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A Nurse's Revolutionary Turn - Julija's Story Of Breaking Free And Building New

Brainz Magazine Exclusive Interview

 

Julija started her healthcare journey during the global health pandemic in March 2020. Caregiver burnout hit her hard-working in a Level One Trauma Center in Chicago and she knew she needed a shift in her career that was more aligned with your soul's purpose.


Julija became an accredited Board-Certified Nurse Coach. After launching her online business, she quickly realized this was the type of nursing she was looking for all along! 


Julija Lemenaite
Julija Lemenaite. Photos by Israel Vega

What is your business and how do you help your clients?


I help my female or female-identifying clients in their 20´s-40´s manage their time to decrease stress & increase productivity! I always dreamed of starting a business where I could help teach women that they have full control over their time! This is a problem I learned to solve in my early 20´s as a young woman with multiple passions trying to survive in the modern world. I wanted to do it all without overdoing it at the same time. I wanted to challenge myself to see what my life could look like without living the typical lifestyle. I researched and tried multiple methods and tools to achieve that very vision. I knew there was not a “one size fits all” way of helping my future clients, so I dedicated time to always come up with new creative ideas that would be simple, and effective.


After a lot of trial and error, I am eternally grateful to now spread this information to others and make a real impact. We live in a society where we feel we owe our time to everyone else but ourselves- this is far from the truth! Time freedom is possible for anyone and everyone. I incorporate a lot of mindset work that helps switch my client's perspective from believing that time is working AGAINST you, and instead turning it into seeing how time is working FOR you. Your mind is your most powerful tool! Once my clients realize this can be their reality & they start taking daily action toward that vision, I get to witness their lives transform before my eyes! It’s the most exhilarating feeling in the world to be a part of their healing journey.


What are common issues or complaints your clients come to you with?


A lot of the women I work with come to me because they don’t know how to set up a routine and stick to it, or don’t yet realize how it can be possible to include time for self-care. A common phrase I hear from my clients is “I don’t feel like myself anymore. I want to learn how to prioritize myself again.” People will come to me and tell me they want to learn how to improve their work-life balance so they can always make time to nurture their important relationships without feeling guilty. On the same note, many women are trying to advance their careers or start their own solo entrepreneur journey, therefore they come to me wanting to learn skills and techniques to help them achieve personal success. This includes wanting assistance on how to meet deadlines with ease, set up realistic short and long-term goals, and build a fool-proof way to organize their life (virtually, on paper, or both!) Managing general stress is often the most common complaint I see across the border that can manifest as a huge mental block for many if not attacked early on.


Can you tell us more about your work and how you ended up where you are today?


I have always wanted to do the exact work I’m doing now but never knew how it was possible to change the trajectory of my reality. In nursing school, we were given SUCH limited options on how to practice nursing. Most of our options only included hospitals, clinics, hospices, or home health. My instructors never once mentioned any other niche nursing specialties. I can only imagine how much more advanced our society would be if we were taught that we had infinite options.


I knew I had a big problem after being so burnt out only one year into bedside nursing. I would always observe the older nurses around me, and everyone was miserable. I quickly realized I did not want to become like them - deep in my gut I knew I was meant for more. I started my first day of my hospital job during the COVID-19 pandemic. I struggled with major PTSD & trauma from being overworked, and underpaid, & seeing how little management actually cared about their staff. I couldn’t last more than one year living this way, so I did the next best thing I knew how to do, which was to quit full-time hours and switch to a PRN position.


This decision was vital to lead me to where I am now because it was my first introduction to experiencing what time freedom looked like. I never worked a holiday or weekend unless I wanted to pick up extra shifts. I took vacations whenever I felt like it because I did not have to use PTO! I never once felt shame for calling off, and I finally felt like I could live an actual life outside of the hospital. I lost all my benefits, but I didn’t even care anymore! It wasn’t worth the headache and stress! After working PRN for the following three years I still felt free, but only to a certain extent. I wanted more.


Julija Lemenaite
Julija Lemenaite. Photos by Israel Vega

What would you like to achieve for yourself and your business in the future?


I want to be a leader that helps heal the collective consciousness and reverse generational female trauma. I want my business to always keep growing and expanding. It’s important for me to continue to level up in my personal life because my business is an extension of myself. Women have been oppressed for thousands of years. We have had to fill so many different roles over time and our voices have not been heard. Think about how many women have had to work a full-time job AND provide for their children with little to no support.


It is extremely evident that this will present a massive societal problem. It’s too much for any one person to handle. We have to learn to let go of the idea of perfectionism so that we can “do it all”! Many women cannot live a life of alignment. We juggle so much and it isn’t fair for us to be left in the dust in a society that expects everything from us, yet gives us nothing. I want to be a leader for this generation.


Who inspires you to be the best that you can be?


I believe that having great role models is one of the most vital components of starting your own business. When you have someone you can look up to, it propels you not to give up. Having a role model also grants you the opportunity to be able to ask for guidance whenever you need it. The most important role model I had in my life thus far was Dr. Eric Williams. I started working for his chiropractic office when I was taking my generational education courses for nursing school. I absolutely loved the work environment, because I saw that the main intention behind making each decision was to serve the community. The amount of love and attention he poured into taking care of his patients was unlike anything I had ever seen before.


I personally never knew of any other doctors doing the type of work he did. I was amazed at how many free educational seminars he would regularly create, and community events he would make himself a part of. I remember thinking to myself: “Now this is a REAL doctor!” He was always for the people and you could see that healing others brought him genuine joy. Dr. Williams always let me ask him questions about his life story, how he got to where he is now, challenges he overcame, & was open to giving me advice whenever I needed it. I learned marketing skills, how to problem-solve, and how to develop fantastic rapport and relationships with patients. I applied all the years of experience at the clinic to developing my own practice today. I truly believe that working at Williams Chiropractic Center was a massive part of my life path.


Why do you believe nurses struggle with making time for self-care the most?


Nurses are bred to work in high-pressure activities all day long with repeated exposure to trauma, and almost never get a chance to take a break. To this day, the only state that mandates nurses to take breaks is California. Many nurses think that taking time to rest, or eat, interferes too much with their workflow. They get used to working in fast-paced environments, and in turn, end up giving all their physical and emotional energy to their patients and families. We give up our own health for the sake of others. On average, nurses work a minimum of 12-hour work days. Most nurses end up developing long-term negative health consequences such as chronic back pain, poor mental health, unhealthy eating patterns, and weight gain. There are so many job-related stressors that contribute to these developments (especially post-pandemic), such as complex job demands, and nationwide short-staffing.


This poses great challenges, because nurses learn to fill other’s cups before their own, leading to major compassion fatigue. I strongly believe it’s more important for the future of nurses to manage their self-care than ever before. Caregiver burnout is at an all-time high and the medical field does little to nothing to help their staff. I vividly remember nursing school never mentioned the importance of this concept as well! All we were taught to do is work work work until we die.


Unfortunately, unless you seek outside assistance, you’re likely to never get the help or education you need in the workplace. Learning to take the time to do this can be extremely intimidating for most. As a coach, working with nurses now brings me a lot of satisfaction because as someone who has years of experience in the trenches, I know what it’s like to hit rock bottom. The relatability and empathy I feel makes my passion for making a change that much stronger. Nurses are the backbone of the healthcare system and without us showing up our best, everything can and will collapse.


Photos by Israel Vega:

Booking E-mail: izzyv3ds@gmail.com


For more info, follow Julija on Instagram, and visit her website!

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