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Your Anxiety Toolkit

Your Anxiety Toolkit aims to provide you with helpful tools to manage anxiety, stress and other emotions that get in the way.
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Now displaying: June, 2018
Jun 28, 2018

 Thought Suppression Doesn't Work!!

 
Thought Suppression Intrusive Thoughts CBT OCD Anxiety Depression Mindfulness Your Anxiety Toolkit Kimberley Quinlan
You may have heard it multiple times, but consider this a little reminder. THOUGHT SUPPRESSION NEVER WORKS!  This short but hefty statement is considered one of the golden rules when it comes to the management of anxiety disorders, specifically Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety, Healthy Anxiety and Phobias.
However, the truth is, we all attempt to make our “bad” or anxiety-provoking thoughts away.  We try to push them down so they won't hurt us anymore.   We try to make them go away, so we don’t have to feel the related shame, guilt, irritation, and annoyance of these thoughts.    Does this sound anything like you?  Let me tell you, you are in the right place.
You see, this is a very common reaction to intrusive, anxiety-producing thoughts.  For those with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Health Anxiety (hypochondria), Social Anxiety, Panic Disorder or Specific Phobias, thought suppression can be involuntary and we often do not even know we are doing it.   Intuitively, our brains will fight or run away from almost anything that creates discomfort for us.  We are biologically set up for fight, flight or freeze.
In today’s episode, we talk about why thought suppression never works.  We talk about how thought suppression can actually increase our anxiety over time and how thought suppression teaches us to intuitively judge our thoughts as bad.
If this sounds counter-intuitive to you, you are not alone.  My clients and the members of the CBT School Campus are commonly asking some pretty great questions about this, so I wondered if this was a topic that might benefit you.
In this week's episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, we talk about how Mindfulness can help us to accept and allow thoughts, non-judgmentally.  We address how it can change the dynamic between you and your thoughts to a more peaceful and coexisting relationship.
Remember, allowing thoughts is the key.  Allow them to come and go.  Accept them and see what happens.  Listen to hear more!
Jun 22, 2018

Anxiety-Related Exhaustion is NO JOKE!

Anxiety-Related Exhaustion CBT OCD Anxiety Your Anxiety Toolkit Mental Health BFRB's Depression One of the most common struggles I hear from my clients and the members of the CBT School Campus is how EXHAUSTING anxiety and depression can be.   If you are barraged daily by exhaustion resulting from Anxiety (or any other mental health issue), you are NOT ALONE!  Experiencing Anxiety is a full-time job.  No one can argue with that.    Anxiety can drain us of our physical energy, our emotional energy and can cause us to have nothing left to give at the end of the day. It can make us too tired to be social and make us want to sleep the day away.   Anxiety-Related Exhaustion can make us feel alone and like there is no hope for us. If this is you, this is the episode for you. Because you know what?!  There IS hope for US! In this podcast, we talk about some mindfulness tools to manage anxiety-related exhaustion.  We talk about learning to observe your thoughts and correct them to thoughts that are more helpful and less draining. We also address a few very important mindset shifts you may need to make.  You see, when we are overwhelmed with tiredness and anxiety-related exhaustion, we often will begin to feel hopeless and start to believe that there is no end in sight.  Everyone tells us, "Just keep going", but we can sometimes feel like we barely have the energy or faith that we need to "just keep going".   In this episode, we talk about specific mindset tools that I use with my clients who struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Anxiety, Depression and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors (BFRB's). And last of all, I use one of my favorite metaphors for managing Anxiety-Related Exhaustion.  You guys know me! I love to use silly metaphors.  That being said, I really believe in it and it works.  I promise you that it will make you take better care of yourself if you put it in place and prioritize it. Please don't hesitate to let me know what you think and if this is helpful. Also, if you listen on iTunes, please do leave a review.  Good reviews help me reach more people and help me get the really important (and inspirational) people on the show. Forward we go, Kimberley
Jun 14, 2018

How Advocacy "Keeps Me Well": Interview with Ethan Smith OCD Advocate

Ethan Smith OCD Advocate IOCDF Advocate Spokesperson You Anxiety Toolkit Podcast Do you ever wish you had someone to inspire you and give you hope about your recovery?  Maybe you wish there was a story about OCD or anxiety or mental health that looks similar to yours and you wish you knew how the story turns out? Well, today I give you Ethan Smith OCD Advocate. Ethan Smith (OCD Advocate) was the keynote speaker at the 2014 Annual International Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (IOCDF.org) Conference, the International OCD Foundation National Ambassador, a writer, director, producer and OCD Advocate. Amongst these incredible talents and accolades, Ethan is hilarious and kind and VERY informed about the ins and outs of OCD and the treatment of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).  During this interview, Ethan talks about his struggles to find correct therapy, his experience with finding evidence-based treatment such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT). Ethan also opens up about his draw towards advocacy work, stating that advocacy "keeps him well" and how being honest and open is considered advocacy work.  I think we often feel that we have to write a book or start a campaign or a fundraiser to be mental health advocates, but Ethan shares his belief that we ultimately just have to share our story and use our story to help others not feel alone. One of the things I love the most about Ethan is his ability to express compassion and humor in the same sentence.  Discussions around Mental Health can feel very heavy, and Ethan has a way of making light of a very heavy topic. Thank you, Ethan, for all that you do. If you feel like sharing your mental health struggles with others is too big of a step right now, consider joining our Facebook Group, CBT School Campus.  This group is filled with brave, supportive and compassionate people and was created so you could feel support and connected to others who are working tirelessly on their mental health in a safe and supportive platform.   Click here to be taken to the FB group. Click here for Ethan's Keynote Speaker Video DO YOU WANT TO REALLY IMPROVE ON YOUR MINDFULNESS SKILLS FOR OCD?  CHECK OUT CBT SCHOOL'S ONLINE COURSE, MINDFULNESS FOR OCD.
Jun 8, 2018

Are you Superhuman or Human?

Superhuman or human OCD Your Anxiety Toolkit Kimberley Quinlan Therapy Psychology CBTIt's an interesting question, isn't it? Are you a Superhuman or Human?  I think in order to answer this question, we need to address how we perceive a superhuman and how we view ourselves, as humans.  We need to address how we "rate" ourselves as a whole. You see, sometimes society and our community will send us the message that those of us who struggle with anxiety or depression (or with a mental health issue) are humans that are missing something. In some circles, us anxious humans get seen as being "less than" or weak because we struggle. Most media outlets portray superhuman as those who have beyond average muscles and their stories usually end in glory and power and victory. Let me pose a new idea for you.  Maybe it isn't a new idea to you, but I am guessing it is an idea that you need to be reminded of. I don't believe for one teeny tiny microsecond that those who experience anxiety are "less than" humans. I don't for a second believe that those who have mental health struggles are "weak". Let me tell you a little fact.  The definition of superhuman is "having or showing exceptional ability or power". Handling Anxiety and Depression or any other mental health issue takes exceptional abilities and a LOT of power and strength. Let's take a look here.  If being superhuman requires you to have an exceptional ability, I would be very comfortable saying that managing anxiety classifies as an "exceptional ability".  Do you agree?  I think that if anyone knew just how hard you were working, they too would say that managing anxiety and depression (or other mental health issues) is superhuman.   We don't give ourselves enough credit.  This podcast is all about how much of a SUPERHUMAN YOU ARE! Click HERE For Online Course for OCD
Jun 1, 2018

Is Fred In The Refridgerator? Interview with Shala Nicely

Shala Nicely Is Fred In The Refrigerator BookWell, this episode is one of my favorites.  Do I say that every week (hehe)?  But this week I am not joking! In today's episode, I have the honor of interviewing the AMAZING Shala Nicely.  Shala has written the most amazing, Is Fred In The Refridgerator?: Taming OCD and Reclaiming My Life.  If you have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) or Depression or another mental health struggle, Shala has written THE book for you. In the book, Is Fred in the Refridgerator, Shala talks about her recovery with OCD, BDD, depression, substance abuse and much more.   The book is an amazing and fun read, but also walks us through her struggles to find correct therapy for OCD, the rules her OCD held her to and the key components of her mental health recovery. Why is this one of my favorite episodes? Well, Shala walks the walk and talks the talk and she gets very vulnerable and transparent about her struggles with OCD.  I love anyone who shares their truth, and Shala did just that.  It was truly inspiring and my heart pretty much exploded during the recording of this episode. I asked Shala a lot of really deep questions and she was so honest and open with us, and for that, I am so grateful.   I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did.  See the link below toget your hands on Is Fred In The Refridgerator? Links: BUY IT ON AMAZON: Is Fred In The Refridgerator shalanicely.com  

If you missed last weeks episode 50 5 Lessons Learned from Hosting Your Anxiety Toolkit

Thank you again for supporting me with this podcast and with CBT Schools online courses.  Please click here to find out more about Mindfulness School for OCD.

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