Over the past five days I have been at a conference in Washington D.C. with thousands of therapists, psychologists, social workers, and helping people. In person and online we joined together at the Psychotherapy Network Symposium. It was extra special to be in the company of my fantastic co-workers and supervisor.
Last year was transformative, even though it was 100% virtual. I fully expected this year to come with some amazing moments, and it did not disappoint. I met Esther Perel, Dr. Holly Richmond, took a work shop with grief expert David Kessler, explored race/class/gender and what it means to be a white body with a panel that included Rev. angel Kyodo williams (this deserves its own blog post which I will write after metabolizing everything I learned) and I listened to the most amazing Keynote speech by Dr. Emily Nagoski.
Dr. Nagoski spoke, more like sweetly sang a melody of wisdom about stress, being a woman, and what it means to actually recover from the stress cycle. I was moved to tears, to clap, to dance, and to look deep within at my own personal “humanness”. So, I was left with two choices, appreciate this moment as a memory that will last forever, or read her new book and keep looking within, and at the collective picture of society. So… I, of course, bought her book, “Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle”.
This post isn’t a book review. It’s more like an invitation to join me in reading. Here are some thoughts I took away from the keynote that are expanded on in her new book… and guess what… I already know I’m going to finish this book fast and make a podcast episode dedicated to exploring how it can be applied to our lives personally and within in our family!
In her book, Dr. Nagoski gives concrete and direct ways we can achieve this, and what limitations there might be for us and many other women.
We have become two polarized parts she refers to as the, “Human Giver Syndrome and Human Winner Syndrome”. As women, she says, we fluctuate between the two, and both are toxic. The giver feels they are not worthy unless they are making everyone happy/comfortable. The human winner believes they have a “moral obligation” to be strong, confident, independent and entitled… sounds so familiar! Dr. Nagoski spoke at her keynote about finding a new way, a way that will support us in completing our stress cycles. She says, “sometimes we have to take the path of rage to defeat these syndromes”.
Is that where I’m heading, because I feel a collective rising inside myself and see it in many of my close female friends and family… and especially see it in my therapy sessions with clients and couples.
My biggest take away, and the moment that I felt seen, validated, heard, understood, and one with all the healers in the room happened when Dr. Nagoski spoke to our “bubble of love”.
Dr. Nagoski, an accomplished researcher, psychologist, author, and woman, has pulled me in and I’m here, with her and many others, to be a part of the change that’s coming. I hope you’ll join me in that change. In the movement toward a new way of looking at healing.
Pick up her book here! Email me your thoughts and let me know if you want to share more on my podcast!