Blog - Page 2 of 3 - Lauren Bell

Combatting Professional Anxiety and Burnout: 5 Keys to Soaring Free.


“The greatest act of courage is to be and to own all of who you are — without apology, without excuses, without masks to cover the truth of who you are.” - Debbie Ford.

Anxiety.  According to Beyond Blue, two million Australians suffer with it, and 17% have experienced it in the last 12 months. 


It’s a debilitating condition that can plague us when we are not in alignment with our true values and beliefs. 


Learning how to recognise the signs of anxiety and burnout can help you reassess your life and give you the courage you need to make changes. 


Read on to learn about what anxiety is, especially professional anxiety, and why it affects so many of us. Then discover some ways to combat stress and anxiety so that you can start living your best and most authentic life NOW.

What is professional anxiety?

Anyone can experience professional anxiety at any time. It relates to how we feel about the work we are doing and the goals and dreams we have for our work, our career, our business, and our wealth. 


Anxiety can become a problem in any life area, but when it resides in our professional life, we can feel even more pressure and risk burnout due to the demanding nature of work. 


Are you in a high-stress job? Do you sometimes feel like you are required to keep giving of yourself, and yet you never feel replenished? Are you feeling undervalued or not compensated adequately for your worth? Does it feel like people want more from you and that you are never able to give enough?


This is a familiar feeling, especially amongst women, who, by nature, are givers and nurtures. 


And for those who work in service industries, such as health, education, emergency services and law, statistically, are more at risk of experiencing professional anxiety. This is due to the nature of their work which can be very overwhelming and demanding. 


Many of us feel that our work requires an enormous amount of investment, which gradually becomes more and more taxing on our mental wellbeing. If you are experiencing stress, exhaustion, are feeling less capable or you are even starting to resent your job. You are likely suffering from anxiety associated with burnout.  


professional anxiety and burnout

How burnout can affect your life

Burnout is a widely recognised condition in which a person experiences anxiety and stress for a prolonged time due to feeling overwhelmed and depleted. 


Burnout is affecting the nature of industry and is costing billions of dollars in lost productivity each year. It negatively impacts the health and wellbeing of individuals, their families, and those who are in their care. 


That’s why it’s so important to gain an understanding of why we experience these situations in our life, and what we can do to remedy them. 


Australian statistics reveal that 92% of serious mental health concerns in the workplace are attributed to work-related stressors. Poor psychological conditions cost businesses an approximate $10.9 billion per year.


This tells us that far too many people are experiencing burnout due to stress-related professional anxiety. It’s a feeling that your cup is never being refilled and that you are constantly overextending yourself. 


Your thoughts are likely plagued with self-doubt,  high standards, and idealism. You may be attached to wanting to make a difference in the workplace or even the world. 


These thoughts tend to activate a strong inner criticism where you believe you should have done it better, sooner, faster, or been more prepared. You don’t even see your achievements but, instead, focus on what’s wrong. You never give yourself a break or encouragement. This serves no purpose and is very disempowering. 

The following are some more signs of anxiety:

  • Physically - You may feel excessively tired, have a rapid heart rate, feel shaky, or experience more frequent illnesses. Experiencing more headaches, stomach problems, dizziness, chills, chest pain, trouble breathing, muscle tension, and insomnia are all signs of anxiety.
  • Mentally - Constant worrying and pessimistic thoughts can lead to depression, apathy, or thoughts of giving up.
  • Emotionally - You may feel overwhelmed and tearful often and unable to gain control over your feelings.

What can I do to help my anxiety?


If you are experiencing anxiety or burnout due to your professional and/or personal life, you are not alone. It’s time to take stock of your life and address the situations that are no longer serving you.


There are skills, tools, and techniques that you can learn and master to combat the anxiety that’s plaguing you. You can actively choose to address your worries and find the power to make changes. As with all personal growth, the lessons start from within. You can learn to not only manage your anxiety but eliminate debilitating anxiety from your life.


When a person experiences these symptoms for a prolonged period of time it can have all kinds of negative effects on our wellbeing. 


During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have experienced increased levels of professional anxiety and stress. At best, your employment has been only mildly affected. At worst, your entire professional and personal life has changed and you have no idea when or if things will ever go back to how they were. 


Uncertainty is at an all-time high.


On top of that, the demands at home may have increased as well. As caregivers, many women take on the responsibilities associated with caring for others, often other family members. 


Generally, women take on other peoples’ worries and stressors too and push themselves to not only meet their professional demands but also fill the emotional, mental and physical cups of others. 


Women are giving by nature and they want to help, but forget to give to themselves. This is a sure-fire way to increase anxiety and burnout, which could result in a complete mental breakdown. There is only so much a person can give when their cup is never being refilled.

Here are the 5 keys to soaring free

From professional anxiety and burnout to soaring free


Take some much needed time out to really think about what you want. Listen to your heart, not your head. If you truly listen, your heart already knows all the answers. Make sure the changes you make are in alignment with what you truly need, and not what you think you need or what you think others want for you. You don’t have to live up to anyone else's expectations, just your own.


For example, I felt stressed that I was nursing when I wanted to be working entirely in my own business. In my mind, I was underachieving. So, after reflecting who I love being and how I love to show up in the world, I understood I am caring, loving and wise. And I value being helpful, respectful and sharing what I know. 


I realised I could be all these things whether I am counselling, coaching or nursing, as a mum, a friend, or anywhere, even at the supermarket. This is me, I don’t have to “DO” anything to be the person I love being. And this takes away the pressure to be something other than who I am now. I feel fulfilled, peaceful, and joyful.

Tip: Ask yourself who is the person you love being. 


Self love



Start taking responsibility for your own needs, not everyone else’s.

We take on what is not ours to take on and then feel tossed around by other people. We think we are doing the 'right thing' but when you really look at it, we are then adopting that victim mentality where we blame others for our problems. This is not a mindset of empowerment. Show yourself and others that you believe what you want is important. When we have an attitude of taking responsibility for ourselves only, we move away from a victim mentality and into a position of empowerment. 


Tip: We can look at any situation and apply one or more of these three ideas to move into the empowerment position: 


  1. What can I learn from this situation? What are the hidden gifts in this? 
  2. What is my reaction? How am I behaving and how can I change my behaviour and respond differently? 
  3. Have a faith belief rather than pessimistic belief. We have to have one or the other so adopt the principle that The Universe is always happening for me, and not to me.



If you don’t have boundaries, now is the time to start recognising them and honouring them. When you don’t set personal boundaries, you are communicating to others that you don’t respect yourself, so why should they? Find out what you can and cannot accept in your life, and stick to it.


Brene Brown says the most compassionate people are those with firm boundaries. They show others how they are willing or not willing to be treated. It’s when we let people step over our boundaries that we become hurt, resentful and then act in ways that cause us to feel ‘bad’, anxious, and guilty.


Tip: Boundaries are like a muscle that needs to be strengthened. When you first start setting boundaries it can feel difficult it can feel unnatural but that doesn’t mean boundaries wrong. It just means that you need to practice more. With practice, you will gain confidence and setting boundaries will come more naturally.

Practice boundaries




Take the time to look at and question your beliefs. Make sure that your beliefs still serve you and are in alignment with the desires of your heart and soul. Are your beliefs your own or have you unconsciously taken on others’ beliefs?


Tip: Beliefs are just thoughts you think over and over. When we really look at our beliefs we can ask questions: Is it true? Is it useful? Chris Helder, author of Useful Belief: Because It's Better Than Positive Thinking suggests using ‘useful beliefs.’ 


For example the belief ‘I hate growing older’ can be replaced with a more useful belief that opens up thinking such as, ‘I am older, yes and that makes me wiser, more experienced, and I no longer need to prove myself to anyone.’ 



Empower yourself with knowledge, and find ways to get in touch with your feelings so that you can discover your own truth. Look for resources that you relate to. My new book, The Anxiety Relief Handbook offers many proactive strategies to help you. 


Tip: This mindfulness and breathing exercise will help you feel more connected to your body and more present. With your feet on the ground, notice the rise and fall of your chest as you breathe. 


Don’t judge, just notice it. What are you feeling in your body? Where are you feeling it in your body? Describe it. Is It a colour, texture, an image? If you could name it, what emotion is it? What would it say to you if you asked it to tell you, and then listened? 


Communicate to yourself that you are ok. Breathe. I am here right now. I am not in the past or in the future. I am in the present and I see that I am ok. Affirm that you are safe. 


When you have managed to move away from those feelings of anxiety into a state of calmness, then you can reflect.  Use self-coaching and explore your thoughts and beliefs. You can release pent up feelings, learn what are the triggers, and recognise and respond to it more quickly. This will help you manage so it doesn’t have to escalate to such a high level of stress.


Remember, anxiety is a natural and normal emotion and it serves an important purpose - to protect us. It only becomes a problem when we are unable to manage it in a productive way. Anxiety can be performance-enhancing if you know how to respond to it. 


Release anxiety and stress

Learn how to manage anxiety and empower yourself

The Anxiety Relief Handbook explores ways to heal anxiety, stress and overwhelm by releasing buried emotions and identifying them. 

Allow yourself to let go of inner doubt, increase self-belief and the confidence to step up and shine. 

In this book, you will find out how to:

  • Understand yourself better, and why you think and feel the way that you do.
  • Practical exercises to guide you to a place of calmness and clarity so that you attract abundance into your life.
  • Release guilt and feelings of loyalty to people or situations that no longer serve you.
  • Discover what you really need, learn how to ask for it, and be open to receiving it from others.
  • Learn how to build trust and watch what you need to come into your life.
  • Develop practical skills for improving self-awareness and a positive mindset.

My wealth coaching will teach you how to really own your own value so that you can step up and be paid well for what you love doing. We all deserve to discover our life’s true purpose and feel rightly acknowledged and appreciated for what we offer. I can teach you how to live a life of abundance.


Now is the time to start living a life where you feel more present, embodied, comfortable, and relaxed. You will be amazed at all the positivity that will come to you just from a change in your mindset. We all want to be the very best and happiest version of ourselves but often we need a little guidance. My book will be that guide for you and offer easy to understand ways for you to experience an amazing transformation.


The book will be available in March, however, to reserve one of the first copies and receive the special PRE-LAUNCH PRICE with free postage (within Australia) plus bonuses click here and secure your handbook today. 


With all book orders, I offer a 30-minute Wealth Breakthrough Session. This session will map your personal breakthrough plan to help you discover what you really want in your life. You will learn how to identify the mindset problems and blockages that are preventing you from achieving what you want. This will open you to receive more abundance, wealth, happiness, and health. Release the pressure and take up this special offer NOW.


Secure your handbook today. 






What The Shaggy Duck Story Teaches Us About Perception

Top Story About Perception


We are Seeing The World Through Our Unique Lens.

Unconsciously we assume that the way we experience the world is the same way that everyone else experiences the world.

But, for every experience we have, it is interpreted through our perceptions.

These perceptions are based on our own senses, our sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell and the consequent meaning that we then assign to it.

And it is also dependent on our past experiences, internal dialogues, emotions, unconscious programming and more.

So it makes sense that we all have our own interpretations and reactions to experiences as they unfold.


Why is this important?

Knowing this makes us more accepting of other peoples points of view, especially when it is different from our own. And we know that in this world in all it's climates, we need more acceptance, respect and harmony.

As the Dalai Lama says, "Mutual respect is the foundation of genuine harmony."


Pete the Shaggy Duck

When I first read this funny and beautiful story about 'The Shaggy Duck' from Alan Cohen's book, A Course In Miracles Made Easy I was able to understand this more clearly than ever before. It cleverly shows how we all view the world through our own unique lens.

It's worth the read and I hope you enjoy it too.

Image Credit: Ernst Vikne -

Image Credit: Ernst Vikne - [email protected]

When I lived in an organic farming community, one morning I sat on the porch of the bunkhouse, watching members walk across a grassy area to the dining hall. 

Beside the path, Pete the duck sat and quacked at people as they walked by. 

A professional singer was the first to pass by Pete that morning.
Upon hearing him, she stopped and told him, “How nice of you to sing me a morning song!”

The next woman along the path was rather overweight. When she heard Pete quack in her direction, she scolded him, “You’re always quacking for more food, Pete. It’s time you stuck to your diet!” 

The final person to pass was a very intellectual architect. Hearing Pete’s voice, he retorted, “Questions, Pete—always questions! How about some answers for a change?” 

Hmm . . . Each person saw Pete through the lens of his or her own self-perception. They projected their worldview onto the duck and attributed their beliefs about themselves to him. It was their own selves they were talking to. 

We are all speaking only to our own self.

From ‘eating their young’ to stepping up as leaders who nurture.

From ‘eating their young’ to stepping up as leaders who nurture.
12 Ways to Lead by Example

Nurses Eat Their Young, a culture that needs to change.

As a registered nurse for over 30 years and working in many different hospitals and organisations, I have met hundreds and hundreds of health professionals that make up this huge workforce.

Throughout my long career, there’s been a saying that represents a culture in nursing that is sad, disappointing and needs to change.

It is this metaphor, that ‘nurses eat their young’ or ‘nurse cannibalism’, a term recently coined by Emma Versluis and Tracy Churchill. That’s pretty confronting hey?

To hear more about this I recommend The Happy Nurse Podcast

Not just a problem in nursing

According to Renee Thompson an expert on incivility in nursing, this is not just a problem in nursing but in many occupations including medicine, the police force and teaching.

It may be commonplace in many professions, but that doesn’t make it okay. And it feels even worse in an industry that is dedicated to caring and compassion

Renee Thompson

I experienced this myself

In my career, I have experienced this attitude of nurse cannibalism and witnessed it occurring to others. And I still hear many troubling accounts from junior and novice nurses.

Although junior nurses are the most often targeted, experienced nurses, do come up against this too. This may occur when they take on a new role in a different speciality, for instance moving from orthopaedics into the operating theatre or coming from another hospital or organisation.

Not ok to not speak up

What has come to light through Black Lives Matter is that it is no longer ok to not speak up when things are not right.

That’s because being present and witnessing something not right and not objecting to it, is equal to condoning the wrongful behaviour. Now I don’t think it’s easy to do but it is important.

Although we worry about what to say and we are scared of being criticised people will criticise you anyway so it’s better to speak up and speak your truth.

We must lead by example 

To make these needed changes in our workplaces, we need to lead by example. It’s not enough to rely on others to do it first and don’t fall into the trap of following along with the cultural ‘norm’ of the workplace.

Be the first, and be proud of how you conduct yourself. This can be as simple as being the one who seeks out another’s eyes and smiles genuinely, is inclusive, asks what you can do to help, and says thank you. 

We are leaders even if it is not fully recognised or owned yet. If we don’t like the way things are then be the change that we want to see.

Take the lead, you can be the change you wish to see.

So how can you be a good leader?

Good leaders must lead by example. Through their actions, which are aligned with what they say, they become a person others want to follow. When leaders say one thing but do another, they erode trust, a critical element of productive leadership.

Here are just a few of the ways that we can lead by example

  1. Take responsibility. Blame costs you your credibility, keeps team members /colleagues on the defensive and ultimately sabotages real growth.

  2. Be truthful/vulnerable. Inaccurate representation affects everyone. Show that honesty really IS the best policy.

  3. Be courageous. Walkthrough fire (a crisis) first. Take calculated risks that demonstrate a commitment to a larger purpose.

  4. Portray confidence. When you are confident in yourself and believe in your team /colleagues, confidence is instilled in others.

  5. Acknowledge failure. It makes it OK for your team to do the same and defines failure as part of the process of becoming extraordinary.

  6. Be persistent. Try, try again. Go over, under or around any hurdles to show that obstacles don’t define your company or team.

  7. Create solutions. Don’t dwell on problems; instead, be the first to offer solutions and then ask your team or colleagues for more.

  8. Listen with empathy. Ask questions. Seek to understand. You’ll receive valuable insights and set a tone that encourages healthy dialogue.

  9. Delegate liberally. Encourage an atmosphere in which people can focus on their core strengths.

  10. Take care of yourself. Exercise, don’t overwork, take a break. A balanced team, mentally and physically, is a successful team. Model it, encourage it, support it!

  11. Celebrate every step of progress. It is important to celebrate all steps of progress and success. Some people feel as though their work is never recognised or valued, they are only spoken to when there is a complaint. We all work better with encouragement rather than criticism.

  12. Be appreciative, give thanks everywhere. People love to be thanked for a job well done, for their effort and commitment. A simple thanks goes a very long way.
A simple thank you goes a very long way.

You may reprint this so long as you include the entire unedited article including this footer.
Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field. Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and live the life you dreamed of; ‘An Extraordinary Life.’ Visit to learn more about Lauren and get your complimentary No Apologies, I Deserve More Toolkit.  

How neediness can get you your heart’s desire

Photo by Fallon Michael on Unsplash

None of us wants to be needy. It’s unattractive, and we can find really needy people annoying, pathetic and attention-seeking.

Being needy is one of the traits in our humanness that we avoid or deny profusely.

We pride ourselves in being strong, capable and independent. 

You know what I mean, don’t you? We don’t ask for help; we pride ourselves in being strong, capable and independent.

Do you agree that it is important not to have to depend on anyone?

After all, if you want something done a certain way, it’s easier to do it yourself than to ask someone.

Would you rather work and be responsible for everything – even to the point of overwhelm, exhaustion and failure-than to ask for help?

Of course, we don’t want this, but for many of us, it’s so much easier to do it this way than to tune into what we need and ask for it. 

There is a benefit too

Although there is a cost to doing it all yourself, the add-on benefit protects you from being upset, disappointed or angry. You do not have to nag someone else or be stuck if they don’t do what you want.

And, when we do it yourself, it gets done the way you want it done. And if there is any problem you cannot blame anyone else but you.


Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Being independent and not asking for help is so common. It can be a challenge to break free from because we learned this at a very young age. We learned it often as a necessary protection.

You see, it’s like we have taken a vow (subconsciously) to:
   never be weak,
   never depend on anyone,
   never want anything that you can’t give yourself,
   never share what you would really like or
   never tune into or feel deeply what you do want for you.

And, there is another downside that you may not be aware of. 

The big downside to this vow of not being needy is that it can keep you from having more money and more ease in your life and career.

Margaret Lynch Raniere
Tapping into Wealth

When you decide that you don’t need anything from anyone else you block yourself from asking and receiving.

Therefore, you are not open to it; you don’t even see it when offered, so you can’t receive it.

Secretly we do want more support

The funny thing is that secretly we do want more support, more help, more ease, more acknowledgement and more money.

How often have you given others what they need (even when they don’t ask) and you hope or believe that they will do that for you?

And, how disappointed and hurt are you when you don’t get it? Perhaps your birthday was overlooked, or you are never asked if you would like a cup of coffee or tea made for you?

Allowing Yourself To Ask For More

1. Know that you are not alone.

We all have needs/wants and desires. It’s just that we deny them and soldier on.
We all have a needy part inside us that wants to be seen and acknowledged. Let it feel seen and honoured for the truest feelings.

2. Tune in to you and question

‘What do I find pleasurable? What do I love doing? What would I love someone…my partner, child, friend, colleague to do for me? What do I need from my boss? How would I feel more supported, loved, appreciated, acknowledged? What would that look like? What have I been afraid to admit?’

This deeper reflection may be new for you, but it does get easier once you start enquiring because you are now curious and open.

Be the detective; you can use a journal, daydream, confide in those you trust, your girlfriends or others you can feel safe with. You can own and acknowledge it for each other. Being honest like this is incredibly freeing.

3. Start asking for what you want

What do you need help with? Would like to receive more of? Start asking for what you truly want from those around you. Start with small things and from people you feel more comfortable with. Build up to asking for much bigger things or things that make you feel vulnerable. 

Understand that people can’t magically intuit what you want or need and often are perplexed by what support they could give you or what gift you would adore.

Let them know. Let them know how much you would love it and what it means to you.

4. Get support

Get support for yourself. There are various modalities, such as tapping or meditation and mindfulness to access the deeper feelings you have. Feelings that you have been denying. They will help you gain the confidence to speak the truth about what you really want, those things you have been limiting yourself.

This was true for me. After doing some of the deep work from the Tapping into Wealth Program, I cleared the vows that blocked me. I accessed parts in me that desire praise and acknowledgement to know that I am loved and cherished for who I am.

Once I understood this, I was able to share this insight with my partner. I told him that I had learned something new about myself, and although I was scared of how he would respond, I felt more courageous and did it anyway.

His response was to hug me, and he said, “Ok, I will do this for you. But, you might have to remind me sometimes!”

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

I still do have to remind him sometimes, but the truth is I can ask for it and at the same time own and love that part inside me that needs this support and encouragement.

5. Acknowledge and give thanks

to those who respond to your requests and see what they deeply need too. When we give from a place that feels full, because we have our own needs met, we realise the gift that is in the giving.

We all need support.

As a woman, a mother, a coach and a nurse, I see this all too common. I know that it can be difficult to clear this deep subconscious programming as these vows have been with you since childhood. We all need support now and again.

If you would like more support with this, then I would love to offer you my FREE Personal Leadership Breakthrough Session

During this private one to one consultation, you sit down with me, over zoom…

  • We will look at one of the areas in your life where you are really overgiving, and I’ll help you make a new agreement with yourself to start setting healthy boundaries.
  • Calls are recorded on Zoom because you’ll gain aha’s and will want
    to listen again.
  • This session is valuable, worth $200.
    It is yours FREE and with no obligation. 
  • Feel heard, understood, clearer and more confident
  • Together we can find out if it is a fit to work together.




You may reprint this so long as you include the entire unedited article, including this footer.
Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field. Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and Love Your Extraordinary Life.’ Visit to learn more about Lauren 

Want To Step Up Your Connection? You Need To Read This First

At this turning point in history, knowing deeply that we are all connected, ONE, allows us to relate more deeply and sense the connection with all hearts (all people, all creatures and Mother Earth).

“I am one eternal light appearing as all”. Matt Kahn.

For most of us, we know we are all part of something larger, part of the whole.

As Robert Smalley writes, “we are all in the oneness of God even though we don’t fully understand or know this. We are like the drops of water in the ocean and the ocean is God.”

Connectedness is the feeling of belonging, it is valuable and feels wonderful.










'Connection' adrianbell_photography
‘Connection’ adrianbell_photography

However, feeling connected comes with certain responsibilities.

If we are all part of a bigger picture then we must not harm others because we will be harming ourselves, we must not exploit others because we will be exploiting ourselves, we must not disrespect others because we will be disrespecting ourselves…

Knowing that I am connected makes me more considerate, caring, kind and loving and helps me to form quick deep connections and interactions with the people I’m with.

Applying this in your life will help you master the art of connection.

So what else is helpful?

The gift of paying attention is a fundamental key in transforming relationships.

Relationships can be turned around when the connection and interest in the other are truly sought after and valued.

The gift of paying attention to another is a gift for you too. And when you are the one receiving, you do truly understand its power.

It’s simple…the number one thing all people crave is to be seen and to be heard, to be truly heard, to be received.


One of the skills that is needed for connection is listening.

Learning to really listen is an active skill that takes awareness, practice and a desire to attend.

Top 10 Barriers to Connection

Connection takes effort, there are things to do and things not to do (that many of us do).

Here are the top 10 barriers that impact the connection in all of our relationships, whether they be intimate, family, friends, colleagues, bosses or acquaintances…and whether they are in agreement or in conflict.

A good example of this is when someone comes to us with a problem, it’s easy to lapse into behaviours that—although usually well-meaning—serve to block us from hearing the other person’s experience.

We’d be better off following the words of this back-the-front saying: “Don’t just do something; stand there”…and try not to:

1. Counsel. Seek not to advise solutions (until asked) but listen and reflect back the person’s experience.

2. Defend. When you explain, justify or rationalize, you invalidate the other’s experience. You can create a time to offer your experience, but for now, just listen. 

3. Shut down. This happens in parenting when we say things like: “Stop crying. It’s not that bad.” Children are more likely to stop crying and will feel supported when they feel they’ve been heard.

4. One-up. Saying, “Oh, that’s nothing! Listen to what happened to me!” gives the message, “Your experience doesn’t count.”

5. Reassure. It’s OK, in fact it’s good for people to feel their feelings. When we try to console (“It’s not your fault; you did the best you could…”) we take people out of their feelings.

6. Pity. Sympathy and pity (“Oh, you poor thing!”) are very different from empathy, which is simply a respectful understanding of what others are experiencing.

7. Commiserate. Sharing stories of your own similar experiences is not showing empathy; it turns the focus away from the person with the problem.

8. Correct. First listen. After the other person feels fully understood, then see about correcting any misunderstandings or inaccurate impressions.

9. Enlighten. Don’t attempt to educate unless your opinion is asked.

10. Interrogate. Too many questions distract from the feelings at hand.

Listen with interest, curiosity, allow the other to experience their feelings, hear their thoughts and feel your support and heart connection.

You will both be gifted.

Many of us have a mind that measures self-worth in terms of productivity…
We give ourselves no credit for just being present. And yet, if you asked the people you care about what they would like most from you, their answer is likely to be some version of ‘your presence,’ ‘your loving attention’.

—Jan Chozen Bays

You may reprint this so long as you include the entire unedited article including this footer.

Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field.

Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and live the life you dreamed because you do deserve more. More wealth, love, authentic self-expression. You deserve to ‘Love Your Extraordinary Life.’

Fill in the fields below for your complimentary

No Apologies! I DO Deserve More Toolkit, that includes:

  • My Self-Assessment Quiz That Uncovers Your Giving and Receiving Quotient
  • What You Must Know to Earn & Receive More Wealth, More Love, More Reward.

No Apologies! I DO Deserve more

Accessing the Power of Gratitude

Accessing the Power of Gratitude

 “Yes Please! More Please! Thank You!”

When something is going well in my life, an unexpected gift, a windfall, new clients, a podcast or interview invitation, opportunities for fun, for work,  for pleasure, no matter how big or small it is, I say, “Yes Please! More Please! Thank You!”

Taught to me by my manifestation coach. I say it out loud, with a smile, with glee. My kids roll their eyes and laugh (and I have caught them saying it too!!!).

The practise of gratitude as a tool for happiness has been in the mainstream for years.

Long-term studies support gratitude’s effectiveness, suggesting that a positive, appreciative attitude contributes to greater success in work, greater health, peak performance in sports and business, a higher sense of well-being, and a faster rate of recovery from surgery.

But while we may acknowledge gratitude’s many benefits, it still can be difficult to sustain.

So many of us are trained to notice what is broken, undone or lacking in our lives. Programmed into us for survival, watching for danger.

However, for gratitude to meet its full healing potential in our lives, it needs to become more than just a Thanksgiving word.

We have to learn a new way of looking at things, a new habit. And that can take some time.

That’s why practicing gratitude makes so much sense. When we practice giving thanks for all we have, instead of complaining about what we lack, we give ourselves the chance to see all of life as an opportunity and a blessing.

Remember that gratitude isn’t a blindly optimistic approach in which the bad things in life are whitewashed or ignored. It’s more a matter of where we put our focus and attention.

For my clients, I encourage them to keep a little notebook to write down all the ways that they are delighted by experiences, items, surprises, kind words, smiles, gestures. This is gathering evidence to counter all the things that aren’t right.


Pain and injustice exist in this world, but when we focus on the gifts of life, we gain a feeling of well-being. Gratitude balances us and gives us hope.

There are many things to be grateful for: sunshine, colourful autumn leaves, legs that work, friends who listen and really hear, chocolate, fresh eggs, warm jackets, the ability to read, roses, our health, butterflies. What’s on your list?

Some Ways to Practice Gratitude

Keep an evidence journal or a gratitude journal in which you list things for which you are thankful. You can make daily, weekly or monthly lists. Greater frequency may be better for creating a new habit, but just keeping that journal where you can see it will remind you to think in a grateful way.

  • Make a gratitude collage by drawing or pasting pictures.
  • Practice gratitude around the dinner table or make it part of your nighttime routine.
  • Make a game of finding the hidden blessing in a challenging situation.
  • When you feel like complaining, make a gratitude list instead. You may be amazed by how much better you feel.
  • Notice how gratitude is impacting your life. Write about it, sing about it, express thanks for gratitude.
  • Smile and dance and exclaim  “Yes Please! More Please! Thank You!”

As you practice, an inner shift begins to occur, and you may be delighted to discover how content and hopeful you are feeling.

That sense of fulfilment is gratitude at work.


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Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field.

Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and live the life you dreamed because you do deserve more. You deserve to ‘Love Your Extraordinary Life.’

Fill in the fields below for your complimentary

No Apologies! I DO Deserve More Toolkit, that includes:

  • My Self-Assessment Quiz That Uncovers Your Giving and Receiving Balance/Imbalance
  • A Revealing Deserving Exercise that shows you just where your subconscious mind is right now.

No Apologies! I DO Deserve more

It Starts With Me! How to Burn Bright Not Burnout

When you think about people who love giving, who are perhaps over givers, who do you think about? Mums? Nurses? Teachers? Someone you know? What about you? Do you over give too?



We have been taught by our families, by society,  to put the needs of everyone else before our own.

That it is selfish to put your own needs first. 

But, I have found that we have it back the front. 

We subconsciously believe that putting our needs first sends a message that wellbeing is our ONLY priority. 

So really it must start with me. I must put my needs and wellbeing first so that I can give from a full tank, not an empty tank.


It doesn’t feel good, does it? 

I have received care like that and I have also been the one giving it. It never feels good.

If you are giving yourself away everywhere you need to find a way to make you first.

Are you taking care of everyone else or caretaking? There is a difference. Taking care is with boundaries and healthy whereas caretaking is unhealthy and can lead to exhaustion and burnout.

Today, May 12th, 2020 is International Nurses Day, celebrating 200 years since the birth of Florence Nightingale and nursing as a profession.

Florence Nightingale

And the World Health Organisation (WHO) has appointed 2020 as the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife.

The theme is Nurses: A Voice To Lead – Nursing the World to Health.

And yet, nursing and the health industry is facing a crisis because caring for others is overwhelming and demanding.

Burnout rates for all industries have risen significantly in the last decade.  Physicians, nurses and other health professionals are among those who are most affected by burnout. With rates, somewhere between 40-60% even cited up to 78% in some recent publications. And it is rising.

High levels of stress can lead to conflicts and workplaces can feel unsupportive, even hostile, leading to high rates of staff turnover and many health professionals intending to or leaving the industry. 

And this was before the impact of COVID-19 😯

In 2019 the World Health Organisation identified burnout as a workplace phenomenon and added it to the International Classification of Diseases 11th Revision (ICD-11) not because it is a disease but because it is a major reason why people seek help from their doctors. 

Burnout is costing billions of dollars in lost productivity each year and impacts the health and wellbeing of each individual and those people who are in their care. 

So what is burnout?

It’s a syndrome that results from chronic stress in the workplace. Chronic stress can be from work and/or workplace conflicts. 

Burnout symptoms include emotional exhaustion, depersonalisation and reduced personal accomplishment. 

Or more simply put, if you feel exhausted, start to hate your job, and begin to feel less capable at work, you are showing signs of burnout.

The truth is having a high-stress job doesn’t necessarily lead to burn out if it is managed well. But there are certain occupations and certain personality characteristics such as perfectionism and pessimism that predispose a person to burnout. 

As a Registered Nurse for over 30 years I’ve been through the heartache and shame of burnout feeling unappreciated, isolated, unfulfilled and resentful. I was questioning what is the point? 

Burnout my experience
Through my experience of burnout and my recovery, I discovered aspects about me that led me to burnout. At the time, I didn’t know I was in burnout until I was through it and could look back on that time of my life.

At the time, I didn’t know I was in burnout until I was through it and could look back on that time of my life.

As a sensitive, empathic, person I see and feel people’s pain and their wounding and am compelled to make them feel better. I was over responsible for everyone else and under responsible for myself.  

I am an idealistic, spiritual and love holistic health and hold an optimistic view of the world and of people. Classic rose-coloured glasses! Yet I barely shared this side of myself at work, believing that western medicine and holistic health/spirituality could not go together. I lived with my feet in two camps. 

Around 12 years ago as a single mother, I returned to full-time nursing. My three sons were only 8,10 and 12 years old. I was juggling a new job, a new relationship, and studying.

It was a lot.

Then I took on a role with even more responsibilities. 

But I didn’t even stop to think about that, I just kept adding more to my plate. And with my high ideals, I was imagining the difference I could make in the work I was doing. 

It became apparent that I could not achieve what I wanted, I was not able to please my managers or myself, I became more and more disheartened, demotivated, burdened and cynical.

I didn’t share my struggles, I didn’t speak up or reach out for help, instead, I complained and I withdrew and became more and more isolated. 

Not in touch with my feelings, stressed, I took it out on my family. The littlest thing such as the boys leaving their dishes on the sink was enough to have me yelling. 

I was doing so much and doing none of it well. I felt unworthy and not good enough.

I was running on empty. 

I felt powerless, stressed, I was making poor decisions. 

Then I hit rock bottom

The Turning Point 
I was in the doctor’s office, he was behind his desk, he was being so kind, compassionate and listening to me, looking right into me, seeing me. As I sat there red-faced with tears streaming down my face, I couldn’t speak, I felt so ashamed, embarrassed, my heart was breaking 💔 

Then it dawned on me… I was doing this to myself. 

I was not listening to what I wanted or needed, I was soldiering on, even though I was desperately unhappy.

I realised right then and there that if I don’t do what I need to do to care for me then I am self-neglecting, self-sacrificing and even self-abusing.

I could make a choice,
I could do this for me 

To put myself first, my heart, my peace, my happiness, my health was foremost. Because without it who was I?


I could make a choice,

I could do this for me 

I realised IT STARTS WITH ME! and in my recovery, I discovered the 5 keys that are needed to soar free.



Drop into your heart ❤️

Drop into your heart ❤️

 The mind doesn’t have answers

The heart ❤️  doesn’t have questions

DR Sean stephenson


I took time out for me and listened to my heart 

What do I want? What do I love doing? Who do I love being? 

I did know what I needed. I do have the answers inside me. 

I had been living a lie, denying myself, my heart and soul wanted to express my love for holistic wellbeing, to embrace my spirituality, I had to stop censoring myself. I had a different view of health and healthcare and I could no longer pretend with my 2 feet in 2 camps, I had to be real, authentic, to show myself, to be myself, to be proud of myself.

I shared this with my family, my work, my friends and even though I felt vulnerable and uncomfortable, I soon discovered there is freedom in being vulnerable. 

Take responsibility for you, not for everybody else 

Working with my mentor helped me to take responsibility, to move to a place of empowerment instead of being a victim tossed like a pinball in the pinball game of life. 

I could see that I had been caretaking not taking care. 

Know yours and honour them 

I had no boundaries in place. I wanted to feel accepted and fit in. I learned what I was willing to accept and what I wasn’t. I set my boundaries and committed to them.

You get to teach others how to treat you when you have boundaries. 

Can be changed, make them empowering 

Choose empowering beliefs

I looked at my beliefs and recognised many erroneous beliefs that weren’t serving me. I chose to believe in me. 




Learn tools to support you.

Mindfulness and Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or Tapping helped me to feel my feelings and to express my truth. Feeling is healing and it enabled to me develop self compassion, acceptance and self love, to know my own value and deservingness.

This started everything flowing into my life 

Benefits of choosing

Now think about your life, where you are not listening to you?
Where are you needing to do something for yourself?
Where are you putting everyone else ahead of you? 

is for you to know what you need to take care of you.  At home, in your workplace, in your career, in your relationships? So that you too can feel happy, on purpose, fulfilled to the brim and overflowing.

As a Nurse with A Voice To Lead – Nursing the World to Health and as a coach I know it is time for you to address your self-care in an empowered way. Gain emotional mastery and take responsibility for your own professional and personal wellbeing.

It Starts With Me!
Burn Bright Don’t Burnout

So how well are you doing?

If you are giving yourself away everywhere you need to find a way to make you first. 

Take my special quiz Are you Taking Care or Caretaking? FREE Quiz to assess right now how you are doing with this. 

Visit to learn more about Lauren and get your complimentary Are you Taking Care or Caretaking? FREE Quiz 

“Self-care is giving the world the best of you instead of what is left of you.” Katie Reed

It Starts With Me!  Burn Bright don’t Burnout.


You may reprint this so long as you include the entire unedited article including this footer.
Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field. Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and live the life you dreamed of; ‘An Extraordinary Life.’ Visit to learn more about Lauren and get your complimentary No Apologies, I Deserve More Toolkit.  

Forget About Fitting In at Work

Fitting In Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up To Be

Fitting in isn’t all it was cracked up to be back in primary school. When we were young, we learned to limit ourselves, play small, hide behind masks, all so we could please others and avoid conflict.

Then fast forward, we’re all grown up, and we’re still unconsciously following someone else’s rules (from family and the society). Mostly we don’t even question it until it becomes too hard, too uncomfortable or deeply painful to continue pretending as if all is OK.

If you notice yourself going along with what others are saying or doing, or asking you to do, whether you agree with it or not, just to keep the peace, here are some steps you can take to win back your power.

Step 1: Notice that you are sacrificing yourself to keep the peace or not rock the boat. Take a bit of time to journal about what’s going on, what are the habitual thoughts that keep influencing you, and how you really feel about it. You don’t have to show it to anyone, this is really for you to become more conscious.

Step 2: Clear the emotional charge around the issue. One way is to just allow yourself to feel. Sometimes this can seem really hard but it’s actually the fastest way to clear it. Many times I’ve noticed things clearing astonishingly fast just by allowing the emotions to be. I also have found EFT (Tapping) to be extremely helpful for this, and it is my method of choice to use with my clients.

Step 3: Decide. There comes a time when you have to decide that you are worthy, that what you say and think and feel has value. Making this decision becomes the foundation for the future steps you will take in the direction of your own empowerment. Once again, I use tapping to bring forward the strength, power and confidence my clients need to move forward.

Step 4: Get help. As a therapist, I have seen it all, and as a woman, I have been there too. What I know is that this world can be a difficult place, and we all need support now and again.

I would love to offer you my No Apologies, You Get To Be You Consultation

During this consultation, you’ll gain

  • Clarity on where you want to go, be or do.
  • Understand your biggest obstacles that
    are stopping you from achieving your dreams.
  • Map out exactly what you should focus on to
    move forward.
  • Receive my best recommendations for your
    Extraordinary Life Strategy and the next
    steps you should take.
  • My honest evaluation of what you can achieve
    once you get clear and take action.
  • Calls are recorded via phone or Zoom video
    conferencing. You’ll gain aha’s and will want
    to listen again.
  • This session is valuable, worth $200.
    It is yours free and with no obligation. 
  • Feel heard, understood and clearer. 



You may reprint this so long as you include the entire unedited article including this footer.
Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field. Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and live the life you dreamed of; ‘An Extraordinary Life.’ Visit to learn more about Lauren and get your complimentary No Apologies, I Deserve More Money Toolkit.  

Happy New Year 2019! Time to stop, rest, reflect and vision.

I wish you prosperity in all of your life; in love, joy, health, freedom, money, success, beauty, fun, whatever you are dreaming of.

So 2018 has come and gone, my how quickly time flies.

I love this time of the year to stop, reflect, not do too much, to withdraw from electronics, read a novel, nap, do whatever feels right in my mind and body.

The Christmas holidays whether I am away on vacation or just enjoying time at home is the only time of the year that I actually allow myself to stop and rest and have no plans at all.

Each day during my morning ritual I will see what is my inspired action for the day is and will set that as my intention. At this time of the year, it may be read a novel by the pool for at least 1 hour maybe even 4!

And in fact, this year I did that. I read for longer and have finished my book. I loved it, not the book (it was an average read). I loved the time and space and freedom that I allowed myself.

You see even though I am a big promoter of taking responsibility for self-care, I have recognised that most of my self-care is actions, things I do, such as walking Ruby through the local nature reserve, receiving a facial, a pedicure or a back massage. I am naturally a doer, always taking action so for me the real test, and rest is to stop and just be.

The truth is I do find it hard to stop and rest.

I have become conscious of my inner critical voice that is constantly nagging, always harping, and never satisfied. This voice when I rest doesn’t feel comfortable. I may get 15 minutes if I’m lucky, but before I’ve really settled into this me time, I’m reminded of all the things I need to do. And then so easily, my inner critical voice wins, I give up and go back to doing again.

The problem with this though is I never get the rest and time out that I am craving.

Eventually, because I haven’t nurtured myself in the way I truly need I find myself waking through the night or in the early morning in a state of overwhelm and stress, not with the refreshed and ready to go feeling that I should have after a good nights sleep.

This puts me into a state of I can’t be bothered, exhausted, listless, and I ask myself, “Why am I pushing so hard? Why bother?” It feels uncomfortable, I am in victim mode, poor me, powerless and complaining.

I use myriad of things that helps me move through this state, but mostly it is about honouring how I feel, accepting how I feel and loving myself deeply and completely anyway…more about that later.

The point I am making here is the need to actually stop and rest and be in the feminine, receiving mode, just being and appreciating just because I deserve it; I need it.

I need it regularly, more often, the balance to my doing, doer, masculine energy.

And, the truth is I’ll get more done, I’ll achieve more because my cup is filled, I’m in balance, happier and more energetic.

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions because they don’t work.

I do visualise and dream up my desires and how I want to feel and I create my More Of’s list. More of’s are all the things, feelings, experiences you would love more of in your life.

So my first More Of for 2019 is to have more being time, no pressure, nothing to do, just be, maybe journalling, maybe meditating, maybe sitting in the sun, maybe smelling and loving the flowers, maybe watching the sunrise or sunset, or maybe sitting with my back against a big, beautiful tree.

It sounds heavenly.

What is your first More Of that you’d love to welcome into your 2019? Please share in the comments below.

Beautiful Big Gum Bendigo Botanical Gardens

You may reprint this so long as you include the entire unedited article including this footer.
Lauren Bell helps nurses, healers and caring professionals who feel burnt out, stuck, angry and silenced to step up, stand out and be valued at the highest level in their field. Passionate for holistic health and wellness – body, mind, and spirit, Lauren delivers high impact transformation with therapy, coaching and workshops to move you forward and live the life you dreamed of; ‘An Extraordinary Life.’ Visit to learn more about Lauren and get your complimentary No Apologies, I Deserve More Money Toolkit.  

Self Care, necessary or hype? Is your cup full?

In October 2018 I am a speaker at the Australian College of Perianaesthesia Nurses (ACPAN) National conference in Brisbane. My presentation is experiential for all the participants involving the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or tapping as a way to self-care.

The Self-Care Message is essential for nurses. It is essential for anybody that cares for another. So that means pretty much all of us. Parents, children, siblings, friends and those who care in professional roles.

So many of my colleagues and my clients tell me they are good at giving but not good at receiving. But there are so many reasons why this doesn’t serve them or the people they are caring for.

It’s the old analogy... For safety, you must fit your own oxygen mask first before attending to another.

We all need self-care and we must take responsibility for our own self-care. It is not up to anyone to do it for us.

When we have a good understanding and respect for this, we do this from a place of honouring our needs. There is no reason for guilt or excuses such as lack of time. We may need to ask another to step in for us while we attend to our own needs.

Unfortunately, all too often we give and give and give until we are depleted, burnt out, stressed, we make ourselves sick physically, mentally and emotionally and it impacts our relationships and how we care.

For me, self-care means filling my cup. We must give from the overflow, not the cup itself,  then we are never depleted, and we CAN give our best.

How do you fill your cup?

For me, I love walking with my dog Ruby. She shows me how to be present in the moment and I feel grateful and blessed to be alive. She runs so fast with a big smile on her face, so happy and excited to be free, outside, full of speed and delighting in all the sniffs she can find.

There are so many ways to do self-care. Meditate, mindfulness, massage, healing sessions, special meals, outings with friends, exercise, reading a great book, smelling the roses, sunsets, craft, cuddles….

Some can involve a cost but there are many and varied ways to do self-care that are free too.

There is no right way, but it must be your way. And what you must do is be conscious of it, appreciate it and acknowledge that it is your self-care and that you are filling your cup.

Enjoy your self-care. Make it your priority. You deserve it.