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Midday Medicine: Preventing Burnout from Work

Unlearn Lab Podcast

Productivity is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it nurtures a culture of efficiency and thriving. But on the other hand, it pushes us so hard until we feel burnout from work with the constant need to accomplish something. When productivity becomes our priority, it becomes impossible to take a pause and take a moment to relax without guilt. But is the endless grind worth it in the end? It will be a long journey, but it’s possible to break free from this culture and start focusing on yourself.

In this solo episode of Unlearn Lab, Jess introduces the concept of her midday medicine episodes. She discusses the importance of pausing to prevent burnout from work. She shares her personal journey of unlearning, particularly on her brand and business’s sustainability. Jess teaches us that it’s okay to be vulnerable; give yourself grace and grit in moments of self-doubt and uncertainty.

If you want to find out why you should start integrating moments of reflection for yourself into your daily life, this episode is for you!

Listen on Spotify Here

Here are three reasons why you should listen to this episode:

  1. Find the importance of taking a pause.
  2. Address the needs of your most human self.
  3. Discover the key to overcoming the perfectionism pattern and preventing burnout from work.


Episode Highlights

[01:36] Midday Medicine 

  • Jess is currently living in Okinawa, Japan. Most of her family, friends, and clients are in the US.
  • She used to think of the time between noon to 5 pm in Japan as dead zones in productivity.
  • It turned out to be an opportunity to pause and break up her feeling of unproductiveness and burnout from work.
  • This midday medicine is a moment to recalibrate, move with clarity, and an opportunity to reset.

“I think we think of this idea of reset as this designated time in our calendar that we have to block off, or we look at it as the morning or the night. Actually, it’s a time that we get to decide.”

Jessica Moy
  • Jess made the “productivity dead zone” of the day her “me time.”

[03:08] Embracing the Pause

  • Jess walks us through meditation practices and insights she has gathered from her midday medicines.

“I want these moments to be real and raw because it’s the in-between—the pause—that brings our most human self to the forefront.”

Jessica Moy
  • Embracing the pause helps drive your mission and vision forward while avoiding burnout from work.

[04:13] Reflecting on Unlearning

  • Unlearning is an experiment.
  • Jess comes from a medical science background, which involves a lot of research.
  • Researching unknown things never has a predetermined outcome.
  • For third culture kids, it’s a lifelong journey deciding who they are versus how their cultural and colonized values and beliefs define them.

[05:39] Unlearning Sustainability

  • Jess continuously structures her brand and business to be sustainable.
  • Sustainability changes and evolves. What was sustainable in the past may not be today, leading to burnout from work or other enterprises.
  • Unlearning requires the consistent acknowledgment of where perfectionism and self-doubt are coming in.

“What you think works one day and then all of a sudden doesn’t work the next day is a constant unlearning for me that had nothing to do with me. That in order to get the house right, in order to get your people right, it requires us to get it wrong. Because again, it’s an experiment—we don’t know.”

Jessica Moy
  • It’s not necessarily your fault when something doesn’t work out. Getting things right requires us to get them wrong.

[07:45] Grace & Grit

  • Sustainability will not be perfect because it continues to evolve. 
  • You can’t rely only on yourself to do it. You have to call in your faith and fear, then face them.
  • Grace and grit are vital to overcoming the perfectionism pattern.
  • It’s the grace to hold yourself in the most vulnerable moments.
  • It’s grit through having faith and trust in yourself to do and continue doing the thing.

[09:39] Using Your Gift

  • Jess and her partner have been watching an anime called Demon Slayer, which has the theme of having a gift and the duty to help others using it.
  • We all have a gift, and it’s your responsibility to use yours to help people.
  • The privilege of ability allows you to help in the lanes you are drawn to.

[11:00] Having Self-Belief & Trust

  • The end game is much bigger than yourself, your brand, and your business. The midday medicine allowed Jess to go back to this.
  • What does your most human self need? What are the gifts you are now hiding because you’re afraid?
  • Don’t let burnout from work take you down. Give yourself grace and grit if you’re in a place of fear and self-doubt. 
  • Have faith in yourself and in the process of trying to do one thing that serves you.

Enjoyed this Episode?

If you enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe and share it!

Leave an episode review and share it! If you enjoyed tuning in to this episode, don’t forget to leave us a review. You can also share what you’ve learned today with your loved ones to help them embrace the pause, unlearn, and start living with grace and grit in themselves. Burnout from work can affect anyone, so take a breather, get the reset, and come back to being your best self.

Have any questions or thoughts? I’d love to hear from you! Feel free to hit me up on @embodied_impact or send an email at connect@jessicamoy.co. Thank you so much for listening! For more episode updates, visit my website.


Jess Moy: Welcome to Unlearn Lab, with me, your host, Jess Moy. Together, we are going to demystify what culture really means nowadays and how we can show up as our whole-ass human selves, through the lens of wellness, entrepreneurship, and impact. Really thriving, in the long run, requires you to remember who you really are. Unplug from the matrix, and write your own damn story. We are going to cover some serious ground together, y’all. From what culture really means, to unpacking modern-day spirituality, to peeling back the layers of multi-passionate entrepreneurship. We are gonna explore it all together. Let’s unlearn some shit. 

Hello, my beautiful humans. Today is a solo cast. This is something that I was wrestling with—if I wanted to do a solo cast, or if I wanted to hear this out of my own voice. I just feel that this is exactly what I need in my own journey, embracing my own voice and myself in not just my business, but in life too. Hopefully, these can bring you as well little moments of not just connection with me, but also connection with yourself. That daily pause that we don’t always give ourselves. Really, this stemmed from what I call midday medicines. 

I’m currently living in Okinawa, Japan. Most of my family, friends and clients are stateside in the United States.  The middle of the day here in Japan, around noon to 5 pm, I would say, are kind of what I used to think of as dead zones in productivity. Really, they actually turned out to be opportunities to break up my day, and break this pattern of feeling unproductive and useless while everyone’s asleep, and I’m in Japan. Really, wanting to bring back this idea of the pause and what this midday medicine for me what it came to, was actually this moment to recalibrate, to move with clarity, to give myself an opportunity to reset.

I think we think of this idea of reset as this designated time in our calendar that we have to block off, or we look at it as the morning or the night. Actually, it’s a time that we get to decide.  Instead for me of looking at this quote-unquote, productivity dead zone, I made it “me time”.  These midday medicines that I’m going to be sharing with you here on Unlearn Lab are maybe going to be meditations that I walk you through that I’ve done or insights that I’ve had or developed during my own midday medicines. 

I want these moments to be real and raw because it’s the in-between — the pause that brings our most human self to the forefront. For me, this is what I need and needed to drive my own mission and vision forward. I hope that you find these little pauses as moments for you too, to find what you need in this day and carry you through. Again, take what resonates and as always leave what doesn’t. But I hope that you enjoy these midday medicines and share what you think with me on Instagram or send me a note. I’d love to hear from you. 

This first midday medicine is one that will probably be my most vulnerable moment with y’all to date.  That is to talk about a little of my own unlearning, and what I’m still unlearning. This podcast is literally called Unlearn Lab. The reason that I kind of chose this name and this premise was that unlearning is an experiment. Coming from a medical science background, when we look at science, the art of researching, and diving into things unknown, we don’t know what the outcome is going to be.  The same thing can be said, I feel, for unlearning. We don’t know what we don’t know, and things are ever-changing. 

If you are like me, growing up as a third culture kid with a lot of different narratives, I think it’s going to be a lifelong journey deciding what I want to keep; what is actually Jess the human’s values and beliefs, and what is coming from culture and colonization, and all these things. Today, unlearning can be unpacked in a lot of different aspects of life. But I’m going to focus today on my own past and current journey in my brand and my business, and this idea of continuously restructuring it to be a sustainable one. 

The funny thing about sustainability that I’ve come to realize is that it changes and it evolves. What was sustainable, even two days ago, may not be sustainable today. What that requires, at least required for me, is this consistent acknowledgment of where perfectionism is creeping back in, where self-doubt, and that narrative is coming in. Because what you think works one day, and then all of a sudden doesn’t work the next day, is a constant unlearning for me that had nothing to do with me. That in order to get the house right, in order to get your people right, it requires us to get it wrong. Because again, it’s an experiment we don’t know. 

I think the unlearning that came up here was this idea that sustainability is not going to be perfect because it continues to evolve. But also, I can’t only rely on myself to do this thing. I have to call in faith, I have to call in fear, and sit with it and be like, “I’m afraid of doing this change. I’m afraid of letting this person down. I’m afraid of letting this person go. What are they going to think?” The sustainability piece is like, had nothing to do with my business, and everything to do with me, and continues to still have to do with me, but not just like, my responsibility, but my role in my business as a human. 

Every time that I breakthrough, what I feel is that the perfectionism pattern, it comes back another way.  How do we stay in this game, speaking from this moment, like me questioning myself, “How do I fucking stay in this?” This is an insane game that we’re playing in business, in the coaching industry, and in entrepreneurship. It’s fucking grace and grit, y’all. It’s the grace to hold myself in my most vulnerable moments and acknowledge and sit with and say, “Yes, I feel this and today sucks.” But it’s also grit, not in the sense of. “H How can I hustle more to force things to work?” It’s almost like grit and faith and grit in trust.

 Whatever you identify or subscribe to — God, universe, spirituality, whatever. It’s just a grit, and maybe even just faith in yourself that you’re going to do the thing. It might not be right the first time around, but you have to continue to keep it going. I don’t know if y’all are into anime but my partner and I have been watching Demon Slayer. It’s new — they came out with a second season and I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but we watched an episode most recently. That was a little gut-wrenching, a little sad. So I’m not going to specify what episode in case any of y’all are Demon Slayer fans. But it was about this idea of, if you have a gift, which we all do — if you have a gift, it is your responsibility to use it to help people.

Then in the anime, it was like, if you are strong, you have a responsibility to protect the weak; that’s not so much what I’m subscribing to slash resonating with. I look at it more of this privilege of ability or privilege of said gift to help. Not someone necessarily that’s weaker than you, but help in the lanes that you are drawn to, that you and your heart of hearts know is right. Coming back to this idea of unlearning, it’s been for me this reminder that the end game is so much bigger than myself. Bigger than the conversations that are hard, both with other people and myself, bigger than restructuring the brand, or solidifying the business or hiring the right team. 

What took me back to that was again, midday medicine, this pause of, “What does my most human self need? What are the gifts that I am now hiding because I’m afraid and because I don’t know what’s going to happen?” To this day, talking about self-belief and trust still kind of makes me emotional, because those are things that I think I will always be leaning into uncomfortably because they don’t come second nature to me, really.  That is my great unlearn in this moment, and what I continue to lean into. 

I hope that if you are also in this place of maybe fear, maybe self-doubt, maybe “I don’t know how much longer I can take this”, no matter what this is, I want you to give yourself a little bit of grace, but also put in a little bit of grit in having faith in yourself and faith in this process; andtrying to do one thing that serves you the human that helps you show up as you the business or the brand, or the parent, or whatever it is — whatever role you’re showing up to. As always, in love and community, until next time.

noodle OBSESSED, sloth in human form, modern mystic, culture explorer. 

Hi, I'm Jess.
Host of Unlearn Lab & Culture Curator.

I always knew there had to be more than business strategy, leadership skills, and the wellness practices we embody and share. It's the humans inside these paradigms that get to say and shift what is the "norm" and where we really want to go. So come along with me and Embodied Impact as we build culture together. 

Learn more

I support intersectional leaders & business unmute their message and cultivate communities where humans thrive through. Your legacy is your sovereignty.