Stress is like a witch’s cauldron. A big vat with snakes, and toads and everything yucky. But here’s the thing, without realizing it, we stir and chant over that cauldron until it bubbles and boils and then, out explodes…anxiety!

When your mind is running amok with worries, concerns and a plate piled high with ‘doing’, this triggers stress, which boosts cortisol levels (blood sugar) causing a domino effect of unbalanced hormones which mess with sleep cycles. And there you’ve brewed yourself the perfect cauldron of anxiety.

Before we dig into this anxiety causing cycle, I would be remiss if I did not mention that there are medical reasons for anxiety that shouldn’t be ignored. Thyroid imbalances, anxiety disorders, trauma – heart disease and asthma also cause anxiety as well as mental health issues. Early childhood trauma is another trigger and these are just a few of the underlying causes of anxiety. If you are experiencing severe anxiety please see your doctor or mental health professional.

But with medical issues ruled out, the self-inflicted anxiety remains.

So, I want to take a minute to thread this all together – overwhelm is an emotional state developed from beliefs and habits we unwittingly adopt. Such as guilt, which leads to over-pleasing, which leads to over-whelm. Which we now know, from Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, is because society has ‘trained’ women to feel guilty and over-please.

I’d like to invite you to let go of the toads! And gently weave new habits into your life that will replace this anxiety triggering cycle. Are you with me?

Try these steps, find the ones that work for you right now.

#1: Women – Know your ‘edge’ 

The truth of the matter is we navigate hormonally charged emotions every single month. Be mindful of that edgy feeling so it does not become another ingredient in your cauldron. Feel it, recognize it, warn those around you, cut yourself some slack, back off on the caffeine and sugar and schedule a massage or Reiki session.

#2: Have these tricks up your sleeve

  • When you feel anxiety, breathe in through your nose deeply and breathe out with the ‘ahhhh’ sound, three times (or more).
  • Place the palm of one hand on your forehead, and the palm of the other hand on the back of your head. Close your eyes and feel the comforting sensation of lovingly holding your head. This along with the ‘ahhhh’ breathing method is a wonderful way to calm anxious feelings.

#3: Keep it real

A question that helps me is to ask, “Am I okay right now in this moment?” There may be a huge project due next week, but in this moment, are you okay? Anxiety is often caused by worrying about something that has not even happened.

#4: Surrender 

You have a choice, you can let whatever it is that is provoking the anxiety cause your mind to run amok, or replace the anxiety provoking thought with a mantra. Two of my favorites are “I surrender, I surrender, I surrender” and “All things are resolving themselves for me harmoniously now”. I’ve used both of these countless times and shared them with many friends with glowing results.

#5: Redirect 

Do something that makes you happy – go outside, take a dance break, go for a walk, meditate, read something inspirational, write down ten gratitudes. Doing something that breaks the state of your mind, is like taking your foot of the gas pedal and shifting into cruise. And, sometimes there are outside things that can help, here are a few of my favorites:

L-Theanine (Suntheanine is the purest form) is an amino acid that boosts GABA in the brain (an inhibitory neurotransmitter). Theanine seems to calm the brain without sedation and even helps with mental clarity. At my nutrition store both humans and animals benefited from a flower essence called Five Flower Remedy. *If you are pregnant or nursing or on medications for anxiety, please consult your health practitioner.

No matter where you are on your path, I want to help you get there faster, with less pain and more enjoyment. I’ve spent the past year gathering all the tools I used to step off that maddening wheel of overwhelm. And I want to share them with you now, before the holidays start, before it all kicks into high gear and feels like it won’t stop.

I’ve put together a four-week training that will take you into the holidays feeling relaxed, uncluttered and in control of your power to say ‘no’. This mini course combines all the tools I’ve used and refined to get off the hamster wheel of anxiety, stress and over pleasing and I want to share them with you.

To be honest, I debated holding the course until after the holidays when things settle down and we all have more time, but my intuition prompted me to realize, it is this time of year where we start to feel the true burnout. Holidays, family gatherings, planning cards and gifts and meals and hosting and still trying to get our own work done not to mention a few moments of ‘me’ time.

So, I am starting the course the first week of November and I’m stripping it down to the essentials. Just the tools you need to get through the next two crazy busy months.

I’ll have a more on that this coming Tuesday so keep an eye on your inbox for that. And, I should mention, this course will have a lot of one on one time with me, to answer your questions and customize the tools for you. So, my number of spots are limited for this one.

What I’ve realized in these past few years is that there is a richness to life that I was missing out on. My relationships are better, my anxiety is just about non-existent, I can say no without guilt, and I have more time in my life for the ‘yesses’ that matter.