On Friday, May 5th, 2023, I will be speaking at the Data Platform WIT/DEI Mental Health and Wellness Day. This is a free, virtual, all-day event for anyone working in technology. Topics range from dealing with stress, burnout, depression or chronic pain, to working in tech as a queer or neurodiverse person.
I will be presenting a session called Stressed, Depressed, or Burned Out? The Warning Signs You Shouldn’t Ignore. This is a deeply personal session based on my own experiences from the past decade, and it’s one of the few sessions I can’t and don’t want to rehearse. It won’t be an hour of incoherent rambling (don’t worry! 😉) but it will be fairly raw and unfiltered.
You can find the schedule and full agenda on the Data Platform Women in Tech website.
Stressed, Depressed, or Burned Out? The Warning Signs You Shouldn’t Ignore
We all experience stress in our lives. When the stress is time-limited and manageable, it can be positive and productive. This kind of stress can help you get things done and lead to personal growth. However, when the stress stretches out over longer periods of time and we are unable to manage it, it can be negative and debilitating. This kind of stress can affect your mental health as well as your physical health, and increase the risk of depression and burnout.
The tricky part is that both depression and burnout can hit you hard without the warning signs you might recognize from stress. Where stress barges through your door and yells “hey, it’s me!”, depression and burnout can silently sneak in and gradually make adjustments until one day you turn around and see them smiling while realizing that you no longer recognize your house. I know, because I’ve dealt with both. And when I thought I had kicked them out, they both came back for new visits.
I don’t have the Answers™️ or Solutions™️ to how to keep them away forever. But in hindsight, there were plenty of warning signs I missed, ignored, or was oblivious to at the time. In this deeply personal session, I will share my story of dealing with both depression and burnout. What were the warning signs? Why did I miss them? Could I have done something differently? And most importantly, what can I - and you - do to help ourselves or our loved ones if we notice that something is not quite right?
About the Author
Cathrine Wilhelmsen is a Microsoft Data Platform MVP, BimlHero Certified Expert, international speaker, author, blogger, organizer, and chronic volunteer. She loves data and coding, as well as teaching and sharing knowledge - oh, and sci-fi, coffee, chocolate, and cats 🤓