Rebel Podcast: Life and Work on Your Terms

Empathy Without Burnout in HR with Dimple Dhabalia

May 29, 2024 Kyle Roed, The HR Guy Season 5 Episode 208
Empathy Without Burnout in HR with Dimple Dhabalia
Rebel Podcast: Life and Work on Your Terms
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Rebel Podcast: Life and Work on Your Terms
Empathy Without Burnout in HR with Dimple Dhabalia
May 29, 2024 Season 5 Episode 208
Kyle Roed, The HR Guy

Imagine walking a tightrope between service to others and preserving your own well-being, a path so many in high-impact roles know all too well. Dimple Dabalia joins us to share her transformative journey from government service on asylum and refugee issues to launching Roots in the Clouds, offering a stark look into the realities of occupational traumas like vicarious trauma and burnout. Through Dimple's lens, we navigate the complex interplay of individual struggles and systemic organizational challenges that demand urgent attention and change.

It's time to tear down the old narrative that service must always come before self. As we unravel the threads of organizational trauma with Dimple, we uncover the four pillars integral to fostering a humane work culture: mental health prioritization, human-centered practices, restorative rest, and nurturing a shared mission. We confront the uncomfortable truths within our workplaces, including the role HR professionals have played in upholding detrimental norms, and we propose actionable strategies to bring about healing and a renewed sense of community and purpose within the workforce.

In our final moments together, we reflect on the delicate dance of empathy and boundaries in leadership. We stress the significance of creating a space that allows connection without emotional fatigue, and we celebrate the power of clear boundaries and self-care in safeguarding our mental health. As we bid farewell, we extend a heartfelt note of gratitude to Dimple for her invaluable insights and remind our Rebel HR community to carry forward these conversations with courage and compassion, reshaping the future of work-life balance.

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Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work. Please connect to continue the conversation!

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http://www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Imagine walking a tightrope between service to others and preserving your own well-being, a path so many in high-impact roles know all too well. Dimple Dabalia joins us to share her transformative journey from government service on asylum and refugee issues to launching Roots in the Clouds, offering a stark look into the realities of occupational traumas like vicarious trauma and burnout. Through Dimple's lens, we navigate the complex interplay of individual struggles and systemic organizational challenges that demand urgent attention and change.

It's time to tear down the old narrative that service must always come before self. As we unravel the threads of organizational trauma with Dimple, we uncover the four pillars integral to fostering a humane work culture: mental health prioritization, human-centered practices, restorative rest, and nurturing a shared mission. We confront the uncomfortable truths within our workplaces, including the role HR professionals have played in upholding detrimental norms, and we propose actionable strategies to bring about healing and a renewed sense of community and purpose within the workforce.

In our final moments together, we reflect on the delicate dance of empathy and boundaries in leadership. We stress the significance of creating a space that allows connection without emotional fatigue, and we celebrate the power of clear boundaries and self-care in safeguarding our mental health. As we bid farewell, we extend a heartfelt note of gratitude to Dimple for her invaluable insights and remind our Rebel HR community to carry forward these conversations with courage and compassion, reshaping the future of work-life balance.

Support the Show.

Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work. Please connect to continue the conversation!

https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
http://www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

Speaker 2:

This is the Rebel HR podcast, the podcast about all things innovation in the people's space. I'm Kyle Rode. Let's start the show. Welcome back Rebel community, very excited for the conversation. Today With us we have Dimple Dabalia. She is a writer, podcaster, founder of an organization called Roots in the Clouds and author of the new book available now Tell Me my Story, challenging the Narrative of Service Before Self. Welcome to the podcast, dimple.

Speaker 1:

Thank you so much for having me.

Speaker 2:

Well, thank you so much for joining us and for spending a few minutes here. So far, so good. We're recording this right in the middle of the solar eclipse and so far it is not Armageddon, so we're going to assume that that's a great omen for the rest of this podcast.

Speaker 1:

I was going to say we still have some time left.

Speaker 2:

There is still some time left, so we'll see. So if there is some weird disruption in the middle of this, I wish all the best to everybody and their families through this human event and obviously for many people it's just like mid-May. They're like what in the world are they talking about? So good for all of us for still being here. Well, thank you so much again for joining and I'm really excited to dig into this topic today and into the book a little bit. I think this is really going to align well with what we're all about here in the rebel community. So first question that I have for you what motivated you to write the book? Tell Me my Story, challenging the Narrative of Service Before Self Tell.

Speaker 1:

Me my Story, challenging the Narrative of Service Before Sell. Yeah well, thank you. So I spent almost 20 years working in the government on asylum and refugee issues and about 12 of those years were spent what we call in the field actually interviewing asylum seekers and refugees for resettlement in the US, and it was an incredible job. But as a result, I encountered certain what I call occupational traumas along the way, so things like vicarious trauma, moral injury, compassion, fatigue and ultimately, burnout as well, and what I realized. So basically, six years into my job, I was on assignment in Zambia and up until then I had always really taken pride in being able to create what I called a wall of professionalism so I could sit with an applicant, take in their whole story and not get emotional about it. But six years in, I am in Zambia, we're interviewing it was one of the worst trips I'd ever been on and I'd been on a lot at this point but we were interviewing the last of the 94 Rwandan genocide survivors. We were interviewing the Congolese which I don't know if you know anything about the war in Congo, but it's some of the worst atrocities you've ever heard of and then what we call protracted Burundians. So these are people from Burundi who were born in refugee camps and then subsequently had their camps attacked, and so they were kind of refugees twice over. So really, really difficult stories. A lot of stories that revolved around rape as a tool of war, and it was the first time in my career that I found myself unable to regulate my emotions, and so, as the applicants are sharing these stories with me, I am crying. And we were working really long hours. When we'd go back to the hotel, most of us would head straight for the bar. I wasn't sleeping, or if I did sleep, I was having these nightmares where I was reliving the trauma that I had heard about earlier in the day, and so I knew something wasn't right. That I had heard about earlier in the day, and so I knew something wasn't right.

Speaker 1:

And I was very fortunate because when I started my career out of law school, I actually worked at the attorney general's office in Denver, and my boss there recognized the work that we were doing at the time was around child abuse and neglect issues, and he recognized that this kind of work it impacts us as human beings, and so we used to go through this vicarious trauma training every year, and I remember, as a new kind of cocky attorney, I was, like, have been a red flag, but I had you know it planted a seed for me, and that seed kind of came to fruition a full decade later on this trip. And what I realized very quickly, though, is that my organization really wasn't resourced to support me, and there was so much shame and stigma because nobody was talking about what they were experiencing, so for me, it felt like I was the only one going through this, and so I kept it to myself. I tried to figure out how I could help myself without telling anybody what was going on, and after a little while, I started thinking about it and I realized, you know, I can't be the only person experiencing this. There has to be others who are also going through what I'm going through. And so I was very fortunate because, when I rotated back from overseas, I ended up in a position where I had a bit of a platform, and so I started advocating from within my organization that we need to be addressing these occupational challenges and traumas that are very real to this kind of service work, and so I kind of pivoted within my organization and started focusing on workforce mental health, well-being, things like that.

Speaker 1:

But about five years into that, after developing a whole leadership program that was based in mindfulness and positive psychology and creating all these programs that were really supporting our workforce, I had, you know, the unfortunate kind of face-to-face reality that there was still a pretty good chunk of our leadership that didn't support the work that we were doing on my little team.

Speaker 1:

So that really got me to realize if this was important to me. I really think that it takes a certain person to be in service this way and we're losing people because the organizations aren't looking out for these kinds of issues in their staff. And so at that point, in 2021, I left my job and founded Roots in the Clouds, which is a boutique consulting firm where we're specializing in using the power of story to heal organizational trauma and moral injury, and so it's really challenging these pervasive beliefs that sacrificing personal well-being is inherent to serving others, and so really we want to kind of change the culture of organizations and move them from being really solely metrics-driven to more human-centered and focusing on healing that organizational trauma and prioritizing a holistic, human-centered duty of care that you know hopefully will become the norm rather than the exception.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely thank you for for for doing that work.

Speaker 2:

That I think many of us is, you know, is don't even have the context for what that's like to listen to somebody that's been through that like that, just extreme.

Speaker 2:

You know trauma, right, and you know, and I think many of us in the, you know, in the world of, like you know, corporate, corporate workplaces, um, don't really have an appreciation for that, um, but but you know, I think what's what's interesting is that there are some, some corollaries to what you're talking about and I I like the term that you use this, this wall of professionalism, and so often it at work we're supposed to do that, right, we're supposed to put put on this facade or flip this switch and become this professional automatron. And I had a similar experience when I was much younger in my career where I would flip a switch and literally become professional Kyle and then I'd be HR Kyle and then I'd flip the switch off and I'd be like actual Kyle and I got to a point where I couldn't do that in good conscience and really look myself in the mirror at the end of the workday. And I think there's many of us that struggle with that.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I was just going to say I. I think there are many of us who struggle with that because it's not, you know, I. I think that this is honestly. I talk about this as the legacy of the industrial revolution because, you know, the industrial revolution was all about creating efficiency and, uh, the problem and you know, the Industrial Revolution was all about creating efficiency and it worked in these kinds of factory settings.

Speaker 1:

But when you think about the professions to which this model was applied, it was applied across the board machines. We are human beings with emotions and lives outside of work, and so this idea that we can bifurcate ourselves and I always say this when I work with leaders that we don't leave a piece of ourselves at the door when we come into work each day, no matter how much we think we can compartmentalize, we are carrying all of that with us, and so it does impact how we show up and our ability to focus and connect with other people around us, which is the whole reason that I think that this idea of creating human-centered workplaces is so important.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely yeah, and I think it's been interesting that you know, as we continue to watch all of these metrics of you know mental health concerns you, concerns being ever-present in the workplace and burnout being at all-time high and engagement scores going down and down and down consistently year over year, as an example that people are starting to wake up that, hey, maybe this model's not working as well as we all like to pretend that it was for everybody, or maybe, more accurately, it's not working for everybody, right, because I think it is working for some.

Speaker 2:

But certainly my experience and my perspective would be that our duty of care for employees expands well beyond just workplace safety, but it also expands into what we're being asked to support now, which is some of these mental health resources and prevention of burnout and actually making it a great place to work. So I'm curious we throw around the word duty of care quite a bit, certainly in the context of like insurance, right, but I would argue that it goes much deeper than that. So how do you define our duty of care as an employer for our employees?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's such a great question. So duty of care, it actually is a term that originated in tort law and, like you said, it has historically focused on the physical health and safety, or safety and security, not even health necessarily, but the safety and security of staff. What's interesting is I, in the book I talk about, I talk about this and I think that I've always thought of that as a given that it's at a baseline. Most organizations provide that, and lately I have to say, by what I'm watching in the news, that that's actually not even the case.

Speaker 1:

But, um, but when I'm thinking about duty of care, I'm really looking at this as, uh, you know this idea that we have kind of these four pillars and so when we were looking at the whole human being, and so any duty of care, I really believe needs to be grounded in social connection and empathy and it has to address the mental, physical, emotional, spiritual and relational health and well-being of the person, because these are all the components that create a flourishing human being.

Speaker 1:

And so if we want people to show up at work and flourish and do well at their job, we need to help them be healthy in all these areas, and I don't want to create the impression that I'm saying you know I say this all the time that I'm not saying that. You know we're talking about therapy at work or anything like that, necessarily, but there's space when, especially when we talk about the idea of creating psychological safety and building trust, there's space to create that form of connection and empathy so people can show up more closely as the whole version of themselves, rather than having to put on that mask, um, or that armor that we hear about so often and so um.

Speaker 2:

So this is really kind of what the, the duty of care, is about no-transcript spiritual needs in some way shape or form, or we don't have those relationships at work. You know that that that it's just not, it's just doesn't feel right, right like, like, like there's something off and you can't really like be fully present because you really can't be fully yourself, and I, I think that so much. I think that that that can cause so many challenges within an organization and has caused much of the much of the issues that that we've already mentioned here today. So as, as we look at that you, you know, I think one of the challenges from my standpoint is kind of figuring out, okay, like it's easy to diagnose, like something's off, but now how do I, you know, how do I go about kind of, you know, triaging this, how do I put a solution in place or start to build a system that allows for some of these four pillars to actually be in place for my team?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's a great question. So I want to name the four pillars. So the first is to normalize and address occupational mental health challenges and traumas. The second is to evolve from metrics-driven cultures into human-centered ones. The third is to support rest and recovery. And the fourth is to foster shared purpose and commitment.

Speaker 1:

And so I think the biggest kind of challenge to all of this is so many you know, I keep using this term organizational trauma, and so most of us have heard of individuals being traumatized. Right, we get, we experience trauma, we get wounded, and the same way, our organizations can experience the same thing through our systems. And it kind of makes sense because, if you think about it, the systems that we operate within are created by individuals, and individuals, again, are bringing you know whatever they're like, the lens through which they have experienced the world, into creating these systems. And so I often describe it as the water that we're swimming in. And so, if people aren't familiar, there's this anecdote of two fishes swimming along. Another fish swims by and says, oh hey, boys, how's the water today? And the two fish just kind of keep swimming along and one looks at the other and says what the heck is water? Right, and so it's this idea that we are so immersed in these systems that are toxic and unhealthy but have become the norm that we almost don't notice it anymore or we allow for it. And so we're, and collectively, especially in mission-driven organizations, we're so focused on addressing the overwhelming needs of the mission that we just stop noticing when things aren't right within the organization itself. And over time, this creates this cumulative impact of not addressing the needs of the organization and, specifically, the people in the organization, and so there's a lot of factors that contribute to that.

Speaker 1:

So things like lack of transparency and communication and decision-making top-down issues that don't consider workforce health and well-being perceptions or actual racial, social or other inequities and unfairness, outdated policies and procedures, um, and then you know this lack of acknowledgement of a lot of these occupational traumas that I was talking about, and so this is a process, and you know, I think part of this is when we are in this place, where we need to create these new policies.

Speaker 1:

We need to have help.

Speaker 1:

We need other people who aren't immersed in our culture to come in and help us see what the issue is, and so part of this, I think, is really having honest discussions between staff and management, and so you know, when I first started my firm, I was hired by a government agency that has a historically terrible reputation for racial inequities, not just within the organization but with the clients that they serve within the organization, but with the clients that they serve, and one of the issues I had was there was no acknowledgement of this past history.

Speaker 1:

They just wanted to jump into creating these DEI programs, and I kept saying that the problem is that without acknowledging the past and this isn't about blame, this isn't about anything like that, but it's acknowledging that sometimes we inherit these systems too right, but if we don't acknowledge them, there's not that credibility and so there's not that trust, there's not that psychological safety yet, and so all of this has to be built to get to that point of addressing these root issues. And that's really what it comes down to is we have to address root issues and heal root issues in order to then rebuild a culture that is actually going to create the space of connection and belonging for everybody.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. Yeah, I think it's. You know it's probably the first time that I've that. I've really kind of reflected on that, on the organizational trauma piece, and I think it's.

Speaker 2:

You know, it's probably pretty uncomfortable, especially for somebody in human resources that's listening to this, to hear, like because then there's some like implication that here, like because then there's some like implication that, oh, that's partially my fault, right Like I, like I didn't address that policy that I knew was just kind of archaic and silly and fairly inequitable, but it's been around for 40 years so we'll just leave it alone, cause we know it's going to be a headache. Right Like, like. But but there's so much of that and and so much of that. I think, like I love the analogy where it's like a fish swimming in water doesn't even realize it's in water, right, like, I think that's really really powerful at our organizations and we actually start to acknowledge what this trauma is doing to our teams. What kind of a cultural shift do we need to make to essentially just say enough, and what have you seen actually work for an organization that really needs to address some of these root issues in order to get on a path of healing.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's a great question. You know it's different for each organization, right? Because it starts with what are your root issues? So part of you know, like I think there's some great ways to create surveys and other things to hear from your staff to get a sense of what's the perception. What do people feel are issues right now? Uh, like the hr space.

Speaker 1:

Again, it's really it's it's easy to fall into that feeling of people are going to blame me, um, but we have to look past that. And you know, I think that it's worse when you are aware that that something is wrong and you choose not to do something about it. So, once that awareness is formed, I think that's more important. And so part of this is figuring out the current state of the organization, so it's not what the leader thinks it is, but what it actually is. And so organizations need to really look at the facts and understand staff experiences and their perceptions before creating a plan. And so it's helpful, again, to bring in someone who specializes in this type of work to help the organization take the right approach. And then, you know, like I talked about, with acknowledging organizational history and this can be really hard because organizational amnesia is so common and runs very deep, especially when it comes to racial and social inequities, biases, subtle acts of exclusion or what are also known as microaggressions. It's not fun to talk about these things, but we have to, and the more that we can acknowledge the mistakes and choices from the past and the corresponding impact, that's like a huge step towards healing some of these divides, right and these forms of trauma, and building a foundation so that we can create more diverse and equitable and inclusive environments. Moving forward and then, you know, making sure that we're aligned with our organizational values.

Speaker 1:

A lot of times, I mean, there's a lot of organizations out there that tout this idea of core values and right or other forms of trauma happening when our organizational ethos and our organizational values are one thing, but I'm being asked to do something that completely goes against that and that's a problem. And then fostering kind of organizational spirit, right. So we want to nurture and spirit the spirit and of the organization and create this sense super emotional thing. Empathy is the ability to be present to another person in this moment, and so it's not about doing anything extraordinary, but it's about being with your people, and this is easier said than done, and I recognize that because we operate in these environments that are working so quickly, things are changing constantly. Everyone is overworked. There's, you know, it feels like there's not even a time to, like, you know, go sit and have lunch, or I remember there were times where I couldn't even get to the bathroom, and, you know, like it was just um so frustrating. And so I understand. But, but this is part of what we have to change, right, we operate in this culture of busyness and we tie um self-worth to productivity and profit, and that's what needs to change. Is that that that has nothing to do with my self-worth, you know? And so we need to start shifting these kind of bigger picture things and addressing these root issues by determining what they are, in order to start making those shifts, which is not easy.

Speaker 1:

And then the other piece of this is, you know, this idea of shifting from metrics-driven to human-centered. And again, I don't want anyone to think that I don't understand the value of metrics. I think metrics are incredibly important, right, metrics help us determine if we're meeting our goals. The place where metrics start to become a problem is when they are the only driver of our policymaking, and so this is where you know human centered cultures factor in how you know workloads and certain decisions are going to impact our staff, and so I think that's where we're going to be, along with metrics. There has to be this human component in each and every policy that's being made, so that that human factor is considered and it's not this afterthought, which I think is what we see a lot in the way that our cultures are set up.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. Yeah, I'm curious. I'm going to ask the community out there. Just send me an email telling me the last time that someone got really, really excited and engaged because you gave them a new key performance indicator measurement. I just want to know because I'm going to challenge that, yeah.

Speaker 2:

But I think this is all just such a powerful concept and I think what's interesting about this approach and I think you and I probably agree on almost everything related to this but the reality is it is so simple of a concept for us to think about these things. Right, like it's simple to think well, yes, I need to be present with my team, that's being a good leader, or no, metrics are not really going to get people excited and feel like they have a strong sense of belonging with their fellow team members, right? Or? Yeah, when people are too busy to even use the restroom, it's probably not a great place to work. But the reality is that we just we lose sight of this stuff and the day-to-day like grind just kind of takes our eye off the ball on this, and it really is easy to. Before we know it, we're literally swimming and we don't even realize we're swimming in this toxicity.

Speaker 1:

Exactly, and that's why I always say it's simple, but it's not easy.

Speaker 2:

Correct so much of yeah, so yeah, my entire job. It's like we learned much of this stuff in kindergarten, but that doesn't mean that anybody does it well.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. That's always a thing right, like at what point do we lose that? You know all those basic things that we learned as children.

Speaker 2:

The same time that we had, we decided we had to do standardized tests instead of actually what kids do, like you know, recess, yeah, sure, but I think you know this is kind of this might be a little bit tangential, but I think you mentioned this earlier. You know, so much of this comes from like organization or industrial revolution rather, where organizations like decided, hey, if we can measure it, now we can, we can like incentivize it, we can make people do it differently and we can get better. And and I think that's helped us in a lot of aspects of society at large and I think you know, certainly in you know, productivity focused roles. I think it can be extremely helpful, but you know, human beings are much more complex than that. And like, just because I can efficiently sit on like 12 Zoom calls back to back in a day and have, but are you really efficient?

Speaker 2:

No, I don't. After like three of these, I'm like my brain is mush and I'm like I'm like like getting you know, half half attention and you know, just just try not to try not to say anything stupid and it's like it's just, it's not effective. There's better ways to do it, right.

Speaker 1:

Well, and you know so, I teach a. I teach a course called MPEEK, so it's mindful performance enhancement, awareness and knowledge. And one of the things we talk about in there that most people don't realize is that 47% of the time, our minds are wandering, and that's on a good day. So that means that you know. So this idea of this eight hour workday where we expect people to be seated at their desk and it's not happening, it's not happening. Be seated at their desk and it's not happening, it's not happening, it's just not going to happen. And so, yeah, so I think that that's really, you know, it's interesting and it feels counterintuitive, but the more that organizations start to put people at the center of their policymaking, the more that they actually start meeting benchmarks and are able to better fulfill operational needs. Right, because we are creating the space for our humans to show up as humans and do the work, and we can still meet the needs of the organization, but we're doing it in a different way.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. Yeah, I think that's a really important call. 47% of the time Okay, that makes me feel a little bit better. I promise I have not been mind-wandering 47% of the time here, I swear.

Speaker 2:

I want to touch on something here before the end of our time together here and you mentioned this early on and that's vicarious trauma. And I think one of the things that's really kind of a risk, at least in the human resources occupation, is this risk of you use the term vicarious trauma of a profession where you're primarily, you're primarily trying to help people through their problems, whether those are personal or work related, and it's really easy to just absorb all of that and just and just kind of kind of take that on, because I think, for the most part, most of us are helpers, we're trying to be helpful, right, and we want we want to do something to help people with their challenges. So what advice do you have for us who might be in that profession, or even just in a general leadership profession that is struggling with this fatigue and risk of burnout because of these things?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so that's a great question. You know, there's a couple of things. First of all, these occupational traumas, occupational challenges, they are a part. I mean, especially after COVID, we see them popping up even more in just regular corporate settings, but especially in these kinds of what I call humanitarian professions, so anyone that's working to alleviate pain and suffering in the world. So we're talking about medical professionals, we're talking about, you know, aid workers or you know, first responders. All these things are even more likely to happen because of the nature of the work, and so that's kind of one thing to think about.

Speaker 1:

I think that, in terms of taking in other people's trauma so this is part of again, when I work with leaders there's there's often this feeling like I don't want to ask people about their grief, I don't want to ask people how they're really doing, because I don't have the capacity to take that in or I don't know how to deal with when they say something. And again, this is where empathy can be really, really helpful, right? So, again, empathy is not doing anything extraordinary, it's not trying to fix anything for anybody, but it's that presence. And one thing that I've learned through all my travels is that, at the end of the day, as human beings, we just crave to be seen and valued and heard, right, and so if we create that space number one to do that, that in itself is a really big step. And then the other piece of this is boundaries, right? So boundaries are not selfish. I talk about them, that they're gifts of clarity, and the problem is that most of us were not taught the benefits of boundary setting as children, and so now trying to honor our limits through boundary setting can feel rude, it can feel aggressive, it can feel selfish, but boundaries aren't any of these things. They're gifts of clarity. They help us create accountability over our time and energy, and so they allow us to feel safe and respected, both physically and emotionally, and they're really at the heart of self-care, which is what protects us from things like burnout and exhaustion and illness and allows us to actually thrive in our life and our work. And it's not again, it's simple but not easy, right, and so this is something where we have to practice, and unfortunately, especially for women, I think that boundary setting often comes with a lot of guilt, and so part of this is learning to reframe our guilt. It's learning to practice saying no, and I say, boundary setting is a practice, and it's a practice because we have to keep practicing it, but it's like a muscle that can be developed. So, just like we go to the gym and lift weights to create, you know, the muscles in our body, the more that we practice these things, the easier it becomes to default to them when we need to.

Speaker 1:

And then the other piece of this is at the heart of all of this. So you know, like I was talking about the leadership program that I created in my previous organization, it starts with the leader first, in terms of you know, and when I talk about leader, I don't, it doesn't necessarily mean a specific title or anything like that, right, but this idea that everything starts with self-awareness. And so, even though, you know, a lot of leadership programs are so focused on how we're treating other people and all this stuff. It's all important, but we have to start with ourselves. And so we have to create awareness around our thoughts, around our emotions, around how these show up in our body, because our body is sending us signals all the time. And then we pair that awareness with compassion, and a lot of times, especially working with high achievers, which I think most of us are.

Speaker 1:

There's this feeling that compassion is too soft and that compassion is not going to motivate me. Compassion is challenging. If you've ever tried to be compassionate towards yourself, it is one of the hardest things that you can do, because we all have that inner critic, right, that's constantly telling us all the things that we're doing wrong or why we're so terrible or whatever it is. And so compassion you know, we so easily give compassion to others at times where you know we give them that kindness that they need, and so that's one aspect of compassion is turning that kindness towards ourselves. But that's the kind of yin aspect of compassion.

Speaker 1:

The yang aspect of compassion is this kind of tougher, like tough love, right.

Speaker 1:

And so when we're in this space of compassion, it's easy to kind of fall into that soft side of, well, okay, it's okay, don't worry about it.

Speaker 1:

But that tough love side is the one that keeps us coming back to say, well, no, you know, okay, don't worry about it.

Speaker 1:

But that tough love side is the one that keeps us coming back to say, well, no, you know what, we didn't quite hit what we wanted to do, so we're going to try it again, or whatever it is. So compassion is actually a yin and a yang as well, and so when we bring those two things together, we're in a place where we learn to regulate our emotions and our nervous system in real time with greater ease, and that's really you know. So then when we sit down with people, because of the mirror neurons in our brain, it makes it easier because we can regulate ourselves, which then helps to regulate the other person as well. So then we're not taking in a lot of stuff necessarily, but we're learning to create that space where people can show up a lot of stuff necessarily, but we're learning to create that space where people can show up, share what they need to, and we help them kind of get back into a space where they can actually connect and focus and everything else.

Speaker 2:

So Love it. Love it All right. Well, it's been an amazing conversation here. Again, the book. Check it out. Tell Me my Story, challenging the Narrative of Service. It was before self available where books are sold Dimple. Thank you so much for spending some time with us. We're going to shift gears. We're going to go into the rebel flash round. Are you ready? Yep, all right, here we go. Question number one where do we need to rebel?

Speaker 1:

I think just what we've been talking about, so challenging the narrative of service before self. So stop looking at the humans in our workplaces as resources and see their humanity and commit to providing this holistic, human-centered duty of care.

Speaker 2:

And we don't have time to jump into the whole title of human resources. But we'll just leave that. We'll just put that one on the shelf and you can kind of read between the lines on that. Question number two who should we be listening to?

Speaker 1:

Well, going back to this feeling of self-awareness definitely ourselves. So again it starts with creating self-awareness. Self-awareness, definitely ourselves. So again, starts with creating self-awareness. But then I always also say Ted Lasso, all day, every day. I think he is such a great case study in human-centered leadership, and then also in real life, I think, the Surgeon General, Vivek Murthy. I think he's doing some amazing work with loneliness and a framework for addressing mental health in the workplace.

Speaker 2:

Awesome. Yeah, I'm not wearing them today, but I do have the Ted Lasso goldfish socks that I like to wear, just as a reminder of the old Ted. Be curious, not judgmental One of my favorite snippets of any show ever. So, yeah, all right. Final question here how can our listeners connect with you and get their hands on this book?

Speaker 1:

Oh gosh, Okay. So, speaking of Ted Lasso, I have a podcast called what Would Ted Lasso Do and it's lessons on life and leadership through the lens of leadership and positive psychology. So there's that Another podcast called Service Without Sacrifice I'm at Dim Story across all major social media platforms and the book is available at all major online retailers and on my website, which is wwwrootsinthecloudscom. And that's all plural and, for anyone who's interested, I am doing a 50 for 50 challenge this year, trying to get in 50 book events before I turn 50 next January. So if you or anyone you know might be interested, um, there's information on the website for for that and how to reach out.

Speaker 2:

We will have all that information in the show notes. Open up the podcast player. Check it out. Click in. Dimple, thank you so much for spending the last few minutes with us here. And we are still here at the end of the eclipse. Congratulations, we've survived. Thank you so much. Have a great rest of your day, thank you. All right, that does it for the Rebel HR podcast. Big thank you to our guests. Follow us on Facebook at Rebel HR Podcast, twitter at Rebel HR Guy, or see our website at rebelhumanresourcescom no-transcript.

Challenging the Narrative of Service
Addressing Organizational Trauma and Root Issues
Navigating Challenges in Work and Wellness
Empathy, Boundaries, and Self-Care
Rebel HR Podcast Interview With Dimple