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High-Octane Women: How Superachievers Can Avoid Burnout Paperback – November 1, 2010

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High-Octane Women: How Superachievers Can Avoid Burnout + From Burned Out to Fired Up: A Woman's Guide to Rekindling the Passion and Meaning in Work and Life + Restore Yourself: The Antidote for Professional Exhaustion
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (November 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616142200
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616142209
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #490,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Carter, a nationally recognized psychologist specializing in extreme stress in women, addresses the pressures highly competitive positions exert on women. Although women hold more than half of the management and professional positions in the U.S., burnout is high. Carter examines the multiple causes for stress, including double standards, gender discrimination, psychological abuse, jobs with 24-hour technology demands, and lack of support at home. Recognizing that normal de-stressors such as exercise and meditation aren't sufficient, Carter proposes her own solutions that will enable women to revitalize themselves. Such solutions could be scheduling uninterrupted time, knowing one's personality, setting boundaries in commitments, or being realistic in expectations of others. Carter (Justice For All: Challenges of the Mentally Ill in the Legal System) also offers suggestions for social support, danger signals for stress trigger points, and guidelines for societal and corporate changes. This is a practical, useful guide; hopefully, corporate women won't be too stressed out to read it. (Nov.)


"A must-read for high achieving women who have come to accept stress as a way of life." 
--Cindy Krischer Goodman, Miami Herald columnist of "The Work/Life Balancing Act"

"Gain powerful tools to manage your life and to keep your engine 'revved up'!"
--Dr. Priscilla V. Marotta, psychologist and author of "Power and Wisdom: The New Path for Women"

"... not a 'one-size-fits-all' self-help throw away, but a sensitive, insightful window into the world of professional women, their unique stressors, and proven approaches to ameliorate them." --Laurie Shanks, Professor, Albany Law School

"Finally ... compelling and enlightening research combined with a realistic road map for high-achieving women to reverse burnout and find our way back to sanity!" --Caryl Ginsberg Fantel, MrFood.com Editor, Music Director, and Arts Advocate

"Dr. Bourg Carter reinforces a basic truth: control your professional job before it kills you. This is a harsh reminder of what we all need--work smarter, not longer--and take our lives back." --John Wesley Hall, Criminal Defense Lawyer

More About the Author

Dr. Sherrie Bourg Carter is a psychologist and an author who writes on the topics of women and stress and children and stress (see some of her articles at www.high-achievingwomen.com). Her background in the area of stress, particularly extreme and traumatic stress in women, began in graduate school when she worked under the direction of internationally-recognized traumatic stress expert, Dr. Mary Ann Dutton. This work blossomed into work with traumatic stress in children, which led to numerous published articles, national speaking engagements, and two books on the topic of child witnesses.

Dr. Bourg Carter first began counseling women and children with stress-related problems in 1989, and since that time has conducted hundreds of psychological evaluations related to stress, anxiety, depression, and traumatic stress. Her publications on the topic of work-related stress and burnout include numerous articles as a featured mental health contributor at Associated Content, a chapter in John Wesley Hall's book, Professional Responsibility in Criminal Defense Practice (3rd ed.) and an article for the American Journal of Family Law, titled When the Enemy Lies Within: Risk for Professional Burnout Among Family Law Attorneys.

Dr. Bourg Carter is CEO of her firm, Sherrie Bourg Carter, Psy.D., P.A., as well as partner and CEO of the Institute for Behavioral Sciences and the Law, a forensic psychology practice in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mary on December 6, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book is simply amazing! For years I thought that something was wrong with me when I would work long hours, rush home to family functions, and then skydive for a vacation. Now I have learned amazing things about myself through reading High Octane Women. Moreover, Dr. Bourg Carter has outlined coping strategies for dealing with my high-achieving lifestyle without hitting the wall and burning out. I was encouraged by her celebration of living on the edge, her pride in accomplishments, and her acceptance that some of us are just different from others in the way we live our life. I have already recommended Dr. Bourg Carter's book to all of my colleagues. It is really a must-read book for any woman who lives the high adrenaline life and for the men and women who love them and want to understand them better.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on May 25, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book helped me to understand myself a little better. Don't get me wrong; I am a very introspective person. What I didn't understand was why I repeatedly felt overwhelmed and what I can do (or am already doing) to help reduce those feelings.

As it turns out, I had been doing a decent job of self-medicating. However, when your "medicine" is kickboxing rather than "just relax and do nothing," it's easy to mistake the causes for the solutions.

This book does a great job of explaining why you feel overwhelmed (probably too good of a job; the whole first half of the book is this). Better than that, though, it gives great suggestions for what sorts of fuel your mind & body need to keep running at the break-neck pace that it does.

This book is heavily skewed toward CEOs and other business higher ups. However, the author does note that high octane women can also be stay at home moms or hold lower paying jobs. If you are the kind of woman who always pushes herself as far as she can go... and then tries to get a little further anyway, you might be a high octane woman. If anyone has ever told you, "I don't know how you do it," or stared in disbelief when you listed off the errands you've gotten done in a single day, you might be a high octane woman. If people always assume that your work will be perfect, because they've already tried to find flaws and consistently fail to, you might be a high octane woman.

And if you are, you need to read this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Hannah Swain on November 14, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was diagnosed with burnout last January. People kept telling me to learn to relax, to meditate, etc. However, this book is one of the things that has helped me most to come to terms with what's going on with me. Some of the things that have stuck with me the most is that high-octane women are not normal, which made me less upset about not being relax by things that work for most people: meditation and yoga drive me nuts. It's explained why it makes perfect sense that my Body Combat lessons relax me and helped me realize that relaxation is relative to each person.

I was also fascinated by the parts explaining what it does to high-octane women being in a man's world and how that works psychologically. This book explained a lot of things that I knew in the back of my head but now can actually do something with.

Well worth reading for an overview of what to watch out for when you're running on empty and how to deal with it when you are.
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Format: Paperback
I agree with Sherrie Bourg Carter that there are specific approaches that an individual can take to cope with stress in one or more areas of one's life. I also agree that there is much to be learned from superachievers about how to avoid burnout. So there are two separate but related challenges: How to avoid burnout? and How to recover from it? In both instances, the workplace plays an especially important role, for better or worse.

Those who have seen a performance of David Mamet's play, Glengarry Glen Ross, or have seen the film based on it, no doubt recall an early scene when Blake (played by brilliantly Alec Baldwin) delivers a bone-chilling, threat-filled challenge to salesmen in a real estate firm's branch office. "The bad news is - you've got, all of you've got just one week to regain your jobs starting with tonight. Starting with tonight's sit. Oh? Have I got your attention now? Good. 'Cause we're adding a little something to this month's sales contest. As you all know first prize is a Cadillac El Dorado. Anyone wanna see second prize? Second prize is a set of steak knives. Third prize is you're fired. Get the picture? You laughing now? You got leads. Mitch and Murray paid good money, get their names to sell them. you can't close the leads you're given you can't close s***. You ARE s***. Hit the bricks pal, and beat it 'cause you are going OUT." Miranda Priestly (played so well by Meryl Streep) in The Devil Wears Prada would never be called vulgar but she is no less menacing and probably more lethal than Blake.

High octane executives -- male as well as female -- struggle with severe stress each day and many experience burnout or at least a milder form of combat fatigue and much of the stress is self-imposed.
Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By LadyLJ57 on December 20, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I rarely read books on this subject - burnout or "how to be a superachiever", but after finally hitting burnout - a real nice, flaming type - my counselor suggested it to expand my understanding. It is very strange to read something written by a stranger that hits your private thoughts and traits but this one does it - and does it pretty well. If you are a woman who has always been "different" - goal oriented, self-determining, strong, focused, over-achieving becuase you can't stand failure - READ THIS BOOK! If nothing else it will give you a feeling that you're not alone.

The book lost a star from me because the last quarter of the book absolutely does not apply to me. I'm not saying it won't apply to some other reader, it just didn't address enough of the "cure" that I was seeking.
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