Break Free from Anxiety

October 01, 2022 Debra Jones Rm with Dr. Gina Simmons Schneider Episode 48
Break Free from Anxiety
Become a supporter of the show!
Starting at $3/month
Show Notes Transcript

How to soothe anxiety, worry, anger and stress - advice from coping skills expert, author, and licensed psychotherapist, Dr. Gina Simmons Schneider, PhD.

Everyone experiences anxiety. The collective anxiety level has skyrocketed over the past two and a half years. As a healer, I've noticed the debilitating results of unregulated and unsupported anxiety and fears.  Most of us haven't learned the coping skills that are needed to regulate varying anxiety levels, nor are they given to patients by their family doctor. This rise in stress and anxiety has led me to discover more tools to share with my clients. In this podcast episode you will discover useful tips for yourself, and to share with others who may need them.

Dr. Gina Simmons Schneider's website

Debra Jones' walking meditation (mental practice)
Book a session with Debra at www.debrajones.ca

This episode of OWN THE GREY is brought to you by I AM.

  • Discover your unique talents
  • Realize your potential
  • Align to your path

Take the first step to Uncover Your Life Purpose by visiting www.debrajones.ca/courses

This episode is brought to you by LUNCH with a HEALER podcast. The BEST conversations happen when you're having lunch with a friend - especially when one is a healer! Pull up a chair at LunchwithaHealer.com

Support the show

NEW! ** Support the show **

CONNECT with Debra Jones

[00:04] Debra Jones: Welcome to OWN THE GREY, a podcast to dispel the notion that aging is undesirable and setting new positive attitudes. I'm Debra Jones, and I believe you can be vibrant and healthy throughout the best years of your life. 


Everyone experiences anxiety. The collective anxiety level has skyrocketed over the past two and a half years. As a healer, I've noticed the debilitating results of unregulated and unsupported anxiety and fear. Most of us haven't learned the coping skills that are needed to regulate varying anxiety levels, nor are they given to patients by their family doctor. This rise in stress and anxiety has led me to discover more tools to share with my clients. And in this podcast episode, you'll discover useful tips for yourself and to share with others who may need them. My next guest is a coping skills expert. Dr. Gina Simmons Schneider is a licensed psychotherapist who helps people regulate emotions and conflicts. She's the author of Frazzlebrain: Break Free from Anxiety, Anger, and Stress using Advanced Discoveries in Neuropsychology. Welcome to OWN THE GREY. Dr. Schneider.

[01:35] Dr. Schneider: Thank you, Debra. It's a privilege to be here.

[01:39] Debra Jones: One of your book reviews calls Frazzlebrain, and I quote, a much needed resource for anyone who's ever struggled with stress and anxiety, as it teaches the readers how to meet even our toughest emotions with ease and kindness. Dr. Schneider, tell us, what is frazzlebrain?

[02:01] Dr. Schneider: Thank you for asking. The word Frazzlebrain came out of an awareness that all of my clients were saying the same word over and over again, that they feel frazzled. And all of us can relate to this idea of this feeling of being pressured. There's time pressure, there's financial pressure, there's health worries, there's all this feeling of pressure, and it can bring with it some irritability and then fatigue. So, you have this mixture of a sense of urgency with a feeling of fatigue and kind of being exhausted by stress and irritability at the same time. So, it's anxiety, anger, and stress all combined. And when I was doing the neuropsychology research, because the book is based on neuropsychology research and also my clinical practice as a psychotherapist. So, when I was doing all this research in the neuroscience of our brain, we do have this state where different networks of our brain are all jumbled together. We're feeling all these jumbled feelings. And so I thought the term Frazzlebrain was relevant because it's in our brain, right? And it is related to this feeling of being frazzled. And now people are starting to use that term, like, I feel frazzlebrain, and I totally relate. I know what you're feeling.

[03:38] Debra Jones: So what is the book about?

[03:41] Dr. Schneider: It's really about helping people to manage really difficult emotions anxiety, anger and stress, shame, trauma, all the things that are really hard that we go through. And how to use our own brain, our own neuropsychology. From the neuropsychology research, what you can actually do to calm and cope better, calm yourself down and cope better. So the book is broken up into three different sections. The first section is focused thoughts? So when we focus our thoughts in the direction we want our feelings to go, we have a lot of empowerment to help our emotions move from a place of real discomfort and overwhelm to a place of feeling more competent like we can cope. The second section of the book is about intentional behaviors, like choosing specific types of behaviors that have a physiological effect that is calming, relaxing and healing for the body. And that helps us cope better no matter what we're going through. So it's thoughts, behaviors. And then the last section is on healing experiences because when we've been through trauma, the brain remembers that never forgets and that's for survival, right. We want to remember where that dangerous thing happens so that we can protect ourselves. The interesting thing about trauma though, is if we're going to recover from trauma, we need to have new experiences. And the way our brain works is the new experiences overlay on the trauma so that we create sort of this more expansive view of the world and we get more coping skills. So I saw this really interesting TikTok video with Dr. Julie Smith on TikTok and she showed trauma painted. It’s sort of like this black hole. It's like this black thing. We feel like it's this darkness. And new experiences - she took another brightly colored paint like yellow and said a new experience is kind of like putting a yellow brightly colored thing around this blackness, right? And then we have another new experience and you add like another red or purple or green. And when she finished the painting, you have this black in the middle. But then you have all of these new experiences that reshape the brain and help us cope from trauma. So what we don't want is to stay stuck in our trauma and have our world close up because we have anxiety and fear and we don't try new things and we don't have new experiences and we don't want to meet new people because this last person betrayed us. Right?

[06:44] Debra Jones: Right.

[06:45] Dr. Schneider: So what I offer in the book are really easy ways to ease out into the world if you feel wounded or injured in some way. Hurt. Harmed. And how to little by little having these new experiences that broaden and build your world and we know what that does to the brain is it can literally heal the parts of the brain that have been harmed by traumatic experiences.

[07:16] Debra Jones: Wow, that's so much. I'm surprised you were able to fit that in one book, actually. Because there's so many different aspects to all of the things that you just talked about. So I just want to unpack that a little bit just to give some context. So from my experience as a healer, somebody that comes to me that is saying that they feel anxious and they're sharing with me the kinds of things that they're suffering with. One of them is the fear of going out because of an anxiety attack and how that's going to affect them. And I was talking with the client just recently who was put on medication that made it even worse and she had some very dark thoughts that really scared her. So medication now has scared her. And so most people find their way to me when they've gone through all the other resources and haven't found a solution. And we do find solutions, but point being is that's a really dark, heavy place to be in when there's no hope. I think without the hope aspect we can't thrive, we cannot survive. And so your book with these concepts and these tools and ideas is something that's going to bring hope to some people. And I heard you mention in another podcast of how simple and quick some of these things can be. Maybe share one or two of those tips so we can just get an idea of what you're talking about.

[09:01] Dr. Schneider: Yeah, a lot of times we think when we are suffering deeply that it's going to just take this long effort that's just grueling years of therapy, right? Massive amounts of medication to just break us out of this intense pain that we're feeling. And what's really interesting is that, for example, there's one little 15 second technique and that is taking a little tennis ball or a stress ball or a little squishy thing like a hacky-sack or a balloon that you can squeeze and you squeeze it for 15 seconds with your left hand. You can even take a pillow if you have a pillow on your couch or something, squeeze it for 15 seconds with your left hand. It activates the right part of the brain which is involved in pleasurable thoughts, happy thoughts, positive thinking and that reduces anxiety. It has a measurable reduction in anxiety. They've found that it improves their performance on tests. It improves your performance when you're on doing public speaking. I use it before podcasts and things like that just activate my little happy place. It's a 15-second strategy. Now, if you're dealing with real severe anxiety, you might want to just have something in your left hand and just throughout the day you just squeeze it a little bit. Another thing is what happens with anxiety is our imagination. And here's one of the superpowers that people with anxiety have. People with anxiety are often highly sensitive, they're often very empathetic and kind, they're often artistic or they have some ability to really appreciate on a deep level great literature, art, music, color, textures, fabrics. So people with a lot of proneness to anxiety are highly sensitive people and they have a superpower, they have an amazing imagination. The downside is that imagination can be used to create even more torment than you're already experiencing when you're going through a hard time, right? So one of the chapters in my book is really about harnessing the imagination. And there's some incredibly exciting research on just imagining the best possible outcome for yourself. So if you think about, I'm going to see Debra Jones for a healing treatment, basically, right? If you go in there imagining, I am going to feel better, I am going to get hopeful tools. I can imagine myself with the best possible outcome. I can't imagine my muscles relaxing. I can imagine my cells healing from the surgery I just went through. I can imagine my brain recovering from the stroke because my brain can grow and create new neural connections. My brain can recover. So you imagine all of that and you might have an argument with yourself because your worry imagination is going, yes, terrible things can happen. And you could have an argument with that, but you want to lean into the best possible outcome fantasy. So let those other thoughts be a little more in the background. You can have your worry thoughts. They'll be there, right? But lean into the best possible outcome. And here's why it works. I'm going to just tell you, try not to bore with too many studies, but there's a new study that came out. It was at Stanford University by Dr. Elia Crumb. And they took children with peanut allergies, which we know can be fatal, right, for children. And they have a medical protocol to help children desensitize their reaction to peanuts. And so all of these children and their parents were divided into two groups. One group got the medical treatment, but they were told that any non harmful side effects that they had meant that the treatment was working, was doing what it was supposed to do. The other group given the same treatment, they were told they might have some non harmful side effects. Then they measured their outcomes. OK. The group that was told that the side effects meant the treatment was working, they had significantly better responses to the medication on a cellular level. It changed them. It also created other changes. The parents were more relaxed, the kids were more relaxed and taking the medication. And that helped. So there's also another study, the milkshake study. I'll be really quick, which I think this is just so radical, the milkshake study. Okay, so the same group of people was given on two different occasions, the exact same milkshake, same people. So you go into the lab two different occasions and you drink a milkshake and your job is just to evaluate what you think of the milkshake.

[14:53] Debra Jones: Okay?

[14:54] Dr. Schneider: The milkshake was 380 calories exact same milkshake on both occasions. The first occasion you're told and you're given a false label that says it's a 620 calorie indulgent milkshake. And it's got a fake label that has all these different nutritional facts on it.

[15:15] Debra Jones: Okay?

[15:17] Dr. Schneider: The second time you go in to the lab, you're told this is a sensible milkshake of 140 calories. Okay.

[15:27] Debra Jones: Okay.

[15:27] Dr. Schneider: So then they measured their ghrelin levels. Ghrelin is a hormone that goes up and down throughout the day and tells us when we're hungry. If our Ghrelin levels are high, that means we're hungry. If our Ghrelin levels are down, it means we feel satiated. We feel full.

[15:44] Debra Jones: Right?

[15:45] Dr. Schneider: This is what's so freaking amazing. The people who believed that they got 620 calories, their ghrelin levels dropped dramatically. They stayed full for a long time. They didn't get hungry for a long time. The people who believed they got just like 140 sensible snack kind of amount of calories, their Ghrelin levels remained steady, so their hormones changed according to their expectations. So this is why if we have a proneness to anxiety, we want to prepare our expectations and lean into this is going to help me thanking the medication. Thank you for healing me. Imagine it healing you. Because our expectations can have a physiological effects on how our body absorbs the medicine and how we experience it or whatever the treatment is. So that is a really empowering tool, I think, for anybody going into a treatment protocol to just really lean into imagining the best possible outcome, feeling very good, accepting the healing. You can even say things like, I accept the healing. And the studies are now really showing that our mind has an effect on us at the cellular level.

[17:17] Debra Jones: That answers all those questions about why healing works. The work that I do is basically energy work, which you can't see, taste and touch, but yet it's working. And I think a lot of it is to do with the beliefs and letting go of beliefs that are holding you back as well. And it's that power of the mind which kind of leads me to something that I saw on one of your podcasts or heard on one of your podcasts was about mental practice. And one of my podcasts, episode 16, I put together a podcast that was a mental practice specifically for a client of mine who had some mobility issues. And what I had learned about mental practice is, well, you could probably tell it better, but athletes use it and musicians use it. Do you want to share with us how mental practice works?

[18:17] Dr. Schneider: Oh, yeah. That's really exciting. And I write about it in one of the chapters in my book about how mental practice is what great athletes, Olympic athletes, will often you'll see them visualizing before they even go out on the mat to do their gymnastics routine. You can even just watch their face and they're visualizing a perfect routine that they have done over and over again. There was even a study that you could strengthen. They did a study on finger muscles and finger dexterity, and they had people imagine their finger exercising and becoming more flexible. And those people who imagined it could create physiological changes in their own fingers. There's the best possible self study that was done by Sonya Lubomyarsky, who does a lot of stuff in positive psychology. She's a great researcher, but she looked at performance in people who were in one condition, told to imagine their best possible performance, their best possible self. So just imagining yourself with everything in your brain working really smoothly, you're in a flow state, you feel calm and relaxed and confident. You're able to perform the task, whether it's a musical piece or whatever, you're able to perform it at the highest level. And that when you imagine that your outcomes are way higher. Now, if you sit there and imagine being a guitar player and you never pick up a guitar, it's likely not going to be a very good performance if you travel and go out on stage.

[20:12] Debra Jones: But it's an addition too, right?

[20:14] Dr. Schneider: In addition to, right. But if you're looking at really anything you care about that you would like to do well, I tend to get very nervous and anxious around dinner parties because I'm not very skilled at hosting dinner parties. I don't do more than maybe three a year. And I always envy my friends who are so brilliant at it and just seems so relaxed and poised and everything is effortless and looks beautiful, and I'm stressing on every little thing. Right. So I really have used this in my own life, that when I'm going to have a dinner party, I imagine myself being relaxed. I imagine myself having everything ready on time and that it all tastes good and that it's all beautifully presented. I just sort of hold my own hand through it because it's a skill that I don't feel confident about and that has really helped me improve over the years and kind of not having the last minute anxiety flip out before the guests arrive. That's very helpful. It really helps. So I think that's a mundane example. But for bigger important things like healing, imagining the best outcome, imagining your cells healing, imagining the tumor shrinking, imagining the outcome you want to have, studies show that it does have a healing effect.

[21:47] Debra Jones: Yeah, that's really the thoughts aspect of your book, your focused thoughts. And so if we walk into the intentional behaviors part of it, what do we need to know about that? What did you write about?

[22:02] Dr. Schneider: Well, there are interesting things that we can do that are actions that no matter how we feel, if we do that action, it has healing effect if we do that experience or that behavior. So one of them is this concept, Shinrin Yoku, the Japanese term for forest bathing. That 2 hours walking in a forest. And if you can't walk 2 hours in a wheelchair sitting in a forest, not walking. So it's not just related to exercise, it's actually just being in a forest.

[22:44] Debra Jones: The environment and the smells and the feeling of it and touching the bark and things like that?

[22:51] Dr. Schneider: Yes. Actually, when you inhale particulates from a forest that changes our brain chemistry and has antidepressant effects that lasts for up to a month, for 30 days, they've measured it. So it's a natural antidepressant. I know my beloved sister in law, who we lost when - we lost her from cancer. Her survival was like ten years beyond what was predicted. And one of the things she regularly did was go to the forest and we would hike. We would hike in the mountains together. She would go regularly with her family. She would go to local places and hike to whatever degree she could. Sometimes she couldn't hike. She'd just sit.

[23:44] Debra Jones: Right?

[23:45] Dr. Schneider: And she attributes her long term survival and improvement of her quality of life to the fact that that reduced her depression and created more hopefulness in her life. So we also know that the experience of being kind to others and practicing kindness changes us biologically. And I talk about just random acts of kindness, everyday kindness. We sort of have this kindness habit in our household. Whoever makes dinner, thank you for dinner, thank you for doing that. There's just this everyday sort of manners, right, that we teach our children to practice. There is something biologically calming about acts of kindness, and they build bridges of connection with humanity, whether it's the people we know or the people - strangers out in the world. And so you can do intentional acts of kindness like people do with volunteer work. For example, my sister in law that I just talked about, she was an avid volunteer person and even all the way to the point where she was so weak, she would still be in her virtual book club and she'd be contributing. Their acts of kindness are healing to the body, and they also help us recover from trauma because a lot of times trauma comes from cruelty. Right. That's happened to us. And kindness is a cure and a healing balm. It's like you have this burn wound and now you have this cooling healing balm that helps protect you from the pain, but it also helps you recover and it also helps our relationships to be better. And one of the things that we know about successful aging is the ability to create and build and maintain loving relationships in our life is one of the most healing things you can do.

[26:01] Debra Jones: Yeah, let's talk about that a little bit because I was listening, you were talking about Alzheimer's patients and the types of things that they can do to help their health in that way. Do you have any tips for us?

[26:17] Dr. Schneider: Definitely. In fact, there were studies of Alzheimer's patients that if they just had a plant to take care of or they could go out in a garden and do some weeding, 19% improvement in their behavior, in their mood. So being in nature, having something to take care of, pets, we know pets can really help us age successfully. What are we doing when we have a pet? We're taking care of something, right? A living creature. We're taking care of a living creature that is also giving us new experiences all the time that kitten is crawling on our lap and purring and kneading something or it's yelling at us for food. We are having a new experience. When we see the plants starting to wilt and need water, and then we give it water and it starts to bloom again. These are really small and simple things that help with aging and also improve and reduce some of the negative effects of illnesses that can happen to us as we age.

[27:29] Debra Jones: Wow, there's so much that's part of the healing experiences, I think, of what you're talking about. And you also talked about getting a sense of awe and wonder as well. Can you share some of that with us?

[27:44] Dr. Schneider: Yes. You know what so amazing? Like this web telescope that just came out with these brand new images of outer space, and what we're seeing is images from 18 billion years ago. We are seeing 18 billion years. Is that awe inspiring, right? I mean, is that wondrous and we're discovering things about the universe that are going to just keep tumbling out. It's this humbling thing, right? Here we are in this little blue marble floating around and we're little tiny people on this little blue marble. So the experience of awe gives us a sense of humility. It gives us this sense that there's something bigger out there than us, right? It takes us out of our ego, reads about our little ego, right? Do they like me? How do I look today? All of those things that we worry about. And I'm like, I could care less how I look. This is 18 billion years ago. Look at how beautiful the universe is. Wondrous what's interesting, when we measure physiology, when people are exposed to films that generate a sense of awe and wonder, a lot of them are nature films, but that it actually has an anti inflammatory effect. So our cells get inflamed when we're sick, right?

[29:20] Debra Jones: Yeah.

[29:21] Dr. Schneider: Or when we're infected, we have an infection that's an inflammation, right? So exposing yourself to wondrous music, that makes you just go, wow. My husband and I went to we had an experience of all when we went to the Paul McCartney, sir Paul McCartney concert a few years back. And it was on the full moon. It was a Dodger stadium where the Beatles really first took off in the US. And here he is, he's 70 plus years old and he's hitting all the high notes and moving like a rock and roller. And there was a couple around our age we didn't know. And at the end of the concert, we were so bonded that we hugged each other and embraced each other because we were all crying as we're singing at the end and so on. Wonder can be listening to great music or watching incredible athletic events and you just go, how did they do that? But we can savor that feeling of all if we know it's good for us, right? Like, sometimes we'll have a nice experience, we'll go, that was nice, that felt good. If we let our mind linger and steep in that feeling a lot longer and maybe revisit it with pictures. That amazing waterfall. We revisit that feeling of awe and wonder that we actually have. Can help ourselves heal faster from wounds, we can help ourselves recover better from surgery, and we reduce. If we are exposed to viruses, we're less likely to get sick. And they did this in a lab with people. Be real quick on this one, too. But these amazing, brave volunteers agreed to be exposed to the flu and cold virus.

[31:21] Debra Jones: Wow.

[31:22] Dr. Schneider: But they found out that you could expose a whole bunch of people to a virus and only some get sick. Why is it that some don't get sick and some do get sick? And they found that the ones who were more likely to get sick had been angry the previous week.

[31:43] Debra Jones: Not just in that moment, but this week.

[31:47] Dr. Schneider: Yeah. They'd had episodes of anger where they were really under siege with maybe something really upsetting them and that made their nervous system more vulnerable to getting sick. Now we can't go through life. I mean, anger is there. We need our anger. It is not a bad thing to get angry.

[32:06] Debra Jones: Right?

[32:07] Dr. Schneider: However, we don't want to stay stuck there. We want to allow ourselves to get the lesson from the anger of that person. Hurt my feelings. How do I deal with this conflict? And then lean into our positive emotions. I can recover from this thing that hurt my feelings. I'm going to take good care of my body. I'm going to do these anti inflammatory things. I'm going to listen to. I recommend Tina Guo, the cellos to do the Wonder Woman theme song, and she's got a classical album out. That's amazing. Okay, so beautiful music, whatever inspires you, can really help you heal and recover from those episodes of anger. And so it's not like we have to always be positive all the time because that's not actually healthy either. Just like physical pain, if we had no ability to feel physical pain, there is a condition where people never feel physical pain and it's deadly because they don't know they're sick and they don't know their leg is broken. So we need our emotional pain for the same reason. It's teaching us something. However, we don't want to stay stuck there.

[33:28] Debra Jones: Yeah, that's really well said. So your book gives us the ability to take care of our own state of mind and health and the studies, and they're coming up with new studies all the time that we have so much power within us. We don't need anything specific. We just need to train our mind to think a certain way. So as you just said, don't stay in the pain, don't stay in the discomfort, don't stay in the anger any longer than what's needed is to gain the lesson from it or what it is that's teaching us or making us a better person. But if we're in a situation where, let's say we've been anxious for months, for years, and we just feel that that's our lot in life, that's the way it's going to be, and not give anything a try or I think what I'm hearing I'm saying is we need a little bit of hope or a little bit of belief that we can change. That has to come first, doesn't it?

[34:47] Dr. Schneider: Yes. There's a lot on mindset and a lot of research on mindset, which is a belief. And there's two different kinds. You can have a fixed mindset, which you described well, where you could say let's just say you're a person who's had chronic anxiety for a very long time, and it becomes the sense of yourself, I'm just an anxious person. This is just who I am, right? And so because of that, I can't take risks or I can't go to big parties with people, or I can't do some of these things because it just makes me too anxious, and that's just unbearable, and that's just who I am. So that's a fixed mindset. And then there's the growth mindset, which is I'm a really anxious person. I inherited it from my mother or my dad or both. Maybe multi generational, just part of the genes. And yet I know that I can expand and broaden my world if I use some of these tools and help myself so that I can try some of these things that I value and care about, even if it makes me anxious. And if I do that enough, my anxiety will go down, and I'll still be able to do those things. So that's a growth mindset, and we find that a growth mindset can be cultivated. We can grow a growth mindset.

[36:13] Debra Jones: Cool.

[36:14] Dr. Schneider: Because all it is is our brain telling itself a different story. Because here's the radical, radical thing about our brain. We create our emotions. We create our lived experience because our brain is constantly predicting, it's constantly interpreting. We do not get experience immediately absorbed into our brain as a pure record. We have an experience, and then we interpret it. Okay? Yeah. For example, I had last year Father's Day weekend, my husband and daughter and son in law were on a hike, and it was 90 deg, which was really stupid that we went on a hike when it was that hot and we went up the mountain. And of course, it was also really stupid that I noticed my judgmental language. I don't recommend being judgmental, but I was I was wearing sneakers instead of good hiking boots because it was hot and I felt. Feel like a confident hiker. So I don't eat hiking boots, right? So anyway, on the way down, I slip into a ditch and I break my foot and I'm two and a half miles or so up this mountain and I can't get up because I'm busy. I'm going to pass out. So I'm sitting there. My husband calls 911. Fortunately, the phone connected. And so I'm really sitting there immediately going, oh, I've ruined Father's Day for my husband. My foot hurts. This is not the day we planned. But then I went, I have coping skills. I started practicing what I preach. Like do deep diaphragmatic. Breathing through your nose. That's why you're dizzy. You stopped. Breathing deeply. Breathing deeply through my nose. Breathing out all the way to get the carbon dioxide out. Tell yourself your day has changed and just adapt now. Now you have a new thing to adapt to. You don't have to judge it.

[38:23] Debra Jones: It's just this new thing.

[38:25] Dr. Schneider: So then this guy comes in a helicopter. He comes down on a cable, cute guy named Tim. And he comes up and he puts a harness on me and says, we're going up in the cable. So one part of me is going, I am not Tom Cruise. I do not want to be dangling from a cable from a helicopter. This is not my plan day. I'm scared. And then the other part is going, look at this with flexible curiosity. This is a really interesting experience. You've never had an experience dangling from a helicopter on a cable before, right? So I told my son in law, please take pictures, like a selfie. This is not going to happen. This is not going to happen again. So as I'm going up, I'm really trying to surrender to the experience and adapt to the experience, because that's how we cope better with everything, is the sooner we stop struggling with this shouldn't be happening. This is really bad that this is happening, right? When we're doing that, it's like we're being tossed in a wave and we're fighting a wave we don't know up from down, we don't know where to get air, but we're fighting and fighting and fighting, and we're using up a lot of energy, but we're going nowhere. And we could be making it worse by swimming in the wrong direction, right? So if we can just surrender to this is happening, this wave is crashing over me, adapt to this is my new reality now. Now, let me look at it with some flexible curiosity. This could be interesting. I could learn some things. So I got up there and by the time I was like, away from the ground rush where all the dirt was being stirred up by the helicopter and then we got off the mountain, I went, this is the best view ever. We came up the mountain for a view. I had the better view. I had had a broken foot, but I had a great view for a while, and so we took pictures of the guys in the helicopter. It was really fun. On and on. So, long story short, obviously that was not a life threatening injury I was taking care of. Obviously, when you have something a lot more devastating that you're having to deal with, you might have to work a little bit harder to get past some of those early feelings of fighting it. However, the same principle applies. The sooner we accept this is what's happening, and then we open ourselves to, what are some tools I can use? Who can I call? Can I call Debra Jones? Can she help me with this energy healing? What are my options? Let me explore new options. And when we do that, when we generate hope, we are helping ourselves on a cellular level. Tell yourself a different story, because you are creating your lived experience. So you can change the story and go, you know what? I'm an anxious person, and I can write the horror movie of the week. Just like that. I've got the horror movie going. The worst case scenario, let me change that story. Let me make it have a happy ending. Let me make that story a romantic story, a story of great friendship, you know, a story of wonder.

[41:58] Debra Jones: Everything but the horror story.

[42:00] Dr. Schneider: Exactly. But we can do that. We can do that because our brain is wired to be very flexible.

[42:07] Debra Jones: Thanks for listening. And did you know that positive reviews from listeners like you helped me get these messages out into the world? Leave a rating for OWN THE GREY on your podcast app or at www.OwnTheGrey.ca