Superwoman Must Die! Why Women are Still Exhausted

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A recent study found that women are so exhausted when they get home from work, that all they want to do is fall asleep on the couch! Trying to juggle work and family responsibilities is taking its toll. Time management has been touted as the answer – but is it?

When asked at a recent conference what one skill would help them to better balance work and life responsibilities, over 180 women identified ‘time management’. However, the key note presenter Dr Jackie Holt outlined why time management strategies often added to their exhaustion rather than alleviate it.

In her research involving professionals from the medical and education field, Dr Holt found that if women did not have the basic belief that their personal time was important then any time that they saved from time management strategies was most likely spent doing more work. This resulted in them working more hours rather than less and compounded the exhaustion they were already experiencing.

According to Dr Holt, “Time management is not really the answer; it’s what we decide is important that will determine how our time is spent. If we do not believe that we ‘deserve’ to spend time on ourselves, then we won’t. Unfortunately, it is often a crisis of some kind; health concerns, relationship problems or business disasters that force us to rethink our priorities.”

While there are no prescriptive formulas for work/life balance, there is a proven, practical process that can assist women to reclaim their time and energy. The RIPPLES Self Management Process was evaluated as part of a PhD looking at decreasing psychological distress amongst doctors. By following the step by step process, women can fight off the Superwoman myth and learn how to spend guilt free time on themselves.

For a free article on the RIPPLES Self Management Process visit A range of other work life balance resources are also available.


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Jackie Holt
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