Emotional Health

What I Do When I Experience Feelings of "Overwhelm" Setting In

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There was a moment today where I felt the familiar feeling of extreme overwhelms tart to well up inside me again. You know what I mean - your heart races, your gut turns, you want to cry from exhaustion but you can’t work up the tears - it’s just all too much sometimes. Maybe you even bury your face in your hands and wince. The to-do list lengthens in your mind as you run through everything that requires your time and attention.

If these feelings come up often for you, you overcommit yourself often, or you feel as if life keeps “happening to you”, there may be some deeper level healing work we can do one on one, so be sure to reach out when you’ve finished reading this post.

But for now, I want to walk you through what I do to heal and work through overwhelm in the moment.

Basic Steps to Reversing the Onset of Overwhelm

First, when you first feel your heart rate rise, stop and ask yourself “what’s required of me *this moment*”? Are these things that are overwhelming me so greatly in this moment, are they due right now at this very second?

If the answer is no (which it usually is no!) then you likely have a moment to spare and stop and breathe.

Stop and tune into your body’s physical response in the moment. For me, today, I discovered my body was very tired and worn down from what we’d done the past few days. Family events, weddings, normal work schedules, parenting, packing for a move, and late nights writing course material for my upcoming membership. I was tired.

I ran through all those things I had experienced and or accomplished in the past few days. It had been a lot and it had been good. I was proud of myself. So I stopped to acknowledge that I was tired, fatigued, and was in need of a break.

Then I checked the calendar.

Awesome. Clear night tonight.

So instead of filling it with additional tasks, which I might typically do, I decided that in order to get through the next few weeks (which were the cause of my overwhelm!) I was going to need a little TLC tonight.

I tuned in and asked myself (asked my body) what would feel best tonight. A night out with a friend? A night in? My body resonated with how great a simple warm bath, a face mask, freshly painted nails a cup of tea and getting to bed early would feel.

Done! Date with myself, scheduled.

The Result

Doing this would better equip me to get up and face tomorrow’s challenges, the upcoming responsibilities I knew would be mine to manage. Instantly the feelings of overwhelm were greatly diminished, even close to gone in that moment. I knew what I had to do in this day, in this moment. I was going to rest up and give my body the care it was asking for to get move forward.

The Body’s Naturally Wise Internal Messaging System

Often, overwhelm is simply the body’s physical response to tell you to STOP! Slow down, tune in, rest, recharge. If your body is responding with overwhelm or signaling that something is “too much”, guess what… it probably IS! Your body is incredibly wise. Take a moment to listen to it so it doesn’t have to find alternative ways to get your attention.

Ive been through too many times in my life where I continually ignored my body’s internal messaging system. Feeling overwhelmed? I self sabotaged with panic. Feeling exhausted? I’d reach for caffeine.

Disregard your body’s simple, profound messaging system long enough, and your body may even do what I did, which is start to physically shut things down to get your attention.

A simple alarm going off in your internal messaging system that something is “overwhelming” or “too much”, simply take a second to ask your body what it needs in that moment. Ask your mind and soul what is needed. Often, its some version of rest. So whatever version of rest sounds BEST to you in the moment, do that.

If this seems too simple, I challenge you to try it.

It has taken time for me to love and appreciate myself, who I am, and how I move through life enough to get to the point where now this feels natural to me to walk through this with myself.

If it feels foreign to you, uncomfortable, or like it doesn’t work the first few times you try it, keep at it.

Always begin with a few deep breaths. Because oxygen truly is anxiety’s greatest physical antidote. And from there, ask yourself what’s required of you *this moment*. Because often the things that are overwhelming us are projections into the future and fears of the unknowns or of how we are going to “get through”. You must bring yourself back to this present moment. Stand in the grass if you can (this is a grounding practice!). Tune into your body and ask it what it needs right now, and act accordingly. Showing this level of love and care to yourself in a moment of overwhelm can drastically shift what happens next, and the rest of your day will likely thank you for taking that moment.

Have you walked through these steps or steps similar to these before in a moment of overcoming overwhelm? Let me know in the comments!


How to feel happier and be more grounded on a daily basis (and get out of your own way!)

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This is one of my favorite topics.

Because often, for most of us, even if we are going through the most difficult of situations, there are some basic tools we can have in our tool box that can help us feel more grounded, and over all just feel HAPPIER on a daily basis, no matter what’s going on around us.

I loved recording this episode because this list of tips I offer I so simple, there’s no prep, no big program, just 8 simple yet powerful ways to check in with yourself on how you’re feeling, if you want to and are ready to feel better about your life right now, RIGHT HERE, right where you’re at!

So without further ado, sign in to listen to this list of 8 check-in style tools you can fit into your happiness toolbox right now to feel happier and more grounded today.


Time to let go of the holiday guilt and create a new kind of health reset

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Okay, health minded mamas, it’s time to let go of any ounce of guilt you may be experiencing over what you ate during the holidays (or all those greens we didn’t eat!). You feel me?

I’m writing this on January 2nd, 2019 has officially begun. This is the day most people begin their new year’s resolutions, hit the gym, and the local juice bar, and plan their weight loss meal plans. These are all GREAT things. You and I both know that.

But you and I don’t have to let our faithful dedication to our health and wellness take away from the love and great times spent with family and friends during the holidays.

My Goal as Your Health Coach

As a health coach, my goal is to help break the idea in the health industry that the picture of health looks like a green smoothie touting body builder taking photos on the ocean-side (although that is amazing, and kudos if that’s you), but I want to help you celebrate the health journey, and that means embracing the moment right now, and where you’re at.

I want to help you be the healthiest you RIGHT NOW, today. And you can be, even BEFORE you reach your weight loss goals, or any goals at all. Let’s discuss how…

What Matters Most to our Health

Our primary sources of nourishment don’t just come from the food we eat, although that’s of course deeply important. Our primary sources of nourishment come through our ability to rest, the positive and supportive relationships we have, how much we enjoy our career, and if we are able to live out our passions. Our health depends on how we wake up and approach every new day, how we navigate challenges, and how we treat ourselves and talk to ourselves and care for ourselves day in and day out.

The food we eat is intrinsically important. Our body reproduces its cells from the energy and compounds in the very food we eat. We literally are what we eat, as our cells rebuild. But, we are also more than our physical body.

In the health industry we are daily discovering that the mind body connection is more complex than we’ve ever thought before. Your are, essentially, more than just what you eat.

We are what we eat, and we are what we think, and we are what we believe… and so on.

Creating a health reset today - a mental shift

So, my friends, give yourself permission to stop feeling guilty or stressed about how you should be eating. Is this important? YES. Absolutely. And let’s discuss that together and find the plan that works perfectly for you. But even more important to me, today, is that you and I treat ourselves with kindness, show up for the people we love, see challenges as opportunity, step out of toxic relationships, step into new hobbies that feed us, unplug, pray, run, dance, read, and sleep… all these beautiful things and more that support our health first and foremost.

If you’re feeling guilt from the holidays and are stressing about how to get healthy in 2019, stop and do these two things:

  • express deep gratitude for the loved ones you spent time with over the holidays, and express deep gratitude to yourself for showing up and loving the people close to you in your life

  • decide that today you will be kind to yourself, and love yourself where you are at right now, and that whatever steps you take toward better health and wellness today will be to beautifully support your body and soul because you’re worth it and you’re already enough.

Want to chat more about your health and wellness in 2019? Are you looking for a holistic approach that helps you make sense of all the important facets in your life that support your health and wellness like your family, your career, your sleep habits, your hobbies, your workouts, and your food? Let’s connect!

A List of Tips for a Healthier more Mindful Holiday

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I know the holidays can get VERY stressful for some of us, and for even more of us, we may even find ourselves “tripping over ourselves” trying to keep up with busy schedules, gatherings, events, baking, friends, and travel.

Every year it seems I notice the shift in people’s mindset in my community - we start getting more and more irritable the closer it gets to Christmas.

Call it materialism, call it hustle, call it whatever you want, but it’s definitely can negatively affect our attitudes.

Here are a few tips to help you get through the Holidays with ease this year.

Tips for Taking Care of Your Health During the Holidays:

  • Keep things simple

  • Eat warm foods, especially vegetables

  • Reduce sugar

  • Enjoy your herbs

  • Get plenty of sleep!

  • And I know it’s warm beverage season, but remember to drink enough water and watch out for dehydration!

  • Get enough sunshine… if you live in a cold climate like me, grab your parka!

  • Show more and more love in big, new ways, both to yourself and to those around you!

Tips for Taking Care of your Home During the Holidays

  • Keep it tidy

  • Keep decor simple, if this helps you out!

  • Focus on your entry way, even if that’s the only portion you decorate, get a wreath and a holiday rug and boom! Christmas decor done.

  • Grab these holiday scented hand-poured scented candles from Acacia Accents!

Tips for Caring for your Emotional and Mental Health during the holidays

  • Love well and show love often

  • Rest Up, be sure to get your sleep

  • Take your Vitamin D and get plenty of sunshine

  • Don’t sacrifice your health for extra holiday treats, but allow yourself to enjoy your favorites when you can!

  • If the Holiday season brings up extra difficult emotions for you, get support as soon as you can.

What did I miss? Let me know in the comments what you’re doing this year to stay healthy, keep things simple, and take the best care of yourself you possibly can!

My Free Gift to You…

“Restoring the holidays: 4 ways to enjoy a simpler, more mindful holiday”

If you enjoyed this list and it gave you a few good ideas, be sure to sign up to watch my free mini series, sign up below! It might help you gain some clarity as you map our your holiday season and create a plan for making the most of it!

Take 30 Minutes out of your day and mindfully prep yourself for the upcoming holidays, getting clear on what you want and need to get out of it this year…

In my free mini series, I take you through 5 short videos that share a bit more on a few of these topics! In this mini series we dive into …

  • Identify key stress points that might be holding us back from truly enjoying the holidays

  • set our intentions for how we TRULY want to feel and act this holiday season

  • Shake off unhelpful expectations we might be placing on ourselves, or any level of perfectionism we may be dealing with

  • Preparing an action plan along with our loved ones, that will help us fill the holidays with only what is essential and helpful, and supports our overall goals and values surrounding the holiday season!

Ready to sign up and watch the series right now? I’ll meet you over there! Grab your pen, a notepad, your fuzzy slippers, and your favorite holiday drink and let’s get going!

How to deal with Regrets and Setbacks and move forward in confidence

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Have you recently experienced a some regrets and setbacks? Or maybe even something in your life you perceived as an absolute failure?

I’m going to quick throw this out there - I don’t really believe in failures. At least never in the pure sense of the word. We are always learning from our experiences, so I don’t really believe there’s any such thing as a pure failure.

However, regrets and setbacks are unfortunately a part of life we can’t really avoid.

So let’s chat about them, because odds are if I’ve had one recently, and we are all human, you’ve probably experienced one recently too!

Whether you’re experiencing a regret or a setback with your physical health, mental or emotional health, your spiritual practice, your career, or your family and relationships… there are some key tools we can all employ to help accept these times, and know how to move forward in confidence.


Realizing our Freedom

Recently I have been reading the Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte. It’s an amazing book for anyone who considers themselves an entrepreneur or a go-getter in following their careers and passions and talents.

But right away in the beginning of the book Danielle explains a time in her life where she was experiencing one of her biggest setbacks/regrets/presumed failures of her life to date.

A friend calmly reminded her as she was painfully processing what she would do next “You’re free-er than you think you are.”

This single quote stuck out to me as if the words were raising off the page to my heart. I wrote it down on a sticky note and stuck it where I’d see it constantly for the next week.

You see, I struggle with feelings of being trapped often. Maybe you do too! Maybe it’s my wildly creative soul, maybe it’s because I’m a dreamer to the fullest dimension, but I constantly finding myself pushing to extend my horizons. And yet, what I find, is that most of my limitations are pure figments of my imagination!

I’m like that ant on the sidewalk. Have you ever drawn a circle out of chalk around an ant on the sidewalk? He’ll go crazy. He’ll get to the edge of the chalk and he won’t cross over because he thinks there’s a border there. But there isn’t. (It’s kind of insensitive, I wouldn’t recommend doing it, but it’s a fascinating example of what I’m talking about here!).

I imagine barriers in my life and start making up excuses to move forward like “People will stop taking me seriously if I do___”, or “If I do ____ it’s just too vulnerable. People will see the true me and they won’t want to stick around.” or “People will just think I’m a joke. They might laugh at me, scoff, or talk about me behind their backs…”

If you can relate with me, maybe that quote will resonate with you like it did with me.

Or maybe a quote like this one:

Fears Are Paper Tigers.
— Amelia Earhart

Because I’d venture to say, most of us are afraid to move on from perceived failures, regrets, and setbacks, because we are afraid of making the same mistakes again.

Would you agree? I know it’s true in my life.

But if you’re ready to MOVE ON but you feel stuck in the past, or unable to move past your fears of failure or thoughts about where you’ve been, let me just remind you that you are FREE.

You and I are sometimes a lot like that ant. We just have to realize, we can walk right through those barriers to the other side where growth and expansion can really flourish us.

So let’s walk through some steps and ideas.


Real vs. Unreal

One of the first action steps you can take to overcome your fears and to step outside of regret, setbacks, and failures is to take inventory of your thoughts. When you have a demoralizing or depressing thought about what just transpired or your current situation, take that thought at face value for what it is. Is this thought REALLY true about me? Or am I just perceiving that it is?

For example, this past year when I was still working web design and social media management, I had a client experience that was less than optimal. It was the first “failure” I felt as a designer. It was bad. Or at least I was perceiving it to be bad. I definitely made some mistakes in the process for sure. But my thoughts were consumed with “That’s it. I’m a bad designer.” Oh, okay, so forget the fact that I had a large number of successful, joyful design projects under my belt! Nope, didn’t matter at that moment, I was depressed and had fully succumbed to the fact that I had failed epic-ally! (see that fake barrier I just put up for myself right there?)

Well, the first thing I had to do was step out of my thoughts and take inventory of them. My thoughts were trying to protect me, “don’t go back out there! It’s scary!” my thoughts screamed at me.

But I had to simply acknowledge that my thoughts were simply not reality, and that many other factors were involved in that setback. I could move on knowing that I was still a good designer, and I could move on to step two… what did I learn?


The Epic Learning Experience

I honestly believe this: that there really are no failures. Life is a beautiful thing, and sometimes it gets really uncomfortable. But even in these moments where we experience perceived failure, epic setbacks, regrets over life, we have the divine privilege to be able to first bust out of the chaos of our thoughts and take inventory on what’s really reality, get our feet firmly planted back on the ground, realize our place in the world, and then start jotting down all the things we learned from that experience!

Pretty amazing privilege, right? We truly are free-er than we think we are, and it’s amazing.

So let’s take an action step! Consider making a list. What did you learn from this painful experience? Be honest with yourself. As soon as you start writing, you may feel your spirits lifting.

Here’s an example. Things I learned from my design experience that I perceived a failure:

  • I need a better communication system in place with my clients.

  • I need keep all my notes in one place so I don’t lose any of them.

  • Be more careful of that friendship vs client line in the future! Keep it more professional.

  • I NEED MORE SLEEP!!!

Yeah. Especially that last one. Did you get that? That would have really helped prevent most of the problems I encountered with that situation.

Your list will look different from mine. But make sure you are kind with yourself, generous with yourself, give yourself grace… be honest, but be objective. Remember, we already distinguished which of our thoughts were actual reality and which have been simply trying to sabbatoge us.

Here’s a shameless plug! Bring a health coach alongside you in the process if you need to, to help support your emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical health along the process as you grow and stretch into the future and this new version of you! Coaches have saved my life. I have epic respect for each and every coach and mentor I’ve had the honor of sitting with, and grateful for the introspective questions they’ve helped me ask myself.


Types of Setbacks & Preparing Your Toolbox

We all experience setbacks. My example here of my perceived “designers fail” was a minor setback in career. It seemed huge to me then, but now I see it for what it is - just a spec on the roadmap of my life. We could talk about setbacks all day long. They’re part of life. But in the end, this is what they will look like, mere specs on the map.

You might have been the healthiest version of yourself a few years ago, and then, well… life happened. Because that’s how it goes, right?

You may have felt things in your career were humming along as planned, but now you feel absolutely stuck.

Setbacks happen all the time in our lives. The key is, knowing how to gather a toolbox of things to help you maintain your emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual stamina throughout life, in spite of these fears, regrets, and setbacks.

I am a health coach because being a coach-ee has helped me be able to navigate life with a steadier gaze. I know who I am, I know my place in the world, and I have a tool box that I’ve created for myself so that I know what to do when things in life try to set me back or sink me.

I can stay a-float because I have a curated list of tools I can utilize at any time to assess where I’m at and know what to do next.

It’s a very powerful thing.


A Note From You in Three Years…

The beauty is, we don’t have to stay locked into regret mode, or even fear mode. You’re free. There’s more to you than that. The best of you is still yet to come if you’re ready to grow from this experience.

Think about what you, three years from now, will say to you once you’ve walked through this as an epic learning experience and you’re stronger than ever! My guess is it’ll go something like this.

“I’m SO proud of you. Look at you! You did it. I’m so glad you decided to not succumb to your feelings of regret and stay locked in your perceived failure. You did an amazing thing back there when you got up, learned from that experience, and used that to create the next best version of yourself. Way to go, rockstar. And now look where you are!”

At least, that’s how I imagine it. What about you?



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