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050: How to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t – Andrea Owen

Andrea Owen is an author, mentor, and professional certified life coach who helps high-achieving women let go of perfectionism, control, and isolation and choosing courage and confidence instead. She has helped thousands of women manage their inner-critic to create loving connections and live their most kick-ass life. She is the proud author of How To Stop Feeling Like Sh*t: 14 Habits That Are Holding You Back From Happiness, which has been translated into 18 languages, as well as her inaugural book, 52 Ways to Live a Kick-Ass Life: BS Free Wisdom to Ignite Your Inner Badass and Live the Life You Deserve. When she’s not juggling her full coaching practice or hosting retreats, Andrea is busy riding her Peloton bike, chasing her 11-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter or making out with her husband, Jason. She is also a retired roller derby player having skated under the name “Veronica Vain”.

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • Three sources of your inner critic.
  • How to recognize your inner critic and cultivate positive thinking.
  • Andrea’s story of hitting rock bottom and coming back.
  • How Andrea told her Lutheran pastor that she believes in reincarnation.

Connect with Andrea Owen:

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Interview Transcript

Well, Andrea, thank you so much for taking time to hang with me today.

I’m so excited to have this conversation, David. Thanks for having me.

Sure. I just mentioned to you before we started that we’re probably at episode fifty with no cursing, so you are going to ruin our streak.

I’m so honored to be the maiden voyage into this – into the foul language.

It’s all good. Today we’re talking about our inner critic. And so, first thing I want to know is why should it even matter how we talk to ourselves?

Right. Well, it’s one of those things where people ask me – also the question -. This is how strongly I feel about it. People ask me, “If you could only give people one tool or exercise, where should they start?” And I always say, “You need to start with the conversation that you’re having with yourself.” Because that – you wouldn’t let other people talk to you the way that your inner critic talks to you. And not just that, our inner critic is directly related to our core belief systems; the things that we truly are committed to believing about ourselves. So, if you are beating yourself up 24/7, chances are you have a core belief that says, “I’m not good enough. I always am a failure. I am a screwup. I’ll never be -,” fill in the blank. And so, that carries us and we start making our decisions from that place about who we – who are relationships are, what we will tolerate in our lives. And so, you can kind of see the chain of events that it can unleash when we aren’t speaking to ourselves kindly.

So, where does this even start with? Because I think – well, a lot of us don’t even realize we have it, because it’s such a good friend. But where does this inner critic even begin? At what point in our life?

It can start for many – sadly, it can start really young. It depends on your family of origin. Maybe there were some things that were said to you outright. That you are a failure. That you’ll never measure up to anything. That type of thing. And also, in some families it’s not clearly said but the messaging definitely is there. Maybe we had a sibling that was always “the smart one” and we were never praised for anything. So, then we start to – we make assumptions about how our parents and our caregivers feel about us and how they see us. And that’s just a human trait that our brains do. It can also come from relationships that we’ve had before. People say things to us, people – even just their actions make us make up stories about ourselves. And it also comes from our culture. I’m going to gender stereotype here for a second, David. So, for men, their inner critic…

Feel free.

Okay. I don’t like to but I’m going to. For me, typically the inner critic is around being vulnerable as weak. That your status, how much money you make, how successful you are is directly equivalent to how good of a person you are.

How about the size of your penis?

That might matter. I mean, I don’t know. I don’t have the experience of walking around with one.

You know how many jokes…?

I think you’re half joking there, right?

No. No, I’m not even saying the actual – I’m just saying the amount of jokes that are about that. I think that’s like a metaphor for exactly what you’re saying; any type of performance. You know what I mean? All about performance.

It’s directly related to your masculinity. Absolutely, and for women it just looks different. Our bodies, the way that they look, the size that they are, the appearance of our face, how old we are, that matters culturally in terms of how valued we are. I hate that it’s like that. I hate it. But it is.

It is, yeah.

It sucks.

That is pretty common, yeah. Okay, so I’m hearing you say our family of origin.

Yeah.

And culture. Those are two big ones.

And relationships.

And relationships are where those – the inner critic comes from.

Yeah, and I think this is worth mentioning. As humans, brain science shows us that we have a negativity bias. We are more likely to jump to -. It’s sort of like when you get a review at work, this is an easy example for people, and there is all the great things that they’re saying about you and then there’s like the opportunity for improvement. That’s the one that we latch onto and we obsess on. And we’re complaining, “Oh, my boss is such a dick. He said this about me.” Or we don’t tell anyone because we’re so ashamed about this opportunity for improvement that we got on our yearly review. That’s a negativity bias.

Are you familiar with – and the two – the names of the two books are escaping me at the moment, but Michael Singer’s books? Are you familiar with him?

Yes, I’m familiar with the author but I probably haven’t read the book.

Okay. Man, I cannot believe those two books have escaped my thought.

It’s positive psychology, isn’t it? The topic?

Well, he’s all about basically saying that you’re – that inner voice – any inner voice is not you. We somehow – and really he resonates with that term “inner critic”, in saying that we think that that voice that we’re hearing is us and he basically just says, “How do you disconnect from that? How do you see it from a distance? How do you observe it? And then you’re disconnecting yourself from it.” Because I know for me, that inner critic is so familiar that it’s like, “No, that is me. That is me telling me that.”

Totally. I remember when I was sitting in my alma matter for – my life coaching certification is the Coach’s Training Institute, and I remember the very first weekend that we were in training. Sitting in that conference room in Los Angeles and they started talking about it. The Coach’s Training Institute calls it “your saboteur”, which I think is kind of hilarious. Like, let’s slap a French word on it and make it sound sexier. It’s not. But I remember looking around at everybody in the room like, “Wait, wait, wait. You mean to tell me that voice that I hear that tells me I shouldn’t even start because it’s going to -. Or, what are people going to think? All of these excuses, negative self-talk, like that isn’t my truth? You mean I have the ability to manage that and change the way that I talk to myself?” Like, to me, head explosions. The possibility are endless for this. So, I agree to that – to what that author is saying and at the same time, like I was saying in the beginning of our conversation, the self-talk matters but also the real kicker is that our self-talk becomes our core beliefs and it lives in our bodies and that can be the messier part to untangle and unlearn and detach from.

It’s almost like these are the tip of the iceberg – the symptom. The inner critic is. It’s revealing what’s going on below the surface. So, how do we recognize this voice? Because if we become so familiar with it, I know a lot of people that I talk to and coach, it’s like, “What do you mean? That’s just the truth. I do suck.” How do you distinguish what is the inner critic and what is reality?

Well, I mean, with that example, I would love to dig in with that person. Every person is nuanced but I’d be interested to know what happened to that person. What stories they make up about themselves because of the way someone spoke to them or because of some circumstances that happened that makes them so committed to that belief. And it’s heartbreaking. Everyone has a story and there are some people whose stories would bring you to your knees and there’s some shame in many people’s stories. They don’t want to reveal what was said to them or how they came about believing that. But after we sort of untangle that, where I would start with someone is just to challenge those beliefs. What is the evidence that you have that you are a bad person? Does making a mistake equal being a bad person? If David had made those same quote unquote “mistakes” or lived that same life, would you think he was a bad person? So, I would sort of show them the reality of it and that’s not a quick fix. I’m not saying it is, but that’s a place where I would start. Just really looking at it at face value of what’s really going on.

If I have any negative thought about myself, would you say that that is an inner critic? Any negative thought? You know what I mean? How would I distinguish what’s going on in my head and what I should call a negative thought or what I should call an inner critic, versus just, “Yeah, that really is the case.”

Yeah, that’s a great question and no, not every negative thought is the inner critic because sometimes we are assholes, right? Sometimes I show up and I’m not the best mom to my kids and I lash out and I have to circle back and apologize to them. So, I think that – are you familiar with the work of Byron Katie?

So, she has what she calls “The Work”, which I think is so awesome that she has coined that; capital T, capital W. And she asks four questions. I have a little bit – I don’t love the very end because sometimes when you’re taking -. Anyway, long story short, she asks you to look at your part in things, which I think is super important about taking responsibility. However, sometimes people can blame themselves unnecessarily. But the first couple of questions that she asks is simply, “Is this true?” And so, there’s a difference between – so, say I lash out at my kids unnecessarily. There’s a difference between me saying, “Wow, that was a mistake. I should not have spoken to that kid that way. He didn’t deserve that.” That’s one thing. On the other hand, me saying to myself, “I’m the world’s worst mother. This kid deserves a completely different mother. How can I even look at myself in the mirror? What a terrible human being I am,” which I’ve had those thoughts as well. So, there’s a difference and Brene Brown, who’s studied shame work extensively, those differences are shame versus guilt. So, shame is, “I am a bad person,” and guilt is, “I made a mistake,” and those are two very, very different things. Which we can go down that path if you want to, but that’s really a little bit of a deeper level around this topic.

So, that almost sounds like a behavior versus identity. Would that be the case?

Exactly, yes. Behavior versus identity is perfect.

Yeah, so my behavior was poor or unhelpful in that moment, versus I am this in my totality.

Exactly, and it’s noticing when you’re thinking in absolutes like that. So many of us do it. It’s so very normal and the trick is to catch yourself in the moment. It’s not necessarily – I think when people walk into their path of personal development, I don’t know if this was the case for you, but being a high achiever and I tend to be black or white about things. Either I am someone who talks badly to myself and has a lot of negative self-talk, or I am in constant positive affirmation mode and, “No, I am a good person at all times.” And what has been so helpful to me, is to realize that’s actually not the case. Like, it’s part of the human experience to sort of be on this rollercoaster of emotions and beliefs and things like that. What I always tell people is, the win is that you’re catching yourself in the moment. In the moment of telling yourself that you’re a bad person. So that you can move on. And sometimes it’s just bypassing it and saying, “Nope, I’m not going to believe that,” and going and apologizing and making amends. I don’t sit at my desk and catch myself in those moments and do ten minutes of positive affirmations. I don’t. I don’t have time for that first of all. But it’s about noticing when you’re beating yourself up and choosing a different direction to go.

Okay, so when you say notice it and choose a different direction to go, how do I choose a different direction to go? What are some strategies that I can use?

One of my favorites is, I have a mantra that I say to myself. And so, what it’s essentially doing is – another thing we know from brain science is that we create neuro pathways in our brains. Our brains are very malleable and that’s why we’re so quick to think about certain things, because those pathways have been created. We’re also extremely habitual. We think – most of our thoughts are the same thoughts that we had the day before and the day before and the day before, and a lot of those are negative. The vast majority of them are negative. So, what you’re trying to do is create a pattern interrupter. And so, you’re not necessarily trying to flip the switch and think a completely different thought, you’re catching yourself in the moment. And so, anyone who’s listening to this podcast, you’re probably pretty aware of when you go down that path or completely beating yourself up. It might take you a few minutes. It might even take you a couple of hours, but eventually you will notice. And my suggestion is to have some kind of mantra that you tell yourself that is neutral. So, the one that I use is, “Well, that just happened.” That’s all I say.

So, it’s not positive. It’s not negative. I’m not telling my inner critic to piss off, which I don’t think is helpful personally. I’m not telling myself a positive affirmation. I’m acknowledging that it happened and then I’m choosing another thought after that and a lot of times, I change what I’m doing in that moment. So, again, you’re trying to create a pattern interrupter, so that you can recognize that negative self-thought train more quickly next time.

Okay, so, “Well, that just happened.” Alright.

You can do – I have some clients who love the mantra – they just say, “Stop,” and they imagine a red stop sign. I have some clients who say, “Thank you for sharing.” Mantras are short and powerful and again, I highly encourage you to make it neutral and that you’re just acknowledging what happened and you’re not making it mean anything.

Okay, and then after that – after you’ve interrupted the pattern, choosing a different thought. How do I choose that thought? What do I choose to think?

It might be that you -. I think that’s why it’s sometimes helpful to change geography, and what I mean by that is change what you’re doing in that moment. If you’re sitting -. Sometimes an example that I give is one time I was sitting in the car and I had just walked away from an IEP meeting. My son has special needs and…

Oh, I know what those are. My wife’s a kindergarten teacher. A lot of IEP talk in our house.

Those are – and my hat’s off to the teachers that have to deal with parents and administrators and all the paperwork involved in that. But as a parent, it depends on the meeting but you can walk away from those meetings feeling like you got the emotional shit kicked out of you. And this particular meeting, I did.

And I walked away and I was in the car and I’m going down that path of just feeling – blaming myself completely for everything that really wasn’t my fault. Feeling like I’m not doing enough as a mom. I haven’t done one of those autism 5K’s. I don’t even have the blue puzzle sticker on my car, “What kind of mother am I?” And I was sitting at a red light when this was happening and – I mean, we’re not at red lights for very long, even though it can feel like a long time, but as the light turned green, it sort of shook me out of that thought trap that I was in and I said my mantra. I said, “Well, that just happened,” and my next thought was, “And I’m doing the best I can.” So, at that point, this was maybe in 2013ish, I had been doing this work for several years and so for me to say to myself, “I’m doing the best I can,” I did in that moment truly believe that. The me five years before that might not have believed it, so I wouldn’t have said it. So, it would have been enough just for me to say, “Well, that just happened,” and then start driving again and think about something else. Maybe it was, “Okay, well, what can I do in this situation? I can reach out to such and such organization for help,” or it is going through what I need to get at the grocery store. It can be innocuous; it doesn’t have to be related to the thing that you were beating yourself up for.

Even if you have to do it five to ten times within a minute, because that’s what people push back on me too. They’re like, “Well, I tried that and it didn’t work.” And my argument is, “You have been thinking the same way for like thirty, forty, fifty years. This is going to take a minute for you to get in the practice of changing the way that your thought patterns are.” You have got to commit to this and you have got to have patience and perseverance in this work, because this has the ability to change your life.

It feels like exercise, Andrea. And I don’t want to exercise. It feels hard.

Right, okay. Well, then what’s the alternative? That you feel like shit. I don’t know what else to tell you. I look at it as hygiene. Do I want to floss my teeth every night? Not particularly, but I’m forty-four years old and if I don’t take care of my gums, my teeth are going to fall out or I’m going to be bleeding when I’m talking to people and that’s just gross. I don’t want that. So, I would rather floss then have the alternative. So, that’s what I ask people, “What’s the alternative? Because it’s not working for you to have this consistent negative self-talk.” I get fired up about this.

Yeah, I feel it. Woo, man. All of a sudden I’ve got bloody gums and I’m feeling bad about myself and I’ve got an autistic son and I’m like, “Oh, my God. I’ve got a lot of problems.” It breaks my heart when I interact with people who have the negative self-talk – the inner critic, and their life shows it. The results that they’re getting shows it. And they’re not interested or willing to do the work. It kills me. It kills me. It’s lost potential. We have one life; you’re losing every day of your life that you’re just lying in bed watching TV. You’re losing the potential that you have to make a positive impact in the world. It just kills me. It absolutely kills me.

It does, but here’s what I think and I’m going to get real woo-woo on you for a minute here. I think that not every person on this Earth was meant to live their fullest potential. I think that…

That is depressing.

Isn’t it? I know. I just – I think it’s not up to everyone. I think that maybe in a different – whatever you believe about souls and spirits and things like that, but it’s not for this lifetime. It’s just not and I know how painful it is, especially when we see someone that we love and care about and we know this book that’s going to help them so much. And we see them, either they’re financially a mess or their relationships are a mess or everything – or they have bleeding gums or whatever. But it’s not up to us to change them and it’s -. I get it, it is so heartbreaking but I find some comfort in knowing that it’s just not their lifetime. And in another lifetime, I truly believe that they will be different and they will live up to their potential and unfortunately, I’m just not going to be around to see it.

Do you think that we reincarnate? Is that what you’re saying?

I do to some extent. You know, it’s funny, I grew up Lutheran and I remember I was probably eleven or twelve and I went…

I don’t think Lutheran’s believe that.

They don’t and I found out because I told my pastor who was this man that I trusted. I think at the time we were going through confirmation, so I must have been in seventh grade and he was my spiritual mentor. I remember sitting in his office and I was so excited because I was going to tell him, because I knew in my bones that my body has walked this Earth in -. I couldn’t tell you who it was, but I just knew I had been here before. And I believed it and I told him that and he says, “Oh, Andrea, we don’t believe in reincarnation,” and I was like, “We don’t?” But I believed this and it was worse than finding out there was no Santa. I mean, it was heartbreaking and I remember being so disappointed it and feeling wrong and that was just like, “Don’t trust your intuition anymore because it’s wrong.”

And, “We don’t believe that, so now you’re not one of us.”

“You’re not one of us.” And nobody wants that feeling.

Did you go home and tell your parents?

Probably not, but my mom has always been -. What’s funny is my mom grew up very Catholic, as did my dad. But my mom as always been – I mean, she’s a witch. We know she’s a witch, me and my sister. That’s just another conversation. But they don’t – they kind of frown upon that and the Catholic church. And Lutheran is just Catholic light, let’s be honest. But no, she – my mom was open to it but no, I don’t think we ever had the conversation.

Okay. If you could choose any one that you would have had a former – like, you would have been them in a former life, who would you choose?

What do you mean I would have been them?

Like you were them. Like let’s just say you knew you were this person in a former life…

Oh, yeah.

Who would you choose?

My guess is that it’s someone who struggled profoundly, because I also think that we sort of graduate into the next evolution with each life that we live. And to me, there’s a saying in the spirituality world that when we choose this path of personal development, of becoming a conscious evolved person, we have the opportunity to heal the seven generations before us and the seven generations after us. Which is like, no pressure but I also think that because the gifts that I have been given, my life exploded in 2006, which has brought me here. And to be able to walk away from that and not be a full-on drug addict and just throw my life away, to be able to become as conscious as I have, and I still have a long way to go – to be able to face my own shit and have some hard conversations and take radical responsibility and accountability for my mistakes, I had to have had some struggle before. You don’t just get this amount of privilege and amazing life, having had it easy. That’s just my – what I believe.

Sure, I must have lived a hard life too. So, now I read about 2006 in your book. But for people who – and this was not part of my planned conversation with you, but now that you’ve brought it up and I think it would be really powerful for people to know that part of your story, even just briefly. Because it sets the context for the conversation that we’re having about your inner critic. It really is like, “Okay, yeah. You didn’t just grow up in a nice Lutheran family and happen to believe in reincarnation and now you have an inner critic.” Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s like, “Well, yeah, okay that was a nice life.” How did rock bottom – how did you find rock bottom in 2006?

Yeah, well I was married before. I met a nice boy when I was seventeen and ten years later, we got married. And we had been together – we had been married for a couple of years and we always knew we wanted a family and we’re talking about conceiving our first child. And he also had a really large family. My parents got divorced when I was eighteen, so they basically adopted me and they were the type of family who – any celebration and birthdays, baby showers, graduations, job promotions, anything. I mean, you coughed really loud and they were like, “Yes! You’re amazing! Let’s all get together and have dinner and drink and just congratulate each other.” They just loved really, really hard. And so, I was – thirteen years, they were my family. They were definitely my family and they were a big family too. And my husband at the time, decided to have an affair with our neighbor who lived across the street and got her pregnant. It was not a matter of, “Oh, my gosh, Andrea. I made this mistake. Can you forgive me for this? Let’s try to work it out.” Which to be honest with you, David. I probably would have tried to figure out a way to make it work because I was so attached to his family, and that wasn’t the case. He was in love with this other woman. They got a house together. They even got a dog together. It was just so awful. So, I was essentially – I mean, you talk about pushed out of a community, they had no choice. I had to leave and this other woman essentially took my place. So, I did what I probably should not have done right after that. I started dating. I met someone whom I thought was Mr. Right and to make a nine month story short, he had lied about everything. He had conned me out of almost ten thousand dollars. He was addicted to opioids and I didn’t know it because he had lied about having cancer to cover up his drug problem. So, I was financially supporting his quote unquote “cancer medication”, which was basically opioids that we were getting in Tijuana, Mexico because we lived in San Diego. And I was unknowingly crossing the border with illegal drugs for him. I’m going to write a memoire, because the whole story is just like, “What?”

“That happened.” “That just happened.”

That happened. And so, he went away to rehab. I confronted him with everything. He admitted everything. He went away to rehab and I was pregnant with his child. And I thought, “Maybe he can get sober and we can work this out.” If I hadn’t been pregnant, I would have not but some people get sober and clean their lives up and live happily ever after. It happens in Lifetime movies. So, he went to rehab and he met someone else who was another addict and he fell in love with her and we broke up. And she had a trust fund by the way. We all know how that ends. So, I have an eleven year old son from him and I was pregnant and on the floor in my bedroom after having found out that he was cheating on me with this woman in rehab and thinking, “How did I get here?” I was thirty-one at the time, so it was also right around the time where most if not all of my friends were getting married and or having babies and it was just – the shame I felt for where I had ended up and the choices I had made. And of course, those two guys had done crappy things to me but I had to look around at what I had tolerated. I had major issues with control and co-dependence and really equated my self-worth and how valuable I was as a human based on my romantic relationships. And I had to take a good hard look at that and just really start – I know it sounds cliché, but I had to start over and that’s really where everything took off because I got to really get to know myself, if that makes any sense, and just start living from a conscious place. It sucked; I’m not going to say it didn’t. It was hard. And that was twelve years ago? Yeah, thirteen years ago.

That’s an extremely painful journey.

It sucked. I got the shit kicked out of me, mentally and emotionally. But looking back on it, I am so grateful that that happened because I didn’t belong in that family. He was doing the best that he could but he had clipped my wings and I was always just – I always felt like I was too loud and too expressive and all of these things. At the end of the day, I think my first husband had a real problem with me being as strong and powerful as I was. And so, I felt wrong for it, and angry. I realized also how angry I was, and for women especially, we have complicated relationships with anger and rage. And when I got out of both of those relationships, I mean, it all came flying out. I also finally learned how to feel my feelings and that none of them were wrong.

And now, twelve years later, through all that pain you’re helping so many people process who they are and help them to feel better about their lives and gain traction in their lives. It’s so powerful. So powerful.

Yeah, and I’m not -. Thank you for that. I appreciate it. And I’m not here to tell you that there was an end to that and that, “Oh, I made it.” In terms of success, I do feel like I’ve made it and there’s more. That type – if you’re going to define it that way. But in terms of my own personal development journey, I’m still uncovering stuff that’s old patterns and behaviors and now I get -. This might be kind of sick, but I get excited when I uncover something where I need to work on that and I look forward to the journey, even though sometimes it’s a slug fest. It’s still – I have tasted how it feels to be alive and I remember how much pain I was in before and how unconscious I was before and I honor that woman. Because before I had a lot of resentment towards her, but I’ve worked through it. I got some coaching on it, as we do. And I’m excited for what’s to come.

So powerful. Alright, back to – thank you for the detour. Very powerful detour. Twelve year detour. Inner critic. What if I say, “I need this inner critic to motivate me, because this negative voice is what pushes me to the next level. Challenges me to be better. Do better. Work harder”? What if I get rid of that negative critic? If I get rid of the inner critic, will I lose my edge in life?

My short answer is, no. And I invite people who have that belief to think about, are you thinking in black or white again? So, for those people it tends to be, “Either I have this inner critic that kicks my butt and motivates me, or I am a complete slacker that throws in the towel and then we know what happens then. Then I become a loser and I’m not successful, etcetera, etcetera.” And I get it. I totally understand, and at the same time, no one beats themselves up into betterment. We don’t get better and evolve through the shit being beat out of us. It just – it doesn’t happen that way. The way – the journey to your best self, your most evolved self, your most successful self, truly is through kindness and self-compassion. And I know that might be contradictory, maybe even more so to men, but just – I invite you just to try it. Just try it for a little while. And it doesn’t mean that you – I think that people think if they are kind and compassionate to themselves, it means, “Oh, I don’t have to get up for these five AM workouts that I do enjoy. I’m just going to sleep in.” It just is treating yourself like you would your very best friend or maybe even your dog. Would you beat your dog up? I hope you don’t, because if you do, I don’t want to be your friend. But no, it’s through kindness and dog treats and high pitched voices and things like that. It’s that avenue of kindness and compassion that we offer our closest people that we love and even to our pets. Try that on for a minute and see how it works for you. I think a lot of people listening might not even know what that looks like.

Well, I want them to get your latest book for sure. I’ve been reading through it. It’s How to Stop Feeling Like Shit and that’s the first time that I’ve cussed on the podcast, oh my gosh. I hope my mom’s not listening. I’m such a loser.

I’m so honored to share this moment with you, David.

I’m the worst person ever. Okay, that just happened. Okay, stop. Stop, stop, stop. Red stop sign. Alright, tell me who should get this book? Which is probably everybody, I know that’s your answer. And what will it do for them? Sell me your book right now. I’ve already bought it but sell other people your book.

Oh, my gosh. In thirty seconds. Well, and I wrote – just to clarify just for the sake of transparency, my practice is, I coach women. And I wrote this mostly for them. So, the examples in there are from women or people who identify as women. But I’ve had a lot of men say, “I’ve read your book and I loved it. I got so much out of it.” So, what they will stop doing is – I wrote about fourteen behaviors that are holding us back. So, it’s self-sabotage. It’s perfectionism. It’s isolating and hiding out. It’s numbing out, which I know just isn’t a woman’s issue, that’s everybody. And it’s also about over-achieving and blaming and things that I always say, “They work for a little while, until they don’t anymore.” So, if you’re at that place where you’re thinking, “Yeah, I don’t think that that’s actually working for me anymore,” and that’s where the title comes from. It’s not for people who are walking around constantly feeling like shit. If that’s you, you probably need a therapist. What it’s for is, for people who are doing all of these behaviors because they worked for a while and they’re getting to a place where it’s starting to feel like shit and they don’t know why it’s not working anymore. And so, that’s what I talk about. It’s lots of tools in there for people to actually implement – action.

And these – well, they’re compensating behaviors, in reality. Coping mechanisms, yeah. And they are – it’s so good. Like, every one of them I’m like, “Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah.” Really great list of this is the stuff that you use to feel better when you don’t.

Yeah. Well, no one teaches us coping mechanisms, right? That’s not one of the electives when we’re in high school. It should be but that’s what I’m teaching is better coping mechanisms, which would have been a really unsexy title for a book.

How to Stop Feeling Like Shit is a way better title.

It is. I’m about to write my third book actually and so, for the rest of this year, I’m only doing private clients. I’m not doing any group programs or anything like that. So, yeah.

Great, and so we want people to go to www.yourkickasslife.com and they can find @yourkickasslife on Instagram.

That’s where I love to hang out. I do.

Yeah, and you have your own podcast.

I do.

Yes. So, we’ll link to that. All these things, we’re going to link to. If you’re on an iPhone you can just swipe up to check out the show notes or you can go to www.insporising.com and find all of these links in the show notes there. Or just go to yourkickasslife.com because that’s where you’re going to connect.

Yeah, that’s where everything is.

Yeah. Andrea, thank you.

David, thank you.

Whoa, a previous – we talked about reincarnation.

We have.

I’ve got to think about -. I have another friend who possibly believes in reincarnation. I don’t know. I’m open to believing in it.

Yeah.

The tradition that I grew up definitely does not believe in it.

I’m not surprised.

But yeah, yeah. I’ll have to think about who -. Maybe I’ll just make up who I was. I don’t like your idea that I was having a lot of problems in the previous life. I would prefer that I was somebody noble and amazing in the previous life.

Sure.

Yeah, that would be way more fun to believe about myself.

Yeah.

Yeah, I was this lame person and now I’m having the chance to be better. No, I’d rather be someone awesome and somehow…

Of course.

At the end of my life, I screwed up and I had to take some backtracks.

Yeah, and I mean, I don’t know. If I had to stake my life on it, none of us actually know. That’s why there’s religion.

Oh, a lot of people know. A lot of people know. They’re very strong in their knowing.

No one really knows but it’s just – it’s something that I believe and it’s -. I kind of feel like, whatever works for you and makes you show up as a great human being, then run with it.

I bet you also use essential oils and stroke crystals too?

Oh, my God. Should I show you my crystals? They’re back there. I have only seven and one of them was really expensive. It’s kind of embarrassing. Well, it was like thirty dollars for a little rock.

That’s not expensive.

No, compared to how much some of them are. I have essential oils. I don’t use them on the regular. My son actually has a diffuser in his room. He loves them and he has crystals too.

I just started using essential oils. I interviewed a woman named Lindsey Elmore, who’s a famous essential oil guru and so she got me to sign up for Young Living and I’m now – I’ve got literally -. Like, here I’ve got – my favorite…

A kit?

Is peppermint.

They are pretty amazing.

Yeah, I put it in my eyes for eye drops. It feels good.

You do not! I almost believed you for like a half a second. I was like, “How do not know about this?” No, but I have sensory issues. So does my son. And smells, I can’t do those plug-in scents. Cannot – they make my body hurt. Even incense – I couldn’t even deal with incense anymore and so the diffuser with the essential oils is the only thing I can do as air fresheners. There are some candles that work for me but not a lot.

But crystals, because they don’t smell. So, that’s nice.

They don’t smell and you can wear them in your bra. No, I don’t. I know people that do.

Are you kidding me?

They make bras that specifically have pockets for holding your crystals.

That’s like a third nipple. In the middle or something?

No, it’s probably – actually, I don’t know. It’s probably somewhere in the middle where it doesn’t show as much. But they make flat crystals too. You could get a nice rose quartz.

I have not had someone on the podcast that focuses on crystals yet. That is going to be…

Oh, God. There’s this woman…

I’ve got to get…

And now I can’t remember her name. God, she’s like – she’s a little bit reminiscent of Cardi B and she has this thick Brooklyn accent. Yes, exactly and she is all into crystals. I’ll have to send it to you but she would be amazing to have on your podcast.

Okay, find her. Let’s get her on.

Okay.

Andrea, thank you for being with us today.

Thank you so much, David. It’s been my pleasure and I’m honored to have been the first guest where you said your first curse word. I feel like it’s brought our friendship to the next level.


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