Is it Okay to Walk Away From Your Career for the Sake of Your Mental Health?

A man in a horse mask jumps on the beach

When I was in high school, my group of nerdy and rather competitive friends liked to play the “how-little-did-I-sleep” game. It was as absurd as it sounds.

Every morning nodding off at our high school science class desks, we would humble-brag about how much homework we had done the night before, how many activities and hours of part time work we had managed to squeeze in, and how little sleep we got. We were hard workers, with cultural messages telling us that hard work was the only way to guarantee success. We figured all that sacrificed sleep would surely pay off in future happiness — right?

Continue reading Is it Okay to Walk Away From Your Career for the Sake of Your Mental Health?

How to Check Your Ambitions When They Affect Your Mental Health

A man in the forest plays guitar while holding a child, next to a ballerina dancing

He was ruthless in his race to the top, picking off his competitors one by one. When he defeated his rivals and finally achieved his dream, things were great — for a moment. But soon, he was haunted by his past, discontent with the position he’d achieved, and what he wanted all along turned out to be his undoing.

Continue reading How to Check Your Ambitions When They Affect Your Mental Health

5 Ways to Bounce Back if You Get Fired

A red fire extinguisher on a red wall

History is filled with trailblazers who were fired — often publicly — before finding success in their chosen field.

Steve Jobs was a wealthy, global celebrity when he was forced out of the billion-dollar company he had sacrificed everything to build. Oprah was fired from a reporter role early in her career, which led her to a more junior role. Walt Disney had a similar story, being fired from the Kansas City star for “lack of imagination and no good ideas.”

We read these stories, and so many more like them, and hope the best is likely yet to come. But finding out you are being forced out of your job is difficult, no matter how many inspirational stories you hear.

Continue reading 5 Ways to Bounce Back if You Get Fired

Why Are We So Afraid to Feel Happy?

A woman with smeared eye makeup holds a piece of paper with a smile on it in front of her face

Many people struggle with the fear of success, fear of closeness, or fear of happiness. Let’s say your father suffered from depression and ranted about the workplace being a dog-eat-dog environment where everyone has to watch his back.

As a child, you, like all kids, want to think of your father as intelligent and perceptive. You listened to him and thought that his worldview made sense. Even if you later realized, as an adult, that your father was a very negative and depressed person, his impact on your own worldview may be very difficult to change.

Although it isn’t rational, many people subconsciously steer themselves away from experiences where they feel good about themselves, or where they end up feeling happy. But why is this and what can you do about it?

Continue reading Why Are We So Afraid to Feel Happy?

How to Assert Yourself at Work

A woman sits confidently at a desk

For as long as I remember, I’ve wanted to be a journalist.

Even before I knew of Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw, The Devil Wears Prada’s Andy Sachs or How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days’ Andie, I knew I was destined to chase deadlines. So, when I graduated during the recession of 2008 and was given my first full-time editorial opportunity, I knew how much of a privilege it was. I was elated to be fulfilling a 10-year dream.

Even though it was a very junior position for a very small magazine publisher, I knew it was an important stepping stone, and I wanted to give it my all. So, I took on everything.

You need your three-hour interview transcribed? I’m on it. Six pieces need to be written and published by Monday? Don’t ask anyone else, my weekend is yours. Slowly, I began to be seen as the one in the office you could count on doing what you didn’t want to do.

Continue reading How to Assert Yourself at Work

4 Tips to Help You Find Meaning at Work

A man holding paintbrushes with paint on his hands

Work. It wakes us in the middle of the night, it consumes a majority of our days, and yet we rely on it to provide for the actual life we want to lead. Given its significance and presence in your life, it’s sad to experience work as empty or, worse, dreadful — sapping energy from your soul.

But so many workers do. According to a 2015 Gallup survey, less than a third of employees are fully engaged in their jobs.

Continue reading 4 Tips to Help You Find Meaning at Work

How Imposter Syndrome Torpedoes Our Success

A dog wearing glasses with a fake nose

You go forth into the world to follow your dreams and shine your beautiful light — only to feel like a fraud on the inside. You begin working on something, and self-doubt and anxiety creep into your brain. So, you choose over preparation and exert overreaching effort. You may even accomplish your goal through luck. But truly, you just want relief, and it comes only temporarily, until you push back any form of positive feedback — resulting in a loop back to anxiety and feeling like a fraud.

This is the cycle of imposter syndrome.

Continue reading How Imposter Syndrome Torpedoes Our Success

Why Successful People Struggle with Mental Illness

actor jim carrey wearing dark glasses

It doesn’t take long to assemble an impressive list of successful people who also struggle with mental illness. Comedian/actor Jim Carrey experienced clinical depression, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling also combatted depression, entrepreneur/business mogul/founder of CNN Ted Turner lives with bipolar disorder, accomplished athlete Herschel Walker revealed he has dissociative identity disorder, and Brian Wilson of Beach Boys fame has been diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder.

Continue reading Why Successful People Struggle with Mental Illness

What to Do if You ‘Lose It’ at Work

man in business suit crying

It’s no wonder that work stresses so many of us out. Americans work longer hours with less vacation time than anyone in the developed world. This can make it difficult to balance work life with family life, friendships, and your own emotional and physical self-care.

For some of us, this stress can take a real toll on our performance at work, and when stress reaches a breaking point, some of us are apt to “lose it” — perhaps lashing out at colleagues, acting unreasonably, or losing our tempers.

Continue reading What to Do if You ‘Lose It’ at Work