Arianna Huffington ON: How Setting Small Micro Habits Can Help Combat Burnout and ExhaustionOn Purpose with Jay Shetty
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- 29 Mar 2021
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During times like these, we need to access the best in us. When we are exhausted and running on empty, we are the worst version of ourselves. But Arianna Huffington is on a mission to push back against Burnout Culture and to set a new metric for success: thriving.
On this episode of On Purpose with Jay Shetty, Jay speaks with Arianna Huffington about steps we can take in our personal and professional lives to thrive even in the thick of challenges.
Check out Your Time to Thrive by Marina Khidekel, the newest book from Thrive Global.
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And, you know, any time you leave something established and successful to start something new, there is a risk involved. And I remember actually agonizing over that decision and talking to Sheryl Sandberg and she said to me, stop thinking about it.
Just close your eyes and drop.
Hey, everyone, welcome back to you on purpose. The number one health podcast in the world, thanks to each and every single one of you that come back every week to listen, learn and grow. Now, today, we have a really special and exciting guest, one of the few people that we've ever had on the podcast twice. It is none other than my dear friend mentor and someone who I consistently tell you changed my life, the one and only Arianna Huffington.
Now, I'm so thrilled because Arianna is the CEO and founder of Drive Global. She's been named as the world's 100 most influential people by Time magazine and has also been included on the Forbes most powerful women's list. She's a mother, best selling author, businesswoman, as well as a dear friend of mine. And today we'll also be talking about Thrive Global's latest book, Your Time to Thrive. If you're someone right now who's been struggling, working from home, remote work, trying to figure out how to manage the stress of everything we've experienced in the last 12 months.
This is the book for you. This is the podcast for you. If you're someone who's sitting there at home right now thinking, gee, I just don't know how much more I can deal with this, this is the conversation you want to be listening to. Arianna, welcome to the podcast, Jay.
So great to be with you. I love every day reading and watching you spread wisdom, making wisdom viral. I love that.
Well, I'm so grateful to you, especially now as we were just talking about the wonderful drive, original top yabbering, onward, upward and inward. I love that as a motto. I think that's a brilliant mantra and motto.
It's very much what your work has been about to remind us that when we go inward, our journey onward and upward is better in every possible way. It's so true.
It's so true. And one thing I love that we're having this conversation today around here is because you built Thrive Global. And by the way, I just want to remind everyone, so my first day in New York City was Arianna Huffington, the first day of starting a drive global. Arianna, I don't know if you remember, we were at the final party like a celebration party of you moving on from Huff Post and starting Drive Global. And and you said in your speech, you said whether you've been here since day one or whether you just joined yesterday, like Jerry, I want you to know that you're all part of the family.
And I remember just seeing you go off and start this new company, this new organization destined to help people's well-being in their daily lives at work. You must be feeling like the purpose of the company is coming alive right now more than ever, actually.
You're absolutely right. And, you know, any time you leave something established and successful to start something new, there is a risk involved. And I remember actually and agonizing over that decision and talking to Sheryl Sandberg and she said to me, stop thinking about it. Just close your eyes and jump. And sometimes that's what life requires of us. And the themes that we build thrive around you. Not ending the stress and burnout epidemic and making well-being an essential and central part of our lives have now become more important than ever.
They've really gone mainstream because the pandemic has forced everyone, whether individuals or companies, to recognize, you know, how foundational our well-being is to everything. And and finally ending that delusion that in order to succeed, you have to burn out. You have to power through exhaustion. You have to be Always-On, which is simply not supported by science or data or ancient wisdom.
What are some of the trends that you've noticed over the last 12 months of how people are experiencing burnout and stress and pressure? What have you been seeing through the data, through your company's work in what are the biggest challenges that people are having?
So what we are seeing is that all the challenges we were facing, pre pandemic, have been exacerbated, which is a bad thing, but also a good thing. We can no longer avoid dealing with them and the primary challenges that we are dealing with, first of all, the mental health crisis which existed before the pandemic, but now it's. Right in front of us, who is that hundreds of millions of people around the world being affected with depression, anxiety and also the skyrocketing increase of diseases, especially diabetes and heart disease, which also have become much worse because of their stress levels.
But also it's hard for us to realize that we are never going to be able to deal with a mental health crisis. Are all these diseases if we don't go upstream and change our behaviors? And that's why we wrote this book, to make it clear to people that changing behaviors through micro steps, you know, small, daily, incremental steps is very doable to actually take lofty goals like I'm going to lose 30 pounds or give up sugar or work out every day and break them down into the smallest possible actionable step.
We call our micro steps too small to fail. And there are eight chapters that break down all the micro steps. And the first one, because I believe it is foundational to our well-being, is sleep. Yes. And as you know, I'm an evangelist, I'm sleep. We all sleep. And increasingly during the pandemic, we've all had a harder time sleeping or falling back asleep after we wake up. In fact, there's a term called Cordona Somnia, but there are small daily steps we can take to improve our sleep and to reduce the stress, which makes it easier to sleep.
I'm so glad that you brought up Sleep and Korona Somnia, which I wish I had not heard actually.
But I know when I read your book Sleep Revolution, that really gave me the permission to feel like I needed quality sleep. It really did that like I when I read it. And you share the stories of so many of your friends, CEOs of large companies all over the world who prioritize sleep. One of the things I find right now, the reason why people are struggling at home to sleep, to practice what's a micro step they can take towards better sleep.
And I love your idea of micro steps because I practice it in my own life. And your definition actually is the best definition I've ever heard of. A micro step of too small to fail, because if you fail at a step, then it wasn't micro enough. And so that's a great, great definition. What's a great micro step we can all take towards getting better sleep during this time?
So check actually out of all the hundreds of micro steps in the book, my absolute favorite is to pick a time at the end of the day that you declare the end of your workday and to mark this end with a ritual because, you know, we are creatures of rituals and rituals. Turn off your phone and charge it outside your bedroom. Now, you may say to me, you know, Arianna, that's too big a micro step for me and say, not a problem.
Jay, can you pick one day and week when you can do that? Maybe Friday night or Saturday night, just start wherever you are. If you say no, Arianna, that's too big a step on me. I say, OK, can you just put your phone on airplane mode? But instead of putting it on your nightstand with 72 percent of people, do put it somewhere further away. So if you wake up in the middle of the night and you can't immediately go to sleep, most people go to their phone and that's like allowing your day life with all these challenges.
And and the problem is to invade your night life, which is the time to really deeply surrender, to sleep and recharge. So that's my favorite micro step, that that's a brilliant micro step.
And I love how compassionate and empathetic you are in simplifying it and making it easier every time. I love that micro step. I think it's absolutely brilliant. And I love I remember years ago you built those beautiful drive beds, the beds, the phone beds. Yeah, they're fantastic.
We have this charging station that looks like a little phone that you can put the phones under the blanket, back the mean and reconnect in the morning. So you teach your children like phone hygiene, which is there there your phone and you don't sleep together.
I think it's brilliant. I think it. Such a it's such a cool idea and you've made it you've made it trendy again for people to know how to have these habits. And I think what I like about your approach, Arianna, is that it's very real. And even that it's almost comedic. It's funny. It's it's playful. It's not it's not like this harsh discipline. It's not military. There's this there's this love and joy behind it. I see on Instagram you always posting joy triggers.
I love you on my go to a place for joy triggers. And we both we both recognize the importance of joy. In fact, you know, for me, Jay and Joy is a barometer of how I'm doing. And it's like at some point in my life, I, I knew I could be effective and productive, but I didn't have to prove that to myself anymore. So my test now is, am I bringing joy into my daily life?
I'm not talking about all the time. I mean, I'm dealing with challenges. I'm dealing with problems. I'm working on my own reactivity. You know, I'm a work in progress. I'm on this journey. But if I can find joy in what I'm doing, it means that I need to course correct. It's almost like a sign for me to course correct. And that's like the key to all the micro steps to recognize that we all have this place of wisdom, peace, strength in us.
It's like our birthright, right. And nobody lives there all the time. And the opportunity now is to be aware of when we are not there and how quickly can we course. Correct. It's almost like all cars of cars on cars of cars and their judgment free zone. Ready for your free covid-19 vaccine, visit vaccinated Virginia Tartuffe to sign up, you can get information, get preregistered and get notified when it's your turn to get vaccinated. You can also call one 877 VACC Inva, seven days a week, eight a.m. to eight p.m. There are hundreds of operators standing by to help you.
That's one 877 Vei exi NBA or one eight seven seven eight to nine four six eight two. No one will be turned away. Yeah, absolutely, I feel like right now everyone's judging themselves to be the perfect person, the perfect partner, the perfect parent, and it's exhausting because we're all dealing with something that we've never experienced before. And here we are. What are some of the ways we can become more loving to ourselves, more more empathetic to ourselves at these times?
Because, like you said, you're asking yourself, how can I bring joy into my life? I think a lot of people are asking themselves, well, maybe I'm not working hard enough with my kids or maybe I'm, you know, maybe I'm not working out enough or maybe I've been. How do we how do we train ourselves out of that or how do we approach that and navigate that properly?
Well, as you know, Jay, the first step is to accept where we are and not judge it. And loving ourselves is kind of a prerequisite for really, truly loving others out of our overflow. And so for me, and gratitude is the antidote to anxiety, to stress, to guilt. So I practice what in the book we call habit stacking. So any time I'm doing things that don't require my brain, like washing my hands, washing the dishes, washing my hair, I repeat to myself things I'm grateful for.
Like right now I'm having my bulletproof coffee. I don't know if you like coffee, but I love it. And I'm grateful for this every morning. And I'm grateful that I'm here with you. And this is it fills my heart. And I'm really very grateful every day that I do work that is meaningful, going back to on purpose and has an impact on people's lives. I feel extremely grateful for that. So remembering all these things constantly and literally, as you know, moves us from the sympathetic nervous system, the fight or flight nervous system to the parasympathetic nervous system.
Gratitude and anxiety cannot coexist. What I love about this moment we are seeing is that modern science is validating so much of ancient wisdom. If you take what I consider the hero future in Europe and in the Micro Steps book is the 60 second reset. And I love the fact that if you tell people, you know, can you take 20 minutes to meditate, then they throw their arms in the air, etc. and I don't have the time to take 20 minutes to meditate.
Can you take five minutes to meditate? Ah, that's really hard. Do you have 60 seconds?
We break it down to 60 seconds and 60 seconds. Another favorite micro step in the morning before you go to your phone. 60 seconds to set your intention for the day to take deep conscious breaths to remember what you are grateful for. Anything kind of almost like reconnect with yourself before the world comes out. You. And so that is at the heart of every religion, if you look at Islam, let's take Islam. I mean, the call to prayer is kind of unbelievable.
It's like this tiny interventions during the day when you have to get up from what you are doing strach, which is great, and reconnect with something larger than yourself.
And every religion, you know, Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism have like these short moments, you know, that having been a monk and that bring us back to center. So we've integrated that, in our opinion, the micro steps for anybody who feels overwhelmed with their to do list. Are there some fatigue or whatever they're dealing with?
That's that's such a brilliant piece of advice. And I love how, again, no one can say they don't have 60 seconds. And it's amazing that you spoke about Islam there for a moment, too, because I was recently in Dubai where the call to prayer is happening in the morning and throughout the day, the five times a day. And I went skydiving for the first time in my life. And the freefall is exactly 60 seconds. And so for anyone who doesn't say that, 60 seconds is a long time, it's enough time to get your attention right in the morning.
It's a brilliant amount. So the skydive was 60 Minutes sorry, 60 seconds of free falling and then six to seven minutes of parachute falling once the parachute is released. And now that you're saying that I when I was in that 60 seconds of freefall, I was trying to meditate and pray and experience and you can achieve a lot in 60 seconds. And so I think that that is such a for anyone who's there going, well, you know, 60 seconds, what am I going to do in the morning?
We don't realize we pick up this within three seconds or one and a half seconds. And so 60 seconds in the morning, that is such a brilliant invention because just being present with yourself and letting your heart rate naturally get up, letting your brain actually wake up, letting your mind wake up, that's such a great micro step.
And now we've brought it in to our team meetings that thrive. So we start our team meetings within 60 seconds and we have everybody can create their own resat like you could create a reset with pictures that you love of your wife, your loved ones, quotes, music, everything. And in 60 seconds, you are reminded of what you love about your life. So we play this from somebody from the team plays their reset, which also connects us to each other.
So there's so much we can do that connects us with ourselves, connects us with others and doesn't take a lot of time. I love that.
I mean, every company should be doing this. This is brilliant. I love this advice and I hope everyone is listening and watching. I hope you're thinking about your calls and how you can start your next phone call with your company set differently. I hope that you can recommend this to people within the company. Ariano, tell us a bit about that. Let's say some of our listeners are inside an organization, but they're not necessarily a leader or a senior manager.
How do they affect change? You've you've worked at the beginning of a company. You've owned companies, you've sold companies. You now have a new company. You have employees at all different levels. How does someone more junior in an organization create change when it comes to health and wellness?
So one of the great things about this time is that these questions of well-being and transformational change within companies is no longer just the province of H.R. Everybody's talking about it from this is the way to every intern so anybody can raise their hand. There's such a greater opening to people expressing how they are feeling if they need help and come up with ideas to suggest. And anybody who wants more ideas, please reach out to me on Instagram, LinkedIn, you know, any any medium of communication.
And we are happy to send you a lot of ideas. In fact, we have partnered with Zoom and Zoom is bringing Thrive Resat as a downloadable lab so that anybody can actually download it and be able to create their own reset. But even without the. Anybody can have the 60 second protocols for anybody who is maybe thinking, oh, this sounds like warm and fuzzy, you know, for a high growth company. Let me just tell you, I was interviewing Marc Benioff yesterday on my podcast.
He's an investor in Thrive. And we were talking about how he starts meetings with closing his eyes for a minute. And everybody around him knows that he's not zoning out. He's not going to sleep. He's just coming fully present to tap into what is best in him, his creativity, his empathy, his best idea. So we always like to make it clear that a lot of hyper successful people use the small micro steps to make them even more effective.
And that these things are not like for people who just want to chill under a mango tree.
Absolutely. No, I think these I love that you've built an app into Zoome that drive reset. I think that's fantastic.
I, I think that we live at a time where we need these digital tools to remind us of being more present with our physical, mental and emotional and spiritual selves because we've become so wired to our devices, we need our devices to help us in that process. How have you found the Arianna that a lot of people just feel this addiction to scrolling? And you've worked with Treston, who is obviously the social dallam. I remember when you introduced me to Tristan's work years ago before the social dilemma even came out.
Tell us a bit about that approach that you've seen through your micro steps with people's addiction to scrolling endlessly like me. And you look for joy triggers. But what if people are just scrolling on Instagram and tick tock and losing themselves in that? Wow, have you found to help people remove that addiction from their lives?
Well, first of all, it is a real addiction. And that's why our second chapter in the book is called Unplugging and Recharging. You know, how can we unplug from what has become so dominant in our culture? Basically, everybody in our lives is competing with our phone and your wife, your children and your friends, you know, it's as though this thing is the most interesting thing in our lives and we can't separate ourselves from it. So I think that handset, you know, it has never been easier to run away from ourselves.
Yet at the same time, we can use, paradoxically, a digital tools to help us disconnect from technology. It is a paradox, but truth is often paradoxical. So, you know, the recent example is one of them. But the fundamental problem of our addiction, because it is real, requires us to take steps. For example, if we are particularly addicted to to Instagram, take it off your front page so that you have to download it.
You have to be intentional to go there. I mean, that great stuff, this great stuff on Instagram, really. I mean, I love following you and and I get joy from the quotes and from everything you have. But there's so much that leads to comparisons that makes people feel less than. And that is just something we need to honor and love ourselves enough not to expose ourselves to all that, because all we have right now is time and our attention.
So where our attention goes is needs to be really carefully thought out. And therefore, that's what self-knowledge comes in. And as my compatriot Socrates said, the unexamined life is not worth living. So we need to examine our lives, examine our habits without judgment and just begin with micro steps. Yeah, you know, you can't take a social media account. You are particularly addicted to all of your phone. Can you move it to Gray? Can you?
And all notifications that are not personal. I have no notifications on my phone. I don't get breaking news because first of all, 99 percent of the time, it's not breaking. And and second, every time I don't want to be constantly interrupted, that's how we need to see that. Any time I want to get the news, I go get the news. But it's on my timing. Yes.
Yes. I love what you said there of setting the time of when do we want a piece of information? When do we want to reach out to this person? When do we want to connect with this idea? I think that Doug. What you just said is intentional, curated living, and unfortunately, our world has made us unintentional lives. We live unintentionally and unconsciously. We're we're just exposed to whatever anyone feels like exposing us to. And then, you know, you may not be in the right mindset to take on some breaking news.
And I loved what you said half the time. Breaking news is not even breaking news. It's it's it's just trying to get our attention. Tell me about Arianna. What's what do you think has been your biggest challenge in the last 12 months personally? And also, what has been your biggest opportunity that you've seized in that you've gained and grown within the last 12 months?
So the biggest challenge has been that triumph has been growing very fast. I had to hire a lot of people that I have never met.
Yeah, that's crazy, isn't it?
You know, I'm Greek. I want to break bread and look you in the eye. And I had to hire a CEO and head of business development. And I had to say, I mean, you're very senior positions that I have never met. And that took some kind of developing some new intuitive abilities and being able to look you in the eye resume and like trust these feelings that you you want to trust when you are hiring somebody that goes beyond their resume and their references.
The best thing has been that in this year of incredible pain and grief, we can never underestimate that. You know, it's been a year of unbelievable losses, losses of life, financial losses. And we also have a catalyst for transformational change. And as you know, a transformational change is hard, like we have known for a while that we had to change the way we work and live, that the breathless, frenetic way we are living is not sustainable.
We have known for a while that the growing inequalities in our country are unsustainable and unjust racial inequity. We've known for a while about the existence of these problems have been to so many conferences about inclusive capitalism, et cetera, planetary sustainability, but so little has been done. And now, as somebody said, that crisis is a terrible thing to waste. So we have an opportunity to use this crisis as a catalyst for fundamental change. What really resonated with me, with what you are saying is this challenge of having to create human connection through digital media where we've never met someone, I think that is a really it's truly I I've also made mistakes in that department in the last 12 months because in the same way my work was growing and I've had to think about hiring and recruiting through through digital.
And I haven't got it right many times because, yeah, you're intuitive capabilities through a screen. I mean, we know each other. We've spent time together and so this is very comfortable.
What what are some of the questions that you've asked people that you think were really powerful, that people here today, if they're listening or watching, could use in their digital meetings with people to help understand people better? What are some of your favorite questions in interviews or questions, in conversations that you feel have helped your intuitive abilities?
So if you are going to work with somebody and for me, the most important thing is what is our number one cultural value and thrive? And this is compassionate directness. This is my my number one cultural question, because in any relationship, whether personal or professional things come up that we are not happy with, you know, that frustrate you. I mean, you've talked about it even with your beloved wife. You may you may have arguments, disagreements.
You need to have a way to express them. Otherwise they're faster and they become toxic. The same applies to professional relationships. And if you are not able to serve as discontent, frustrations, disappointments and express them, you can't deal with them. And it's much harder for people to do that than it sounds. So I try to dig deep. And I asked, for example, whether they were able to be direct with their manager, with anybody, not just with their peers, and to express to disagree.
And I feel cultures that have achieved that are healthy, thriving cultures. If you are to thrive and you come to me and complain about someone in the company, everybody knows and say, OK, let me just bring them in or let us just all get together and resume and talk about it. I don't want to hear about it without the other person being present. I don't accept anybody coming to me to complain without that other person being there so that everything can be added together.
That for me is number one, unless, you know, somebody comes and complains about something illegal or egregious, sexual harassment or something. I'm talking about the everyday complaints of people who work together.
Yes. Yes, absolutely. Absolutely. I you know what, Arianna? I've realized that recruitment is a completely different skill to the attracting of energy in your life. So I feel like me and my wife have very similar values. And we've found that thankfully and I have really good friends and I have really good relationships, but I find that recruitment is is a real challenge. It's it's difficult to truly understand if you can be of service to that person and if that person is also going to serve with the same values.
And I think I'm learning I think I'm genuinely speaking. I'm learning. I'm reading a lot about it. That's why I'm asking you about it is very useful. And I like how value centered your approach is, because I think today also what's really interesting is I was hosting a panel for LinkedIn the other day or multiple panels, and one of the biggest talking points was around the difference in wellbeing needs of a diverse organization. So realizing that people from different demographics, different genders, different backgrounds, different walks of life need different support and wellbeing, what are you seeing and how wellbeing and diversity affect each other in the programs that you're implementing, especially when it comes to unconscious bias?
It also comes to a lack of sensitivity to understanding someone's background.
Well, we actually have a whole training around the connection between wellbeing and diversity, because what we have found scientifically is that when you are exhausted and running on empty, you are less empathetic. You are the worst version of yourself. So you are less likely to be open to people who are different from you. And to create a culture of belonging, because diversity is not just a question of numbers, it's creating a culture of truly belonging where everybody feels at home, it's not just to have so many African-Americans and so many Asians because what's the culture like?
How do they feel? How does that connect with everyone? So that, again, micro steps going back to their recruiting conversation. And that applies to people applying for jobs as much as to people hiring. Never, never enter that conversation if you are tired. Know, it sounds very simple, but any time I've interviewed and I'm tired, I miss all the exciting things. Yes. And also, psychologically, you just want to cross one more thing off your to do list.
Mm hmm. So you are like more likely to just say, okay, good, that sounds good enough, especially in times like we are living through now when we can't just do maintenance like these times are challenging. We need to be able to access our creativity and our empathy and that the best in us. And and that's why it's more important than ever to prioritize our well-being.
Mm hmm. Mm hmm. How do you know, as someone who's been so successful, how have you known when to push and when to press pause? Because I feel that as you're on a journey of acceleration and growth and momentum. Even when you're doing what you find purposeful, like I love what I do, but I work really hard at it and I've over time I've had to understand this, this balance between pushing and pressing pause. How have you find that?
Like, how does someone know when to push forward, when to work a bit harder, when to stay up at night versus when to stop pulling back? How do you find that balance? Well, first of all, Jay, I've I've done it wrong so many times, including, as you know, finally collapsing from doing it wrong and hitting my head on my desk and breaking my cheekbone. So I learned the hard way and through a painful wake up call.
And what I'm clear about now is, first of all, there is no such thing as balance. It's not like you can balance your work, your life is the same every day that doesn't exist agrees that he is. What are the baseline things you need to do to show up your best? For me, my baseline is sleep. The science of sleep is categorical. Like unless you have a genetic mutation, I don't know if you do. People with a genetic mutation only need four hours of sleep and that's one, two and a half percent of the population.
The rest of us need somewhere between seven and nine. You know, Tom Brady famously says that he gets nine hours of sleep a night and he considers it absolutely instrumental to being able to win a Super Bowl at 43. So if he had said, oh, you know, I really want to win the Super Bowl, I'm just going to power through exhaustion and and work out and train more, he would not win. You know, that's really what is amazing, that our culture for centuries has believed something false.
You know, I'll sleep when I'm dead. You snooze, you lose. And I went back because I'm a bit of a nerd to try and understand how come an entire culture is believed, something false. And it goes back to the first industrial revolution when we started revealing machines. And what's the goal with machines? They go with machines is to minimize downtime. And what's the goal with software? We brag, you know, this piece of software is ninety nine point nine nine nine percent uptime.
But the human operating system is different at downtime is a feature, not a bug. And now we need to have this mindset shift that acknowledges that we are swimming in a culture that's driven by principles that are not science, are data based.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I'm so glad that you're such an evangelist for this movement because, you know, I came to a point in my life where I realized either I had two choices. I either slowed down or I invested more in my health. And what I realized was that the more I invested in my health and the more priority my sleep was, my exercise was my diet was, the more I was actually able to extend myself. So a lot of the time when people told me that they just had too much on, my first question would be, do you exercise?
And they would say, no, I haven't exercised for years and I'd be OK. And then I'd say, well, do you sleep seven to nine hours? And they were like, No, I sleep like six. And I was like, oh, OK. So you start to realize that a lot of our experience of low productivity or effectiveness or burnout is because we're not actually investing in our health. So I know that when I've exercised and when I've slept well, I can actually do more in less time.
And as you said, you don't want to do an interview when you're tired because you make mistakes, you feel like you're actually making better decisions. This morning I played an hour of tennis and I meditated for two hours before that. So I'm able to give you my best energy. And you're so right that if I miss tennis today, if I didn't meditate, if I'd slept badly, I would feel like this was a lot harder.
I'm so happy you're saying that we need to shout it from the rooftops to well, to help people eliminate their fear that if they invest in their heart, they are not going to achieve all that they want to achieve because it is a fear in them. And a lot of people have achieved a lot through powering through. So you can have a lot of examples of that, but you can achieve more if you invest in your health. And also you can live a life which has more meaning and purpose, because in the end, the definition of a good life is not just a successful life in terms of money, it's also a life of wellbeing, tapping into our wisdom, giving wonder.
And if we miss out on all these things, we have a very shrunken view of existence. Absolutely.
Tell us, Arianna, I've got a few more questions for you before I let you go, but tell our audience how they can recognize if they're experiencing burnout, because I feel that today we don't even know when we're experiencing burnout because we don't have that time to sit with ourselves and we're not aware how. What are the signs of. That someone can be aware of so that they can say, you know what, I need to start doing what Arianna saying, I need to do that 60 second check in.
I need to put my phone away in the evening. I need to sleep for seven to nine hours. What are the signs of burnout that we miss because we're so busy that we don't even realize what we're going through? First of all, that's such a good question, because we do miss the signs and we need to kind of fine tune our antenna. I would say there are three signs that are predominant. And the first is actually when we begin to fear to be very negative and cynical about our work, our lives.
And that's a sign that we are not connected to our center and our essence. The other is when we really wake up in the morning and everything feels like drudgery, like we can still do things, we can be transactional and get through a busy schedule, but we have to be pushing ourselves. And often we find ourselves going to carbs or sweets to give ourselves energy. And I love my coffee. Nothing wrong with coffee, but I stop having caffeine at two o'clock, so that doesn't affect my sleep.
Noticing in all these like ways that we try to fuel ourselves because we don't really have any natural healthy fueling this. And the other is very simply our productivity. I mean, you can see it in any area of your life when you are running on all cylinders, you know, things can be done so much faster, you are clearer. And when you are exhausted, it's like I mean, for me, like trying to write an article when I'm exhausted seems like overwhelming.
So there are so many little signs that we can begin to notice. And the other thing I am a big believer in and we practice, I thrive, is having an accountability body. You probably do that with your wife, but having somebody who can say to you, you know, hey, Jay, you seem off today or you haven't done this and not in a critical way. But, you know, can you can you stop for 60 seconds?
Can you. Is there something this afternoon that we can reschedule, you know, kind of see your Sieger schedule as something that is tangible? If you are if you are not feeling fully yourself, is that there are some things that can't be rescheduled really on your deathbed and other things that you can reschedule?
Yeah, the accountability thing for me is huge. I know that I'm I need someone to keep me accountable in different areas of my life, whether it's exercise, whether it's diet and having that commitment. And what I find is the most important thing about accountability is being ready to receive feedback because you can find an accountability partner and you can find an accountability body. But if you don't want to be told that you're wrong or that you could improve something, it all goes wrong.
And I find that with my wife, she's so good. But if I have my big ego on that day, you know, you don't allow yourself to receive it because you just want to defend yourself. No, no, no. I'm getting it right. But I've found that in my own practice, being able to be humble enough to actually hear someone out and realize they're telling you for your own good luck. My wife will always say to me, eat slower, eat slower.
She'll always say to me, You're eating too fast. And I'll be like, Yeah, but I've got so much to do. I'm so busy. I've got I've got to go to this place. And she's just saying it for my own good. She's just, you know, she's not saying it for her body. She's saying it for my digestion in my body. And and I think being able to receive humbly is is a really you know, I definitely it's something I think that we all struggle with and can work on more.
But, Arianna, you've been amazing.
I want to ask you what we always do, which is our final five. You were amazing last time. This is our last five questions, which you answer in one word or one sentence maximum. That's it. So these are your final five questions. So the first question is, what's the first thing you do in the morning?
The first thing I do in the morning is the 60 seconds to set my intention for the day. Amazing.
I love that. What's the last thing you do at night? The last thing is to write down three things I was grateful for, for the day from the day. Beautiful.
Question number three, a habit you wish you started earlier, recognizing that life is shaped from the inside out and that changes all the habits.
I love question number four, a habit you're trying to develop right now or something you're trying to work on right now. I'm working on reactivity, so being less reactive, taking deep breaths and then acting or saying something beautiful, nice, I like that.
OK, and fifth and final question, your favorite micro step from the book, Your Time to Thrive.
So my favorite micro step beyond everything we discussed is the recognition of the super power of our breath and specifically practicing what Navy SEALs practice box breathing. And that's more than a sentence. But inhale to the account of our powers to the count of four. Exhale to the count of. Absolutely great advice, great insights, everyone, please, please, please. If you're listening to this right now, your time to thrive will be available everywhere books are sold.
Make sure you go and grab a copy. I really believe that right now is the time to build these micro steps. When we're in this stress, in this pressure, in this challenging situation, there's no better time. Don't wait for the right time or a good time or a better time to build these micro steps. If you build them right now, you're going to feel so strong, so confident and so powerful when we move out of this space slowly into the future.
Arianna, I thank you for your amazing insights. I loved everything you shared today. And there's so practical, yet so philosophical. Everyone, please go and follow Arianna on Instagram, on LinkedIn, on Twitter, on Facebook and on all social media platforms. Go and grab a copy of the book and make sure you tag me and Arianna on Instagram and Twitter with your favorite insights that you're going to try from this podcast. We'll see you next week.
This podcast was produced by Dust Light Productions, our executive producer from Dust lt is Michelle Yousef. Our senior producer is Julianna Bradley. Our associate producer is Jacqueline Castillo. Valentino Rivera is our engineer. Our music is from Blue Dot Sessions and special thanks to Rachel Garcia, the dust like development and operations coordinator.