250 episodes

With over a million downloads, Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast delivers compassionate, science-based tools for anyone with Anxiety, Panic, OCD, and other mental health struggles.

Your Anxiety Toolkit - It's a Beautiful Day to Do Hard Things Kimberley Quinlan, LMFT

    • Health & Fitness
    • 4.9 • 546 Ratings

With over a million downloads, Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast delivers compassionate, science-based tools for anyone with Anxiety, Panic, OCD, and other mental health struggles.

    Ep. 296 What is Your Recovery Goal and Why is it SO Important?

    Ep. 296 What is Your Recovery Goal and Why is it SO Important?

    In This Episode: The importance of having a specific recovery goal Why you need a recovery goal in order to gain traction with OCD and other anxiety disorders  What does your “recovery dream” look like?  What is getting in the way of your recovery goal?  Learn to live your life “as if” you had already reached your recovery goal. 
    Links To Things I Talk About: https://www.cbtschool.com/overcominganxiety ERP School: https://www.cbtschool.com/erp-school-lp Episode Sponsor: This episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit is brought to you by CBTschool.com.  CBTschool.com is a psychoeducation platform that provides courses and other online resources for people with anxiety, OCD, and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors.  Go to cbtschool.com to learn more. 
    Spread the love! Everyone needs tools for anxiety...
    If you like Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, visit YOUR ANXIETY TOOLKIT PODCAST to subscribe free and you'll never miss an episode. And if you really like Your Anxiety Toolkit, I'd appreciate you telling a friend (maybe even two).
    EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION 
    This is Your Anxiety Toolkit - Episode 296. 
    Welcome back, everybody. I am so fired up for this episode. Oh, I just love this stuff. I love it. I love it. I love it. 
    Okay. Let’s get started. First of all, let’s do an “I did a hard thing.” This one is epic. This one is from Fisher and they said: 
    “I have OCD, health anxiety, and panic disorder. And last year, I was diagnosed with POTS,” which is postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome. That is the chronic illness that I have also. And they’ve said: “This was very overwhelming for me. I was petrified of exercising because of the exercise intolerance that comes with POTS and worrying that it was a life-threatening cardiac issue.”
    Oh, I am with you, Fisher. So, for those of you who don’t know what exercise intolerance is, it’s like it’s almost impossible to do exercise. When you stand up, you pass out. And when I’ve been triggered by POTS, it’s hard to even do a block around, walk around the block of my house. 
    “My doctor did all the cardiac tests to rule out any underlying issues before diagnosing me with POTS and recommended cardiac reconditioning to help me get started with recovery. My first barrier to overcome this was to trust in my physician and their diagnosis and follow their recommendation for exercise therapy. My second barrier was facing my fear of exercising. I can now say that I’m in my last week of the program after going twice a week for three months, along with exercising on my own at home. It’s been a struggle. There are some days where I flare up.” I hear you, Fisher. I totally get you. “And it seems impossible, but accessing self-compassion, budgeting spoon usage for the day, and moving things around to allow myself to rest have been invaluable tools to help me with the experience. A wise person told me after my diagnosis, the only predictable thing about living with a chronic illness is that it is unpredictable. So, I try to accept that uncertainty as a part of my life, living with anxiety and POTS.”
    Fisher, I just love you. You’re killing it here. “I have a lot of work to do in learning to live with my chronic illness and my OCD and health anxiety recovery, but I make a little progress each and every day. P.S. Would you consider doing an episode on coping with chronic illness that mirror anxiety symptoms like POTS? I’d love to hear the skills that have helped you and some of you recommend coping strategies. Thanks for all the hard work that you do on this podcast.”
    Fisher, I would love to have you on the podcast. I am going to write it in my notes to reach out to you because I think this is such an important topic, one that I myself have gone through, and thank you for writing this. You are doing badass, amazing hard work. So, yay. Thank you. You will hear from me. If you don’t hear from me, reach out, because I think that would be won

    • 18 min
    Ep. 295 When Your Fears Appear in Your Dreams

    Ep. 295 When Your Fears Appear in Your Dreams

    SUMMARY: Today we talk all about how to manage when your fears appear in your dreams.  This was a heavily requested topic, so I hope it was helpful for you.
    In This Episode: Why our fears and obsessions show up in our dreams What to do when your fears appear in your dreams  How to manage the distress when dreams feel “real”  Links To Things I Talk About: ERP School: https://www.cbtschool.com/erp-school-lp
    Episode Sponsor: This episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit is brought to you by CBTschool.com.  CBTschool.com is a psychoeducation platform that provides courses and other online resources for people with anxiety, OCD, and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors.  Go to cbtschool.com to learn more. 
    Spread the love! Everyone needs tools for anxiety...
    If you like Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, visit YOUR ANXIETY TOOLKIT PODCAST to subscribe free and you'll never miss an episode. And if you really like Your Anxiety Toolkit, I'd appreciate you telling a friend (maybe even two).
    EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION 
    This is Your Anxiety Toolkit - Episode 295.
    Welcome back, everybody. It is Episode 295, which sounds like a whole lot of episodes. It really, really does. Actually, it shocked me when I saw that number.
    Today, we are talking about when your fears show up in your dreams. I would say quite regularly, actually, a client, particularly morning clients will often say like-- I’ll be like, “How are you? How was your week?” And they’ll say, “Well, I’m just feeling really overwhelmed. I had the most bizarre dream last night and it’s hard to shake it off.” And so, I’m wondering, I’m guessing. I’ve had this experience, I’m guessing you have too. And I wanted to talk this episode about how we might respond to that situation and what we need to look out for when we have this situation, particularly if you have anxiety. That’s really the specific group of humans we’re speaking to today. And I’ll share a little bit more about that as we get going.
    All right, before we do that, let’s do the review of the week. This one is from FullWalrus and they said:
    “I found this podcast by Googling an issue I was having, and this just popped up.” FullWalrus, this makes me so happy. Thank you so much for Googling this and finding me because that means we’re doing a good job at being on the internet and helping people in that way. “I had kept away from podcasts about mental health in fear of being triggered or being told I was crazy after all, and that didn’t happen obviously. Kimberley is a gifted presenter and a therapist who introduced me to Buddhism and mindfulness in a way I’d never thought of before. For the first time, I feel like I actually have the tools to help me manage OCD, and this show is sure a beautiful compliment to any therapy you should be currently undergoing because we all need therapy. Thank you for everything, Kimberley. My life is forever changed and I am forever grateful.”
    Thank you, FullWalrus. What a wonderful, wonderful review. I just love hearing how I’m helpful. I love hearing what episodes are helpful and it’s really cool that I’m a really-- I love Buddhism. I find it to be exactly what I need every time I’m in a hard time. So, I’m so glad that I’m bringing that in a way that isn’t overwhelming or overpowering. So wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.
    This week’s “I did a hard thing” is coming to you from Holly. Holly says:
    “Last week, I went to court to obtain full custody of my son since his father has become a threat to him. This was extremely difficult seeing as we have been in an abusive past. My anxiety was the highest it’s been in a very long time, but ultimately, I knew I had to take action. I did my hard thing and I couldn’t be more proud of standing my ground and not succumbing to so many fears.”
    Holly, sending you so much love. This is 100% doing the hard thing. It’s so hard, because often we’re talking about irrational fears an

    • 18 min
    Ep. 294 Can Correcting Thoughts Become a Compulsion?

    Ep. 294 Can Correcting Thoughts Become a Compulsion?

    SUMMARY: 
    Correcting thoughts can but a very helpful tool to use when you notice that you have lots of thought errors.  However, in some cases, correcting thoughts can become a compulsion.  In this episode, ask the question, “Can correcting thoughts become a compulsion?” And review what you can do to make sure you are not engaging too much in the content of your thoughts. 
    In This Episode: How to correct your thoughts and how this can help people who have errors in their thinking How to determine when it is helpful to correct your thoughts  How to determine when correcting thoughts is becoming a compulsion Links To Things I Talk About: Overcoming Anxiety and Panic https://www.cbtschool.com/overcominganxiety ERP School: https://www.cbtschool.com/erp-school-lp Episode Sponsor: This episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit is brought to you by CBTschool.com.  CBTschool.com is a psychoeducation platform that provides courses and other online resources for people with anxiety, OCD, and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors.  Go to cbtschool.com to learn more. 
    Spread the love! Everyone needs tools for anxiety...
    If you like Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, visit YOUR ANXIETY TOOLKIT PODCAST to subscribe free and you'll never miss an episode. And if you really like Your Anxiety Toolkit, I'd appreciate you telling a friend (maybe even two).
    EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION 
    This is Your Anxiety Toolkit - Episode 294. 
    Welcome back, everybody. What a special treat to have you here with me today. 
    Today, we are talking about when correcting your thoughts, we call it cognitive restructuring in therapy – when you correct your thoughts, when does that become compulsive? Or we could also say problematic. And so, we’re actually going to go into this today, and then I’m going to let you decide for yourself what is helpful and what’s not. But I hope today is really helpful. It’s a very, very, very important topic. It’s often one of the biggest mistakes therapists make, particularly those who are not trained in anxiety disorders and OCD, and ERP. It’s probably one of the biggest mistakes that they make. So, I want to really review this so that you can have the information in your back pocket and you can make the decisions for yourself.
    Before we do that, let’s first do the review of the week. This is from Cynthia Safell and Cynthia said:
    “I first was introduced to Kimberley’s clear and compassionate teaching style when I took the ERP school course for therapists.” This is wonderful, Cynthia. So, for those of you who don’t know, we have ERP School, which is a course where I teach you exactly how I would do ERP if you were my client. And then it turned out that a lot of therapists were taking this course. And so, we duplicated the course and I added a whole bunch of modules for therapists, so they can become excellent therapists for people with OCD as well. So, I am so delighted that Cynthia has written this review. She goes on to say: “In the past 3 weeks since taking the course, I recommended both the course and podcasts to my clients. So helpful. Thank you, Kimberley.”
    Wow, Cynthia, literally, that is the biggest compliment. Really, it is. If a therapist can trust me so much that they would recommend it to their clients, that is the biggest gift to me. And thank you so much for telling me that, because it just brings me so much joy and so much pride. So, thank you so much, Cynthia, for that amazing review. 
    Alright, before we move on to the bulk of the content of this episode, we also want to do the “I did our hard thing” segment. This is from Abby and Abby is over here doing some hard things. So cool. Let’s go. It says:
    “I have come on holiday. I’m terrified of flying. My anxiety was high. My thoughts were racing, but I did it.” So good, Abby. “I got on the plane and I got on holiday. It was scary, but I did it and I’m proud. Now to commit to the holiday first two days have been hard, but

    • 24 min
    Ep. 293 I Screwed Up...What Now?

    Ep. 293 I Screwed Up...What Now?

    This is Your Anxiety Toolkit - Episode 293.
    You guys, I’ve totally screwed up. Oh my God, it’s going to be one of those episodes where I laugh a lot. Maybe not. Who knows? 
    Alright, I totally screwed up. It’s funny because I have for months been thinking about doing an episode and reminding you guys mostly so I could remind myself that I’m a human being, that I’m going to make mistakes, and it’s one of the biggest lessons that I have had to learn over and over and over and over again. It’s really frustrating, you guys. I’m so frustrated by this fact that humans make mistakes. I don’t like it. It makes me mad. If only we could figure out a way where we don’t and we don’t disappoint people and we don’t screw up. If anyone has figured this out, let me know. Just shoot me an email, tell me your special secret, because I haven’t figured it out yet. So funny. 
    Okay. Before we get into it, this is actually pretty much a coincidence and I love when big coincidences happen, but the review of the week is actually from Flashcork. They’re writing a specific review on Episode 193, which I think is really cool because this is by coincidence 293. And they said:
    “This episode 193 is just what I needed to hear today. I’m stressed and anxious about my upcoming trip and experiencing racing thoughts. This will help me to manage those feelings and practice by shortening the leash.”
    Now, if you haven’t listened to this episode, it is probably one of my most favorite episodes. A lot of my patients and clients have said that this concept has helped them a lot. And so, really go back and listen to 193. If you want to practice being able to be in a place where you can manage those thoughts a little better, go back and check that out. It’s just a metaphor. 
    Flashcork says: “It makes sense because it has worked for me walking Sally, my Golden Retriever.”
    I make a reference to thoughts being like a dog on a leash. So, you can go back and listen to that anytime.
    That’s the review of the week. Thank you, Flashcork. So happy to have you join us. 
    The “I did a hard thing” is from Allison. Allison says:
    “I’m going to go on a job interview next week after applying to a different job, going through the grueling interviewing process and at the end not being successful. I’m working really hard to believe in myself, screw up my courage to attend this interview and be open-hearted about the new possibilities. It’s hard to pick yourself up and try again, but I’m doing the hard thing of trying again. I’m scared, but I’m proud of myself.”

    Allison, you are doing the work. And I’m actually going to take your advice today, Allison, because this is so perfect for the topic of today, which is like, yeah, sometimes we do screw up and we just have to get up and we have to try again. It’s so important. I’m so, so I’m impressed. I’m just so impressed with your courage and thank you so much for sharing that because I think we’ve all experienced it. 
    So, Allison, let me tell you my hard thing. I want to preface this with, I think in my-- if I’m being completely authentic with you guys, I think that I’ve somehow, for many years of my adulthood, without me realizing, and in not a super severe way either, it was a very secret underlying compulsion I think I’ve been doing for years that I didn’t even know I was doing until the last couple of years is I was trying to find a way, constantly striving to find a way that I could live in a world where I didn’t make a mistake. Now I understand I’m a human. I don’t think I’m a superwoman. But in my mind, I think I’ve had-- well, I know I have, let’s be honest. I think in my effort to control my emotions that I’ve engaged in these little nuanced secretive behaviors of constantly trying to find the formula where I don’t upset people and I don’t screw up.
    Let’s just take a minute because it’s funny for me to

    • 28 min
    Ep. 292 Uncomfortable Sensations

    Ep. 292 Uncomfortable Sensations

    SUMMARY: In this episode, we explore how to manage uncomfortable sensations. Many people do not struggle with intrusive thoughts and intrusive images, but instead, struggle to manage intrusive sensations. My hope is that this will give you some tools to manage these uncomfortable sensations and help you reduce how many compulsions you do to reduce or remove these feelings.
    In This Episode: What is an intrusive sensation? What is the difference between an uncomfortable sensation and an intrusive sensation. How to manage uncomfortable sensations such as rapid heartbeat, tingling limbs, numbness, lightheadedness, chest pain, etc. Links To Things I Talk About:
    ERP School: https://www.cbtschool.com/erp-school-lp
    Episode Sponsor: This episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit is brought to you by CBTschool.com. CBTschool.com is a psychoeducation platform that provides courses and other online resources for people with anxiety, OCD, and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors. Go to cbtschool.com to learn more.
    Spread the love! Everyone needs tools for anxiety...
    If you like Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, visit YOUR ANXIETY TOOLKIT PODCAST to subscribe free and you'll never miss an episode. And if you really like Your Anxiety Toolkit, I'd appreciate you telling a friend (maybe even two).
    EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION
    This is Your Anxiety Toolkit - Episode 292. 
    Welcome back, everybody. Today, we are talking about something that I very rarely talk about that I should be talking about more because it’s like 20% of the conversations I have with clients. And I’ll explain to you why in just a second. 
    First, I’m going to do the review of the week. This one is from Linelulu. And they said:
    “Grateful. I am so grateful that I stumbled onto your podcasts. Your soothing voice enhances your messages as I am trying to understand more about anxiety, and panic attacks to be a better support for someone very close to me. Thank you!”
    You are so welcome, Linelulu. Thank you for that beautiful review. Please, I know I ask you every single episode. If you benefit from this podcast, this is one way that you can help me. So, if for any reason you feel like you have a few spare minutes, please do go and leave a review. 
    The last thing before we get talking about sensations is to do the “I did a hard thing” of the week, and this one is from Camille. Camille says:
    “I’ve been managing my dermatillomania,” which we also know is compulsive skin picking, “very well. However, I had a very stressful day and picked my skin pretty bad, in my opinion. I had a party to go to that night with a bunch of people. I didn’t know. And I almost didn’t go. But I pushed myself to go and no one said one thing about my skin. I’m so glad I went and got over the fact that my skin needs to be perfect in that instance.”
    Camille, this is so good on so many levels, that you showed up and you did the thing that you wanted to do. And ugh, it’s so good. And how wonderful that you had supportive friends. Again, we sometimes were really hard on ourselves and we think people notice everything about us, every flow, but how wonderful that they embraced you and no one said anything. So, thank you so much for Camille for putting in that “I did a hard thing.” I just love hearing you guys doing all the hard things.

    Now, why do we do this segment? Let’s just go back and look at that. So, most of you know that the thing I say all the time is “It’s a beautiful day to do hard things.” Our brains naturally default to this idea of like, “No, I shouldn’t do the hard thing. I should do the easy thing.” Marketing keeps telling us don’t do the hard thing, do the easy thing. Commercial advertising is always sharing the easy five-step way to do something. And we want to flip the script because while it’s good to have things be easy, when it comes to anxiety and these kind of conditions that we’re often talking about, it’s often important that you

    • 22 min
    Ep. 291 Tips to Manage Depression

    Ep. 291 Tips to Manage Depression

    SUMMARY: 
    A few months ago, I posted on social media and asked “What are your best tips for depression” and the response was incredible.  Hundreds of people weighed in and shared their best tips for managing depression with OCD and other anxiety disorders.  
    In This Episode:  Hundreds of people with depression shared what skills they use to manage OCD and depression  What skills can become compulsions  How to manage day-to-day depression when you are feeling hopeless (OCD hopelessness)  Links To Things I Talk About: Kimberley’s Instagram Page https://www.instagram.com/youranxietytoolkit ERP School: https://www.cbtschool.com/erp-school-lp Episode Sponsor: This episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit is brought to you by CBTschool.com.  CBTschool.com is a psychoeducation platform that provides courses and other online resources for people with anxiety, OCD, and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors.  Go to cbtschool.com to learn more.
    Spread the love! Everyone needs tools for anxiety...
    If you like Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast, visit YOUR ANXIETY TOOLKIT PODCAST to subscribe free and you'll never miss an episode. And if you really like Your Anxiety Toolkit, I'd appreciate you telling a friend (maybe even two).
    EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION
    This is Your Anxiety Toolkit Episode 291.
    Welcome back, everybody. So, I want to set the scene here because things are shifting. Things have shifted. So, I am right now sitting in my office, which is in Southern California, in the United States. But as this launches and goes live, I will be in Australia for the summer. I think I’ve talked to you guys about this in previous episodes, but my husband and I made a decision that the children and I will go to Australia to see our family for the entire summer. Oh my goodness, what a huge undertaking, but we’re doing it and I am so excited. So, really, I’ve had to batch 10 episodes ahead of time. 
    Now, what I’ve done is I’ve done my best to make these the best episodes I can batch for you, like the things that seem to be coming up the most for my clients, the questions my staff seem to be asking the most, and the things that everyone seem to be really, really liking and appreciating on social media.
    And so, in preparation for today, I was thinking about what’s one of the most helpful, most enjoyed, and engaged posts on social media, because I do spend a lot of time over on Instagram. And by far, interestingly by far, my most popular post I have ever made in the whole history of me being on social media is tips on managing depression. What? I’m an OCD and an Anxiety Specialist, but yet my most popular post in the whole time I’ve been there is on managing depression. So, that’s what we’re talking about today. 
    Now, in order for me to do 10 posts, 10 podcasts, excuse me, in order, I’ve had to manage my time down to the minute because right now we are leaving in 18-- no, what is it? Not 18 days. It’s like 15 days. So, we’re leaving in 15 days. I have all of this in addition to the work because I usually just do these here and there. I’ve had to manage my time, and what I have relied on the most is managing my time using what we call “calendaring.” I talk a lot about this on my online course. If you go to CBT School, we have a whole course on managing time. 
    But the reason I also share that with you is as we talk about skills today, we’re going to be talking about cognitive skills and behavioral skills. And if you have depression, I strongly encourage you to go and sign up for that course. It’s not an expensive course. It’s jam-packed with how to schedule your time so that you can lessen the heavy load that you’re carrying or the time about the lists of things you have to do and get done. So, I do recommend you go check that out. Go to CBTSchool.com and I think it’s /time management. Yes, it is. 
    We’re about to get into the show. First of all, let’s do the “I did a hard thing.” This one

    • 27 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
546 Ratings

546 Ratings

austin-mang ,

Really helped me prepare for therapy!

I finally did it and signed up for therapy. My first session is this Friday. I’ve been doing my best to prepare but was so uncertain about what to expect my first session to be like. This show helped me know exactly what to expect and gave me some great mindset tools going into it. Thank you!

Sydneytenney ,

Incredible resource!

What an incredible resource this podcast is! Thank you for sharing all of this information so freely…you’re truly making a difference in so many lives, including mine! (I am also reading/working through your book and LOVE it. You nailed it in marrying OCD work with self compassion work - what a gift!!!)

young math momma ,

BEST podcast for a daily mindset reset

This podcast was recommended to me by my therapist, and it is one of my favorite “homework assignments” to help me have a good mindset and feel inspired to try my best. I’ve learned so much great information from Kimberley, but the most important thing, in my opinion, is that I feel motivated to improve one small thing every time I listen. I’m taking better care of myself, which helps me take better care of my family.

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