Sustainable Productivity + Focus

How to sustain your energy and momentum to show up during these times

June 17, 2020

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Last week I rain a free training called:


“How to find your anchor and decide your role in global change.”


At the beginning of the training I asked how everyone was feeling about everything what’s been unravelling during these times…


(Side note: Thanks to those of you who emailed me back last week to share what you’re experiencing).



The overarching theme/feeling I’ve been hearing these past couple of weeks: OVERWHELM.


Many of you in the community have shared your desires to “do the work” around anti-racism, unpacking privilege and social justice. AND also feeling overwhelmed with the enormity of the task at hand. 


It’s big work, it’s uncomfortable work and the truth is it’s got to be done.


Many of you have also shared that your personal and professional lives are under pressure too. With COVID-19, there are a lot of stresses at play (work, relationships, kids + homeschooling, mental health etc.)


For white/white-passing/white-privileged folx, admitting that we’ve got our own challenges going on can feel like heresy in the context of the #blacklivesmatters movement where BIPOC folx are facing unfathomable challenges day in and day out.


So what’s the solution to navigating both personal challenges as well as the challenges we’re facing as a collective?


2020 is a year of change. 


Old systems are on their way out and new ones are being called forth for rebuilding.


These times are unknown and unchartered AND they are SO very needed.


To navigate forward, we can’t use the same strategies of days gone by (i.e. avoidance, numbing out, overworking, hustling, unconscious capitalism). 


We’re in a process of dismantling and rebuilding. And let’s be real, we’re in it for the long haul.


To navigate and “be” during this process, we’re going to have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. 


We’re going to have to allow ourselves to feel what’s happening around us so that we take real action but not have it take us out. 



In a nutshell: we need to find ways to sustain our energy and find momentum to show up and do the work.



By the way, “the work” will look different for every single one of us….


Some will focus on unlearning, unpacking and parenting consciously. Others will be outwardly active and on the streets. Others will align their careers to the cause. Some may choose not to do anything about this at all….


Siobhan Barnes Life Coach Career Coach Soulful Executive Coach On Laptop

In order to find our individual roles in dismantling and rebuilding a new way (which by the way are needed to navigate both the personal and collective challenges we’re facing), we’ve got to:


  1. Find our own anchor
  2. Sustain our energy and keep the momentum


In this week’s blog I share how we can sustain our energy and momentum to show up during these times….


It goes without saying that finding our own anchor is KEY to this (Spoiler alert: I believe the way to do this is through the body and I cover this in depth so read on).


Let’s dive in.



We’re in it for the long haul so let’s sustain our energy and keep the momentum going together.



Part 1: Find Your Anchor


When we’re navigating uncertainty, unknown and unchartered times, it’s imperative to find an anchor. 


These times are going to require us to:


  • Speak up on what’s uncomfortable
  • Get things wrong and potentially be called out publicly
  • Look at the ways we’ve been wrong 
  • Face our shadows
  • Deal with job stress
  • Adapt to uncertainty around the future
  • Make decisions that we haven’t had to make or deal with before
  • Have awkward conversations
  • Stand up for what we believe in
  • I could go on….

To do these things we need a sense of safety and security from which to operate. 


The first place to find this safety is to start from within the body. 


This body you have is the vessel through which you are filtering your experience. It’s THE vehicle through which you live, love, lead and learn.

Comfortable Chair

To find your anchor it’s imperative to be able to drop into your body and honour what you are feeling and thinking.


During this process of dismantling and rebuilding, we’re going to have to operate from a new paradigm. 


To navigate forward, we can’t use the same strategies of days gone by (i.e. avoidance, numbing out, overworking, hustling, unconscious capitalism). 


In this new paradigm, we need the tools and ability to FEEL. This practice will begin the process of feeling safe in the body no matter what we are feeling.


We all need to feel safe to feel our dark (anger, rage, despair, guilt) and to feel our light (hope, love, connection, desire).


When you practice the ability to be and feel the discomfort, you build your capacity to hold all your emotions and not have them take you out. Instead you can honour, feel and move through what you’re feeling and from this place take action. 



Let’s take an example of being overwhelmed (the example I mentioned earlier at the start of this blog post).


In the old paradigm…


If you’re overwhelmed you may numb out the feeling by avoiding the problem with overworking. Adding more to your to-do list, justifying you’re “too busy” and drive yourself to burnout. 


The outcome: Your adrenals burnout and you lose your energy. You go backwards personally and professionally and collectively there’s no change made.


In the new paradigm…


If you’re overwhelmed, you take the time to drop into your body and honour what you’re feeling. You honour the discomfort, the dark (rage, anger, despair, guilt or whatever it may be) and you feel it fully. The emotion unravels and you restore back to flow. You feel lighter and more able to hear your intuition and guidance. You take action from this place. 


The outcome: You work with your body and build trust that it’s safe to feel. You find inspired action to do something that moves towards not just your personal and professional goals but the collective, too. 

Curious to know how you can begin to find your anchor in the body?


You can access the free Body Anchor audio practice I created to do just this! Simply click here.


ultimate key to figuring out your purpose and path

During this 15 minute audio I’ll guide you into your body and find an anchor from within that will support you no matter what situations, challenges and obstacles you are facing. 


This easy to use practice will support you to begin to cultivate a sense of safety in your body.

Credit to my teacher Jenna Ward who taught me about embodiment and how to access the body’s wisdom. Her work has informed this process that I created. For those of you who are interested in working with this modality in your own career, you can check out Jenna’s Feminine Embodiment Coaching Certification over HERE. Note: This is an affiliate link.


Action Step: Find a practice to support you and find your anchor. Whether it be the body anchor audio or something else.


Part 2: Sustain Your Energy


As I mentioned earlier, we’re in a process of dismantling and rebuilding. If we’re being honest, we’re in it for the long haul.


The old ways of overworking, hustling and grinding just aren’t going to work. And truth be told they’re simply perpetuating a dangerous standard…..


In a stressed-out-always-on culture, most of us can find it normal to hang out in our sympathetic nervous system. 


This is activated when we’re in situations that trigger the fight-flight-freeze response i.e. when we’re alert and perceiving a possible threat or danger. 


If we spend much of our time here without taking the time to restore it can take its toll. Hello stress (and the accompanying effects on the body: insomnia, chest pains, headaches, low energy, upset stomach etc).


Note: BIPOC folx encounter a greater number of situations that trigger the fight-flight-freeze response compared to whilte folx. It’s important to acknowledge that these microaggressions cause strain on the body and to acknowledge the privilege white and white-passing folx have in this regard.


To navigate these times, I believe it’s imperative to look after ourselves and sustain our energy…..


I want to share some fabulous quotes from @thenapministry to bring home this point. Please follow them on Instagram. 


Tricia Hersey, Founder of The Nap Ministry shares so many incredible truthbombs. 


Some of my recent favourites include:


“You are not a machine, stop grinding.”


“Rest is a form of resistance because it disrupts and pushes back against capitalism and white supremacy.”


“How can we access pleasure and joy and liberation if we’re too tired to experience it?”


“Rest then rise.”


Siobhan Barnes Soulful Executive Coaching Sustain Energy

If we’re to sustainably create change and build a new way of being, then rest and restoration is imperative.


Resting and restoring allow us to switch on the parasympathetic nervous system. This system is responsible for the body’s rest and digest response. It’s often stimulated when the body is relaxed or feeding i.e. when the body feels safe. 


The more you encourage parasympathetic activation the more you train your nervous system to change its baseline feeling of safety. From a place of safety, you don’t have to waste your energy keeping up your defenses…..and you free up energy for other things.


This is a marathon, not a sprint. 


Are you ready to try a different way of approaching your schedule and how you show up to your life and work?


Please join me in saying YES.


Action Step: Schedule in breaks, down time, and restoration periods. 



Part 3: Keeping Up The Momentum


You’ve found your anchor (part 1), you’re going to rethink how you schedule your time and consciously relax your body (part 2). Now it’s about keeping the momentum.


One of the best ways to do this is to be in community. 


The times of going lone wolf, figuring things out on your own and having doing ALL the things are long gone. 




Here are 3 reasons:


#1: You can’t see your blind spots on your own.


#2: We learn the most when we relate to others, hear others perspectives and share our own. Side note: There are nuances in showing up in certain spaces so please discern how you relating, asking questions and being inclusive to everyone in the group, making it a safe space for all to be heard.


#3: It’s simply more joyful and pleasurable to be in community. You don’t have to suffer alone. We are hardwired for community and connection.


Discern what you’re looking for support around. 


Is it around your career?

Is it around your anti-racism and social justice work? 

Is it around conscious parenting? 


Get clear on what you need support in and search for groups/communities/friends who are interested in the same thing.


When you’re anchored in your body and look for the spaces and communities that are aligned, you’ll find the group of people that you feel safe to explore with.


If you’re looking for a community to unpack how you can live love and lead in ways that are soul aligned, liberatory and on purpose, come and check out the Soul Aligned Professional Women Facebook Group that I facilitate. It’s free and I would love to have you join.


Graphic Image For The Soul Aligned Professional Women Facebook Group


I created the group for you to BE and get REAL with what’s working and what’s not, so that you can align back to your path, your purpose, the work you came here to do. 


I’ve committed to creating this space for working women, for mothers, for seekers, for compassionate achievers. For A-types who want to serve the world. For when you’re ready to heed the call and be the REAL you. And for when you desire to live, love and lead in a way that’s soul-aligned, sustainable and liberating.


Action Step: Look for a community that can support you in whichever area you are desiring to focus on right now.



That’s a wrap!


Thank you so much for tuning in 🙂 


In this week’s blog we’ve covered how to sustain your energy and momentum to show up during these times. Specifically we covered:


Part 1: Finding Your Anchor

Part 2: Sustain Your Energy

Part 3: Keeping The Momentum


Before you go, I’d love to hear from you:


Q: What’s your biggest takeaway from today’s blog post?

Q: How do you feel about honouring your body’s needs for rest and restoration?

Q: What challenges do you face around being in community / receiving support?


Leave a comment for me below. I read every response 🙂


With love,




P.S. If you want to go deeper on this, we’ll be continuing the conversation over in the Soul Aligned Professional Women Facebook Group. Inside the group you’ll also be able to catch the replay of the last training I mentioned earlier (“How to find your anchor and decide your role in global change.”). 


I’ll be going live on this on Thursday 18th June to dive deeper on this topic and answer your Q’s.   If you haven’t already joined the group, make sure you come and do that over HERE. You can also catch the replay if you’re tuning into this blog post after the fact.

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