It’s crucial to develop the right mindset for Rheumatoid Arthritis. Anaya and Clint discuss how to achieve happiness and conquer stress despite the immense challenges.

We discuss in this interview:

  • The effects medications can have on our mental state
  • Depression and the microbiome
  • Focusing on the things we can control
  • Choosing our perspective on the world and making it become a habit
  • Getting negativity out of the body
  • The investigative journey to find our own personal solution
  • Making a list of health habits
  • Changing our physiology
  • The power of laughing
  • Book a free discovery call with Anaya

Clint – Today, we’re going to talk about achieving more optimism, more positivity and more happiness, even in the face of challenges, in the face of persistent pain and in an apparent state of hopelessness. What are you going to dive straight into? The sort of problems that I have faced in the past with my inflammatory arthritis and the problems of my guest, who is Anaya, who’s back on this podcast episode. The reason we’re getting together and sharing this information today is because we both frequently see that mental health challenges and all of the problems that we face on that level seem to be at least as difficult as those that come with the physical challenges with inflammatory arthritis. One of our coaches often gets the comment that she must be lucky because she’s naturally happy, naturally positive, and so forth. And yet she brought to my attention that it hasn’t always been that way, and it’s been more of a learned habit that she established for herself. We’ve exchanged ideas around this and thought, why don’t we discuss this on a podcast because this is so important. And so, Anaya, welcome back. It’s so wonderful to see your happy, smiling face.

Anaya – Thanks Clint. It’s really great to be here, and I’m really stoked that we’re having this conversation because I think it’s really, really important and just really to demystify a few things that we’re not superhumans, we’re just people doing the very best that we can every single day, every single moment. And sometimes we mess up, but we pull ourselves up by our bootstraps or put our big girl pants on or big boy pants, as the case may be. And do our best.

Clint – Yeah. We are absolutely not superhuman, and the struggle is real. The impact of pain, the impact of frustration, and the direct communication between the gut microbiome dysbiosis and the brain, and also the impact of inflammation on the brain, all have a scientifically supported negative impact on our health, on our mental health. In addition to that, if we’re fatigued all the time because of the disease, fatigue I can certainly attest to making me irritable. And on top of that, if, according to the science, if we’re on steroids which about 25% of the RA population are. This increases the responsiveness to interpersonal stresses, so it makes you more emotionally engaged and upregulates those negative senses. We’ve got challenges from so many directions with rheumatoid. Does that resonate with your experience of the past also?

Anaya – Oh yeah. There’s so much in what you just said. Actually, I’m just going to pick out a few things that I can remember. I was on Voltaren for six months and I tuned into an emotional reactive mess. I was crying every single day, I mean, at the peak of my pain as well. And it turned me into a different person, it wasn’t me, it wasn’t me. And then when I went off the mast, like, you know, I mean, I was about to leave relationships and I was doing some crazy stuff. And as soon as I went off them a few days later, I was like, Oh my goodness. I mean, I knew it wasn’t really me, but I didn’t understand that it was like, Oh, it’s just horrific. And I went off and I was a few days later, I was fine and I felt like myself again, which is such a wonderful feeling when you haven’t felt like that for so long. I said to my doctor, and she was like, Oh, yeah, I’ve heard that before. And I said, well, that would have been really good information for me to know beforehand. So, yeah, so important to know that these medications that you’re taking and some of them are ultimately for the greater good and will help your microbiome re-establish itself and do all good things like methotrexate. But they mess with your brain and some of them don’t help and don’t support your long term health. We know that steroids don’t and all of those things. And it’s important to know that people who are depressed or anxious or experiencing that that’s not who they are. But a lot of that is to do with the microbiome being messed up.

Anaya – There’s clinically proven people with depression and anxiety. Their microbiome looks different from healthy people. So this is not your fault, none of this is your fault, but you can choose how you respond to it. And knowing that you have a choice is a powerful thing. Every moment for me, it was really chronic health struggles, and you know that I had chronic fatigue in me before RA and I recovered fully from that. But it was really in that struggle that I decided that there was a lot of stuff I couldn’t control that was happening in my life, and I didn’t know why. I really felt strongly that I was going to heal and recover. But there were things that I could control, and one of those was the perspective that I had on the world, whether I put on rose-colored glasses or ugly horror shows. I could choose what I paid attention to. And what you pay attention to, as is what your life consists of, that’s what you remember about life. I’m not denying that there are these things going on, and there’s certainly stuff going on for me still, but I can choose how I view it, and I can choose whether I attend to that and I can choose whether I think about that thing 100 times a day or whether I think about the beautiful flowers that I just bought from down the road. So it’s just a habit, it’s just a habit, it’s a choice that becomes a habit, and then that becomes your default way of looking at the world. And so for me, that was just such a powerful thing to really realize.

Clint – Hmm. So I’m going to play devil’s advocate here because I had the most debilitating whole body, rheumatoid arthritis, misery of hell where I was head to toe, chest, jaw, feet, ankles, left, elbow, my left knee, wrists or lot of my finger. I mean, and then waking up each morning expecting that I was going to get better and then continually worsening even on a maximum dose of methotrexate. And so when I go back into that state, if I’d have heard what you just said now at that time, I’d be like, I want to hurt her. Like I’m so miserable and I can’t even, I don’t want to do anything today because the methotrexate makes me so tired. I want to nap during the day, I just go and eat my weekly ritual is to get in my car and scream so loud until my voice is husky After that, because I’m so miserable, I’m so angry, I’m so frustrated. So with that in mind, does your statement still hold up, and what else can we do?

Anaya – Been there as well. You know, when you’re in so much pain, you wake up and you’re like, Oh, God, I’m awake. And you just know that as soon as you try to move, you hope that a world of pain is not going to be unleashed upon you. But for a long while it did and then, you know, I’d take a minute to sit up and then I’d literally have to sit on the side of the bed for about 10 or 15 minutes before I could muster just the ability to move, really. And then, you know, which is hard when you really want to go to the toilet, but you can’t move. You don’t know how it’s going to end and get up and go to the toilet. But I think I’ve certainly been in that state and man, it was really, really, really hard. And certainly, the number of wellness practices that I could do was dramatically reduced. But I made myself I still did my gratitude list, I looked around with mindfulness, I looked at beautiful things, and I just tried to be really present with that beautiful flower that be going past. The fact that my little finger felt really, really frickin awesome, and I mean, sometimes it was really hard to find good things, but you can still find them. Like, the sheets are clean, the food is delicious, my little finger feels great, that bee is beautiful, the sky is blue. And, I mean, I had to dig really, really deep to find those things. And I think. Holding onto that, for me, it was, a thing I said a lot to myself was, nothing’s permanent, everything changes, everything changes, things are changing all the time. And as they start to change in a good direction, you get that little bit more room in your life and you can choose what you feel they’re worth. Right? So I wasn’t going to fill that with more pain, I wasn’t going to fill up with anxiety or anger. And I did my fair share of shouting in the car as well. I mean, man, did I. Actually found it better, I waited till it was a really windy day and I went somewhere I could shout into the wind and I found that I could shout a lot longer and I didn’t get the sore throat afterwards.

Clint – The old wind shout, Yeah, there’s an option.

Anaya – It’s so good, and it just feels so free, so wonderful and so just taking pleasure and things like that. Taking pleasure and shouting and expressing your anger in your upset, in how you’re feeling. Things like that can feel really wonderful too and empowering.

Clint – Yeah, I got that from my dad when I was a young teenager. Not directly, but he would always say of other people and of himself and of my mum when they would express their anger as he refers to it. And he read that he read a book about it, and then it became like his philosophy on this topic forever. Which was that you’ve got to get the energy of negativity out, you’ve got to let it go, because if it stays in you, it manifests, it develops, it goes round and round and round, and it’s not going to almost, you know, I guess it’s not going to escape unless you push it out of the body and say get that out of me.

Anaya – Yeah, you do connect with that anger or that energy that you’re feeling and then you just express it verbally in whatever way that you like. So the frequency that comes out and your voice as basically correlated to the frequency of that emotion. So that’s valid, it really works, really effective.

Clint – Yeah, it wouldn’t feel as satisfying if you were to feel deep, deep frustration, anger and say, get out of my body.

Anaya – I mean, not in words, as a noise as a frequency.

Clint – I’ll tell you something and as we as I was taken back and you were talking about all that hard stuff and I was mentioning my hard stuff, and I hope this is helping people. I think we’re weaving some suggestions into this and not just sort of reflecting on the tough times, but we want to make this educational, not just some kind of whinge. But when I was in those sort of like absolutely the worst days. One thing my mind that kept me getting up and trying to walk and thinking I’m going to do it again and again and again every day were the following. It’s that I was absolutely certain that there was a way to improve. So that was crucially number one. And number two, that it appeared to me just as though it was some kind of extremely difficult Rubik’s Cube puzzle. And the thought that I had was it was sort of around the style of I’ll try something else today. That was my that was the sort of mental state that I had. Well, that didn’t work because here I am, just as I was yesterday, I’ll try that instead today or I need to emphasize the thing I did yesterday less and emphasise something more. And so whilst never really saying to myself, this is like a Rubik’s cube, no it was that there’s something that I’m not yet doing, there’s something I’m not doing enough or there’s something I am doing that’s causing this to be worse. Therefore it is a investigative journey that I must stay on, because remember that I know there’s a way out of this maze and I just got to keep looking. So that.

Anaya – Yeah, Same here. You just know there’s something. You’ve just got to find it.

Clint – There’s always something.

Anaya – There’s always something and just finding it and. The best solutions are the ones that work for you. If something doesn’t work for you or you don’t enjoy something, don’t do it, look somewhere else. Don’t do someone else’s prescription, this is how I got with the ABCDEFG. If that doesn’t work for you find a variation that works for you. If it’s not fun and you’re like, you’ve got to do this today, forget it. Find something else to do, something that you enjoy that brings you joy, you know. And the best things are things that you do.

Clint – Exactly. So good example for me in my life was swimming has always been a good exercise for me, but I just don’t like it, I really don’t like it. And I know a lot of people love it and I encourage you and applaud you, It’s a wonderful format for inflammation reduction. I’ve just never enjoyed it, I just don’t feel comfortable. I feel stressed in the water as I’m losing my breath after about eight laps. And so, however, I love going to the gym. And so like you said, modify it, if you don’t like doing squats, do lunges, but do something. What you’re saying applies to all of us. You’ve got to have an adequate level of enjoyment or at least a neutral attitude or there’s too much friction to make it a habit. And it’s and then you are all about habits, aren’t you? Establish the habit.

Anaya – Yeah. Yeah. So the way I view it is there are health habits, things that support your healing and wellness, and then there are illness habits, things that keep you stuck. Chances are people aren’t aware or haven’t necessarily even thought about it, or awareness to things that are health habits. So I actually just wrote a list, I started writing a list because I do this every so often just to check in with myself and to, you know, keep making progress. So for me, the last couple of weeks, I’ve found myself. I just haven’t been nourishing myself enough, I haven’t been giving myself enough downtime, and I’ve been just giving a lot away. And so I’m like, okay, I really need to get a grip on this because this is part of my personality, this is part of who I am. I have this tendency to just give a lot of my time and energy away, and I have to monitor that. This is part of who I am, and this is probably not going to go away. I’m probably going to be like this when I’m 90 or whatever. So I have to attend to that part of me and look after that part of me. So, you know, a list of things that I do that health habits like I eat really well, I exercise really well. I spend time outside, meditate, chill time, and laughing at myself, and I have a lot of wellness practice. I try and make really conscious choices. I try to respond rather than react. And I don’t listen to all the crap that goes on in my head. You know, most of your thoughts are rubbish, you know, like what kind of. I mean, insanity is when you listen to everything that goes on in your head and think it’s true. I’d be kind to myself, I don’t judge myself. If I don’t do something well, I just go, oh, okay, whatever. And I move on. You know, I don’t berate myself or put myself down. I try to be my own best friend, I look for support. I go walking with my dog every morning part that’s for her. But it also gets me moving for the day. And then I sort of do my mindfulness practice noticing three things. I see, two things I hear and one thing I feel as I go around so that I’m also getting something from it. So those are just a few things that I do and there are a lot more.

Anaya – The way that I would start with this is I would just start thinking about all the health habits that you’ve got and list them and then think about, okay, what’s another one that I can add? And so for me, sometimes I take laughter, wellness, but when I’m doing someone else’s, when I’m a participant, I sit on my bike and I laugh while I’m on my bike so I’m spinning. So I’m multitasking, and it doesn’t take anything away from what I’m doing and kind of means I get to do two good things at once. If I’m trying to introduce a new habit, I sometimes I’ll tie it into another habit. When I go for a walk with my dog, we pretty much go the same way every morning. I do squats at a certain place, there is a hill that I walk up backwards and, you know, I just tie it all in there. So I’m just sort of doing all these things. It can feel overwhelming so this is a way to make it less overwhelming. You don’t want to start doing everything at once. You start with a few, you know, become aware of what you fundamentally do now and then think about a whole lot of things that you could add and then prioritize which one you want to add. Once you do it for a couple weeks, it’s a habit that doesn’t require a lot of thought or energy anymore. Then maybe you want to use another one, maybe this one’s not very useful. You get rid of that one on top and change it. Yeah. And then the other thing I look at is my illness habits, and sometimes these are harder to identify. So, you know, one of my illness habits is that I give away too much time and energy and also a very empathetic person. So it’s very easy for me to pick up a lot of other people’s stuff. And that’s just a tendency that I have to manage and monitor. It’s very obvious sometimes when I do it because I seriously start acting like a two-year-old having a tantrum. My husband’s like go and have a shower, you know, or do something, shake it off like I play Taylor Swift’s Shake, Shake it off, or there’s another song, Shake your booty, shake your booty, and I sort I just sort of shake off that energy. Sometimes I have something going on, and then I’ll want to call someone and talk to them about it. So but it doesn’t help very often, it doesn’t really work. I need to really check in with myself first and go, Well, what do I need? And so I have illness habits, too.

Anaya – The ones that a lot of people have, and the people that I work with, I would say that almost exclusively, everybody, all of these people have things, they judge themselves really hard on themselves, they see crazy expectations for themselves. Expectations are a great way to fail, really, because you’re constantly berating yourself for not making progress. I think aspirations are great, and inspirations are great, but expectations, you’re just sort of setting yourself up for judgment a lot of the time. Like I said before, listening to all your thoughts and acting as if they’re real. Catastrophizing, you wake up in the morning and something a little bit sore. So what I do now is like my chest is a little bit sore at the moment, but I know that’s because I’ve got more mobility. And so some of that tissue that’s formed is sort of stretching and releasing, it’s just hurting a tiny bit, but it’s actually a good thing because it means it’s healing happening there. So that’s how I view it. Whereas someone that catastrophize is, Oh no, I’ve got, you know, RA or some other symptom come up on my chest. What does this mean? What is it about? I must be getting worse. Loop, loop, loop, loop, loop 100 million times a day. Round and round and round and round and round. Until that becomes all you’re thinking about, and your reality. Focusing on the negative, the role, the bad exclusively in worrying about the past, which you can’t change in the future.

Clint – Let me jump in here because all of us are guilty of all of those things at different times, that negative list.

Anaya – Yeah. Yeah.

Clint – And I can feel myself thinking, yeah, I’ve done all that. And then starting to feel like maybe our audience may feel, Oh, yes, yes. And now we feel bad again. So let’s jump back on to the things that the all the massive list of things that do that are health-promoting, health habits. And I’ll add to them some of my observations as well. And my lessons over over life are two people that I have paid some attention to over the years. One Anthony Robbins, another coach Brendon Burchard. Now both of them and I’ve paid a lot of attention to what they say to do when you feel a negative mental state and their advice is exactly what you do, which is to change the physiology.

Anaya – Easy for you to say.

Clint – That’s right. That’s right. Their first advice is to get a dictionary. So Anthony Robbins says immediately, if you’re feeling a low state, get the chest up, take a deep breath, get a power stance. Basically get into a position of power, not into a position of weakness. And he doesn’t use his word, but almost like a pathetic physical state.

Anaya – Yeah.

Clint – Regardless of where you’re at with your own body and health, with rheumatoid, you can still improve it and uplift your chest. And that’s number one. Then we need to move our body, and this is Brendan Bouchard’s number one tip. If he’s in a funk, as he calls it, then go for a walk. That’s the first thing you need to do, because otherwise it’s almost like that energy, that negative energy is trapped in a singular position in the world. Let’s distribute some energy out, move ourselves particularly effectively into a nature environment, a green park. And doing that will sort of take the bite out of that mental state.

Anaya – And that is actually what happens too. Because when people do get in a funk and their sympathetic nervous system becomes activated, you’re sympathetic nervous system, your fight flight or fright. Right. So it can be calmed. One of the things that can calm is taking action, and movement is literally taking action. I mean, another action might also be a checklist of something. It might be you know, it can look really, really different, but it will actually physiologically calm that response. As with the posture in the language, you don’t see a happy person look defeated and weak a weak posture. And I certainly that was actually the key part in my healing from chronic fatigue that last 5% came when I really paid attention to my posture and my language. So I didn’t say I’ve never said I have RA, I’ve never said that, I’ve said I’m diagnosed with it, and talk about it like that. And some might be like, well, you’re in denial. I’m not in denial because I’m taking a part of me feels like maybe I still am, but I take action to deal with what I’m faced with and that is what I’m faced with. But yeah, so language and posture are massive.

Clint – Yeah, the action theme is definitely one that’s flowing through all what we’re talking about. It’s like when I was getting up and thinking, what haven’t I discovered yet? What do I need to test today? That’s taking an action. You being, you know when we’ve talked about now going for walk when our mental health isn’t right. It’s exactly what I do like when I’m not feeling right and I feel like I can’t concentrate. There’s too much going on, the kids are running around. What I do is I say I’m going by myself while I’m walking through the park. It takes me about 10 minutes to walk barefoot on the grass from one end of the park to the other. I don’t want to take the kids and I don’t want to walk with my wife. I just need to be by myself. When I come back, I’m about 50% better and that’s enough to manage things. Then the action-taking like you just skipped over it a moment ago and I love it. If you are in a stress state and you write down all the things that are bothering you on a piece of paper in a massive list, by the time you’re done, you feel damn good. You kind of are in good shape.

Anaya – When your brain gets into a real fret and funk OR if you can’t sleep, you’re feeling anxious and all the stuff’s going around in your brain. With that, get up and write it all down and it is such a powerful thing to do. Then you reread it and honestly, you’re like, Oh my God, I write that like, write down everything that’s going through your brain. I hate myself or my life sucks or I’m never going to get better. When you write it down, you can see very clearly in a way that you can’t win and it’s just running through your brain. Then it’s just not true because it’s just a mess of catastrophe. It’s almost like when you read it after it’s written down, it’s almost like you’re imagining someone else says it. Then if you know someone else did that stuff to you, I’d be like, that’s not true. I only had to do that or I did that once in my life, and that’s all I’ve had to do. Basically, it’s seriously part of a whole lot of my monkey brain. I’ve never had to do that again because reading or writing down what was going on in my brain was so powerful, but I didn’t have to do it again.

Clint – It’s almost the last thing we want to do. I can appreciate this because if someone like me has been asked to do this in some seminars and things over the years and I’m intellectually aware of it, I actually haven’t done that for a long time. It’s like meditation and it’s great for you, but for most of us, until we’re in the habit of doing it. Also, the pain of feeling like we’re breaking a habit is greater than the pain of having to do something we’re not familiar with, it’s hard to kind of do it. The reason I like explaining this is your conscious brain is the one that’s making the decision as to whether or not you’re going to park it for 10 minutes and it doesn’t like that. So it’s going to decide, don’t park me for 10 minutes, go and do anything else in the world. So anyway, so yes, it’s like that. Making the checklist is a wonderfully quick way alongside going for a walk to get some quick relief from mental health problems.

Anaya – Laughing obviously, you like laughing and I like laughing. I just laugh at myself or I laugh at my monkey brain. It’s like a ridiculous thing or what a funny thing to think. Just choosing to laugh or choosing your next step is so powerful because these subconscious things just run us a lot. It’s the more you become aware of these things that are running you in and forming your thoughts and behaviors, the more power you have. It is because you can then be in a position to make a choice about how you respond. It’s very challenging to heal and recover from things if you don’t have any awareness. Building awareness or doing everything that you can to build awareness is for me, a real foundation and a really fundamental thing. It is the priority in order to heal.

Clint – Now, when you say awareness, just so we’re on the same page here. Are you essentially saying that if we’re having an angry moment, a frustrating moment, to be able to observe that almost like a third party and say, I’m in a bad way at the moment? I know there are things that I can do right now to switch this up. Is that what you mean?

Anaya – It could look like that. I would say, I’m experiencing anger. Hopefully, when I read through the list of healthy habits people might have, yes I do that. When I read through some illness habits, people might be going, I do that. So that’s awareness and when it happens again and we’re human, it probably well, we’re like this is just a bad habit. I can do it differently and you might or might not, but it becomes a choice, and no judgment as to what you choose to do. Eventually, once you become aware of it, you will start making choices that are really promoting your health and well-being and ongoing happiness and wellness.

Clint – Let me tell you something really funny. This is actually a new problem I’ve had in the last 12 months. I place so much attention on the awareness of my family dynamic that I actually find the habitual behaviors of all of us, myself included, quite funny. I find them funny, right? This is awful to admit. If myself or my wife are in a situation where we’re running a previous exchange that we’ve had before and one of us is getting into a heated situation, the habitual nature of that exchange is humorous to me. With that, I can’t help but start smiling or start to giggle and this infuriates me.

Anaya – Of course, I know it’s like when I tell you to calm down. Then, it’s not going to work if you ask me to calm down. Then it’s like, don’t calm down and they get furious. But yeah, I do relate to that.

Clint – These habits are really obvious. When we come to tune into the observation of them and now a change of direction. It is because now we trying to just freestyle on this and I’m really enjoying just sharing these things. But one thing that I love to ask myself, whenever things go on sour for my kids or friends for myself, is always what’s great about this. It’s my favorite phrase in the world and I use it so much that it now almost comes forward before I’ve even fully digested the problem that I’m facing. If let me think of an example, like a conflict of schedule that we have this weekend. I’ve got a stand-up comedy job that’s looming to be right over the top of a massive family event and suddenly is a drama. It is because now you’re not going to be there, my parents are coming, and all that sort of stuff. Then we say, what’s great about this? The reasons are pretty boring compared to the rest of what we’re talking about. It’s that I need the stage time and I need to build materials. I’ve got another job the next week and it’s a very high-paying role. However, I’m already thinking that I’m already neutralizing the negative effect of the thing, even though it can take other family members a lot longer to get to that point. I think what’s great about this is just helps us in every situation in the most effective way for me. It is my number one tool for quickly moving on when things appear bad, including rheumatoid-related stuff over the years. Do you use this strategy?

Anaya – It’s funny when you’re saying that I actually just became aware of something and that was I’ve learned to do this right. One of the places that I learned to look at the positive or ask the question, what did I learn from this or what did I enjoy was actually teaching. It is because I’ve been a teacher for many years at different levels. Obviously, when we’ve finished a task or something, what did you learn? I was taught to do as a teacher is to ask, what did you learn? What did you enjoy about it? What would you change? What would you do differently? So I wasn’t really aware where that particular thing came from. But I think that’s one of the places that it comes from. I have always been a very curious person. I’m always asking questions about how did they happen or why they happen? Also, what if I tried this, or what if this happened, or what if the aliens came down? I learned to look at the good things and I learned to focus on the positive things. I’ve also learned to deal with trauma, express trauma, and express myself. I’ve learned to who I can go for support and know that they will support me. I’ve forgotten the question that you ask me now and I’ve just got something else on my brain.

Clint – Rather than me thinking, she’s forgotten the question. My thought is what’s great about this, right? What’s great about this is that it reflects like we’re in a live situation and this is fun. We’re freestyling or we’re not going off the script here and these little fun things happen and we can laugh about it. As we laugh about this little moment, we feel better. You can’t be stressed and laughing at the same time and the whole thing is better than what it was before you forgot the question.

Anaya – Exactly. Then I’ve forgotten the tangent that I was going off on too because I thought it was quite a good one too.

Clint – We got a laugh out of it and it worked out wonderfully. So yes, the what’s great about this and people could say, what if my knees now terrible? What’s great about this? You can even apply it and it’s not as obvious. It’s far more subtle, but it might be okay. What’s great about this? What’s great about this is we need to take more action. We can therefore book a rheumatology appointment sooner, and when we ring, our voice is going to be sterner. It’s going to be more imperative over the phone and we’re probably going to get that appointment sooner than we would have had otherwise. It probably means that what we did yesterday is the wrong thing, so we stopped that and we’re going to get closer to turning over the right stone to find the answer. It probably means that we can investigate different things that we were looking at yesterday. I know this feels like it’s clutching at straws. However, the alternative, which is just to say I’m stuffed is not good. So use what does work, even if it’s only a little bit effective compared to the monster at hand, but you need to do something.

Anaya – There might be something that might uncover itself because we can’t know how things are going to turn out. You take that next step and then that next step might lead somewhere unexpected, wonderful, and incredible. You might discover something new, but if you stay still, doing nothing differently. You’re going to get the same things to happen and over 90% of our behaviors are habitual, and that’s a lot. That’s a lot of our life that we have the power to change. It’s a lot of subconscious stuff going on and an incredible amount. The thing that you might do so even something different could be to pick up your glass with your left hand and drink from your non-dominant hand. It might be brushing your teeth with a different hand. It might be walking backward that might be getting. Any tiny little thing that you can do differently helps to change your brain and helps to change your perspective. It is because you’re literally living in a different way. When I pick up this glass of my left hand, I’m like, Oh yeah, that feels a little weird, and take a drink. I hope I’m actually going to get it in my mouth without hitting my teeth and it feels different and different. I guess this is probably a learned thing too. A belief that different is good and that’s a belief that I’ve adopted. Different as good and I recognize that that could be a massive leap for a lot of people that different is good. They’re feeling different, which can be a good thing and a positive thing, and it reflects change and it reflects progress, and that’s how I’ve decided to view things. I know that that’s really challenging. When it comes to a journey like this, it changes everything and it just does. It can be really hard to accept for a lot of people, we get stuck on how it changes things for better or for worse or makes things not possible. However, there are polarities and life. There’s always contrast or always two sides to the story. On the flip side of that, it’ll make some things possible and you might not know what they are yet, but you don’t need to necessarily know. Then, you need to know and trust that they are there and so it takes courage to move into that space of hope. It really does when you’ve been feeling hopeless.

Clint – You and I know each other because through both having the same condition we have connected through our online support platform. We have communicated and we’ve gotten to know each other. We’ve built a friendship together and you’ve now done a part of our coaching work. I mean, these are good things that have come about from one damn heck of a miserable disease, right?

Anaya – (inaudible) have a miserable time, right?

Clint – So that’s just one micro example of each of our lives that have been enriched through the otherwise dark side of the equation. We need to look at the balance of it all. Yes, it all seems miserable. But if we had to if we were forced to, what great has come about of this situation? If we were to list ten of them on a page, you probably say, those things are pretty important to me right now. Those friendships I’ve made or the knowledge I have about how to eat or what’s now changed the life of my husband, who now has gotten off his blood pressure medications or whatever it might be, right? If you could write ten good things about what this disease has caused.

Anaya – Yeah.

Clint – Well done. What?

Anaya – That reminded me of something else with Mandela. Prison for 30 years sort of was a pretty grim place. Did he pack up and decide that was it? I mean, he was always a freedom fighter, right? But he found his freedom in prison because he realized that his freedom couldn’t be taken away from him. It starts in the mind and your mind can literally travel anywhere, no matter where you are or what circumstance or position you are in. It all starts in the mind and it can all start in the mind. I mean, who ever imagined that he was going to get out of prison and become the leader of the country? Then, change things and change the world in so many lives and the way that he does. I have read his biography, but he would probably have imagined the mess of ripples or tidal waves, really, that he was going to have on the entire world. It’s incredible and he was a human. I’m a human being who’s not to say that, you know, you can’t make these ripples and that is just as important.

Clint – That’s a beautiful place for us to start to close this out. It is because when I’ve read biographies or listened to interviews with really successful people in areas that I pay attention to, I like sports. I like listening to what people say about who is successful at a national level with a sport. They say I’m just like anyone else and I just applied endless amounts of time and energy and effort. I just put it in and we come right back to habit. Their habit was their training. Their habit was probably their nutrition fueling their energy requirements and their discipline. All the things that we have found to be super helpful with the rheumatoid in recovering from this and getting to a place that’s at least less painful, which is discipline, habits, taking massive action, finding an attitude that says what’s great about this situation and therefore I can see it’s balanced. I’m not going to linger there and never give up, and it’s these consistent things. Nelson Mandela as an example is sensational and these are people who’ve given the same amount of time as you and I have. As Dr. Nisha Manik, who is our rheumatologist who comes in our live calls always says, you can manifest your future. It is about your intention and so circling back to how you said what you focus on. Are you looking at the bee that’s buzzing around that’s beautiful, or are we still caught only on the pain? Well, what we focus on pulls more into our lives. Then, we with intention of improvement and intention of having a better life. It helps to manifest that and there’s no doubt about it.

Anaya – If you’re on the Paddison program, there are a lot of good health habits that you have. Not only there if you have rheumatoid support, but you’re also getting the support that you want in need. One of the things and I know this probably opens up another can, but one of the things that are very common, and certainly I’ve had to really look at it for myself as deciding what support you want? What does it look like, what does it sound like? Do you want physical support? Do you want someone to come and mow your lawn? Do you want emotional support? Do you want phone calls? Do you want people to send you funny jokes and messengers? Do you want someone that you can talk to and share what’s going on with you? Do you want spiritual support and guidance? Do you want company? Do you want someone to come walking with you to support you, to get back and to exercise? What does that look like? Does that look like someone just coming and having a cup of tea with you once a week? Does it look like a weekly phone call? Is it random? It is because a lot of us want support and we don’t get it and we’re not very specific with it in terms of what it looks like. People need you to ask them if you want, ask them for support and tell them exactly what you want and need from them. Then, they will respond because most people don’t know what you want. When you say I want some support, that’s just like the brain will just go blank. What do you want? What? You know, they sort of get into a fluster. They don’t know what to say and they don’t know what to do. Some people will say, you’re really good friends who know you really or if you’re someone that’s got very clear on what kind of support you want. Then, they’ll be able to give it to you. However, for the most part or most of us, we’re not very specific and clear. So if you get really clear and specific about it, chances are you will get that support. But when you just ask for support carte blanche, it’s just like going to a restaurant and saying, I’d like some food. Then somebody gives you a plate and you’re like, I don’t want that. Then I’m like, you asked for it and not what I don’t want it. Then they’re like, I gave it to you and I gave you what you asked or I gave you what you wanted. Then they’ll be like, don’t ask me again. Then I gave you what you are, what you wanted.

Clint – But yes, that’s a great point. Inside, our support platform will get some people who just want to be cheered along. We get some people who say I’m on day six exactly, what should I eat today? It’s all completely understandable and what you said is lovely. We need to know where we need help. I want to wrap this up now and say thank you. You have or you do your 30-minute discovery calls to folks who want to work with you and they can grab a link to that underneath the show notes of this episode. Head over to and click on the podcast tab. At the top you’ll find this episode and also we’re going to put it under the YouTube video. If you’d like to talk to Anaya, just to find out what services she offers across the spectrum of chronic fatigue, mental health coaching, and working with people who are following the Paddison program. Then, head over to one of those places to click on the link and book a free 30-minute call to find out if you might like to work with Anaya. Thank you very much for coming to this episode. I hope everyone has enjoyed it. Have you had fun?

Anaya – Yeah, really enjoyed it. I like this freestyle conversation because it’s really great here and that suits both of us.

Clint – Yes. We appreciate everyone’s time, wherever you are, whatever you doing, and know that the future is bright. The past does not equal to the present. Today you can take massive action to just improve your life just that little bit more. With the cumulative effects of taking action and knowing that there’s another stone unturned, it will you will get to that next.

Anaya – Small things have a big effect.

Clint – It’s all going to play out just fine. Thank you, Anaya

Anaya – My pleasure.


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