10 Things You Absolutely Need To Know About OCD
Available September 16-20th, 2019
If you have OCD, or you know someone who does, please join us each evening at 6 pm PDT to learn about the 10 things you need to know about OCD.
Things to note:
Its offered each evening this week.
The webinar is pre-recorded and will be sent directly to your inbox.
You can watch it in your PJ's
If you miss the training, a replay will be sent to your inbox the following day.
Did I mention that it is free?
I LOVE YOU ALL AND HOPE YOU ENJOY IT! https://www.cbtschool.com/10things
We like to keep the courses super affordable so that everyone gets a chance to learn the tools needed to manage anxiety, obsessions, and compulsions.
Exposure & Response Prevention (ERP) School includes 18 video's, supplemental PDF's and Handouts to help you apply the content to your obsessions and compulsions and a BONUS 7 videos on applying ERP to the common OCD Sub-types.
In total, the course is almost 5 hours of the same ERP information and skills I teach my face-to-face clients.
CBT School is committed to supporting you throughout this process. If you have any questions, Kimberley meets bi-monthly on Facebook and Instagram for her LIVE MAGIC MONDAY Q&A hour (every second and fourth Monday at 12 pm PDT) where she answers questions and troubleshoots any concerns you may have.
Once you have purchased the course, you will have unlimited access to the videos.
Exposure & Response Prevention (OCD) School is available for purchase just a few times per year. The cart for ERP School will open again September 20th, 2019 so get excited!
LINK TO COURSE:
I am honored to have Steven C. Hayes, author of A Liberated Mind: How to Pivot Towards What Matters, back on the Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. He was on Ep. 83 and is joining us again! There is nothing that makes me happier than to chat with Steven Hayes about the unbelievable work he is doing and I cannot tell you how much I adored his most recent book.
In this week's podcast episode, Steven Hayes addressed how we can reach a liberated mind by improving psychological flexibility and moving away from psychological rigidity. Not only does Hayes address these important topics using a combination of science and reason, but he also discussed how we can access a liberated mind by practicing compassion and kindness, and by seeking out our own set of values. During this conversation, we touched on some really difficult topics including suicidal ideation, immigration, global warming and other issues that impact the state of the world. Steven Hayes does such a beautiful job teaching us how we can reach be more open to our suffering and be open and flexible with other people’s suffering.
Steven Hayes also addresses how we overuse problem-solving with our emotions. He talks about how we can create our own “hero’s journey” by choosing a path that feels liberating and freeing, instead of one that is powerless and rigid.
For more information on Steven Hayes, click below:
To purchase his most recent book: https://www.amazon.com/Liberated-Mind-Pivot-Toward-Matters-ebook/dp/B07LDSPRYM
A book freebie:https://stevenchayes.com/a-liberated-mind/
Steven Universe video - "Here Comes a Thought": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dHg50mdODFM
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit. Today we are talking all about Accepting our Common Humanity. You may remember that Kristin Neff was on the podcast (Ep. 87) and she spoke about how Common Humanity is a core component of Mindful Self-Compassion. In that interview, Kristin Neff spoke about how we must notice that we are all in this together. Her description of Common Humanity is that we are never alone because all humans suffer and all humans feel emotions similar to what you are feeling, although it might not have the same content and be experienced from the same source of stress. Kristen Neff also addressed how we should not compare our suffering to that of another. When we do that, we minimize our own suffering and we reject the common humanity that we all experience.
In this episode, my goal was to share with you some of the struggles I have had in accepting my own human-ness. As I have battled multiple medical issues this year, I have had to face my common humanity over and over again. I have had to stare my human-ness in the face, which has been both painful and freeing. I have had to reflect many times on how I am treating myself and how to create a more self-compassionate life that involves me setting realistic expectations for myself, treating myself with love and care when I am not feeling well and being honest with myself about what I can and cannot achieve or do.
This journey of common humanity has been such a huge one for me and one that I hope brings you some awareness or hope. I often hear listeners and members of the CBT School community talk about how hard they are on themselves and how they hold themselves to standards that are impossible and outright cruel. If this resonates with you, this episode is for you.
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit. Today we are thrilled to introduce Dr. Laura Wetherill who will be talking about school anxiety. Dr Laura Wetherill is a Formal Research Scientist, turned full-time mom, who has a gift for doodling and supporting students with their studies and their mental health. Dr. Laura Wetherill now considers herself an online educator and has so much to share with us about managing school anxiety.
During the interview, we address the below questions:
Dr. Wetherill gathered information on how students are feeling about going back to school and learned a lot about school anxiety and fears:
When asked, “How are you feeling about going back to school?” the vast majority reported fears based around friends, exams, time pressures, expectations, etc. We included them for your reference.
Friends/relationships: • Nervous about not having friends in some of my classes. • Worried about losing friends. • Worried about making friends. • Unresolved conflict with friends. • Bullying.
Exam Stress: • Many students worried about coping with stress, anxiety and the pressure around upcoming exam time. • One student is worried that she will panic in the exam room. • Students worrying that they’ve failed their exams and must go back to school with “bad” results (worried they’ve let parents, teachers and themselves down).
General stress: • Scared the year will be too stressful. • Excited for subjects but not about the stress.
Expectations/Not feeling smart enough: • Worried about not meeting entry requirements for A levels. • Worried about not being smart enough and finding it hard when everyone is competing and being compared against one another. • Worried about being unable to cope with the step up in difficulty.
Time pressure: • Not having enough time to learn everything. • Not having enough time to finish resources. • Not having enough time to revise. • Feelings of time running out. • Having to miss the first week of school and then worried about catching up with work.
Predicting Failure: • One student had failed her mocks and is worried that she will fail the real exams. • Students worried that they will fail the exams at the end of this new school year.
Feeling unprepared: • Unprepared for exams. • Unprepared to leave school at the end of the year. • Unprepared for the year ahead. • Some are not sure how to prepare for the year ahead. • Revising hard but feel like it’s not enough. Coping with ongoing medical conditions that disrupt school. • Having a medical condition that means they might not be able to attend school or sit the exams that they would like to sit. • One student was doing half days and they’re worried that this year they won’t be able to cope if they have to do full days. • Making the wrong choices: • Worried that they’ve chosen the wrong subjects or will not enjoy them.
Strong feelings: • “I hate school, I don’t want to go back.” • “My friends p*** me off.” • “I’m terrified”.
New beginnings: • Nervous about starting a new college/6th form/school. • Nervous about starting a new school, in a new country.
For more information on Dr. Wetherill, visit:
Dr. Wetherill and I created a FREE 7-Step resource to help you bust your procrastination habit. Click HERE for the info.
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit. Today I was reflecting on what you might need to hear and it dawned on me that you might need a solid dose of compassion. So, today we are talking about finding your compassionate voice. In this podcast, I will lead you through a “Finding your compassionate voice” meditation, created originally by Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer. The script is below, but please note that I did change a few components to match the style of my voice and my ideas for what you needed to hear.
Finding your compassionate voice involves us bringing what we need to hear to our awareness. Examples of finding your compassionate voice might sound like:
“I love you”
“I am here for you”
“You are enough”
“You are loved”
“Everything is going to be ok”
Finding your compassionate voice is an exercise or tool that might be able to offer you a skill to increase self-compassion, self-kindness, and self-respect.
Finding your Compassionate Voice Meditation
Please find a posture in which your body is comfortable and will feel supported for the length of the meditation.
Then let your eyes gently close, partially or fully.
Taking a few slow, easy breaths, releasing any unnecessary tension in your body.
• If you’d like, placing a hand over your heart or another soothing place as a reminder that we’re bringing not only awareness but affectionate awareness to our breathing and to ourselves. You can leave your hand there or let it rest at any time.
• Now beginning to notice your breathing in your body, feeling your body breathe in and feeling your body breathe out. Now releasing the focus on your breathing, allowing the breath to slip into the background of your awareness, begin to offer yourself words or phrases that are meaningful to you. Whisper these words into your own ear.
• Just letting your body breathe you. There is nothing you need to do.
• Perhaps noticing how your body is nourished on the in-breath and relaxes with the out-breath.
• Now noticing the rhythm of your breathing, flowing in and flowing out. (pause) Taking some time to feel the natural rhythm of your breathing.
• Feeling your whole body subtly moving with the breath, like the movement of the sea.
• Your mind will naturally wander like a curious child or a little puppy. When that happens, just gently returning to the rhythm of your breathing. This is mindfulness.
• Allowing your whole body to be gently rocked and caressed – internally caressed - by your breathing.
• If you like, even giving yourself over to your breathing, letting your breathing be all there is. Becoming the breath.
• Just breathing. Being breathing.
• And now, gently releasing your attention to the breath, sitting quietly in your own experience, and allowing yourself to feel whatever you’re feeling and to be just as you are.
• Slowly and gently open your eyes.
Welcome to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. We are talking all about our bodies and addressing a very important topic called Health At Every Size in this episode. Today, I am honored to talk to Emily Cooper, a therapist who specializes and is so knowledgeable about health at every size, body positivity, body neutrality, and privilege.
In this episode, we talk about whether there is a “right type of body” or a “wrong type of body” and how society and diet culture impact us and how we see our bodies. Emily Cooper addressed why Health At Every Size is an important concept that improves self-respect and self-love. Health At Every Size (HAES) is an inclusive movement that supports people of all sizes, weights, and body types in addressing health directly by adopting healthy behaviors. Health At Every Size does not focus on weight as the sole indicator of health. Being thinner does not necessarily make a person healthier or happier. A “healthy body” aligns with more than one body type and across a wide range of weights.
During this episode, Emily Cooper also addresses how our perception of our body can impact our everyday lives, specifically related to work environments, social environments, relationships, intimacy and life in general.
In her discussion about Health At Every Size, Emily Cooper also addressed the concept of thin privilege and diet culture and how they impact our relationship with our body and other peoples’ bodies.
The goal of this podcast episode is to introduce you to the idea that you can start to respect your body today, no matter what size or shape. Emily beautifully shared that her hope is to give us permission to not like our bodies but still learn to live our lives, not using weight or size to indicate your worth or ability to do the things you want to do.
For more information on Emily, visit:
Body Respect by Linda Bacon and Lucy Aprhamor
Intuitive Eating by Linda Bacon
Welcome to Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today we are talking about a concept that I get asked about so often. Today we are talking all about how to manage intrusive thoughts. So often I am asked by clients and the CBT School community questions like, “What is an intrusive thought?” and, “How do I manage intrusive thoughts from becoming mental compulsions?” and, “Why is it so hard to manage intrusive thoughts?”
These are all such good questions and I can totally resonate with why it is such a difficult and confusing topic. In today's episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit, I talk about why thought suppression doesn’t work and why distraction is a tool that only works for a short period of time. In this episode, we review the practice of mindfulness in an attempt to manage intrusive thoughts and create an environment in your brain where fear and uncertainty doesn’t run the show.
A wonderful follower sent me the below question:
“I have heard you talk about distraction and thought suppression. Does that mean I need to just focus on my thoughts and stay in my own head? While keeping myself busy with my job and other activities keeps me engaged and gets me out of my own head, does this count as a distraction? Also when you say distraction is bad, is it in the context of OCD or in general? I'm a bit confused, can you please provide some clarity on this.”
This is such a common question that I get asked and I wanted to take this time to address a concept called “Occupation,” which is the practice of allowing thoughts WHILE you go about your day. Occupation is a practice of taking intrusive thoughts with you while you do the things you value in life. This is a very important concept and can help us to define how we manage intrusive thoughts and how we can reduce engaging in compulsive behaviors and mental compulsions.
I hope this episode helps give you additional tools to help manage intrusive thoughts and mental compulsions.
This week’s episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast will really change the way you look at and relate to Self-care. In this episode, we aren’t talking about luxurious, expensive and unsustainable self-care. We are talking about affordable self-care. And, we are talking about self-care that costs NOTHING! If you struggle with self-care, this is the episode for you. If you struggle to even be aware of when you need self-care, this is the episode for you.
In this episode, we talk with Psychologist Dr. Jenn Hardy about how marketing and media have made self-care into something that should look perfect, cost a lot of money and be luxurious. Dr. Jenn Hardy brings up the wonderful point that a self-care plan that is expensive and indulgent is not sustainable and won’t fit into most people’s daily lives. Dr. Jenn Hardy addresses a concept she coined, affordable self-care, which is taking care of your basic needs and making time each day to give your body and mind what it needs.
Here are a few examples of affordable self-care that you can include into your life in simple and easy ways.
The thing I love the most about this episode is that we learn just how accessible affordable self-care is. We all have access to affordable self-care, no matter what your income is, where you live and what you do for a living.
For more information on Dr. Jenn Hardy, visit:
Before we go, I want to share a virtual conference with you that I will be speaking at (from August 5th-15th): Share Triumph Cancer Conference. I will be speaking at this free, virtual event in which women share how they made decisions about medical treatment and discuss how the emotional effects of diagnosis impact them today. Specifically, I will be talking about managing anxiety related to physical illness and cancer. This event brings together renowned doctors, therapists, nonprofits, fashion brands, comedians, podcasters, survivors and metavivors teaching you how to get through diagnosis, treatment and the aftermath to help keep your mind and spirit intact! Click HERE for more information and to register
Welcome to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today I am sharing my takeaways from the 2019 International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) Conference. I just got back and it was possibly one of the most wonderful experiences. This year, the conference was in Austin, Texas, and I won't lie…it was HOT. I was super impressed with the people from Texas, as they were so kind, cheerful and helpful.
In today’s episode, I wanted to give you guys a quick peek at what I took away from the 2019 IOCDF conference this year. The 2019 IOCDF Conference is a conference that is held annually to help provide education, support, and advocacy for those who struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Health Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors, Tic Disorder or Tourette's Disorder and general anxiety. It is a wonderful opportunity for those who need extra support or want to learn the gold-standard treatment for OCD.
Not only is it an educational weekend, but it is also a weekend filled with hope, love, and unconditional acceptance. Here is what I took away from this year’s 2019 IOCDF Conference.
First of all, you guys are so kind. I cannot tell you how overwhelmed and honored I was to meet so many of you. Thank you to each and every one of you who came and said hi, gave me hugs, thanked me for the work I am so honored to do and for those of you who showered me with the sweetest and most thoughtful gifts. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Now, once again this year, I was honored to host the 2019 Compassion Collective support group for Self-Compassion with my dear friend Michelle Massi. Michelle and I met each morning at the very early hour of 7 am to sit with a group of beautiful humans who are invested in being kinder and more compassionate to themselves. It was a beautiful group and, once again, we got to peek inside their minds for an hour each morning and learn just how hard you all are on yourselves. Wowsers, you guys. Humans are FAR too hard on themselves. The main message we tried to share with y’all (We were in Texas hehe) was to drop the idea of getting A+ in life and to shoot for a B-. Be a B- human. Give life a B- effort. Give yourselves a little break here and there.
In addition to running the Compassion Collective group, I also had the honor of running the Women’s OCD Support Group with my dear friend, Beth Brawley. The one big takeaway from these amazing women was to be unapologetically yourself. As women, we need to stop apologizing for ourselves and just own the struggles and wins that we have.
Another thing I heard from attendees over and over in the elevators and hotel halls is the strong urge and pressure to make themselves attend each and every presentation. If anyone has attended and IOCDF Conference, you will know that the schedule is JAM PACKED every single hour of the day. There is no way we can do it all. I figured you guys are hard on yourself in daily life also so my message to you is that you don’t have to do it all.
This one is SUPER important. You are alone! You really are not. Each year, thousands of people meet in a random city in the USA to learn about OCD. I know at home you may not know a single soul with OCD, but please know that people like you are out there and they are wonderful and kind and smart and funny and make my heart so full, just like YOU.
The last takeaway from the 2019 IOCDF Conference is this. YOU ARE SUPPORTED! I was honored to attend the OCD Game Changers event at the conference and there I met a large number of OCD treatment providers and OCD Advocates who are on a mission to help you all and provide good treatment and to advocate for you and to fight for you. You may have had terrible experiences with some therapists, but please know that there are some incredible therapists out there who are such badasses and they are fighting for you.
In today's episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit podcast, we are discussing a compassion practice that will change your life. Today, we are talking about the Buddhist practice, Tonglen Meditation for anxiety. The ancient meditation practice of Tonglen is known as a practice of “taking and sending”.
Tonglen Meditation for anxiety is a practice that is similar to everything we talk about here on Your Anxiety Toolkit. Tonglen Meditation for anxiety reverses our usual logic of avoiding suffering and seeking pleasure. Commonly, people with anxiety want to learn how to eliminate their own suffering and pronouns such as “I”, “Me” and “Mine” is the focus of their attention.
The use of Tonglen is a practice of compassion for all humans, including ourselves, that allows us to visualize taking in the pain of others with every in-breath and sending out whatever will benefit them on the out-breath. In the process of Tonglen Meditation for anxiety, we let go of patterns of selfishness and we bring love to both ourselves and others. We create a practice where we take care of ourselves and others.
Tonglen Meditation for anxiety awakens our compassion and introduces us to a view of reality that is wider and more realistic. Tonglen meditation for anxiety can be a formal meditation practice or can be used at any time for even brief periods of time.
Tonglen Meditation for anxiety also allows us to send compassion to all humans and see that many other humans are just like ourselves. This Tonglen Meditation for anxiety will bring you to see that you are not alone in your suffering. The practice is to bring love and compassion to all living beings, as everyone is suffering in one way or another.
Instead of beating ourselves up, we can use our personal struggles as a way to access common humanity (understanding what people are up against all over the world). As we breathe in the pain and suffering for all of us and breathe out love and compassion for all of us, we create a space where we can feel more deeply and honestly. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings.
Please use this Tonglen Meditation for anxiety to remove the suffering of mankind, while also sending the relief. Breathe out while releasing out comfort and happiness. Radiate love as widely as you can, CBT School community!
This episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit was not an easy one to record. No one likes to have a conversation about suicide, but we need to. We need to have a conversation about suicide more than ever and we need to keep having these conversations until we break the stigma of suicide.
Recently, one of our dear CBT School members died by suicide and our community was heartbroken. My heart was broken. Even as a therapist, I cannot prepare myself enough for the conversation about suicide.
Thankfully, as we all grieve this sad loss, we are joined today by Joe Dennis to help us work through this difficult topic. Joe Dennis is the Clinical Director of Mindful Counseling in Utah with such a wonderful kind heart. In a flash, Joe agreed to join me for a conversation about suicide where he educated us about suicide and gave us some wonderful tools and resources for those who are struggling with thoughts of suicide. We also discussed tools and resources for those with a loved one who has died by suicide.
Joe talked with us about why we now call it “Death by suicide” and the reasons for this terminology change.
Joe also talked about the difference between passive suicidal ideation and active suicidal ideation and how to differentiate between the two. Joe and I talked about why we struggle to talk about Suicide and how Depression, anxiety, trauma, etc. play into suicidal ideation.
Lastly, Joe talked about what is going through the mind of someone who is contemplating suicide and what tools/strategies/resources they can use when they are faced with this difficult time.
I really hope that this podcast helps you to understand and approach suicide in a way that is less stigmatized, less shamed and less frightening.
Thank you, Joe Dennis, for being on the show.
For more information on Joe, visit:
For more information on suicide awareness and prevention, visit or call:
National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1800-273-8255
Crisis Text line: 741741
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. This week we are joined by the amazing Dan Furlong. Dan Furlong is the man behind @maleanxietydepression on Instagram and is an inspiration to many in the mental health field.
In this episode, Dan Furlong talks about his recent experience with running the Jungle Ultra in Peru through the Amazing Jungle. Dan Furlong called it a “self-sufficient race” where he had to run for 5 days through the Amazon Jungle, 3 of which had torrential rain.
Dan Furlong talked about his struggle with anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and depression. Dan also talked about his struggles with suicidal ideation. Dan said many inspiring things throughout this episode, but here are a few inspirational quotes that really got me thinking.
When discussing his experiences with depression, Dan quoted, “You need to goal set your way out of depression. He talked about how he never lets himself give up and “only when you go through real pain do you find out who you are!”
As Dan ran through the Amazon Jungle and faced many death-defying cliffs and traverses, he repeated to himself, “If you get through this, you can get through anything” and he referred to his OCD recovery in this discussion also. Dan reported only getting 2-3 hours sleep each night and how he chose to run ahead to be allowed to take the “long course” which was running up to 1.5 marathons per day. Just so inspiring, right?!
Dan Furlong spoke extensively about his mindset during the run (and his OCD recovery) and how he has learned to “take the path of least resistance”. Dan stated that “your brain will always talk you out of doing hard things” and because of this, he learned to “take the harder route”.
To donate and help those affected by OCD, click HERE.
To learn more about Dan, visit:
To purchase Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins, click HERE
In today’s episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, we are talking about finding a middle path in our recovery. This is a very important topic to me, as it is what has helped me immensely in my own anxiety management.
Finding a Middle path (or middle way) is about us seeing beyond our dualistic or black-and-white ways of thinking, behaving and being.
Finding a middle path (or way) describes our journey of seeing the middle ground between attachment (where we cling and grasp onto things being a certain way) and aversion (where we run away from things that are not the way we want them to be).
Finding a Middle Path is about stepping away from “good” and “bad” and seeing that there is no good and bad, and there is only neutral.
In this episode, we talk about embracing the dialectics of change and stillness at the same time. We addressed how finding a middle path is being independent whilst also being a part of a larger community. It is where we embrace tension, paradox and change and discover a world that is workable in the middle, not just at the beginning or end.
One of the reasons I love this concept so much is that instead of always seeking resolution and completion and perfection, we let ourselves open and relax in the middle stages of our process. We live in the reality of the present. The more we delve into the middle way, the more deeply we come to rest between the play of opposites.
One of the hardest parts of this Buddhist practices is learning to trust in life itself. In this episode, we touch on this as an important part of finding a middle path.
For more information on Finding a Middle Path, read this wonderful article by Jack Kornfield: https://jackkornfield.com/finding-the-middle-way/
Dr. Sarah Sarkis Talks About Anxiety Management and Your Relationship with Anxiety
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today we have Dr. Sarah Sarkis on to talk about Your Relationship with Anxiety. Dr. Sarah Sarkis is a psychologist, writer, and performance consultant with a private practice in Honolulu, Hawaii (though it won’t take you long to discover she’s a Boston girl at heart). Her integrated approach is big on science, low on bullshit, empowering us to achieve long-term change and growth through an eclectic blend of psychology, neurobiology, and functional medicine.
Her blog, The Padded Room, is your virtual safe space to help you manage the jarring realities of life. There, you’ll find a soft landing for life’s harshest truths. You can find it at drsarahsarkis.com.
Addressing your relationship with anxiety might be one of the most important steps you take when it comes to your anxiety management. Dr. Sarah Sarkis beautifully shares how she approaches fear and how your relationship with anxiety can determine the degree of suffering around anxiety. She also addressed people’s conceptualization of “I cannot handle this” or “I cannot face this” when it comes to facing fears.
During this interview, we also addressed concepts around Optimum Performance and Dr. Sarkis’ experience in her practice with patients in this area. I am sure you will agree that changing your relationship with anxiety is a game changer when it comes to your mental health, and I am so excited to share this inspiring interview with you
For more information on Dr. Sarah Sarkis, visit:
Lastly, the annual IOCDF conference is being coming up SO SOON! It will be held in Austin, TX, from July 19-21. This national meeting focuses solely on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related disorders. I will be one of the presenters among over 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars. There will be support groups and evening events as well. Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
Do you remember podcast episode #92 where I talked about my new goal of Failing 100 times? At the beginning of this year, I set the goal to fail 100 times in my business, personally and in my life. The whole concept came from a podcast episode by Amy Porterfield (EP# 247) where she set the goal to fail 100 times this year, not because she wanted to drop everything and mess up, but because she wanted to set goals that were so high that she was destined to “fail.” The whole premise of failing 100 times was to reach for the stars instead of setting goals that held us back and limited us.
Well, I decided that I was going to fail 100 times this year, but I was hit by a rude awakening that has completely changed the way I think about failure. As some of you may know, I have been struggling with some pretty serious medical and emotional issues this year. It has been a very scary and uncertain journey for me, but I have learned so much about myself. What ended up happening was that I ended up failing in ways I wasn't even expecting and I came to see just how hard I am on myself.
I am scared to share this with you, but I have decided that it is a beautiful day to do hard things. So, this episode is about how I am failing at 100 things that I didn’t set out to fail. I hope you find it helpful and that it inspires you to take a close look at how you conceptualize failure. And finally, I ask you, how are you doing at failing 100 times this year?
There are a few things I want to remind you of before we go! The annual IOCDF conference is being held in Austin, TX, from July 19-21. This national meeting focuses solely on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related disorders. I will be one of the presenters among over 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars. There will be support groups and evening events as well. Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
Catherine DeMonte, who joined us in Ep. 95 of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, is the author of a new self-help book that will be released on June 18, 2019.
Beep! Beep! Get Out of My Way! Seven Tools for Living Your Unstoppable Life is a practical self-help book grounded in Psychotherapist Catherine DeMonte’s 25 years of clinical psychotherapy practice. Based on the Abundance Circle groups she created and leads, this book contains the tools her clients used to realize their dreams.
Written with nurturing warmth and humor, this book addresses both the inner and outer work necessary for creating lasting shifts. You can manifest your “one big thing”— even when circumstances make it seem impossible.Click HERE to order on Amazon.
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today is a little different. I was all ready to record a podcast and all of a sudden, I put that podcast episode on hold and just spoke from the heart. I just wanted to talk directly to you and remind you to honor your hard things. I know when things are hard and you are struggling, it feels like you have no choice but to give up, but again, always honor your hard thing.
In this episode, I share about a recent “hard thing” I did with my daughter. I shared how surprised I was by how hard it was and emphasized that we do not honor the hard things we do enough. My goal was to address how we compare our struggles in mental health with others who do not have the same struggles. Because of this, we don’t honor the hard things you are doing (which is a lot).
In addition, we judge ourselves for struggling and we make it hard on ourselves when things are already hard. My hope with this episode is to help you along to honor every hard thing you do. My hope is that it gives you a moment to celebrate the work you are doing with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Depression, Panic Disorder, Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors (BFRBs) and Eating Disorders. It is hard work and I honor your hard things.
Before we go, I want to remind you about the upcoming IOCDF conference in Austin, TX, from July 19-21. This national meeting focuses solely on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related disorders. I will be one of the presenters among over 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars. There will be support groups and evening events as well. Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
On today’s episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, we are talking all about a journey of self-compassion. Yep, that’s right! This is one special episode.
This week we are joined by previous guest, Ethan Smith, the national ambassador for the charity called the International Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Foundation (IOCDF). Ethan talks all about his new experiences and journey of self-compassion and how he has learned a lot about himself in the past year. Consider this Chapter 2 of Ethan's story, as he shares his struggles with taking responsibility for what goes wrong in his life and not blaming Obsessive Compulsive Disorder for his struggles. Ethan also shares how he is learning how to cope with “bad” choices and making mistakes and how he was pushed into the practice of self-compassion when he realized he was still under the spell of internalized stigma of mental health. This is such an important issue and one I want to focus on in the future of Your Anxiety Toolkit.
Ethan also shared his journey of self-compassion as he learns how he would internally compare and contrast the mistakes he has made before, during and after treatment. He talked about how recognizing this process has made him realize how hard he really was on himself. I think we can all resonate with this at times and Ethan beautifully shares his vulnerable and authentic experience.
Ethan addressed how he is now learning to cope with unrealistic expectations and how self-compassion has taught him to accept himself as he is. He talked about how common humanity is a concept that he fought for so long in fear that it will make him complacent and careless.
I am sure you will learn a lot from this episode and I hope that it helps you reflect on your journey of self-compassion.
Before we go, I want to remind you about the upcoming IOCDF conference in Austin, TX, from July 19-21. This national meeting focuses solely on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related disorders. I will be one of the presenters among over 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars. There will be support groups and evening events as well. Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit. Today, we are talking all about Managing Sleep Anxiety.
It is very common for my clients to report significant anxiety at bed time and during sleep. They might report trouble getting to sleep, racing thoughts while trying to fall asleep, trouble staying asleep, waking up panicking, or ruminating on an event or worry.
In this episode, we are not talking about the specific medical side of sleep disturbances. We are talking specifically about managing sleep anxiety.
Did you know that more than 40 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder? (according to the National Institutes of Health). And, did you know that 50% of those with GAD have a sleep disorder? These statistics blew me away and made me realize I need to be addressing this issue more often.
I am sure you will agree that stress and anxiety may increase sleeping problems or make existing problems even worse. Many will report that their sleep quality is much reduced when they are going through a difficult time in their lives.
But, the real question is, which one comes first? Sleep disorder or Anxiety Disorder? We will discuss this in this episode. In this episode, we also address sleep hygiene, caffeine intake, and the importance of exercise when it comes to managing anxiety. We also talk about the importance of reducing screen time, keeping naps to a minimum and the necessity of seeing a sleep specialist if you are really struggling.
I really hope this episode helps you manage sleep anxiety just a little better. It's a beautiful day to do hard things, CBT School community!
Before we go, I'd like to remind you about two amazing events coming up and a way for you to give back to the OCD community!
What: The IOCDF is hosting their 1 Million Steps 4 OCD Walk in Calabasas on Saturday, June 1, to increases awareness and raises funds for the IOCDF and its Local Affiliates so they can continue their mission. I will be walking at this one! There are many walks happening so be sure to check your area if you are interested.
When: June 1
Where: Juan Bautista de Anza Park | Calabasas, CA
Click HERE for more information and to register.
What: Since 1993, the Annual OCD Conference has been the only national meeting focused solely on obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and related disorders. The unique event allows people with OCD and their loved ones to learn about the latest OCD treatment and information alongside the mental health professionals who care for them. The Conference features more than 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars as well as nearly two-dozen support groups and various evening events. Presenters include some of the most experienced and knowledgeable clinicians and researchers in the field, as well as people with OCD and family members sharing their stories about life with OCD.
When: July 19-21
Where: JW Marriott Austin, Austin TX
Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
During the month of May, Shala Nicely is giving 100% of her royalties from Is Fred in the Refrigerator? Taming OCD and Reclaiming My Life to the International OCD Foundation for the conference scholarship fund. In celebration of the one-year anniversary of Fred’s publication, she hopes to raise enough money to send at least 5 people in need to the conference. And with your help, we can send even more!
As Shala shares in the Fred chapter “Changing the OCD Mind,” going to her first IOCDF conference was life-changing: she finally learned about exposure and response prevention therapy (ERP) for OCD and actually tried the therapy on her own, realizing with amazement that ERP gave her the power to reclaim her life.
If you have OCD, know someone with OCD, treat OCD, or have ever been curious what OCD is really like, please purchase a copy of Fred. As I wrote in my endorsement of the book, “Is Fred in the Refrigerator? is a stunning story of growth, perseverance and hope. Shala beautifully details how mental illness shaped her life, taking us with her on her brave journey through perfectionism, shame and fear. This book is the perfect combination of entertainment, education and validation for those who are on their journey to recovery from OCD, but also for any human being who wants to live courageously and joyfully.”
100% of the royalties from every book sold will directly support sending people with OCD to the IOCDF conference, where they will learn that they, too, can reclaim their lives. Thank you!
How To Be Uncertain In the Management of OCD
Welcome to this week's episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit.
When it comes to the management of anxiety, practicing being uncertain is the key to long-term recovery. We must face our fears and purposely not try to solve what will happen and what we would do if our fear came true. For anyone attempting this, we can all agree that being uncertain is a very difficult skill to practice. I have found that while my clients logically are on board with the idea of being uncertain, they still struggle with HOW to be uncertain. Cognitively, we know the importance of uncertainty, but the actual practice of it might not be something that we are fully on board for.
Nearly every day, a client or a follower on social media (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter) will ask me HOW to be uncertain. They might say, “Kimberley, I get that I have to lean into the uncertainty, but HOW do I actually be uncertain?”
In today’s podcast episode, we talk all about how to be uncertain and what major roadblocks might be causing you to bypass uncertainty. We also talk about some key mindfulness tools to help with the practice of uncertainty when managing strong obsessions and compulsions. This is a very important concept when it comes to anxiety management, so I would love to hear your thoughts.
There are a few very exciting events coming up!
The IOCDF is hosting their 1 Million Steps 4 OCD Walk in Calabasas on Saturday, June 1, to increases awareness and raises funds for the IOCDF and its Local Affiliates so they can continue their mission. I will be walking at this one! Click HERE for more information and to register.
Also, the IOCDF Annual Conference will be held in Austin, Texas, from July 19-21. I will be speaking at this event and love seeing you there! Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
100th Episode Virtual Party!
Welcome to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. This episode is a very special one for us. We are celebrating out 100th Episode and we are having a VIRTUAL PARTY! At this party, we want you to celebrate this wonderful community of brave and courageous people who stand by each other as we go through hard things and we do hard things.
For this virtual party, we invited some of our favorite guests and asked them to share some wisdom, a funny story or dance the night away with us.
First up, we have Ethan Smith who was on Ep. 53 (How Advocacy “Keeps Me Well”: Interview with Ethan Smith OCD Advocate) and he starts the evening off in the most glamorous way.
Sheva Rajaee who was Ep 45 (FIVE Roadblocks to Anxiety Recovery (w/ Sheva Rajaee) shares a wonderful story about Octopi and how adaptable they (and we) are.
Chris Tronsdon who was on Ep 97 (The Emotional Stages of Recovery – Rebuilding Life After OCD with Chris Tronsdon) shared a wonderful and inspiring story of having Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and then led us into a fabulous dance.
Nathalie Maragoni from Ep 65 shared her love for our community and how proud she is of us all.
Shala Nicely from Ep 16 (Guilt, Shame and being “SO OCD” with CBT ROCKSTAR Shala Nicely), Ep 36 (This EASY tool Might Change Your Way of Coping with Anxiety with Shala Nicely) and Ep 78 (Tips To Help You Share Your Mental Illness With Others) Shared her words of wisdom and also has a wonderful and generous gift she is sharing with the OCD community.
Catherine DeMonte from Ep 95 (Love vs. Fear with Catherine DeMonte) shared a wonderful piece about how we must choose love over fear and allow love to lead us. Catherine always has beautiful things to share with us.
Michelle Massi from Ep 84 (How to Manage Social Anxiety (with guest, Michelle Massi, LMFT) Beautifully shares what she loved about being on Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast and we 100% cannot wait to have you back on Michelle.
Alegra Kastens, our fabulous and hard-working CBT School assistant gives us a huge dose of inspiration and support with her beautiful words of hope and faith. Thank you, Alegra!
Of course, no party is complete without Jeremy Quinlan from Ep 99 (Making The Choice to Embrace Panic with Jeremy Quinlan) who shows us late and always causes trouble. Thank you, Jeremy, for showing your handsome face!
The lovely and wise Zoe Gillis from Ep 19 (Nature just might be the ULTIMATE Mindfulness Tool with Zoe Gillis) shared how she experiences parties and brings a unique and thoughtful approach to our 100th episode (always making me think outside the box).
And, true to form, Patrick McGrath from Ep 64 (Don’t Try Harder, Try Different with Patrick McGrath) brings his hilarious jokes and firm direction for those who are working on anxiety and recovery.
And, last but not least, Chrissie Hodges from Ep. 67 (Grieving the Losses of Mental Illness) shares a powerful message for those who are in the throes of anxiety and OCD recovery. I just adore her thoughts and wisdom.
I cannot thank you all enough for all of your support and excitement. Thank you for joining us for this virtual party! I have loved every minute of this podcast...all the minutes of recording, editing, and preparing. Thank you so much, CBT School community! Here is to another 100!
Jeremy Quinlan Talks About Panic Disorder and Choosing to Embrace Panic
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today we have a very special guest. For me, this is THE most special guest, because this week I had the honor of interviewing my husband about Making the Choice to Embrace Panic.
In this episode, Jeremy tells the story of his Panic Disorder, how panic took so much from him and how he made the choice to embrace panic, instead of run from it.
I have wanted to record this episode for the longest time, but life, work, family and business always got in the way. But, on a beautiful spring day, we both sat down while the kids were at school in our lounge room and recorded his story.
Together, we talked about the fear of flying and how this caused him to exit off many flights in a state of panic. We also talk about his fear of driving on the highway, fear of getting on elevators, fear of getting on a train or a trolley or a taxi cab, etc. We also got very deep into the experience of panic disorder and what it felt like to have a panic attack. Jeremy described his specific experience of panic and how it made him fear he would hurt someone or lose control of his body.
What I loved the most was how he shared his bumpy journey to recovery. Jeremy carefully describes what that journey with panic felt like and how he made an intentional decision to “choose life” over running from anxiety, panic, and dread. He addressed how he came to a place where he could see that he had only two choices: choose to embrace panic or to keep running and let it take over his life.
I am so excited to share this episode with you, CBT School community. I hope he inspires you as much as he inspires me.
Three Mindfulness Basics for Anxiety and Depression
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast.
Do you ever feel like you have to go back to basics? Maybe you feel overwhelmed with all the “tools” and strategies you need to practice to manage your anxiety, obsessions, compulsions, and emotions. Maybe you are feeling like you need to simplify your mental health practices so that you only have a few things to manage instead of many.
If you are feeling this way, you are not alone. I recently realized that I had to return back to some mindfulness basics and review the tools that helped me many years ago. In today’s episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit, I talked about the 3 mindfulness basics for anxiety and depression that you must return to when you are struggling with anxiety, stress, life events, depression, and grief.
In this episode, we talk about how we sometimes refuse to go back to the basics because we are afraid it means we are “going backward.” We dispel this myth and address how these 3 mindfulness basics for anxiety and depression can recharge our mental health plan and practice.
If you'd like to learn more about mindfulness skills that I teach my face-to-face clients who struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), we have an online course available on CBTschool.com called Mindfulness School for OCD. Click HERE to learn more and sign up.
Before we go, I want to remind you of two wonderful upcoming events! The TLC Foundation will host their annual conference on Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors from May 2-4 in Virginia. Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets. Also, the IOCDF Annual Conference will be held in Austin, Texas, from July 19-21. I will be speaking at this event and love seeing you there! Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.
Chris Trondsen Talks Rebuilding Life After OCD
Do you ever wonder what life will look like after OCD Treatment? If so, this is the podcast episode for you!
We are talking all about the common emotions involved with the recovery process from mental illnesses such as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Anxiety, and depression in today’s episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Many of you have asked for more episodes about the emotional side of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Anxiety, Depression, Eating Disorders, and Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors (BFRB’s), as well as what life is like after mental illness.
In today’s episode, we talk with Christopher Tronsden on Rebuilding Life After OCD. In this episode, Chris Tronsden talks about his childhood of “confusion” about his symptoms and thoughts and how he was claimed to be a “difficult child.” Chris Tronsden also talks about how he moved towards isolation after being wrongly diagnosed with other mental illnesses, and resultantly survived a suicide attempt. Chris shares the emotions he experienced after this suicide attempt and how it led him to finding the correct treatment for OCD (Exposure and Response Prevention) and moving towards Rebuilding life after OCD Treatment.
What I loved the most about Chris’ story is how beautifully he explains and articulates the process of building up the courage to perform Exposure and Response Prevention and then having to manage the painful experience of anger and loss after his OCD treatment. Chris Trondsen explains how he had to have some difficult conversations with loved ones and himself before he could turn his battle into something that was meaningful.
Chris ends the podcast episode with a beautiful message of hope for those who are at all stages of treatment and recovery. His message really does give hope to those who are embarking on the process of rebuilding life after OCD Treatment.
Thank you, Christopher Trondsen, for a beautiful interview.
For more information on Chris, visit:
IOCDF SoCal: https://ocdsocal.org/about-us/board-of-directors/
Dr. Jed Siev Talks Religious (scrupulosity) and Moral Obsessions
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today, I am so thrilled to talk with you about Religious and Moral Obsessions. In this episode, I was honored to talk with Dr. Jed Siev. Dr. Jed Siev is an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department at Swarthmore College and is skilled in treating Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), specifically Religious and Moral Obsessions. Religious and Moral Obsessions are very common among OCD sufferers and I am so thrilled to share with you.
I was able to take some questions from followers on Instagram (@kimberleyquinlan) for this episode and Jed Siev did such a great job of bringing compassion, skill, and research into the conversation.
Here are some of the questions we addressed in the interview:
What is scrupulosity?
What are the common obsessions and compulsions for Religious (scrupulosity) and Moral Obsessions?
How does Scrupulosity differ from Moral Obsessions?
What does treatment for Religious (scrupulosity) and Moral Obsessions consist of?
Does treatment for Religious and Moral Obsessions differ for different common religions?
The below questions from listeners are addressed:
Is it helpful to involve a member of clergy when treating religious OCD?
Is it common to question whether you are a good person or just do a good thing to prove you are a good person?
How do you practice acceptance of thoughts and obsessions even if it feels so against your morals?
When you struggle with religious (scrupulosity) and Moral Obsessions, how do you teach your younger child to pray?
Why is there such a strong feeling of guilt attached to Religious (scrupulosity) and Moral Obsessions?
How do you address the fear of doing things that are disloyal?
What to do if you keep judging your actions?
What to do if you keep putting shame on yourself?
Thank you for everyone who submitted these questions. I am sure you will find this episode very, very helpful, as I learned so much from Jed Seiv.
For more information on Dr. Siev, visit:
EXCITING NEWS...OCDeconstruct is THIS WEEKEND!! OCDeconstruct is a free online conference designed to give those with OCD, and their loved ones, the information needed to understand key concepts related to the disorder so they can get a productive start on treatment. During the conference, six therapists will present on topics including intrusive thoughts, ERP, family dynamics, medicine and more. OCDeconstruct happens on Saturday, April 13 and will run about 4 hours.
Welcome back to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. Today we have someone who is very dear to my heart: Catherine DeMonte.
Over a year ago, I had the privilege of joining a women’s group called an Abundance Group, run by Marriage and Family Therapist, Catherine DeMonte. Catherine was so inspiring to me and gave me some of the tools I needed to get me inspired and motivated to create CBTschool.com. That’s right you guys! Catherine was one of the people who stood next to me as I cultivated the seed of CBTschool.com. For that, I am forever grateful.
In Catherine DeMonte’s abundant circles, I learned how to lead with love, not fear. While this was a concept I already knew, Catherine helped me to put this into play as I created CBTschool.com and created a life that lined up with my values. Catherine has such a beautiful heart and a beautiful way of speaking in a compassionate and gentle way. In this interview, she delivers tools that will help you tap into the wonderful beauty of your heart and create a life you really want. She talks about love vs. fear. Catherine talks about what it's like to lead with love vs. fear.
In this episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit, Catherine talks to us about being open to receiving love and health and compassion and support. She shares with us some of her amazing tools that she has included in her upcoming book, Beep! Beep! Get Out Of My Way!
Catherine De Monte also talks about involving deep desire to the hard work that you’re doing with Exposure and Response Prevention and she teaches us how to practice grace and gratitude as we work towards our anxiety recovery. I very much love this episode and I hope you do too.
Lastly, I want to remind you about an upcoming event that I am thrilled to be speaking at: OCDeconstruct!
OCDeconstruct is a free online conference designed to give those with OCD, and their loved ones, the information needed to understand key concepts related to the disorder so they can get a productive start on treatment. During the conference, six therapists will present on topics including intrusive thoughts, ERP, family dynamics, medicine and more. OCDeconstruct happens on Saturday, April 13 and will run about 4 hours.