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Is the global workforce headed for a burnout?

From Maggie Lake, CNN and Lauren Said-Moorhouse, for CNN
updated 12:19 PM EDT, Tue April 1, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Arianna Huffington's new book "Thrive" asks us to redefine success
  • Implores employees to sleep longer, take breaks, nap and meditate
  • She adds: "Nothing kills creativity more than burn out"

Leading Women connects you to extraordinary women of our time. Each month, we meet two women at the top of their field, exploring their careers, lives and ideas.

New York (CNN) -- When Arianna Huffington collapsed at her desk in 2007, she woke to find herself covered in a pool of blood. Sporting a broken cheekbone from the fall, the incident spurred the editor-in-chief to sit up and rethink her workaholic lifestyle.

Since then, Huffington has made it her mission to raise awareness around work-life balance with her "sleep evangelist" mantra infused across the HuffPost website. From her "GPS for the Soul" app to installing nap rooms inside her New York headquarters, it's rare for the media mogul not to mention sleep deprivation in TV appearances or her weekly editor's note.

CNN anchor Maggie Lake sat down with Huffington to discuss redefining success as outlined in her new book "Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Happier Life."

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"It's very important to recognize [burnout] is a global phenomenon. I was in South Korea recently where we also have Huffington Post. Stress and burnout are much worse there than in the United States. People consume alcohol four times as much as a way to alleviate stress; 40 people commit suicide a day. You go to China, and stress is now a daily topic of conversation because people have paid such a price."

"I believe we need to define success beyond the two metrics of money and power. [We need] to include a third metric that incorporates our health, well-being and wisdom. A capacity to be connected with our better selves... Not to miss the moment -- because that's all we have. We can't DVR our lives and watch it later."

"Nothing kills creativity more than burnout. So in fact, the best thing we can do for our careers is to foster and nurture that creativity and that effectiveness... There is absolutely no trade off between doing well in our jobs and taking care of our own human capital."

"The situation is changing. In Germany, Volkswagen gives employees company phones which are automatically turned off at 6pm and then turned on again at 7am... Here in the United States, 35% of large and medium size corporations have introduced some stress reduction policies. Businesses are losing $300 billion a year because of stress... All of these things that we are discussing do not just affect our personal lives, they affect the bottom line."

"Introducing even five minutes of meditation. Now meditation is really our quiet time. It is time to unplug from all our devices, unplug from the world... all my smartphones, my iPad, whatever I have is outside my bedroom. I never charge smartphones by the bed."

Lauren Said-Moorhouse contributed to this report.

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