It's not all in your head -
When "Beating" Anxiety Seems Impossible
Real talk on beating anxiety for good, and how it may or may not be a reality for most.
Find your CALM to CRUSH your day!
Full Interview Here
Anxiety is something people talk about as if it could be taken out with the trash and never heard from again. But, those of us who struggle with anxiety know this – it always comes back!
I’m going to throw down some hard truths here, so prepare yourself.
1. When people say they’ve “conquered” their anxiety, what they mean is they’ve finally learned a coping method or a combination of methods that works for them.
Learned is the keyword here.
Opening your mind to the simple fact that anxiety is an ongoing feeling. It can come and go, and just knowing that “it will come back, but I know what to do about it” can be so empowering.
See related Article
2.) Stay in the mindset of learning and growth.
This is the place where you flip your thinking into a different “zone”. When you change your approach to a “beginner” mindset, you naturally become more open to trying new things. This opens the door for more forgiveness of yourself as well.
3. Feeling negative emotions is not a bad thing. Don’t avoid them – Feel them.
Avoiding emotions? Let me count the ways!
There is this “wheel” of emotions. Look at them ALL. There is so much more here than Angry, Happy, Sad, Anxious.
We are complex beings, and in this life, we are able to feel a large range of emotions. When we have negative emotions, it may be uncomfortable. But it may also allow you to truly feel the POSITIVE ones more deeply too. Finding a way to “sit with” your feelings whether you like them or not, is a beginning of learning how to cope with them.
4.) Lowering your inflammation through your lifestyle and daily habits will ONLY help you in your anxiety journey.
Upping the ante in terms of your health, your underlying contributors to your overall mindset, stress level, diet and exercise will ultimately hold the key for a lower anxiety. When you approach this “general feeling” from a multi-tiered (what I like to call integrative) approach – you WIN!
Everyone, I’m Kelly Cole and I’m your host, we are here today, and it is. Number two of our resilient mama series and so we have another amazing resilient mama today who is Chantel Allen.
And so, Chantel is a mom and a life coach specializing in anxiety, which is perfect for us because Chantel we are all about dealing with, anxious, helping anxious moms reduce their anxiety and we really focus a lot on lifestyle change and kind of like eating habits and self care things too. So all of that all together and I know that we are working all towards a similar goal. So, anyway, tell us a little bit about yourself. Okay, and we would love to kind of like hear a little bit about your story.
Okay. And I love my story, because it’s why I’m here today. Yeah, so I’m a mom of four kids actually so I have a 14 year old daughter and then all the way down to a nine year old daughter so I had my kids really close together so that can bring up anxiety, all on its own.
So my story goes about seven years ago I was actually teaching preschool I had been teaching preschool for about nine years out of my house. And I thought everything was great. I thought everything was wonderful, perfect great, I had all of the normal things which I thought was normal.
I struggled with money issues with our family trying to make ends meet. I live very close to all of my in laws, so I had a lot of in law drama that I just thought, “That’s normal”. And I was actually at church, and I stood up I thought everything was great and I passed out. And so they thought it was like low blood sugar they did all the things, you know what they could, give me some fruit snacks try to get me to “come to”. I came to but as they were taking me out of the room that I was in I started having grand mal seizures, and they could not get them to stop and so they had to fly me, so I live in a small town in Arizona. Our hospital is great but It doesn’t have all the functions as a big city hospital has, so they had to ship me on a plane over to Phoenix, Arizona. They ran me through the gamut of all of the tests because I also suffered with major anxiety, with like my migraines and all of that kind of stuff so I had a lot of other things going on.
They thought maybe oh it’s a tumor or maybe it’s an aneurysm or, you know, something going on. Everything came back clean. And that sounds like it’s really great news. But when everything is going on, you’re going to have notice I need some answers, why this is happening in the doctor walking walked into my room and said, You have anxiety seizures, and you’ve made it you need to figure out what to do, or you’re going to have a heart attack or these are going to be consistent seizures. And, I mean, I knew I had stress, but, like, in this form like I didn’t know if anybody else had ever had that type of situation. So I was actually very very resentful. For a long time I was angry. And now I had anxiety on top of what they were telling me was anxiety, so I had to figure out how to cope with this better. And I thought I was doing like seriously I was exercising, I was a marathon runner I mean I was doing all the things that they tell you to do to cope with stress. And so I started reaching out to so many different avenues to figure this out. And I found I don’t know if any of your, your people know Jodi Moore, I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of Jody Moore, the podcaster. She I stumbled upon her podcast, and I had heard her talking about anxiety in a new way that had never heard of. Oh, it comes from my thoughts, it’s not coming from money or my in laws. And after listening to her and getting some insights. Then I started to have different, I had relief I had, you know, different tools in my tool belt and I was like, more moms need this work. And so that’s been my mission and that’s exactly why I’m here today.
Wow, I can say. So my original training and my other job is. I’m a nurse practitioner and, yeah, I specialize in pain management at the moment and so when we have patients come in. We frequently see things like this that are true manifestations of physical manifestations of anxiety and you really do, you run the gamut 100% because you can’t figure it out. And the interesting piece is the level of recognition within the person. So, sometimes they really, like know their own anxiety level on they’re aware of it. And other times, there is just zero self awareness in that realm, they’re like, I’m, I’m not anxious I feel fine I go out, you know, like I’m fun you know and I’m like, Yes, but then like what’s under that you know what I mean like so many of us, put on a smile. Mm hmm. And we fake it till we make it because we think that it’s normal. And it’s kind of like where you live, you know, and if that’s where you’re living it’s like I’m always like this, this is how I am. Yeah, so, oh my gosh, that is such an intense story first of all and I can completely understand why then you kind of said like yes we need to. I need to tell other people about this too, which is so true.
Now, is there anything that you see kind of like the most frequently that people will have circulating in their mind or like one of the things that comes up the most around. Anxiety with moms, or just totally asking you this off the cuff.
Yeah, no and I appreciate it. No, I think there’s flavors of them, like I think they like majority of them come down to like the same basic ones like I’m not enough. Something’s wrong with me my worthiness. But I don’t think they come out in exactly that format. So it’s something like, um, you know maybe their kid yells at them and they’re like I’m not as good as this person over here or I should be doing more so it comes in different flavors, but I do think they all run to the same foundational something’s wrong with me I’m broken in some way I you know I’m not worthy. Those are the types of things that I think every single mom, whether you have anxiety, and you see it or not, we all have the same intrusive little thoughts like that this
Yes, this is very true. I what I mean even today like I did a separate “live” on my Instagram, about the fact that I just felt, Because in the moment, I am a mom and I’m trying to deal with mom things at home, which is very different like our real normal lives just aren’t, our normal lives right now with like everything being different and then my work isn’t my work the same either because in the hospital, everything is different and so it’s kind of like nothing is the same anywhere, and it’s unsettling. It’s this like shifting and I think for like, at this point, weeks and weeks I’ve just been like, Okay, I’m gonna,I’m fine. It’s good. And then like at some point I think it just kind of the snowball hit me. Maybe yesterday and I was like, you know, I’m like, it’s just, you can know all the things and you can like practice all the things that when your life happens, it’s you just have to like go and draw from what you know, and you have to go back to Ground Zero sometimes, and remind yourself of some things.
Yeah,when I think that the biggest thing is like when I teach this stuff to moms. I think there’s like this little piece of us is like okay so if I do this I’m going to master it and I’m never going to feel this way again, like, no that’s never, the goal is to get rid of our anxiety or to not feel this negative emotion of like no you, you need negative emotion to actually feel the other side. So you don’t have anxiety you don’t feel the joy. So, instead of looking at is it a problem I sometimes think of as a gift of, yeah now I get to feel anxiety, and I get to practice the tools that I’ve been, you know, working with and see how much better I am or maybe where I need to work on it differently, but it’s never like something has gone wrong when you feel the negative emotion or when you have what you think is like a return to the negative spiral like we’re always going to have the negative spiral. It’s just now what do you do with it. What do you make it mean.
Right. And what do you pull from at that point knowing, like, Okay, I got to, I got to what I felt was like mastery level so I know these things. And then sometimes when you are in that spiral you’re going down You forgot like, “what am I supposed to do again?” okay yes yeah. But, I mean, you know, you recover you get yourself back together you collect yourself again. And then, you remember, but yeah sometimes it’s not as automatic like you want it to be super automatic and I think that it just all depends what level of structure get out of that moment.
Well I think it’s also to just knowing when I don’t think it’s ever a goal. This is personally for me not to ever master anything. I always want to be in the beginner’s mindset, because if I’ve mastered then I can’t learn anymore. And I don’t like thinking like being a beginner in anything you’re super careful you’re really taking extra care in the steps that you’re taking so if you start to notice you want to be a master level, then I would check in and be like, what, why, because I am done with this there’s a little bit of resistance to me having to keep going through this. If you can just keep saying, I’m a beginner I have always a beginner and everything’s okay then you don’t make it mean something has gone wrong when you are going through it again.
Right. Consider all learning that you’re always always growing as growing. Yeah. So, yes, I mean, and I think specifically for moms that are in that place that as long as you are in a seeking mindset and a growth mindset, you’re never going to be going wrong like to me Oh, you’re going to be always seeking out and.
I think that it’s a beautiful thing. I think that those are kind of the pieces to me that build resilience. So, when you go from struggle to challenge, kind of in your brain like instead of going from a place of like, why is this happening to me and the thoughts kind of like as a victim to, how can I change this and like more of the challenge mentality, and then going from challenge to growth is the ultimate journey to be able to get you and it serves you, not just an anxiety and like your emotional well being, I mean literally in any place, any phase any thing that you can apply it to in your life that little series well gets you to a better spot when you’re just in a place of grit so yeah I think that is the ultimate, the ultimate recipe for resilience. Yeah, I agree. 100%.
Now, after the realization of how much anxiety you were having, and then getting to where you are now, like in between, was there a intuition that you felt like you knew you needed to share this more? I know you said you wanted to but did you feel called to do it or push to do it in any way. Did you feel” like this is what I’m supposed to be doing.”
I do have any kind of. Yeah. So like I said I was, I was a preschool teacher for nine years and so I’ve always had this like teaching mentality I love you know helping other people, and I was actually on a quest in between. when I was a preschool teacher to now. I thought about continuing teaching, and I decided it wasn’t for me. So, there was that and I went and actually started teaching Chinese kids English like I’ve done lots of other things. And then, when this started to happen for me. I was like, Oh, this just clicks for me because it’s my story. I’ve seen it work for me and then I have so many other friends I mean I don’t know one person literally that has not encountered anxiety in some way. And so we just even talking in conversations with people, they would come to me asking, how did you do this and as I do it I’m like, kay more people need to see this not just my little circle, I need to get this out to more people so it was kinda like a mesh of two different worlds coming together and it did it just seemed to align for exactly what I needed to do.
I feel like my story kind of is a little similar but, um, basically I was in this situation where I had all of these changes and I wanted to share them but also, I was getting, like, I’m a nurse practitioner I am, and I was a nurse and that also education is such a huge part of that too and I found myself using like social media and things like that and just like putting stuff out there and people would message me Oh What are you doing, and I’m like, I don’t know but I feel like I
have like naturally developed after that and I was like, I think it’s supposed to be more “ formal”. Then I’m like, I mean I literally was like ask the universe, “what am I supposed to be doing?” because I feel like we’re doing something more like having this bigger impact. And I think that for people who love to be helpers and educators and just kind of have this scale of personal like contact and like relationship. It’s so amazing to have that and I get that a lot. Obviously, as a nurse or nurse practitioner but it’s on a little bit of a different level too. So anyway I just, I also feel I feel the same so I feel like it’s so important and I think it’s something no matter what stage of life you are you can benefit from it.
Yeah. I just I think that it’s super important. Yeah, well, Chantel, can you tell us kind of where to find you and the information. We’ll put that down for you, so we can reach out to you if they would like to chat with you.
Yeah, so I have a Facebook group, it’s actually called the FY BY tribe, and in there. We do lots of training like right now I’m doing training trying to teach them how, you know, to feel their anxiety on a different level.
Yeah. All right, well, it was so lovely chatting with you, we’ll probably have you back again to maybe more some specifics about some mindset things and I think that, you know, all the angles are different angles speak to different people and I think that, you know, some of my gravitate toward gravitate towards one more than another and basically, you find something that speaks to you.
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