I put myself in therapy after realizing that I my anxiety level about my business wasn’t serving me (and was abnormal).
Going Into Therapy
In this episode
Why I decided to go INTO therapy and why I picked therapy vs a life coach.
The thoughts I realized were not serving me
Other things that might interest you
Producer: Drew Erickson
Hey, guys, welcome back to the Pulling Curls Podcast. Today on Episode 105, we are talking about therapy and why I decided I needed some. What I learned, what I did, where I got it. Let’s untangle it. Hi, I’m Hilary Erickson, the curly head behind the Pulling Curls Podcast we untangle pregnancy, parenting, home and even travel. We know there’s no right answer for every family, but hopefully we can spark some ideas that will work for yours.
Life’s tangle free just like my hair. OK, guys, before we get started, let me share an awesome review we got recently. It says, “Hilary is fun and easy to listen to. I love to listen to Hillary’s podcast because she is fun, funny and real.” You’re going to find that out on today’s podcast. “I appreciate her tackling hard parenting issues while still keeping a sense of humor. Thanks, Hilary.” Thank you for the review, guys.
They mean so much. If you could just pop in there. It’s on Apple podcast because apparently that’s the only thing that matters. It just means so much and it really helps my podcast get seen. And did I mention it’s free, so just leave your things. OK, so I shared couples counseling with you guys that my husband and I had gone to a couples therapy and that we had found it so helpful. And I was talking to a friend about how much anxiety I had surrounding my business.
And I just kind of figured, like, everyone had that much anxiety about their business. And she was like, no, no, they don’t like some people. I mean, healthy business owners are able to like, let a lot of that go. Hillary, I think maybe you should see someone. So it made me start to think I actually contacted a couple of life coaches because I thought, you know, maybe they could and I felt like I needed one on one, not just like a group type situation, like I needed to talk to somebody.
And life coaches were way more expensive than therapists, which I’m just going to leave that there for you. I am really glad that I actually ended up going to therapy because I just think it was super helpful for how much anxiety I had about my business and my kids and how it was consuming my life. So to symptoms I had was I during covid started waking up at about 3:00 a.m., could not get back to sleep. And that starts to affect your life.
Like I was trying to go to bed early, but you can’t go to bed at eight p.m. like every night when you have older kids and a life. And so I was just finding myself super tired and also just really frustrated that I had these early morning hours that I wasn’t able to use as effectively as, you know, and then I’d be so tired I’d have to take it out anyway. I just wanted to have like a normal sleep schedule that I could feel like was supporting me as a human being.
So I looked around and covid was still somewhat of thing. I had probably been vaccinated by this. Yeah, I had been vaccinated. I don’t know if I know. I knew. Because if you guys remember, I was in the covid vaccine study, so I think I knew I had been vaccinated. But anyway, it was still kind of a thing and there was a lot of online stuff. And that really appealed to me because being me, I didn’t really want to waste the time, like driving to their office, waiting in the waiting room, going in all those kind of things.
An online appointment really appealed to me. I can do online things like that. I knew that it would be easy for me to do. And I actually came upon online dash therapy, dotcom, and they actually had a course that went with therapy. So what I ended up ordering was their course and a weekly therapy session. And you can tailor that to however you want to do it. But the course was actually super helpful for me. Again, big believer in online courses, obviously, and I knew that I would be able to get through it.
Like I was like, let’s do a lesson every week. And it really helped me learn. You know, they say that therapy is a lot of like bringing up what your parents did. And I never felt like there was blame on my parents, which I really appreciate it. I thought I had a great upbringing. Parents just do the things they do. But instead they were just saying, you know, this is what you’re used to. This is the culture you grew up in and you can change it.
And so they were just pointing out those things instead of there wasn’t any blame on my parents. It was just on like things that I had as a kid. An example for my parents listening, which they never do. You could stop listening, but they when I grew up, they they were always like, don’t start your own business, just like work for the man. Basically, you know, like my dad worked for a university his entire career.
They felt like that was a lot of stability. You know, I was a nurse. They were grateful I had such stability. But at the same point, my husband was a teacher. Like those should be very stable jobs. My husband had been gotten laid off several times. We had been laid off in California and then he got laid off here. Like I realized that working for the man was not a stable thing. But in the back of my head, I kept thinking how unstable owning my own business was.
So that was just like an example, you know, my parents really thought they were doing the right thing for me and for their age. Yes, probably was the right thing. But for us, running our own business has been a much more stable. No one’s gotten a layoff notice in years. And we were probably in every two year layoff notice. I even got a layoff notices, a nurse. So I know anyway, back to therapy.
So they were just things like that that I was just working through and reminding myself that I didn’t need to have the thought about how my business was going to go down in flames like every half hour in my life, because I constantly was just thinking this business is probably going to die because it’s so unstable and all those different kind of things. And that’s not you know, those types of thoughts are not supporting you. But I think if you dig into where the root of where those thoughts are, it really can help you realize that those thoughts aren’t truthful.
And, you know, you can change them. You don’t have to dwell on them, which is what I was doing. I was definitely dwelling on them. So I had the course and I had a therapy session with a psychologist once a week. And I will say, like the psychiatrist, psychologist, it wasn’t a psychiatrist. Psychologist probably wasn’t someone that I probably would have picked. Like her personality is very different than mine, but she. Really was a good match for me, and I think that that can be a source of an issue with therapy, but the good news is with online therapy, if it wasn’t working with her, I could easily have switched to somebody else.
I will say that with her, I had to schedule my sessions way in advance. So that’s something to think about because she’s scheduled up really quickly, I think, for online therapy. I was paying about one. Let me look. OK, so it is about sixty dollars a week. You get 20 percent off your first month, I believe, and they build you monthly. It’s not billed weekly, but it’s pretty reasonable compared to like going to in person therapy.
And I actually really like the course. And I forgot as I was looking through the site, she responds as you answer the questions in the course. So the course has some materials and videos and then you respond to specific things and then your therapist responds. Although I didn’t find that excruciatingly helpful, I found the actually just going through the work in my mind with the therapy course and then doing the sessions to be the most helpful. So, while it’s not super cheap, I only did it for I did it for two months and I felt like that was successful.
So probably about five hundred dollars, maybe not quite that much because you get the discount. But also if you are thinking of leaving or if you’re you can get it, you can like pretend like you’re leaving and then you could get a discount when you pretend to leave in case in case anybody you know likes those kind of strategies. OK, so my therapist initially talked to me about trauma and I kind of rolled my eyeballs because I was like, I haven’t had any trauma, you know, but in the hospital, it’s also frustrating in the hospital.
So if a pregnant woman comes in who is in a car crash, even at just like 20 miles an hour, we still call her a trauma patient because she like, you know, hit the seatbelt. And was the seatbelt in a proper position? Same thing for if a pregnant woman trips and falls, we still call that a trauma patient. Now, it’s not trauma in the way that a nurse would normally think, like we would think severed limbs or an automobile accident where you’re bleeding or, you know, real issues.
But trauma can be any type of like bruise or injury to tissues. And so I started to look at it that way and I definitely had some of that. I think a lot of my business and anxiety trauma came from when I was trying to build my business, plus working as a nurse and like an idiot. I was also PTA president at that time. So and I was trying to help my husband get because the plan all along was for him to get a full time job somewhere and we’d move there.
And that was our plan for a couple of years. And during those two years, I was just like I was that duck under water when I was just like pedaling, pedaling, pedaling, trying everything I could do to bring in money however I can. And I’m sure you guys have had those types of times in your relationships or marriage or life where you were just, you know, doing like all the things to bring in money. But I think I ended up having some trauma from that because I just felt like we needed the money.
We needed money. We need more money, you know, just because you do have to have money to sustain a family. And so I did need to work through that trauma and realized that, yes, that was a difficult time, but is past us now. And we’ve made decisions and we’ve refocused and the business is doing really well. And so I think it’s really important for us to realize that lots of thoughts come into our head. And I am now able to say, you know, that thought comes from a time that I was pedaling like the crazy duck and that’s not where I am anymore.
And I can move on. I think different thoughts now. Right. And I think therapy has shown me that that is something that I could do now with all my therapy. They gave us a gratitude. They gave us some journaling prompts, which I did faithfully for a months, morning and evening. And now I just talk the evening ones out kind of in my brain and in my prayers before I go to bed. And the morning ones I still write down every morning and my planner.
So in the morning I write down three things that I’m grateful for and then I write down how I want to feel that day, which I think is really great. I think we just think, you know, some days I want to feel confident. Some days I want to feel like proficient. Some days I just want to feel fun and happy. And so really deciding, like, how you want to feel and then you decide what you’re going to do to feel that way.
So if you want to feel confident for me, I focus on the things that help me to feel confident. I focus on positive reviews. I focus on things that I feel like I’m doing really well at those type of things. And so that’s how I feel confident. Whereas if I want to feel fun, I focus on the things that are fun in my life. And maybe when I have a point where I can choose what I’m going to do, I choose the fun thing instead of the boring thing, you know?
Whereas if I wanted to feel confident, I might pick the boring thing because I’m really good at it and I feel great about it. So I like that. And then I also have like an I statement. And a lot of times it’s like I am a business owner who helps millions of women every year with their pregnancy or something like that. And that statement can change. You know, you can just say whatever you’re wanting to be that day, basically.
And in the evening you say three things that went great that day. So it’s really nice to focus on the positive things that happened that day, especially before bed. I love doing this. I just do it in my prayers. And then you also think about things that maybe didn’t go well or kind of hit you in the wrong way. So sometimes those trauma feelings that you’ve been having or things like that, and then you think of ways you could have avoided those feelings or put them to the side instead of letting them linger.
And so I go through all of that morning and night and I found that to be extremely helpful. You know, gratitude really is everything. But sometimes it gets repetitive to just be like and I’m so thankful for. Thankful for, you know, great Courcelles today, and I’m thankful for all the Facebook engagement I got. I mean, this sounds like I’m so vain, but that’s how my business runs. So, you know, gratitude is great, but sometimes you need some new ways to implement it.
And I really ended up liking that journey. That’s one of the best things that I took from counseling. I think I also realized that we add a lot to our misery by dwelling on those thoughts so I could dwell on the thoughts of trauma or anxiety, or I could just put those aside and realize that that, you know, those thoughts aren’t serving me today and I could move on. I think life coaching does a lot of that and therapy does a lot of that.
Therapy digs in a little bit more into finding maybe the roots or where you felt that in the past and you kind of, you know, go back into where you felt that even during high school, I put a lot of pressure on myself in high school and I realized that I’ve just been putting a lot of pressure on myself for a long time. And I don’t need that. It’s not serving me. There are times that it has served me, you know, to do better in life.
I was thinking about this a lot with the simone biles thing earlier with the Olympics. And, you know, she decided to drop out good for her. But also she didn’t win the gold medal like she didn’t win a medal. And sometimes you can’t drop out. Like if I had dropped out of, like, working hard to grow my business when we were struggling, like we wouldn’t have had money. And so maybe dropping out at that point in time wasn’t as helpful because we needed to serve the analogy, the gold medal at that point.
But there are times that you can cop out and be like, you know, the things that I could get from this probably just aren’t worth it. And that is obviously boiling it down so, so much. But it just reminded me that for her, her mental peace of mind at this point in her life, because she has a bazillion sponsors and can probably run a gymnastics gyms for lots of money for the rest of her life, it just wasn’t it wasn’t worth it to her anymore, especially that she could get hurt and all the different things that she was doing.
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Hilary Erickson BSN, RN is a mom to 3, wife to one, and a nurse since 1997. Hilary’s curly head started Pulling Curls in 2005. Every day she aims to make labor, parenting & organization simpler for families. You might also know her has The Pregnancy Nurse.
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