22 episodes

Welcome back to Checking In! This season, we're tackling reader questions about everything from vaccines to dating advice, and gratitude to pregnancy. Join SELF executive editor, Zahra Barnes, as she speaks with doctors, medical pros, thought leaders, and more special guests, including actor Kristen Bell. Tune in to hear our experts provide practical, actionable advice on how to navigate everything from health and wellness to life's biggest transitions.

Checking In | SELF SELF & Condé Nast

    • Education
    • 4.5 • 177 Ratings

Welcome back to Checking In! This season, we're tackling reader questions about everything from vaccines to dating advice, and gratitude to pregnancy. Join SELF executive editor, Zahra Barnes, as she speaks with doctors, medical pros, thought leaders, and more special guests, including actor Kristen Bell. Tune in to hear our experts provide practical, actionable advice on how to navigate everything from health and wellness to life's biggest transitions.

    Bonus: Get Grounded: Tips and Techniques for Staying More Relaxed

    Bonus: Get Grounded: Tips and Techniques for Staying More Relaxed

    In this bonus episode, Dr. Mariel Buquè is back, sitting down with Zahra to talk about how to stay more relaxed throughout our workdays. Dr. Buquè talks about why reducing stress can be such a challenge, offering tips and techniques for staying grounded. She then takes us through a guided mindfulness exercise.
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    • 31 min
    Bonus: Busting Myths About COVID-19 Vaccines and Black and Latinx Communities

    Bonus: Busting Myths About COVID-19 Vaccines and Black and Latinx Communities

    In this bonus episode, we’re continuing our coverage of the COVID-19 vaccines. We revisit a panel that Zahra hosted with David Kaufman, digital director at Architectural Digest, about myths and myth-busting around the vaccines and Black and Latinx communities. Along with experts Dr. Leon McDougle, Dr. Gbenga Ogedegbe, and registered nurse Sandra Lindsay, they discuss how to address inequitable vaccine access, the valid questions many people may have about these vaccines, and much more. 
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    • 47 min
    Becoming Your Own Advocate

    Becoming Your Own Advocate

    In our last episode of the season, we hear from Victoria, an archivist who was forced to find answers on her own about her endometriosis. Like many others diagnosed with a chronic illness, she’s faced multiple hurdles while navigating the medical system. Even though she’s learned a lot along the way, she wants to know how to continue to advocate for herself to her doctor—and how she can advocate for others in similar positions as well. Zahra consults Lauren Selfridge, L.M.F.T., a psychotherapist with multiple sclerosis and the host of This Is Not What I Ordered, a podcast about “full-hearted” living with chronic illness. Lauren shares her experience with multiple sclerosis, and how to find empathetic medical professionals who take you seriously, and the power of a good second opinion.

    You can learn more about Lauren’s work at her website (https://laurenselfridge.com) and you can follow her on Instagram @laurenselfridgeofficical (https://www.instagram.com/laurenselfridgeofficial/?hl=en). 

    You can listen to her podcast This Is Not What I Ordered wherever you get your podcasts. 

    Here are some SELF resources and articles about navigating life when you have a chronic illness:

    Opening Up About Your Chronic Illness
    (https://www.self.com/story/checking-in-podcast-multiple-sclerosis) 

    Writing A Chronic Illness Elevator Pitch Has Made My Doctor’s Appointments So Much Easier
    (https://www.self.com/story/chronic-illness-elevator-pitch)

    Let’s Talk About Dating and Relationships When You Have a Chronic Illness
    (https://www.self.com/story/checking-in-podcast-sex-love-sleep-apnea) 

    For People with Chronic Illness, Social Isolation Is Nothing New
    (https://www.self.com/story/chronic-illness-social-isolation-coronavirus) 

    I’m Furious That It Took Almost a Decade to Diagnose My Chronic Pain
    (https://www.self.com/story/chronic-pain-ankylosing-spondylitis) 

    If It Isn’t Chronic Lyme, What Is It?
    (https://www.self.com/story/chronic-lyme)

    How to Support a Friend Who’s Just Been Diagnosed With a Chronic Illness
    (https://www.self.com/story/support-friend-chronic-illness)

    Don’t miss out on new episodes of Checking In on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
    Apple Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-apple
    Spotify: http://listen.self.com/self-spotify
    Google Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-google

    Don't forget to sign up for the Checking In newsletter here: https://www.self.com/newsletter/checking-in

    If you have a health or wellness question of your own and want a chance to be featured on the podcast, you can submit it here.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 33 min
    The (New) Rules of Dating

    The (New) Rules of Dating

    In this episode of Checking In, we hear from Loree, who is unsure about how to navigate dating right now. Online dating could be difficult even before the pandemic. Now, trust is even trickier to establish when it comes to things like vaccination status, caution levels, and boundaries. Not to mention how daunting dating again can be after so much social isolation. To help Loree figure it all out, Zahra first consults SELF senior health editor Patia Braithwaite about what she’s noticed in her coverage of dating life since the pandemic began. Then Zahra chats with Traci Medeiros-Bagan, L.M.F.T., a relationship therapist based out of California. They give advice on how to have these tricky conversations with someone you’re interested in, and how to figure out your own boundaries during this time.

    You can read Patia’s work at SELF here, and follow her on Twitter @PdorBRaithw8.

    You can learn more about Traci’s work on their website: http://compassionaterevolt.com/

    Check out these SELF articles about dating during this time and the many questions it brings up:

    Pandemic Dating Is Hard--But Hasn’t It Always Been Difficult? (https://www.self.com/story/dating-during-pandemic) 

    9 Ways Non-Monogamous People Are Dealing With the Pandemic (https://www.self.com/story/non-monogamous-pandemic-dating) 

    How To Deal If Being Single Has You Worried About “Biological Clocks” and Timelines (https://www.self.com/story/being-single-stress-about-the-future) 

    16 Quarantine Date Ideas That Are Actually Really Great
    (https://www.self.com/story/quarantine-date-ideas)

     I Book Club with Bumble Matches--Here’s What I’ve Learned
    (https://www.self.com/story/bumble-book-club) 

    Road Test: I Tried Hinge’s Virtual Date Night Kit
    (https://www.self.com/story/hinge-virtual-date-kit) 

    Is Your Rebound Relationship Actually Harmful?
    (https://www.self.com/story/rebound-relationship)

     Yes, Your Situationship Breakup Is Real
    (https://www.self.com/story/situationship-breakup) 

    16 Intriguing Dating Apps To Try If You Want To Meet Someone New
    (https://www.self.com/story/16-dating-apps)
    Everything Isn’t A Red Flag--Here’s How to Tell the Difference
    (https://www.self.com/story/red-flag-green-and-yellow-flags) 

    8 Cute Date Ideas to Try If you’re Tired of Staying Inside
    (https://www.self.com/story/outdoor-date-ideas)


    Don’t miss out on new episodes of Checking In on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
    Apple Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-apple
    Spotify: http://listen.self.com/self-spotify
    Google Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-google

    Don't forget to sign up for the Checking In newsletter here: https://www.self.com/newsletter/checking-in

    If you have a health or wellness question of your own and want a chance to be featured on the podcast, you can submit it here.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 28 min
    The Healing Powers of Gratitude and Joy, featuring Kristen Bell

    The Healing Powers of Gratitude and Joy, featuring Kristen Bell

    In this episode of Checking In, we hear from Jenna, a listener who has a question many of us feel deep down during this time: How can we help ourselves feel better when the world is basically a dumpster fire? Sometimes, adding even just one more thing to your to-do list feels insurmountable. Zahra consults Mariel Buqué, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist and holistic mental health expert based in NYC. She’s been helping her clients adjust to pandemic life stressors, particularly by emphasizing the connection between mind, body, and soul. Dr. Buqué offers some practical tips for incorporating gratitude and joy into your life so that you actually feel better—without veering into toxic positivity. After that, Zahra chats with actor and mental health advocate Kristen Bell, who is also SELF’s May digital cover star. They discuss how to set up a personal toolkit to deal with life in an overwhelming world, why Bell is a big fan of gratitude lists, and how she tries to find contentment in her day-to-day life. 

    You can learn more about Mariel Buqué’s work here, and you can follow her on Instagram @dr.marielbuque.

    You can follow Kristen Bell on Instagram @kristenanniebell and on Twitter @KristenBell. And here’s SELF’s May digital cover, featuring Bell discussing everything from parenting in a pandemic to how her husband, Dax Shepard, helps her cope with anxiety and depression.

    For some helpful tips on how to begin a gratitude practice and how to try to find joy even when the world feels pretty awful, check out these articles:

    The Healing Powers of Gratitude
    4 Small Ways to Practice Gratitude Every Day
    Please Celebrate Yourself—Even During a Pandemic
    Black Joy Isn’t Frivolous--It’s Necessary
    In Praise of Black People Laughing
    What Is Resilience, and Can It Help Us Bounce Back From This?
    13 Small but Impactful Ways to Cultivate Resilience

    And here are some of the resources we mentioned for navigating really tough feelings in a way that goes beyond gratitude and joy:

    7 Ways to Find an Actually Affordable Therapist
    10 Online Support Groups for Anyone Struggling to Get Through 2020
    41 Mental Health Apps That Will Make Life a Little Easier


    Don’t miss out on new episodes of Checking In on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
    Apple Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-apple
    Spotify: http://listen.self.com/self-spotify
    Google Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-google

    Don't forget to sign up for the Checking In newsletter here: https://www.self.com/newsletter/checking-in

    If you have a health or wellness question of your own and want a chance to be featured on the podcast, you can submit it here.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 35 min
    How to Have the Best Birth Experience Possible—Even in a Pandemic

    How to Have the Best Birth Experience Possible—Even in a Pandemic

    In this episode we hear from Stasia, a pregnant Black woman who wants to know how to prepare for birth and how to advocate for herself along the way. Zahra chats with Kameelah Phillips, M.D., an ob-gyn and women’s health advocate based in NYC. One of her core interests is health care disparities—and how to help prevent them. Zahra also consults with Latham Thomas, a doula and the founder of Mama Glow who focuses on care along the childbearing continuum. They discuss how to navigate the system as a Black pregnant person and how giving birth looks different during the pandemic. 
    You can learn more about Dr. Phillips’ work or seek care at www.callawomenshealth.com, and follow her on Instagram @dr.kameelahsays.
    You can learn more about Mama Glow and its supportive community at www.mamaglow.com, and follow Latham Thomas on Instagram @glowmaven.
    For resources, information, and a variety of articles on Black maternal mortality, visit SELF’s extensive series on the issue. For other related articles, check out:

    What It’s Like to Be a Doula Working With Black Pregnant People Right Now
    There Are Joyful Black Birth Stories--This New Podcast Is Highlighting Them
    I Got the COVID-19 Vaccine While Pregnant—Here's Why
    COVID-19 Vaccines Are Safe for Pregnant and Breastfeeding People, According to New Study
    Pregnant And Worried About Coronavirus? You’re Not Alone
    Some People Are Disclosing Their Pregnancies ‘Early’ Because of the Coronavirus
    The Deep Loneliness of Having a Baby in a Pandemic
    What It’s Like to Pause Fertility Treatments Because of Coronavirus
    How Years of Infertility Prepared Me for Pregnancy During the Coronavirus Crisis

    Don’t miss out on new episodes of Checking In on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
    Apple Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-apple
    Spotify: http://listen.self.com/self-spotify
    Google Podcasts: http://listen.self.com/self-google

    Don't forget to sign up for the Checking In newsletter here: https://www.self.com/newsletter/checking-in
    If you have a health or wellness question of your own and want a chance to be featured on the podcast, you can submit it here.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 35 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
177 Ratings

177 Ratings

MentatUS ,

Informative and inclusive

Great podcast with authoritative narration. I appreciated the host’s attention to inclusive details: referencing “people with uteruses” instead of “women,” for just one example. I also learned a lot — even from episodes that didn’t feature situations that apply to me personally, the top-notch experts had great strategies for thinking about conditions and approaching different scenarios.

asbrooke ,

Well researched

I appreciate the research and care the host puts into every episode. I know I can count on the information provided and enjoy the positive, supportive tone.

Robyn AC ,

Great host

I am not into podcasts AT ALL, but really enjoyed these. The birth and meditating episodes are my faves. Zahra is also a gem!

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