Owning It: The Anxiety Podcast
Why your anxiety is so physical + how to get rid of social anxiety for good
I can't write a title long enough to capture all that's in this episode but it is a banger. It is probably one of the most helpful ones I've ever recorded. It's practical, it's back to basics to some degrees and while I set out to talk with an expert about the physical manifestations about anxiety and how to manage those, such as understanding depersonalisation for example, the conversation really wound up being a very essential grounding for understanding the anxiety we experience and then, of course, it's jam packed with really smart and sensible ways to get on top of that anxiety. It's with Dr Harry Barry who I've had on twice before. He's always one of my most listened to guests. He has a new book out, The Power of Connection, which he'll discuss. He also shares what he believes is a surefire way to cure yourself of all social anxiety. The first 15 minutes are dedicated to social anxiety. As an essential add on to this episode, and for a real time way to practice the flooding technique he discusses, I really advise you sign up to my limited library of real time audio guides to help you with anxiety and panic, which I've called Owning It Real Time. Sign up here. I don't often promote my episodes as much as I should but for this one, well if I'd heard it when I was in the throes of anxiety myself, it would have saved me a huge amount of suffering. Bookmark it and come back to it as often as you need. Thanks for listening.
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11. The fear of falling apart again + anxiety over world news20:10Join me on Substack here where I write about anxiety, parenting and careers. For this solo episode I am talking through how I overcame my latest anxiety wobble - something I hadn't felt to that extent in so long. It really unnerved me and stuck around for a few days. For me, a fear I will probably forever grapple with is the fear of losing my mind. It comes now and then as a scar from the trauma and how I react to it is really important. I also cover in this episode the very significant 'vulnerability factor' that is our consumption currently of non stop tragic news coming from the Israel/Palestine conflict and how that can activate our stress response within our own daily lives. I hope you find this helpful, as always thank you for listening.
10. Understanding Perinatal Anxiety in Pregnancy51:19Are you pregnant, thinking about becoming pregnant or trying to become pregnant and dealing with anxiety? Or did you experience anxiety in pregnancy? Perhaps it was anxiety due to the physical symptoms, or because you arrived at pregnancy after experiencing reproductive trauma, with lots of worry around conception and fertility, or loss, or because for whatever reason, the hormones in pregnancy just drove you into fight or flight mode. Maybe you thought you'd feel amazing and excited and at ease (which is the picture often painted of pregnancy) and in reality you were incredibly on edge, which is normal though not widely discussed. This episode where we explore perinatal anxiety is for you. I am joined by Michelle Flynn, perinatal psychotherapist and founder of An Croi Beag Psychotherapy. She has a wonderful gentle way about exploring this topic and I hope it's both comforting, useful and of course validating for anyone going through this or having gone through it in the past. To read more about my own parenting experience, sign up to my substack HERE.
9. Medication for anxiety revisited with an expert52:50I have promised another deep dive into anxiety medication and 11 seasons later, I have delivered. Here I am joined by the wonderful Laura Dowling, pharmacist and founder of Fabu Wellness supplements. She also hosts her own brilliant podcast The Laura Dowling Experience. Laura answers my questions (and yours too) on everything to do with anti-anxiety medication. This is a super helpful overview if you are considering taking medication to help your anxiety or if you're on it already and are wondering about its longevity.
8. The 10 best anxiety mindset swaps25:36Sign up to my Substack HERE. Sign up to Owning It Real Time HERE. In this solo episode, I run through my ten most helpful mindset swaps to help you, in a nutshell, own your experience of anxiety. From how to visualise the anxiety to questions to ask yourself, these are all learnings I've had over the years and through interviewing countless world renowned experts on how to better understand and manage anxiety. I hope you find it helpful.
7. Delayed gratification and why it will help your anxiety53:23Is delayed gratification one of the overlooked secrets to reducing anxiety? Is immediacy culture and present bias fuelling our basal level of daily anxiety? That background hum or fizziness we have grown so used to living with? This week on episode of Owning It, with me Caroline Foran, I'm joined once again by Dr Padraig Walsh, behavioural psychologist, and founder of Actualise.ie, as we look to answer these more profound questions about our behaviours in relation to our experience of anxiety. It's in our nature to seek the path of least resistance but overall, but if we can't learn to sit with boredom or discomfort or hold off on doing something that will numb the discomfort, do we contribute more to anxiety? And if that's true, how can we go about working on delayed gratifaction and willpower with the goal of helping our anxiety overall? Join me on Substack here and sign up to Owning It Real Time here, where you can manage your anxiety in the moment that you're feeling it.
6. Living with ADHD, Bipolar + Anxiety: Matilda's Inspiring Story51:37If you're loving this series, do me a favour and hop on over to my substack and click subscribe. There I'll be writing lots more in depth content, with a huge focus on anxiety of course, as well as my parenting experience and some career stuff too. This week's episode is just so wonderful, had I been able to listen to this story when I was in my teenage years or early twenties, I know it would have made a massive difference in helping me feel less alone, and more confident about the challenges I was facing, that so many of us face. Matilda Heindow, you may know her on instagram as Crazy Head Comics, is my wonderful guest. She shares her story of growing up with ADHD, bipolar, anxiety and depression and, after a string of traumatic experiences that nobody should ever have had to endure, let alone endure within one year at the age of 17, she became ill with PTSD. It's hard to listen to at points, but believe me when I say Matilda is so incredibly inspiring, so wise and as she says herself she is now living her best life. She's channelled all of her struggles into the hugely popular Crazy Head Comics account, with well over half a million followers, and her new brilliant book The Art of feeling Better, which is out now.
5. Which kind of perfectionist are you?46:35Join me on Substack HERE. Do you struggle with perfectionism? Do you understand the science around it? Are you more of a socially prescribed perfectionist or a self oriented perfectionist? What does that even mean? In this episode with Professor of Psychology at the London School of Economics and Ted Talker Tom Curran, we get really granular on the subject of perfectionism. The latest research, whether it differs across genders and crucially, how we can manage our tendency towards perfectionism which of course can result in higher levels of daily anxiety. Tom is the leading authority on perfectionism and has a brand new book that explores all that features in our chat and it's called The Perfectionist Trap, available now.
4. How I overcame my anxiety around travelling24:03Subscribe to my substack HERE. Sign up to Owning It: Real Time to help with your travel anxiety while en route HERE. Brought to you in partnership with British Airways Holidays, this solo episode explores my experience of travel anxiety. It's something that held me back from getting on a flight for such a long time and it meant I missed out on a huge amount of formative experiences. Eventually, I worked through it with some mindset shifts laid out in this episode and other coping mechanisms, leading to once-in-a-lifetime trips to Thailand and Japan. Part of managing travel anxiety, be it the kind I experienced or the general stresses that surround travel, for example when holidaying with children, is booking with the right provider. British Airways Holidays are making it so much easier to enjoy your holidays without the stress. All their holidays are ATOL protected, they offer a 24hr helpline should you need them when you’re away and allow you to book with a low deposit. You can enjoy flexible payments until you fly*, and can even use Avios points towards your holiday too! Plus, all their holidays include a 23kg baggage allowance per person, so no surprises when you book. If this episode inspires you to take your holidays more seriously you can head to Ba.com/holidays. * Full balance due four weeks before departure for short haul or seven weeks for all other holiday bookings.
3. 'How holding my breath taught me to live': how this free diver manages anxiety56:16Sign up to Owning It: Real Time HERE. Subscribe to my brand new Substack HERE. This week I am joined by Claire Walsh, bestselling author and free diver. Having watched The Deepest Breath on Netflix, I realised how much we can differ when it comes to finding the thing that helps to downregulate our stress response. For many people, the idea of plunging down into the darkest depths of the sea, in one single breath, without all the breathing paraphernalia would be enough to send them into a state of panic. It is certainly not for everyone and it requires major training and experience and it's high risk but for those who describe themselves as free divers, this activity can be how they manage their stress and anxiety. Here, Irish free diver Claire tells her story and what she's learned from holding her breath in the water which she can apply to her life on dry land. PS: I've recently launched a substack where I'm sharing a weekly column. Anxiety will be a regular theme but there'll also be discussions about parenting and work and relationships, such as how I've managed to build a reliable revenue stream from podcasting. You can sign up at carolineforan.substack.com Some content is free to read but you can pay the price of a fancy coffee per month to read the juicier stuff. For now, enjoy this episode. Buy Claire's book HERE.