Health. It’s so critical to everything we do.

When we are in our jobs, and are doing everything we can to provide for our families, on top of being noticed at work, we can easily get overwhelmed and burned out.

Let me tell you my story.

I have a perfectionist, controlling personality. That can be incredibly good, and incredibly bad. On top of that, I have a couple of rare autoimmune diseases that can debilitate me for days on end if I am not remaining constantly aware of what I eat, drink, my sleep, and stress levels.

When working in corporate for large organizations as an operations management and engineering professional, I made sure processes were running extremely effective and efficient. I was good at it….VERY good at it.

But what started to happen was I focused SO much on my career and serving others, that I didn’t take care of myself as much as I needed to. Yes, I worked out, and ate decently well. But sleep and meditating to reduce stress were NOT practiced by me.

I got burned out and took a sabbatical from my job. My job was there for when I was expected to return after 6 months – great, right? A few months in, my husband and I got pregnant with our first son and then had two more boys – all within 3 years. I didn’t go back to the corporate world. After the first kid was a year old, I started my own career coaching business. I loved serving others! But then, when I got pregnant with our second son, my health deteriorated.

I put a lot of my efforts and free time (when not playing with our son) on the business and my clients. With not sleeping well, and not managing my sleep and stress, I ended up having post-partum depression and didn’t take care of it before getting pregnant with our third son. I went into severe depression.

Hard to admit, yes. But the recovery and discovery process are what have made me stronger. I do NOT wish depression upon anyone – so if you have ANY symptoms, get help ASAP. Don’t question them or put them off.

Once I made the decision, myself, to set aside things that weren’t immediately important and take care of myself first, things changed. My family noticed changes right away. My naturopath and I worked closely for months to get hormone levels and stress levels under control through supplements, diet and sleep monitoring.

Was it hard? ABSOLUTELY! I’m used to going at record speed in everything I do. But the process totally shifted my outlook on life to what really matters. Many of us women think that we have to “do-it-all” or be “super-mom” to be noticed or feel worthy. STOP! We can’t be our best for others and be examples to others if we are depressed, worn out, stressed and crabby.

I suggest taking time this week to schedule in time for YOU each day. Whether it be a hobby, a walk, workout, reading, taking a nap, or coloring with your kids. De-stress please! The world needs US!