Article - How to beat burnout - Kathleen Wills’ new book

How to beat burnout - Kathleen Wills’ new book

Amid increasingly busy, stressful lives – with an expectation we’ll always be connected and available - Kathleen Wills’ new book seems a timely guide for many kiwis.

Kathleen is an Auckland integrative medicine practitioner, combining conventional and evidence-based natural medicine. After several years of consulting with patients, many of whom feel tired, run down or unwell but can’t find the cause, she’s released the book as part of her mission to beat burnout using a whole person approach rather than just treating symptoms.

In a recent interview, Kathleen said nine in 10 people who come through her practice have some form of burnout, with symptoms like insomnia, poor memory and headaches, digestive problems and anxiety.

Beat Burnout: Dr Kathleen’s Holistic Guide to Happiness is really practical and, recognising that people are time poor, it has an introductory self check quiz to help readers find out what’s relevant for them and which chapter they should reference to help them manage anything they’ve identified. That could be nutrition and physical health when travelling, ways to naturally boost mood and energy, dealing with hormonal decline, or speeding up a sluggish thyroid.


The book’s also dotted with case studies, and has inspirational quotes and visuals that make a nice complement to the practical advice and resources. And it sets out to help people shift their mindset and learn to prioritise, ensure they take time for themselves and focus on good health, and recognise how big a part good health plays in their journey to be their best.

“As busy people we tend to have tunnel vision in a way,” the book says. “We become focused on the most pressing issues, on the latest goals that we’ve set, or ensuring that everyting comes together neatly in our professional and personal lives. Nowhere within that do we ever make the time to properly take care of ourselves. So guess what the end result is with all of that?

“It’s a reality that too many busy people have health problems or compromised immune systems. If you don’t take care of yourself in the here and now, that will have negative impacts on your short term health as you get sick more often. In the long term, you may suffer from more tangible and even life threatening health problems.”

Dr Bernard Willis, MD, University of Leeds, United Kingdom and former Royal Air Force Doctor, says burnout can be a complex condition impacting on sleep, nutrition, hormones and environmental toxins.

“Dr Kathleen Wills has written a book that will help every one of us trying to live and stay healthy in the stressful and toxic world of the 21st century,” he says.

Beat Burnout is available at

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Comments | 5

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    That sounds like great advice Anna, thank you!
    By Melanie Rands on Tue June 16, 2015
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    In my experience, there's not a one-size-fits-all solution. What kind of burnout are we talking about? I know meditation helps many from mental burnout, but exercise or nap have always worked best for me. For my partner, physical and mental burnout have one solution - a nice cozy warm bath.
    I recommend getting your hands on a fresh new notebook and drawing at least three columns on each page - one for the stressor (e.g. hours of helping emotionally distressed clients); another for what you did to heal your burnout (e.g. danced 30 minutes to cheerful music); and a third for relief on a scale of 0-10, with 0 being none and 10 - nirvana or paradise.

    Much love &
    Have a wonderful life!
    By Anna on Sun May 31, 2015
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    Top Tip for beating stress. Have a protein breakfast every morning and eat something green with every meal: e.g. scrambled eggs with mushrooms, tomatoes and spinach with some salmon for added protein. This will help you stop feeling hungry all the time and craving sugar. You will lose weight and start to feel fabulous. It works. I do it!I would never go back to eating cereal for breakfast every again. I have been doing this for 11 years and it is the best thing I ever did.
    By Julie Baker on Sat May 23, 2015
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    I have suffered burnout for a few years now and cannot get any answers from my GP so am now trying a naturopath. I have just listened to your interview with Mark Sainsbury about your book and it sounds very interesting.
    By Rose Stratford on Fri May 22, 2015
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    Job stress is the number one cause of burnout. Get out of that toxic job that is poisoning your mind. Find and follow your passion and your job will never be hard work ever again. I know. It happened to me.
    By Peter Lehrke on Tue May 19, 2015

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