EPISODE 58: [STORYTIME] My Struggles with Anxiety & How I manage it now (AN UPDATE!)

**TRIGGER WARNING** In this episode we are tackling the idea of ANXIETY and MENTAL HEALTH. If these themes & topics are going to make you uncomfortable or trigger negative or harmful thoughts / habits, I recommend you pass on listening to this episode.

After a few months of really focusing on welcoming peace back into my life and working on getting my anxiety under control, I wanted to share a little update with you on what’s working for ME and how I am doing. This has been such a journey of growth and learning and I hope you find this episode helpful. If nothing else, I hope you take away the permission slip that it’s okay to ask for help and do what you need to do in order to live a life of peace. Do what you need to do in order to get there, whatever you choose to do, I support wholeheartedly.












Maddy 0:08 Welcome to the living in sunshine podcast if you don’t know who I am, my name is Maddy. And I am so excited to have you tuning in to our weekly podcast episodes, where we chat all the things from tips and tricks to funny stories from my life that have helped me to truly live in the sunshine. In this space, we are all about encouraging, inspiring and giving you the tough love that you need to hear sometimes to realize that you are totally made for more than what you currently have in life, and that you hold the power to make the changes that you need to level up and live your best self. So buckle up, grab some water and let’s get into it. Hello, hello, my dudes and welcome back to the living in sunshine podcast. I am so glad that you are here and back for a yet another episode of the podcast. If you hear scratching or crying in the background, that would be my dog who cannot decide if he wants to be in the room with me or out of the room with me. So we’re just rolling with this is a life when you have too many animals because you’re too afraid to commit to like a baby. You know what I mean? Dog moms will get it Okay, those who get the girls who get it, get it and the girls who don’t know. But you guys today we are jumping right back in to our month long series talking about the topic of peace. And this year 2022 Peace was one of my kind of words for the year if you have ever heard of that before people picking a word for the year. And I would say that piece I didn’t typically I didn’t technically pick one. Um, a word that that is I didn’t pick a word for the year. But if I was looking and thinking of my vision board piece is definitely one of those reoccurring themes right piece is one of those reoccurring themes for me this year, because 2021 was just a lot between house things, relationship things, personal things, business things. 2021 was just a year of chaos and living in it and growing through it and just trying to figure it out. And after last year, at the end of last year, when I was setting my vision board and mind setting my vision for 2022. I just told myself that I wanted to feel more at peace and less anxious and more joyful, and all of those things. And one of the things that I really wanted to get under control in 2022 was my anxiety. And before we get any further, I do want to just insert a little bit of a trigger warning right here, we are going to be talking about the themes of mental health, anxiety, chronic worrying, in similar theme. So if that is something that’s going to upset you, or trigger, you definitely just pass on this episode. It will always be something you can come back to when you are also at a better headspace. But I did just want to throw that trigger warning out there in case it is something that makes you uncomfortable listening to or thinking about or maybe it’s going to stir up some emotions in your own life. I totally get it you can come back when you’re ready. But I did want to just put that warning out there. So today’s episode you guys in terms of peace is talking about and giving you kind of an update of my struggles with anxiety and how I manage it so I can be more at peace because last year I have way too many that is healthy memories of me just being so overwhelmed and so anxious that I would sit at my desk and just sob literally cry at my desk, heavy sobs, the kind where you can’t breathe and you have snot running down your face. And you’re just like trying to calm yourself down. That was a reoccurring theme of 2021. And this year, I told myself, you’ve got to get better at taking care of yourself and welcoming more peace back into your life. And the way that you’re going to do this is getting your anxiety under control. And if you remember if you listen to my first episode, because like I said, this is kind of an update to an episode that I did back in February episode 47, where I really give you the full backstory of my anxiety. It was something that I had been struggling with for years. Literally, I grew up in a very what is the right word, um, between the ages of like infancy to probably 11. I grew up in a very hostile home environment. I constantly lived in fear. And a lot of my anxiety stems from that stems from feeling like everything is going to come crashing down or I’m going to be in a lot of trouble. Even though I do everything, right. That’s really where my anxiety stems from. And I kind of uncovered this when I again told myself at the beginning of the year that I needed to get my anxiety under control. And so I signed up at the end of January with a platform called cerebral and it’s s e r e b r a l cerebral and it is probably one of the best decisions I’ve made for myself because It’s really helped me to get to the root of my issues with anxiety and where I can do better. And it’s also got, it’s been the platform that I have used to get connected with medication to help monitor and support my anxiety. And it’s also gotten me connected to a therapist. So I often talk about cerebral on my Instagram stories, and I always get questions about if I like it, what are my general thoughts about it, and just briefly, I love Cerebro for a few reasons. One, it’s super convenient. I am the kind of person who does not leave my house like I don’t like I like being at home, I work from home, I have built a business that I can do from wherever I want, because that’s how I like to live my life, it is something that brings me peace, being at home brings me peace. And so I knew before I started therapy, that if I had to drive to an appointment, I would never go. And so traditional therapy wasn’t something that I knew I wanted, because I knew that I was gonna go. And if you’re the kind of person who knows that you will cancel an online appointment, then this probably isn’t going to be for you. But if you are similar to me, and you do like doing things from home, on your own schedule, whenever you have the time Cerebro might be a really good fit for you. So it was the convenience. The next thing was the affordability, you guys cerebral takes insurance, which is amazing, because a lot of those online therapy session are platforms that are help. What’s the other one? I don’t remember the other one, but I know BetterHelp and other similar platforms, a lot of them don’t take insurance, and you have to pay for that out of pocket, which even just out of pocket costs, in my opinion, were really, really expensive. And that was something that I didn’t want to have to pay for. So affordability is the other reason why I chose cerebral. And the third reason why I chose cerebral over everyone else, is because their customer service and the people on their team are amazing. I have had a few questions before I started. And then after I’ve gotten started and someone has always gotten back to me right away, and the people that I work with my prescriber, aka the person who prescribes me my medication. So a psychologist, right. They’re the people, psychiatrists, and my therapists have been really, really amazing to work with, and starting therapy, and honestly putting myself on medication and swallowing my pride when it comes to needing to take medication to support myself has done wonders for my anxiety you guys I within cerebral and on their medication Plus Care counseling package, if you decide and this is like not sponsored or anything you guys, I’m just sharing with you what has worked to help me manage my anxiety better this year and welcome more peace back into my life, right? This is just an update, it’s not sponsored. I am on their medication and care counseling package, which if you go to cerebral ‘s website, you’ll see that they have different options, I decided to go this route one because of the affordability in two, because part of me knew that I probably needed support of medication. And there’s nothing wrong with that there genuinely is nothing wrong with it. And I was able to share with my prescriber that I was a little bit wary of taking medication, and I was really a little bit against it. But I was willing to try it. And she listened to what I had to say. And she’s prescribed me the just what was dose that you can take, which is five milligrams of the generic Lexapro, medication. And it’s done wonders for me, I genuinely mean that whenever I go for my monthly therapy appointment, I’m like, I don’t really have anything to talk about. Because I don’t really feel like I’m struggling with anxiety anymore. And so my therapist and I like we talk about things, and it’s a really great session. But it’s not something that I feel like I desperately need to have, like I did last year, and even like I did at the beginning of this year before I started taking medication and scheduling monthly therapy appointments. And that just doing that just swallowing my pride, and doing something new that I wasn’t really sure if I want it or not, has brought me so much peace. And genuinely those of you with anxiety, you will get this. I don’t feel like the world is going to come crashing down around me anymore, which for me is a miracle because that used to be a constant feeling. In my gut, in my brain in my heart, I always felt very on edge. And like something was going to happen, something bad was going to happen at any point in my day to day life. And now I don’t have that feeling. And I genuinely contribute it to taking my medication every single day and no medication is not something I’m telling you that you need to go do. But if you were like me, and you were so prideful about wanting to manage it on your own, and you’re still struggling years and years and years after quote unquote managing on your own, then maybe it’s something to try and if it doesn’t work, you don’t have to continue with it right. We’re all about being in control of our own life in this space. You have every right to not take something if it doesn’t work for you. And if it’s not part of your lifestyle, I understand that as well. But it’s what worked for me. And that’s why I’m sharing it here today with you. Other things that I do you guys to manage my anxiety and really support myself with being someone who has Generalized Anxiety is I don’t overfill my plate. And by this I mean when it comes to work specifically, I don’t overdo it because as soon as I overdo it, I get so overwhelmed. And I get really overwhelmed very quickly. Again, because of my anxiety, perks and having anxiety and having an anxious brain, I get really overwhelmed really quickly. So I’m always constantly checking in with myself, are you overbooked? Are you saying yes to often what do you need to do. And something that I’ve shared on my Instagram, I shared it last month in April, is I have this giant whiteboard. Now I had my husband go buy me a giant whiteboard. And what I do when I’m feeling really overwhelmed, overwhelmed, especially with work, is I will brain dump everything in my brain onto this whiteboard in a really organized, systematic way that makes sense to my brain. And then I take a step back, and I’m like, okay, I can do this, it’s really not as much as I think it is. Because it’s no longer in my head. And if it’s no longer in my head, and I can see it visually, it helps me to not feel so overwhelmed by all of the things that I do. The other reason why this works is because it’s a visual reminder to me to continue to not say yes to new things, and to continue to not overdo it and to not overfill my plate. Because when I do that, I find that my anxiety increases. And I start to feel overwhelmed quite quickly. And just by having that visual reminder, it prevents me from doing that. The second thing that I have really been working on this year specifically to help manage my anxiety is talking to someone else. And for me, my someone else is always forever and always going to be my husband, that coupon boy. And I share with him when I’m having a hard day. And I find that when I share these things with him, and I just tell him, you know, I’m having a hard day, I’m feeling really anxious today, I’m not really sure why. Just getting it again, out of my brain and off my chest, I feel so much better. Not huge waves of oh my gosh, I’m you know, suddenly fine. But it’s nice knowing that someone else is out there looking out for me, if that makes sense. So talking to my husband for you, it could be your roommate, your mom, it could be your dog, it could be I don’t know, a therapist, maybe sharing that with someone else helps me to sort of relieve the pressure of taking it all on on my own. And it helps me to know that someone else is out there who knows what I’m going through. And they can sort of help and support me to get through the day or to get through this sort of rough patch, whatever’s causing it. And we can do it together. And I don’t feel so alone. And the reason I tell you this is because you’re allowed to share the bad just as much as you share the good with people. And it might make someone uncomfortable for you to tell them. I’m feeling depressed, or I’m feeling overwhelmed, or I’m feeling anxiety, it might make them uncomfortable. But the thing is, is their discomfort is not your problem. And if they love you and they genuinely want the best for you, they will ask you okay, how can I help you? How can I support you? Do you want to talk about it? Do you want to go for a walk? You know, what can I do to help you get through this. And I remind you that and I’m telling you that because I sometimes need to hear it myself, right. And a little bit of this podcasts are messages that I need to hear myself. And if I need to hear it, I know that you need to hear it too. So know that it’s okay to talk to someone who loves you, or who you love about the bad stuff, the hard stuff just as much as you talk about the good stuff, okay. And the last thing that I do to really manage my anxiety, especially in the days that I’m struggling with my anxiety or my mental health is I don’t push myself if I know I’m having a hard day, because of my mental health, right? I share and I promote and I tote all the time that I’m a quote unquote happy Hustler, someone who who loves to do their job, who loves to work, who is happy to show up and do work every single day. But I’m also a big proponent for not pushing yourself if you’re having a tough day, because sometimes you just have a tough day. And sometimes when you have those tough days, you just need to let it be a tough day and you just need to sit in it and feel it and know that it’s okay to have that kind of day. And when you have those kinds of days, it’s okay to just sit there and do nothing and watch TV or take a nap or read a book or go for a walk or say no or blow off work and take a sick day or personal day. This is something that I do often you guys whenever I need it whenever I know I’m just having a really hard day, right? I go to my husband I share with him and if he’s not working or he’s not busy, we might just kick it and go and leave the house and go for a really long walk in the mountain. because that always helps me to feel more grounded. If he is busy, I’ll call my mom and go for a really long walk. And I will just say screw it, I’m not working the rest of the day, I need an impromptu potato day, you all should know what that is by now, if you’ve listened to previous episodes, or you follow me on Instagram, I take an impromptu potato day when I need to. Because I know that if I forced myself, if I push myself to continue to show up through that hard mental health day, I’m just going to be screwing myself over in the long run. And that benefits no one. Okay. So again, if you need this reminder, just as much as I need this reminder, sometimes it’s okay to blow off work and call in sick and take a personal day, or to take an impromptu potato day and to ask your husband or your friend to do the same because you are having a hard day and you just need to disconnect. That’s okay, put your phone away, delete the Instagram app timer tick tock off and just feel what you’re feeling. Because sometimes that’s what we need to be able to then learn how we can balance that how we can support ourselves in those situations. So that way, the next day, the next morning, we wake up and we can say okay, I felt I felt it yesterday, I can now show up for my day today, knowing how I can support myself knowing what I need to do when I have a hard day again in the future, and will be able to sustain a more joyful, peaceful life more often. So my friends, that is the update for you, I promise you at the start of the year that one of my goals was to be more at peace and to really deal and support my anxiety on a better deeper level. And I wanted to keep you guys updated into how I’m doing that how I’m making that happen. Things like therapy and medication is doing wonders for me. I 100% Recommend Cerebro I love them. I love my team. I love everything about it super affordable. And also doing things like not overfilling my plate not saying yes to too much talking about how I’m feeling and giving myself the grace that I need to give myself when I need it are all helping me so much. And I wanted to make sure that I share those with you just in case you are struggling with these feelings as well. You don’t have to struggle if you don’t want to. And it’s okay to ask for help if you need it. Okay, so if you loved today’s episode, please please, please take a screenshot of it. Post it to your Instagram Stories. tag me in your Instagram stories at living the letter N sunshine so I can see it and share it too. And share with other people this episode. Send it to a friend who you know is struggling, listen to it again. Send it to your sister who you might know is having a hard time and pass it on to someone who you think needs it because I promise you, this will hit the people it needs to hit. Maybe it didn’t hit you. Maybe you don’t struggle with anxiety. That’s okay. You probably know someone who does and they need to hear this message. And if you are someone that had someone else, send this episode to you. Feel free to stick around hit that follow button that subscribe button come hit me up on Instagram. I’d love to chat with you and hear more about you. My dudes I love you all so so much you’re so worthy of everything that you have in putting in the work that you’re putting in to live a joyful life. Until next week, I am sending you all this sunshine, good vibes and I hope you make it a great day. That is all I have for you today my dudes and I hope you love today’s episode. If you did, I would seriously appreciate it. If you went and left the show or review and rating on whatever platform you’re currently listening on Forever Review and rating that you leave it truly helps the show grow and reach more women just like yourself. If you had any major takeaways or aha moments, be sure to take a screenshot of this episode. post it to your social media stories with your biggest takeaways and tag me at living in sunshine so I can share it with my people as well. Again, thank you so much for hanging out with me this week. And until next time, I am sending you all the sunshine good vibes and I hope you make it a great day.