Women, Burnout Culture and the Great Resignation with Sara McElroy

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Sara McElroy is a former hustle culture devotee, ex-chief marketing officer, the Wall Street Journal’s poster girl for pandemic career burnout, and a two-time member of the Great Resignation: class of 2021 and 2022.

Following a stress-induced shingles diagnosis in early 2021, Sara decided to hit the reset button on her life; she quit her hard-won CMO job and trekked to Peru's Sacred Valley to reset her frayed nervous system.

When she returned, she relocated from the buzzy metropolis of Atlanta to the beach in South Florida for a new job and a fresh start. But she once again encountered deeply ingrained cultural issues in her new role, and ultimately, she walked away again.

Finding herself in the company of millions of other women who also set unfulfilling jobs ablaze during the Great Resignation, she returned to her journalism roots and began to explore the stories, breaking points, and defining moments that led women to seek...

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Pet Peeves in Midlife (with Dr. Sarah Baillie, N.D.)

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If you need a good laugh and a little levity, tune into this episode, where Sarah and I share the list of “Pet Peeves” that we’ve been accumulating together over the last year, including petty yet universal annoyances like the perpetual “goaty” smell of dishtowels and empty ice cube trays left in the freezer, but also inexplicable, less rational irritants like mimes (in general, in person or on-screen), books about the Great Depression or riding trains and just about anything “curated, artisanal or bespoke.”

There’s something in this episode for everyone (if nothing else, you’ll feel better about your own cortisol-jacking pet peeves, promise!) Join Sarah and me for a fun conversation about the small things that drive us crazy in midlife. 

I'm pretty sure you won't regret it.

For free tools and resources for making change around alcohol, burnout, or midlife, visit: ...

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Emptying the Nest: The Grief & Joy of Letting Go

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In this short podcast episode, I provide listeners with an update on my abrupt transition to empty nester this fall, including the blindsiding grief I felt this spring and how I worked through it to find the joy on the other side. Since my children are only seven months apart, and in the same grade, they both left their childhood home for university residences the same week.

I share a piece I wrote called “Emptying the Nest” that will resonate with mothers everywhere, where I explore how it feels as your young adult children begin their slow leaving process and then disappear from your home.

If you’ve got children (or nieces, nephews or step-kids or godchildren), don’t skip this one – it’s short and bittersweet but also universal in the emotions involved in this natural transition period in midlife.

Please feel free to share this episode with any moms (or dads!) you know who are in...

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The Key to Midlife Happiness (with Dr. Sarah Baillie, N.D.)

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Sarah and I discuss a couple of recent news articles about the death of ambition since the emergence of COVID. People are working less or are less invested in their work, with more opting for early retirement than ever. There’s apparently a rebellion happening against “pointless presenteeism”, and Sarah and I are 100% here for it.

We explore and deconstruct the social definitions of success for women and consider how doing less might actually contribute to being more, and lead to an easier, more abundant existence.

Is the conventional definition of success and ambition even achievable?

What happens when we let go of our false idea of control and shift our ambition into “being”?

Might this be the key to life satisfaction and happiness? We believe so.

Don’t worry, it’s not as esoteric as it sounds. As always, we keep our conversation grounded in real life and have a few good laughs.

...

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Season Opener: What We Both Learned this Summer (with Sarah Baillie, N.D.)

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Welcome to Season 3 of Bite-Sized Balance! In today's episode, Sarah and I catch up, sharing what we did this summer and some of the life lessons we both learned this past year.

Sarah opens up about a recent loss and her insight into her instinct to try to control everything, and how it serves her better to hold life’s outcomes more loosely. I share an update regarding my emptying nest and the emotions that have accompanied selling my kids’ childhood home and readying them both to leave for their first year of university.

We discuss the importance of learning to trust your gut in midlife. I also share how I'm feeling about another birthday and how the best word to describe how I'm feeling about my 50s is that I have “agency” again. As always, this conversation will resonate and uplift you, and provide a few nuggets to take away and consider in your own journey...

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The Meaning of Midlife (with Dr. Sarah Baillie, N.D.)

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In the Season 2 closer, Sarah and I revisit our favourite guests and episodes from the last year, and what we’ve learned from hosting Bite-Sized Balance and from each other. I provide my favourite definition of the “meaning of life”, and we consider how it jives with our own approach to midlife. Sarah shares two recent moments of self-discovery and her decision to explore coach training, and I provide an update on my impending empty nest situation. We consider the patriarchal social norms around self-care for women and how those aren’t serving us, along with the problem with women’s overuse of the words “I’m fine" (us included.)

Join Sarah and me for a spirited, fun conversation with an important undercurrent: it’s totally OK to start focussing on you again as you move into your midlife.

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Taking Care of Me: What I Really Needed at 50

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In this short podcast episode, I provide listeners with an update on my commitment to “creating a life I don’t feel the need to escape from” before my transition to empty nester this fall, including my re-discovery of my love of writing. I share a piece called “Taking Care of Me” that will resonate with busy, worn-out women everywhere, where I explore what it really means to take care of yourself and the magic that’s available to you when you finally accept that you’re in the driver’s seat of your own life.

Don’t skip this one – it’s short and sweet but it also might be just thing you need to hear to take back some control over your one wild and precious life!

Does your life look great on paper, but it still feels like something’s missing? Grab your free Blueprint for Change Workbook here: www.wendymccallum.com/blueprint

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What Women Need NOW with Dr. Sarah Baillie, N.D.

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Sarah shares the story of a friend’s recent frustrating experience with her care provider when she asked for support with her post-pandemic exhaustion.

Sarah and I discuss what was so disappointing about her friend's doctor’s response, and what women really need right now, as we emerge from a period of intense stress and caregiving, more burnt out and exhausted than ever.

We need a safe place to land, a chance to rest and connect in a meaningful way after years of distancing and self-isolation.

As always, this is a fun and relaxed conversation between two friends sure to confirm that you’re not alone in it all and get you thinking. Join us!

FREE 5-Day Rewind Alcohol Challenge: www.wendymccallum.com/challenge

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Menopause - How It Started (and How It’s Going) with Wendy and Dr. Sarah Baillie, N.D.

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 Sarah and I provide an update as to what’s changed for us in the last six months or so in our transition post-menopause. The discussion includes how the hormonal and other treatments have worked out for us, how our menopausal symptoms have shifted and improved, and what we’ve learned about ourselves and what we need (and want!) more of as we begin the second half of our lives. As always, this is a candid, relaxed conversation between friends with a few belly laughs inserted for good measure.

Join us!

Grab our free perimenopause/menopause checklist, here: www.wendymccallum.com/perichecklist

FREE 5 Day Alcohol Challenge: www.wendymccallum.com/challenge

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Caregiver Burnout During Covid with Neonatal ICU Nurse Angela Fitzgerald

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In this episode, guest Angela Fitzgerald, Neonatal ICU Nurse, and I discuss how the pandemic has impacted the nurses in Angela’s unit and more generally, the challenges that come with shift work and being in a caregiving profession during COVID-19.

Angela approached me a couple of months ago because she saw a need for this conversation around wellness and burnout prevention (and recovery) in her profession. She went through her own burnout a year ago and learned a lot about how to create a better balance as a busy nurse with a family at home. Together, Angela and I provide some strategies for reducing overwhelm and stress and improving sleep, nutrition, and self-care while working shifts and dealing with all of the additional pressures of nursing during the pandemic. Whether you are in a caregiving profession or not, you’ll learn a lot from this conversation about meaningful self-care and balance.

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