Three Phases of Well Being – Where are You?

In the “Secrets of Self-Care Success” article we talked about how it can be difficult to make permanent changes in self-care habits unless you are able to make them automatic, small and attainable and you are consistent through making yourself accountable. When you know what you need to change to take better care of yourself, you can get off the roller coaster which undermines your new, healthier habits. However, you first need to know which changes will be most beneficial as you cultivate stronger, more supportive habits. Those changes are highly dependent upon which phase of well being you are currently experiencing.

We all go through different phases in our lives which require us to care for ourselves in different ways. When you can recognize where you are, you can begin to understand what you need to do for yourself to move through your current phase and into greater energy and vitality. In order to cultivate greater levels of resilience and sustainability, it’s essential to care for yourself in the ways you that your current phase of well being requires.

In this article we are going to explore three basic phases of well being and how to recognize the dominant phase in your life.

The Three Phases of Well Being – Burnout/Depletion – Recovery/Regeneration – Productivity

Cycles of Well BeingMost people come to see me when they are in the Burnout/Depletion phase of well being. Burnout/Depletion isn’t usually a normal part of a thriving and healthy life. It’s what happens when your self-care practices aren’t sustaining you. Some of us, due to our Human Design energy type, are naturally more vulnerable to depletion. However all of us (regardless of type) have the capacity to use our creative skills in productive ways when we are not in chronic depletion.

Ideally Productivity Goes Hand-In-Hand with Recovery/Regeneration. We all have natural cycles which call us into rest and regeneration. Some cycles are longer than others. The level of vitality that can be experienced in daily life is determined by the way you work with these natural cycles to engage in your unique dance between recovery and productivity.

In general, each Human Design energy type has a different rhythm for rest and recovery, and a different way that they are designed to be productive in the world. Your specific design requires you to refine your own understanding of your unique creative expression in the world and how you can best manage your cycles of recovery/regeneration and productivity to naturally contribute what you are here to express. We will explore more about productivity in a later post. For now let’s look at how Recovery/Regeneration differs from Burnout/Depletion.

Burnout/Depletion vs Recovery/Regeneration – Once you fall into chronic Burnout/Depletion it is difficult to get out, especially if you are an energy type which doesn’t have the consistent energy to work and generate more energy. In Human Design these energy types are known as the Manifestor, Reflector or Projector.

Generators and Manifesting Generator energy types, who have consistent energy to work, are also not immune to Burnout/Depletion. Nothing drains a Generator or a Manifesting Generator more quickly than working at something that is not fulfilling them. So my point here is that everyone is susceptible to burnout and depletion. And the way you know that you’re in it is when you discover that a good night’s sleep, a vacation, or some simple lifestyle changes don’t fully rejuvenate you.

You move into the Recovery/Regeneration phase when you have tired yourself out in the Productivity phase. You may feel deep exhaustion at times, and a need to retreat and rest to gather your energy. You may deal with frustration, anger, disappointments or even resentments. But the difference between Recovery/Regeneration and Burnout/Depletion is that you actually do recover your energy in the Recovery phase and can return to Productivity relatively easily. Your exhaustion doesn’t hold you back for very long. When you are in Burnout/Depletion you feel chronically exhausted. You may feel spurts of energy which don’t last very long, but when you use up that energy you find yourself in the deep well of exhaustion again.

(It is normal for Projectors, Reflectors and even Manifestors to experience spurts of energy followed by a need to rest, but when these energy types are not burned out they too can recover fairly easily).

When you are in the Burnout/Depletion phase you don’t recover very quickly from exhaustion. Most likely you don’t know how to recover or underestimate the amount of recovery time you need. In extreme cases you may experience illnesses like chronic fatigue syndrome or adrenal burnout. In milder cases you may just feel chronically cranky or out of sorts, because you have depleted your energy stores to a critical level. If you’re finding that it doesn’t take much to set you off emotionally or to exhaust you physically, and if this is an ongoing issue, then you are probably in the Burnout/Depletion phase.

These three phases aren’t mutually exclusive. For example, you can be in one phase in your financial life and in another phase in your family life. There usually is a dominant phase, however, that you experience throughout. And when you identify the dominant phase you can begin to identify the self-care practices which will be most supportive and stabilizing for you.

What is the dominant well being phase that you’re currently experiencing? 

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Grounding – March 2016 Virtual Mini-Break

A few of us got together on Tuesday March 15th to refresh and renew our self-care practice.  We explored grounding in our half hour together … what it feels like, how to ground yourself through the root center (root chakra) and how to know when you’re ungrounded.  If you tend to feel ungrounded, unfocused or maybe even anxious, please enjoy the replay of this event.  We did a short physical exercise that you can try for yourself and modify in any way that works for you.

Also below the video, you will find the links to the resources that we discussed.  Enjoy!

You are invited to join us for the next free monthly mini break.  Just make sure you’re on our email list to get the updates.

Links to Resources
Free Human Design Chart –
Earthing –
Free grounding mats for massage therapists –

February Mini Break


February mini breakYou can reduce stress and be more productive by making little breaks a regular part of your life.  If you are not taking a pause on a regular basis, try including them into your routine … perhaps once an hour, once a day, once a week or once a month. Step away from the hectic world of activity to bring your awareness into the moment with a little relaxation and reflection.

A few of us got together on Monday to regroup, recharge and enjoy a bit of community.  If you weren’t able to make it, you can still join us via the recording below.

You are invited to join us for the next free monthly mini break.  Just make sure you’re on our email list to get the updates.

If you would like a longer break (without packing to leave home and finding someone to watch the kids and pets) please join us for a Self-Care Essentials Virtual Retreat


Enjoy the February Mini Break (approx 30 minutes)

Self-Care and the “Go-To Getaway”

Have you every been so stressed out, that the thought of planning a relaxing get-away stressed you out even more? An essential part of a good self-care program is to reduce stress on a regular basis. You are encouraged to increase your resilience to stress by becoming practiced at having fun. Discover in this video, how a “go-to getaway” can help.

Do This to Take the Pressure Off the Holidays

It’s almost crunch time!  You know, that time when you’re working your @&$ off to tie up this year while simultaneously planning for next year.  And somewhere in there you’re supposed to have gifts wrapped, turkey’s baked, travel plans made and endless energy for children, families and parties.  How do you do all that while you manage to maintain your sanity?

I used to envy those women who seemed to sail through the holidays with plenty of time to wrap gifts, bake cookies, balance the year-end budget and project the profits for the next 12 months.  Little did I know back when I was baffled by their productivity, that their number one secret wasn’t that hard to grasp.  They planned ahead.  Some of them planned so well that they had all their gifts purchased by July!  Now that’s a little extreme for my spontaneous nature, but when I discovered that it’s easy to get it all done when you have a plan, I was lifted out of the mire of dread that used to suck the ho ho ho and peace on earth right out of my world

So here are some things you can do before Thanksgiving (the end of November for those of you who are not in the US) to insure you glide through the year-end festivities without a hitch:

  • Do your holiday shopping early.  I’m not just talking about Christmas gifts, but buy everything early…maybe a little at a time if it overwhelms you.  Spend a little time each morning making some notes about your holiday needs.  Are you cooking a major meal?  Do you need something special for a party?  Do you want a new decoration for your house?  And of course there is the gift list to plan for as well.
    • Make it simple.  Make it fun.  Think in themes.
    • Pick up items for your special meal a little at a time as you do your regular grocery shopping.
    • Leverage the power of online shopping.
  • Address your holiday cards early.  You can do this while watching TV or listening to music.  No need to mail them before the time is right.  Just get them signed, addressed and ready to go.


Holiday Cards Addressed Almost a Month Early!!! 

  • Get your rest ahead of time.  Can you make it a practice to get to bed an hour earlier than usual?  What about a 15 minute power nap in the middle of the day?  You know how crazy your schedule can get with added social engagements.  Even a few extra commitments in the month of December can drain your energy in a hurry.  So why not fortify yourself now, so you have that energy to enjoy yourself when the time comes.
  • Amp up the self-care.  If you tend to go into a “candy coma” (thanks Indra), or a carb and triptophan induced stupor over the holidays, do a little extra now to get your body feeling good  before you go in to those “no crumbs left on the plate” zones.  A few extra brisk walks can go a long way.  Consciously eating a few less fat and sugar calories while you’re still of sound mind may help to balance out potential overindulgence of holiday treats.

It’s so easy to get thrown off balance by extra responsibilities and activities during the holidays.  With proper planning you can get ahead of the potential pressure that can squeeze the joy out of the season.

There are other stressors and triggers which are unique to the holiday season that even the best of plans don’t relieve.  If you fall into a funk around Thanksgiving and dread the thought of another shopping trip or party, you’re invited to attend a free call which will help you discover the source of your issues and how to overcome them before they even start.

End Holiday Stress Before it Starts – Free Call