My goal is to offer clients a toolkit to help find toward balance and fulfilment by making intentional choices about daily habits, routines, and boundary setting to ensure they arrive at their roles as caregivers having held enough space for themselves first.
SARA DENNISON // IKIGAI COACH
REGION: OREGON, USA
The Balance Challenge
It is hard to find balance in the dance of being a maker and caregiver. For some, being a maker means identifying as a writer, a painter, a composer, a potter, a baker, or an actor. For others, making means creating space and time where they find restoration and alignment in their craft. Maybe that craft is fly fishing. Maybe it’s hosting Sunday brunch. Maybe it’s being an athlete and making a body find its limit. Maybe it’s stewarding a conference or maybe it’s holding Monday night a beer share at your house. Regardless of what we’re making, it’s in the act of doing so that brings us fulfilment and helps us lead more meaningful and balanced lives. However, often our roles as makers need to be supported by other caregiving vocations.
Being a caregiver means that in our trade or by our fate we have the charge of tending to others. Caregiving may mean that we’re educators or nurses or coaches or therapists for which we are paid. But there is a slew of unpaid caregiving labor for which many of us are also responsible. Perhaps we must run a household, or take care of children, or navigate the addiction and recovery or mental/physical/spiritual health challenges of ourselves or those dear to us. In some cases, we even manage end of life care for chronically ill family members or partners.
Imbalance Leads to Burnout
Too often, we find ourselves juggling many of these caregiver roles all at once. Often, one of the first things to disappear off our unending to-do lists is our work as makers. This is when our energy stores run dry and we end up burning out. Simply put, even if we enjoy our roles as caregivers, it takes energy. Often, the act of making creates it. My goal as a coach is to offer insights to help clients determine what feeds them and what depletes them and how to strike a balance in their maker/caregiver roles and help them lead more sustainable, aligned, resonant, and embodied lives.
My goal is to offer clients a toolkit to help find toward balance and fulfillment by making intentional choices about daily habits, routines, and boundary setting to ensure they arrive at their roles as caregivers having held enough space for themselves first.
Caregiving as an educator in higher ed. for the last fifteen years while concurrently working on my craft as writer and administrator in a literary community has shown me that many of us are trying to maintain a hustle for our students and peers while also trying to refuel ourselves by working on our craft. If we throw in trying to maintain family, partnerships, other social connections, our physical and psychological wellness, and the general complexities of life, we end up with a ripe combination for burnout. As a recovering achievement junky who burnt out, got sick, then found a road to meaningful balance, resonance, and flow through studying ikigai, I’m ready to share those insights and help clients move their lives from a hustle toward resonance, alignment, and flow.
Right now, I’m piloting my coaching practice with faculty within my campus community but will be opening the scope my clientele in the coming year.