous and ridiculous. We do not see the ocean, and when blacks say, "We have to behave this way in order not to fall off a cliff," we do not understand. If you don't see something yourself, the first reaction is to brush it off. But look at the shape of these trees. Such an angular, bent to the ground tree grows only on steep slopes. People who tremble at the sight of the police have grown up in a world where a police officer means a threat.

The road may look level because the human eye simply does not register the slope of the roadway. You do not see the ocean beating against the rocks under the roots of another tree - but the shape of the trunk will tell you about its existence. Don't be surprised that some trees find it difficult to grow in an open field. We'd better think about how to make the field suitable for everyone.

Empathy drain

Patriarchy (you cannot throw out words from a song) not only affects us directly, but also causes indirect harm when we care about others. Noticing someone else's stress, you can underestimate its harm, consider the person's reactions "irrational" and ignore the bells.Donors can follow the needs of others for years, soothe the suffering of others, losing sight of their own stress, activated in the body. As a result, one by one, unfinished stress-response cycles accumulate. This accumulation leads to a depletion of the ability to compassion. This is the primary cause of burnout among Donors, especially those working in “helping” professions (many of which are predominantly female - teaching, social protection, healthcare, etc.). Let's walk through the main signs of empathy depletion.

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A person does not trust his emotions - he simulates warmth, because he knows that he should feel it, but does not feel it.

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The person discounts moderate suffering and compares it to extreme: “Stop whining. This is not slavery / genocide / child rape / nuclear war."

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The person feels weak, helpless, the future is scary, but paradoxically, he feels personally responsible for trying even harder.

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A person gets stuck in a destructive work or personal situation because of a false sense of their grandeur: "No one can do it without me."

According to the latest human rights trends, it is customary to say not “victim” but “survivor of trauma / violence”. What do you call people who walk the healing path with them, love and provide support? For them there is a term co-survivors of violence / trauma. They also need support and care. If they do not organize a safe resource space for themselves to recover, they will "burn out" and eventually stop working altogether. We want to change the world, which means we need living examples of how to get help.

Fortunately, in the last chapter of this book, we will describe the necessary skills to help you overcome empathy depletion and prevent it from happening in the future. These include social connections, relaxation, and networking with your inner critic.

Oh, if society would stop saying that we are abnormal and sick! But we can stop thinking this way, without waiting for global changes, now. This is what the second half of our book is about.

The first step is to realize that we have been set up. The game is unfair: the rules allow not only to discriminate against some people over others, but also to blind us in relation to this discrimination.

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