Audio player


creating space to breathe with Kim Dechaine

The Small Nonprofit

Government & Organization

Have you ever felt overwhelmed, like giving up? Or maybe just really burnt out? 

You are not alone! Nonprofit employees are always at risk of burnout. Pre-pandemic, our work was already demanding. And now the pandemic has left us even more stressed and with no capacity to deal with any more ups and downs. 

In this episode, Kim Dechaine, Founder of Inner Powered Leaders, will discuss how we can change our mindset, and prevent and overcome burnout at work. 

Myths that Kim wants us to walk away from:

  • Being busy and overwhelmed is normal. We have been told over the years that being busy and getting many things done is a good thing. But these are just the expectations of our society, especially in our sector. In reality, we need to listen to our body, and we need to take a break from work, slow down and take care of ourselves to prevent burning out.
  • We can’t control burnout. In order to find balanced energy, we need to have self-leadership which is learning to control our thoughts, feelings, and actions. We can have more balance and connection when we slow down, practice mindfulness, compassion, and gratitude. 

Kim’s thoughts around Burnout 

  • Mindfulness: Slowing down our minds and being quiet allows us to choose more of our energies. We can choose more creativity and flow. We can listen to what our body is telling us. Mindfulness helps us to focus on one thing at a time and we can train ourselves to be mindful by doing breathing exercises. 
  • Compassion: Stepping into another person’s shoes. It is looking at their situation from their perspective without judgment. We need to practice breathing and quieting our minds first, which allows us to choose how we are going to react, what action we should take, and how we can look at a situation from someone else's perspective. 
  • Practice Gratitude: Kim suggests practicing gratitude in three ways. First, by writing down three things that you are grateful for every day. This doesn’t have to be massive, we can find it with the small things. Second, saying you’re grateful right when the moment happens. Lastly, when you feel like you are in a difficult moment, you can pause for a moment and choose gratitude instead of reacting in a situation. Gratitude helps us to shift our perspective. 

Favorite Quotes from Today’s Episode

“We have been taught this from a very young age that actually being busy and overwhelmed is normal. And it makes us a better person because we're doing more because we are, you know, look at how much work she gets done. Look at how the time, oh, look who spends the longest at work. Right. And it's almost like we applaud those actions and we cannot do that. And honestly, the only way we can change burnout is each of us taking control and deciding we're going to change this. We're going to change the outlook of society and the expectations.”

Resources from this Episode 

HR Intervals by Imagine Canada 

Looking for HR resources for your nonprofits? is a new and free HR toolkit specifically developed for managers, employees and board members who perform HR functions at small to medium-sized nonprofit organizations. Explore today! 

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