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Practice Justice

What I’m Reading Now: Burnout

A helpful book for leaders
by Lee Ann Pomrenke | September 3, 2021

The book Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle by Emily and Amelia Nagoski is specifically about the layers of labor women take on, from societal norms to relationship patterns to emotional labor in the workplace. But everybody should read this book. Here’s why.

We all need to understand the science of how our bodies react to stress, and how to complete the stress cycle, rather than it continuing to build up within us until we are sick. As the book’s website says: “Wellness is not a state of mind, but a state of action.” Those who do not identify as women also need to understand from the other side how their actions impact women, especially women in leadership. 

Here’s a sample of the empathetic and approachable—yet science-based—solid advice: 

“Social connections fuel your body just as eating nutritious foods and taking deep breaths do. If Human Giver Syndrome is a virus, the Bubble of Love is the environment that fuels your immune response.” (page 141)

If you find yourself wondering what either of those capitalized phrases mean, this book is for you. 

Furthermore, joy is a theme within most of the topics surrounding Sustainability in Ministry and opposing burnout. The ability to experience joy is an end goal of this book. The co-authors, who are sisters, also have a podcast for those who prefer to listen. 


About the Author

Lee Ann Pomrenke

Lee Ann M. Pomrenke is an ELCA pastor and digital content editor for The Faith+Leader. Rev. Pomrenke is the author of Embodied: Clergy Women and the Solidarity of a Mothering God (Church Publishing, Inc, 2020). She also blogs at leeannpomrenke.com.

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