How to Relieve Anxiety with Lola Pickett on The Healers Café with Dr M (Manon Bolliger), ND
In this episode of The Healers Café, Dr. Manon Bolliger ND, talks with Lola Pickett, the importance of being seen, overcoming fears of success, being empaths, showing up for families and MORE!
Highlights from today’s episode include:
I’ve already tried changing my job, I’ve already moved somewhere new, I’ve already gotten in shape. So, none of those things, did it? What is it that’s going to help me even figure it out? And so it was that clue, like that clue that really just hit me in the gut. And that’s the thing I want to encourage everybody to listen to. And for many of us, it whispers for a long time before we can really even recognize that it’s going on. It’s it looks like that low level of malaise. It looks like a low sex drive with your partner. It looks like dreading Monday’s, it looks like redecorating your room for the fourth time instead of having that hard conversation with your partner, that those are kind of the signs that you’re trying to make little tweaks at the surface. But there’s something deeper that needs to be looked at and addressed.
Lola Pickett 10:41
Because if people do what I did, after I had this realization, and try to follow kind of more mainstream self-help device, or the most popular personal growth books, things like that, it can be a very confusing and frustrating experience. And this is what I ran into, because I realized, of course, okay, something big has to change. Let me just go like to Barnes and Noble at the time and go look at their personal growth aisle and see what titles stand out. And I don’t remember exactly the first books that I started with, but I gained a large collection of self-help over the years. And what I was finding, though, was that many of the books had the same message, first and foremost. And if they were truly like New York Times bestseller selling millions of copies, then why weren’t millions of people having truly improved lives?
We have to get underneath that at first to even make it possible to start to have some of that body work, somatic practices, be able to land and to create that sense of safety that it is actually okay, to turn your focus back toward yourself. It’s not going to put you into a place of threat. And you can get that intellectually. But getting that at a at a very deep core level so that you can do that subconscious and unconscious rewiring work is critical. And that’s where I always begin. And then we start to develop awareness. Once you have that safety, the awareness can come on and things can start to change. And you can train yourself to watch for Oh, this is what fight looks like for me.
BIO Lola Pickett:
Lola Pickett is a bridge between realities: neurobiology & behavioral sleuth meets soulful ceremonialist. She’s the visionary behind the Empath to Power podcast, co-creator of the Wild Messengers Alchemical Tarot, and founder of EMPATH*ology™—an 8-week resilience training for highly sensitive empaths who are ready to claim their soul purpose. Her waitlisted VIP coaching often includes edge-expanding journeys, soul styling, herbal support, and sacred ceremony. When not facilitating transformational work, you’ll find Lola on a hike, crafting herbal medicines, and loving up on her husband & kids.
Core purpose/passion: Lola’s expertise, unique perspective, magnetic personality, alluring style, and fluid communication makes her a frequently-requested speaker for events and podcasts in the spirituality, motherhood, sexuality, entrepreneurship, healing, and creativity markets.
Her offerings blend cutting-edge neuroscience with trauma healing, herbalism, permaculture, ritual, and play to create powerful and lasting results. When not facilitating transformational work, you’ll find Lola on a hike, wildcrafting medicines, and loving up on her husband, kids, and kitten in the mountains north of San Diego, California.
About Dr. M (Manon Bolliger), ND:
Dr. Manon is a Naturopathic Doctor, the Founder of Bowen College, an International Speaker, she did a TEDx talk “Your Body is Smarter than you think. Why aren’t you Listening?” in Jan 2021, and is the author of Amazon best-selling books “What Patient’s Don’t Say if Doctors Don’t Ask”. & “A Healer in Every Household” For more great information to go to her weekly blog: http://bowencollege.com/blog.
For tips on health & healing go to: https://www.drmanonbolliger.com/tips
About The Healers Café:
Dr. Manon’s show is the #1 show for medical practitioners and holistic healers to have heart to heart conversations about their day to day lives.
Follow us on social media! https://www.facebook.com/thehealerscafe
Welcome to the Healers Cafe. Conversations of health and healing with Dr. M (Manon Bolliger), ND.
Manon Bolliger 00:18
So welcome to the Healers Cafe. And today I have with me Lola Pickett. And she is known as a bridge between realities, neurobiology, and behavioral sleuth. If I’m saying that proper in English myths, so false ceremonial list, she’s a visionary behind the empath to power podcast, which I’ve listened to, it’s really fabulous. And a co-creator of the wild messengers, alchemical Tarot, and founder of M pathology. So that’s a mouthful. But welcome, welcome. And thank you for coming to share your, your story and your wisdom.
Lola Pickett 01:06
Thank you so much for having me. Yeah, that is quite a mouthful.
Manon Bolliger 01:12
So, let me let me ask you the question I asked everyone, what brought you into the field of, I guess, of helping people?
Lola Pickett 01:23
Yeah, it really is this kind of lifelong drive, I was one of those children who was told you have to stop taking things so personally and get a thicker skin. Because my parents, my teachers could see that I was deeply affected by the world around me so much so that at times, it would, you know, put me behind my mom’s legs, you know, not wanting to engage with scary situations, I would feel a lot of anxiety. And I know that my, my caregivers were concerned, like, we want you to get out there and take life by the horns. But it seems like you know, maybe you just don’t have what it takes. And I internalized that, not to my knowledge, not consciously. But I internalize that as a young child. And so, the way that I proved myself was to turn into a stellar student, total overachiever, perfectionist, and drove myself into just like par excellence in every area that I possibly could in my life. And helping people along the way, you know, being like that essential, good girl. And it wasn’t until I had a near breakdown after the birth of my first child, when I was about 30. When I looked around, and I looked at my like, high achieving life, and you know, the picture-perfect college boyfriend that I had married, and my new fresh baby and my beach house with a white picket fence and a golden retriever. And I was so unshakably depressed. And I thought, either something’s really wrong with me, or something’s wrong with the dream that I bought into. And I started to ask some really…
really hard questions and share about that, you know. I’m somebody who likes to feel like everything I do is a contribution. And I know that, from past experience, that the more that we share our stories, the more that they make us feel less alone. And so, I was sharing my confusion and my frustration and my journey to figure out what it even meant to be happy as a human in these times in this place. And people were starting to really rally around it and find a lot I was, it was like, a little Me-too movement before the me-too movement happened, you know, it was like, wait a minute, me too. Like I’m sitting here in my picture-perfect life that checks all the boxes and going, What? What’s wrong, you know, why don’t I feel the way I’m supposed to feel when I’ve had all these things. You know, I’ve checked off all these boxes. And that really spurred a whole change in direction in my life. And so, I went from helping people to be a good girl and to get their love and to get the respect to discovering that story is service that the more that I learn how to support myself and being authentic and true to myself, the more that I can empower others to do the same. And I’ve taken a lot of different shapes and forms over the years in my career, in my entrepreneurship journey. And now what that’s become is this really powerful platform of work that is designed for highly sensitive people and empaths, who are almost the entire healer community, right, like to really gain resiliency and trusting themselves, so that they stop getting in their own way and they can actually have power and success and feel safe with those things. Because if we don’t do that, then the healers will never run the world. Right, it will still be the traumatizes and the perpetrators and we want to change things at a very deep core level and that starts within ourselves.
Manon Bolliger 04:59
Yeah, I have seen to in them because I teach. I run a college called Bowen College. And there’s lots of feelers and practitioners and, you know, so many of us come from a wound, the wounded healer, and then it’s that, you know, transgressing all of that, first of all acknowledging it. And then seeing the power in the transformation, when you stop more than the negative talk or what society expects you to what, exactly, you know, all of that. Yeah. So, so I’m curious. So, you were mentioning, the checkboxes, you know, you have this and the picket fence, and all of those things. How, how did you recognize that you were unhappy?
Lola Pickett 05:55
Such a good question. Well, what I was noticing was that the changes I thought would make me feel better, because I had this kind of low level of anxiety and depression, and I had it for a long time. And so, it almost became like, my normal. And there was this moment when, after my son was born, I was working from home at a job that I did not love. That actually went against a lot of the things that I believe in as a person, but it was a paycheck. And I was wasting my time on social media trying to avoid a spreadsheet that I had to work on. And there was this Facebook post that was just at the very top of my Facebook feedback in the day, and it said something like, all parents are liars, because they’ll tell their children that they can be whoever they want to be when they grow up, while clocking into jobs they hate, and waiting for Sunday. And I was like, wow, I got you, right. Like you. I wasn’t those words exactly. But that’s what I got from it. And I literally remember looking down, my son was about 10 months old at the time. And he was like playing with the underside of my desk chair. And I’m trying not to roll over his chubby little baby fingers. And I looked down at him, I looked at the screen, and I just burst into tears, because I thought this is so true. And I’m what I discovered in that moment was I want to be that parent that says that my child can grow up and really take life by the storm. And I’m not doing that, or I wouldn’t be feeling this right now. I wouldn’t be sitting here avoiding my stupid spreadsheet that I don’t care about for those business that’s doing things I don’t believe in. I can’t put lip service to this, there’s something big, that’s got to change. And that moment clued me in to just how off things had gotten. It’s almost like, I don’t know if you’ve heard this. But when an airplane takes off, if it’s off of its trajectory by even 1% on takeoff, it is hours away from its destination if it keeps going on that path. And that’s what had happened to me, I didn’t realize that I had gotten off track earlier on. And where I ended up was really far away from what was actually true to me. And it wasn’t till that post hit me in the gut like that, that I saw just how far that had gotten. You know, I didn’t know at that time what it was that I wanted. Because I had followed all the rules. I had done a good job I had like all the things, and I thought well, okay, so it’s not this, but what is it? I’ve already tried changing my job, I’ve already moved somewhere new, I’ve already gotten in shape. So, none of those things, did it? What is it that’s going to help me even figure it out? And so it was that clue, like that clue that really just hit me in the gut. And that’s the thing I want to encourage everybody to listen to. And for many of us, it whispers for a long time before we can really even recognize that it’s going on. It’s it looks like that low level of malaise. It looks like a low sex drive with your partner. It looks like dreading Monday’s, it looks like redecorating your room for the fourth time instead of having that hard conversation with your partner, that those are kind of the signs that you’re trying to make little tweaks at the surface. But there’s something deeper that needs to be looked at and addressed.
Manon Bolliger 09:23
Well, what you’re sharing is, is actually extremely encouraging. If you look at it in what’s happening today, where it’s not that people really have the choice of the jobs, they’re losing and all of these things as we’re becoming more automated as a society and as you know, things are changing. But many people go into fear of trying to hold on to what was probably never serving them in the first place. So, they’re kind of wide open. To end in fear, and to be wide open and in fear, and they have the possibility of absolutely creating the future that is deeply aligned with themselves there is that they thought they didn’t go into fear. Right. So yeah, can you speak a little bit about that? Because I mean, as an empath, yourself. So, how? And I’m just gonna say that, you know, in our community, most people are, how do you? How do you deal with that change? Like, how do you what, what are your thoughts on that?
Lola Pickett 10:41
Yeah, it’s an important question. Because if people do what I did, after I had this realization, and try to follow kind of more mainstream self-help device, or the most popular personal growth books, things like that, it can be a very confusing and frustrating experience. And this is what I ran into, because I realized, of course, okay, something big has to change. Let me just go like to Barnes and Noble at the time and go look at their personal growth aisle and see what titles stand out. And I don’t remember exactly the first books that I started with, but I gained a large collection of self-help over the years. And what I was finding, though, was that many of the books had the same message, first and foremost. And if they were truly like New York Times bestseller selling millions of copies, then why weren’t millions of people having truly improved lives? Why wasn’t a hearing about that? So, something was off. And I was finding that for myself, a lot of the advice that sounded really good and made rational sense to my system. I couldn’t actually do; I couldn’t feel the fear and do it anyway. My fear. And my anxiety was absolutely paralyzing. So, I couldn’t just muscle up, you know, toughen up and be like, oh, fear is a good thing. Wonderful. Let me just go do this thing. And it made me feel like a failure. I was like, well, maybe the doctor was right, when he diagnosed me with failure to thrive at a few months old, maybe I really don’t have this, have what it takes, like maybe I’m not built like everyone else, even though from the outside looking in, you would certainly think so based on the results I’ve achieved so far, like what is actually wrong with me. And what I had to educate myself in and what I now educate people on, is that what’s missing in that dynamic, what’s missing in that dialogue, and that mainstream advice is a deep understanding of physiology of the nervous system and of trauma. Because when you are an empath, or you’re a highly sensitive person, whether or not you’ve had personal traumatic experiences, the way that your nervous system is wired biologically, means that it’s more prone to having a traumatized response to sensory input. Which means that you are more likely to be a candidate for things like complex PTSD, even if you don’t have any memory of anything. That’s like big t trauma that’s happened in your life. Not because you don’t remember it, because your brains protecting you, which can be what happens, but because your system is so sensitive, and is taking in so much input all the time, energetically, emotionally, physically, sense of smell, sight sound, that you are already, somebody who’s dealing with cascading Nervous System protection mechanisms that makes it impossible for you to take that advice, and makes it that much more likely that you’re going to feel like something’s wrong with you, because you can’t do what is supposed to work for everybody. So, it’s so, so important. And it took me so many years, and so much frustration to understand what that missing piece was. It was like, oh, hi, not broken. Okay, so if I learn how to understand first and foremost, what’s going on in my nervous system, to create the false sense of safety and security I’m getting by staying small by holding back by making safe choices, then I can start to very gradually titrating make different choices, teach my system, how to respond to the world differently and take some of those protection mechanisms off of autopilot. So that I can be more conscious and intentional with what it is that I’m creating with my life. And that was the that was the turning point. You know, like I had made a lot of changes up until then. But I was still running into financial plateaus still bumping up against anxiety, still getting paralyzed right before speaking on a podcast and was like, “This is not gonna work”. Like I can’t do this long term. I’ve got to figure out what’s going on here. And I started to put the pieces together back in about, I don’t know 2014 or so and the research has just continued to compile and what it is that I have found as a lay person. and validate the things that I’m teaching. And it’s really exciting to me.
Manon Bolliger 15:04
So, you’ve expressed this so beautifully, what actually is going on? But I’m curious because I, with the people that have PTSD and who suffer from all that I have found that doing body work. But that is, it’s like it’s being it’s not just body work, it’s not working on the body and putting parentvue into parasympathetic, that’s part of it. Because that’s one way of working with the autonomic nervous system. But it’s also allowing the safety of the unconscious to surface and rewrite itself, right, in the present moment. Right. So that’s right. So, I have a process as well that I bring people through. And I’m, I’m curious if you tell us a little bit your process, what is it that you discovered, and
Commercial Break 16:05
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Lola Pickett 17:08
Yeah, yeah. Well, I teach people how to become nervous system fluent and understand both conceptually intellectually, but also in an enteroception sense, like in a self-perception, internal connection sense what is going on with their bodies. And that happens in parts because many empaths and highly sensitive people have found it much safer for the course of their lives for whatever reason, to prioritize external connections, to focus on the other, almost at the exclusion of the self. And so when you hear things like, well, you need to talk to your body, you need to listen to your body, it’s almost like, well, what, what the body like, there is nobody here, you know, like, I don’t know what that actually means, like, my body’s screaming at a five alarm fire drill, every single second, I can’t listen to my body, I got to shut that down, you know. And so, we have to get underneath that at first to even make it possible to start to have some of that body work, somatic practices, be able to land and to create that sense of safety that it is actually okay, to turn your focus back toward yourself. It’s not going to put you into a place of threat. And you can get that intellectually. But getting that at a at a very deep core level so that you can do that subconscious and unconscious rewiring work is critical. And that’s where I always begin. And then we start to develop awareness. Once you have that safety, the awareness can come on and things can start to change. And you can train yourself to watch for Oh, this is what fight looks like for me. Right? For me, it doesn’t look like external aggression. It looks like internal critic. It looks like perfectionism. Oh, for me, a flight pattern isn’t that I run away from that Saber Tooth cat. It’s that I keep procrastinating on that assignment or overwhelm. That’s another tip for overwhelm. I mean, there’s so many different ways that this shows up. And once you start to get fluent, not just in like the nervous system or the highly sensitive nervous system, but your own things can really start to shift and you can hold yourself to greater and greater degrees of safety, which is how we get what I call full spectrum resilience, which is resilient at the nervous system level of resilience with your senses, so that you’re not going into sensory overload all the time. Having resilient boundaries that stand up to push back, that stand up to feedback that stand up to other people’s boundary lessness having resilient relationships that can see be seen through challenging times and withstand conflict. And then having resilient opportunities for yourself with your own success. And being able to be visible and all of those things are built in layers, many people try to just go straight for like, I’m gonna learn marketing because I don’t know how to market and that’s my problem as a highly sensitive entrepreneur or whatever it is. And it’s like, well, that’s it the visibility layer of resilience, and you’ve got to go back down through boundaries back down through sensory and back down through nervous system to even have that be sustainable.
Manon Bolliger 20:20
Mm hmm. Fascinating, I love the way you use, make it very accessible in steps, you know, so that exactly, even you have a goal, but it’s, it’s, it’s not a mindset. Only Oh, it’s, it’s literally a consciousness of this whole state, you know, and I am what, what it makes me think of is in homeopathy. That was one of my practices as a naturopathic doctor, you would have like, you know, over 5000 different states. And the state comes with a, an emotional character, a habit and likes and dislikes, and even sleep positions, even types of dreams, types of fears. And, and part of the teaching of this, I mean, homeopathy works by itself. But I always like to go deeper with people. So, I would, I would say, well, can you see the state Come on, which is, of course, when you technically repeat the remedy. But as people are evolving in consciousness, by recognizing the sort of the ego manifestation from the subconscious creating this state that has physical and emotional characteristics, you can go Oh, there you are. And then that’s right. You can let it go. Right. And so yeah, it’s incredible how divinely powerful we actually are.
Lola Pickett 22:00
It is. And it is. It’s incredibly empowering to recognize that, well, so much of the way that our body mechanics, and our nervous system wiring and our synapse patterns, and all of that is wired for efficiency. And so therefore often unconscious, when you recognize how much you can start to participate in partner with your biology, the potential that you have to be able to step into your purpose, your power, who you’re here to be, is infinite. And it’s so exciting.
Manon Bolliger 22:39
So, I’m looking at the situation that’s happening today. And we’ve talked already about people losing their jobs, and I’m really not sure what the future brings. But the level of I don’t know, there’s so many different levels to this, what’s going on, but I think one of them too, is the waking up, that people have been sort of CO opted into a very well-orchestrated narrative, that will keep going and it keeps going. And when you see it, it’s obvious. But now people are starting to see bits and pieces. And you know, I’m in BC, and they’ve just announced, you know, the passport. And so truly a segregated society. And so, a lot of people who were doing the right thing or believing that we have, you know, if they, if they take this thing that it will protect other people, even though now they realize it’s not the case, like truth is seeping out and even publicly, but there’s so much confusion and so much fear now. And you really see all the different types of personalities coming out and you know, other people putting their heels in deeper, because they can’t be wrong. And then there’s people who are in absolute panic, I know, I have quite a few medical friends who you know, recommended things to their own children and have seen, you know, scary damage, and they’re not sure what to do with themselves anymore. It’s like, their entire belief in the system, their belief in the profession, that belief and is all starting to shatter, you know. And so anyway, I’m sort of presenting the situation of what I see. But are you seeing anything like that in in your community or remorse? All kinds of feelings like that coming up, and what do you do with that?
Lola Pickett 24:56
Yeah, it’s a very polarized world, and ever more. So, whether that’s politically or with regards to the pandemic or racially, there are so many societal dynamics at play that are designed to confront us at an identity level and pull us out of pull us out of critical thinking and pull us out of connection with truth with our personal truth. And you know that that’s ultimately so much up to each one of us to define for ourselves, I think the biggest question of our times is, what is an integrity to me? And how can I stand in that and look back on that and feel grounded in that without getting identified by it, because information is constantly coming to light, constantly. And if we aren’t identified with what’s been in integrity to us, in the past, then we can shift and evolve with new information as it comes. Yeah, right. But yeah, but that is a critical ability. And when, when everything in the world right now is designed to activate us into a place of fear and reactivity, and by everything, I mean, mainstream media, even alternative media, everything is coming from a very extreme perspective, with a whole lot of blaming on every side of the fence, you know, whatever the fences, you know, and there is a level of commonality, though, that I think is important to tap back into. And something that you said is really important to remember. And that is, we all feel like, what we’re doing is for the best, not just for ourselves, but for those that we love, no matter what our politics our beliefs are. And it’s easy to forget that when you feel threatened by somebody, the choices that they have made, right now, you know, as a sensitive person, an empath, who is going to feel all sides, who’s going to be confused by what they should think what they should do. The decisions that we have to face now, which are hard and big, the thing to do is to once again, start to prioritize, and build the resilience for a more personal and intimate connection with yourself, so that you can understand what is your truth, where you stand, so that you can feel like you’re in integrity and not shame yourself. If later? It turns out, there was a different choice you could have made that would have been more beneficial. You don’t know. We don’t always have all the information. Yeah.
Manon Bolliger 27:50
And I think, yeah, no, exactly. But it’s also if you go inside more, and you are in, you’re clear about your integrity, you also are come from less judgment of other apps. Right. You know, so I think, and what we I feel we need to do is, is stop the blaming game. The whole, that’s right, you know, making a judgement, because that’s so from the ego, and it’s not serving, you know, what we’re gonna need as a society to move forward. And, you know.
Lola Pickett 28:23
That’s right. And it’s easy, it’s easy, it’s a protective mechanism, if we can quickly default to blame, then it’s one of our brain’s most efficient pathways, because it goes right to closing that loop. And you get that satisfaction of well, it’s their fault, closed and done. Without having to keep that loop open. really dig deep into how you feel. Get clear with yourself, take personal responsibility, those things take energy and effort. And a lot of us don’t have that extra energy right now. You know, and so that’s why so much of this is happening is that everybody has reached the point of absolute burnout and depletion. So, when we talk about how do we solve this societal problem of everybody blaming everybody else and getting further and further apart and more divided? What we need to do is stop letting ourselves reach the point past burnout. Yeah. So that we have the faculties to actually make a connection. That’s beyond our defaults. That’s beyond a protection mechanism.
Manon Bolliger 29:29
Yeah, I mean, it’s a deep societal healing. I mean, the potential of us all getting through this, you know, they say it’s going to be an awakened world. Maybe so. Maybe so. Yeah. But yeah, and it is, it’s a combination of responsibility, which is often what’s been missing in, at least in healthcare. It’s been, you know, tell me what to do. And not actually checking in to yourself, you know, is it what do you feel about this? And how does this even the basic food, how does this resonate or this atmosphere or this relationship? You know, we’re not, we’re not checking in.
Lola Pickett 30:16
We’ve gotten caught up in the white coat syndrome, where we outsource our authority, everything and we need to also even as healthcare providers, as coaches, as therapists, whatever our role is, I was just talking to one of my clients today who’s a doctor, and she’s overcoming a pattern of, of even the white coat syndrome with herself, because she feels like as a doctor, she has to be perfect. She has to have all the answers, she has to, to know everything, she can’t be human, she can’t be, she can’t make a mistake. And we’re doing the same thing. Whereas really, we’re all in this together as humans, none of us is perfect. We’re all fallible, and nobody is going to be your best advocate except for yourself.
Manon Bolliger 31:02
Well said, and true. So, I can’t believe our time is like already done.
Lola Pickett 31:09
That goes fast.
Manon Bolliger 31:11
That was really fast. Do you have anything else that you’d really like to share? You know, with, with therapists, I think it’s, you know, that’s the world really, that needs the support, because they’re also there for everybody.
Lola Pickett 31:30
Ever there for everybody and often really crying out for help themselves. But yes, when you’re a helper and you’re an expert, it’s really hard to feel like you shouldn’t be able to just keep it all together. And I want to let you know, if you’re a caregiver, if you’re a nurse, if you’re a doctor or a therapist right now, things are being asked of you at new levels that have never been seen before. And it is okay to get support. It’s okay to learn new information, and it’s okay to not have all the answers.
Manon Bolliger 32:06
Thanks very much. Well, that was totally a pleasure.
Lola Pickett 32:10
Thank you for having me.
Dr M (Manon Bolliger), ND
Thank you for joining us. For more information, go to DrManonBolliger.com.