Podcast

Podcast – Ep. 84 – Rob Goldstein, No longer sick with DID, I am well with DID.

My guest on this episode of the Beyond Your Past Podcast is Photographer, Digital Artist, Blogger, and Mental Health Rehabilitation Specialist, Rob Goldstein. He is also a former guest blogger on Surviving My Past, where he shared some of his story in a post titled, “Life with DID where everything is a trigger“. That post has been incredibly helpful and validating for so many who live with dissociative identity disorder, or those who have a loved one who lives with DID.

As outlined on his blog, Rob writes:

I’m a Certified Mental Health Rehabilitation Specialist who became symptomatic with a dissociative disorder in 2010. When I started this blog in late 2013, it was to advocate for myself and other people with trauma related mental health problems.

I wrote in my first profile statement that as I evolved the blog would evolve and over time, I learned about photography, digital art and I rediscovered my writing. I call the blog Art by Rob Goldstein but I can just as easily call it life by Rob Goldstein.

This is my life as I live it, evolve, process its history, and prepare for an uncertain future. My life is my work and my work is my art.

Art by Rob Goldstein is an expression of my emotional and intellectual evolution and an ongoing journal of my psychotherapy. I’m blunt, passionate in my beliefs, and willing to state my mind. If an honest exchange of ideas is what you want you’ve found the right place. 

During my recent chat with Rob, we dive into more of his life leading up to getting the true diagnosis of having DID. As you’ll hear him describe so eloquently and in detail, there were so many things going on in his life that just didn’t add up; people were saying things like, “you aren’t the Rob that I knew before”. He knew that things going on in his mind and in life were fragmented, but hearing things like that was devastating to him. After all, he’d been living his life for decades knowing that something was going on, but wasn’t able to put it all together with a true diagnosis from a professional who understood dissociative identity disorder and was able to get him a proper diagnosis much later on in life.

As Rob points out, what drove him to seek the help of a psychiatrist was the realization that his alters had a constant desire to log into virtual reality to have their own lives. This became such a pathological routine that it was consuming all of his time and finally something had to give.

Our conversation continues with his experiences in life, 6 months after his psychiatrist referred him to a therapist that specialized in DID. However, it wasn’t until about a year and half later, that he finally called and made and appointment with that therapist, because he didn’t want to accept that he could have something like dissociative identity disorder, and due to his research, finding out that DID is often caused by sexual trauma. Quite simply, the thought of it all was overwhelming and something he just didn’t want to deal with.

Rob continues to share more of his story:

  • How things finally started to make sense since he began receiving the help he so desperately needed.
  • He also discusses the challenges of his relationships, and how the evolution of healthy boundaries in all aspects of his relationships was life changing for him and his recovery.
  • You’ll learn how something like VR, that was completely taking over his life and becoming nearly toxic to his well being, is now something he is using to help others and himself along his journey.
  • We discuss his view on how DID has truly been a gift for him, as he’s lived through all of the challenges in his life to date.

There is so much more I could tell you, but I don’t want to miss out on this amazing conversation, so I definitely encourage you to check out my podcast with Rob Goldstein. Whether you live with DID or not, I’m sure you’ll be as enlightened and memorized by Rob’s story as I was. It’s a true honor to know this incredible survivor and talented artist, and I look forward to another podcast in the future with him.

Be sure and check out this recent post on his blog RobertMGoldstein.com , inspired by our conversation on the podcast: Coping with DID, I Love All of You” and follow him on Twitter: @Robrt_M_Goldste

Thank you again to my incredible sponsors, iNLPCenter.org and Daily Recovery Support. Please consider checking them out, as they’ve come together to keep the coffee brewin’ and the mics powered up on the podcast!  🙂

-Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

Podcast – Ep. 83 – Marriage, Mental Health, and Self Care, with Joe and Beka Lombardo

When you’ve been married for 17 years, you can certainly say that you’ve seen your share of struggles and triumphs, ups and downs, good times and rough times. Even more, through all of those experiences you can most definitely say that you are dedicated to each other and your relationship. It’s that kind of dedication that can help carry you through the challenges that come with mental illness, and also help you celebrate each and ever win in your relationship and advocacy work. That’s especially true with my guests on this episode of the Beyond Your Past Podcast, Beka and Joe Lombardo.

beka and joe lombardo - podcast guest on beyond your past - marriage and mental healthI first came to know Beka a few years back when I started Surviving My Past, and she offered to be a guest blogger, and share some insight in the area of body image and bullying. Since then we’ve kept in touch and supported each other’s work while building a friendship and mutual respect for the struggles of living with mental health challenges.

Beka is a blogger for The Mighty, and an author of her own book, It’s Not Your Journey, the true story of one woman who fights a battle inside her mind every single day and attempts to document what she is feeling to help others while she helps herself.  Her ongoing battle is not fought alone, her incredible husband Joe is there with her every step of the way as they navigate daily life in the wake of a troubled past. Their never-ending desire to help others is forged not only in blogging and her book, but also with their podcast, Voices for Change 2.0, which I had the pleasure of being a guest on previously.

During my recent chat with Beka and Joe, we talk primarily about their relationship and the unique challenges that come with being a suicide attempt survivor and having a mental illness:

  • Did Rebecca explain her mental health struggles before you started a relationship?
  • You’ve been married for nearly 17 years despite the difficulties mental illness brings.
  • What advice do you have for someone entering a relationship with someone with mental illness?
  • The effect that Beka’s suicide attempt had on Joe and how he’s been able to support her as well as making sure to take care of himself.
  • How and why they started the #KeepTalkingMH hashtag and what it’s meant for them and so many who use it on social media.

Thanks so much to both Beka and Joe for joining me on the show, and being so open about their struggles so that others can benefit and realize that no matter what they endure, there is hope and that they are surely not alone.  Be sure and check out RebeccaLombardo.com for information about their advocacy work, her book, and the podcast.  Oh, and if you are looking for a guitar teacher, Joe teaches on the weekends and just might be looking for some new students!

Please consider subscribing and leaving a review on your favorite podcasting app, I would definitely appreciate it,  and thank you to my incredible sponsors, iNLPCenter.org and Daily Recovery Support.

-Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

Podcast – Ep. 82 – Mental Health Megacast – Religion and Mental Health, a Roundtable Discussion

Welcome back to our self-proclaimed, Mental Health Megacast, a semi-regular round table discussion with 3 mental health advocates and survivors who are trying to find our way through recovery.

There is some debate as to which episode we are actually on with this particular series, and we’ve covered that fiasco in previous episodes, so whether or not it’s actually episode 82, or episode 9 in the series…well who knows!

Anyways, just in case you aren’t familiar with the Megacasts, you can check out past episodes here, and also on cohorts platforms as well….

To that end, the Megacast is creation of the collaborative brain powers (more or less) of Wes from AudioRising.com and Mike from MikesOpenJournal.com, and myself.  I encourage you to check out and follow them online and through your favorite podcasting platform. Each of these has a tremendous message to share and an inspiring and unique way in how they go about it.

In this episode, we do a bit of catching up before diving into some more specific topics. As you’ll see, we have a lot of fun and regardless of the between shows, we’re able to pick up where we left off. That’s the beauty of this collaboration, not only is it a mutual respect and admiration for each others work asMikes Open Journaladvocates, but also the struggle and subsequent resiliency that comes with battling our own pasts.

The topic of this episode is one that we’ve been wanting to cover for quite awhile now, and as luck would have it, and a bit of good timing, we were able to pull together a time to meet to dive into our views on faith and religion and how believing in God, or a higher power, can influence your mental health and specifically your area of struggle; be it addiction recovery, depression, self-harm, trauma survivor, etc.

We each have somewhat differing views, but the great thing is,  we chat and debate a bit in way that not only ends up being informative and a humorous, but also so that none of us ever feels like our view is less than the others.  As Wes points out, we can chat and nobody feels like they have to win!

To that end, we hope you enjoy this latest episode as we cover this difficult and controversial topic, and if you have suggestions for future shows, please contact us and let us know…but whatever you do, please don’t mention the time! 😉

Be sure and follow Wes on Twitter @WesA1966 and Mike @Mike_Douglas_ & Open_Journal_  …oh and don’t forget to follow and subscribe to all of our shows on your favorite podcasting app!

-Matt Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

Podcast – Ep. 81 – Finding Hope and Life by Overcoming Addiction, and Living with Bipolar and Mania.

Every now and then I have the opportunity to chat with a former guest blogger on Surviving My Past, and when I get that opportunity it’s always an incredible experience. Not everyone is ready to, or enjoys sharing their story on a podcast, and that’s okay. The main thing is that when you are at a point of being able to use your experiences to help others, while continuing to aid your own recovery journey, you do so in a way that feels congruent with you and in line with your values.

This episode of the podcast is just such one of those opportunities to chat with a former guest blogger and share more about his story, hearing it in his own voice. Jason Miller, of BipolarisBeautiful.com and @CostlyLoveWins on Twitter joins me for an incredibly moving chat about his life.

His submission on the blog, “A Bipolar Life: He spent years making mud pies in a slum, but no more!” was vulnerable and honest as he shares many of the struggles he’s endured, in a way that makes you want to keep reading to find out how it all turns out and how he made it through such trauma.  As with so many survivors, you may find yourself not only saddened by their experiences, but cheering them on as they begin to pull themselves out of the depths and into a new world of healing and awareness.

On his blog, Jason describes himself as: a grizzled veteran of the roller coaster of this deadly illness, I (barely) survived it for 43 years. But today, I live with it (bipolar disorder). Perpetually on the edge of that cliff of mania or depression, but with the joy and peace of that boy feeding the gentle giraffe. I hope to help you learn how to do the same. It may take years of diligent effort, but if you want a life instead of a miserable existence, the support networks, tools, medications, recovery angels in skin, and spiritual miracles are all there.

Throughout our conversation, Jason shares more indepth about some of the struggles in his life in the areas of Living with Bipolar Disorder, Mania, Addiction to Pornography and Alcohol, a traumatic accident at work which left him with severe burns,  as well as these following topics:

  • To what do you attribute your getting into recovery and what tools do you use to stay there?
  • What has been most beneficial to your recovery?
  • Besides working on your own recovery, what do you do within the mental health and addiction community?
  • What are your thoughts on the stigma surrounding mental illness and addiction?
  • What are your thoughts on our broken mental health care system?

As you listen to Jason talk, don’t be surprised if you find yourself hanging on each word as you hear him recount struggle after struggle, starting over again and again, until finally coming to a place where he could seek out help, surround himself with safe people, and embrace acceptance along his life long journey of healing.

Thank you again Jason for coming on the podcast, your story is undoubtedly helping so many and I’m honored to help share your story.

Don’t forget to check out Jason’s post on Surviving My Past, and we hope you’ll consider sharing his podcast with those who you feel might benefit from his story.

Oh, and don’t forget to subscribe and leave a review on your favorite podcasting app, I’d surely appreciate it! Special thanks to my sponsors, iNLPCenter.org and Daily Recovery Support.

If you’d like to be a guest on an upcoming episode of the podcast, just contact me anytime!

Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

Podcast – Ep. 80 – Life with Autism, C-PTSD, DID, and Narcolepsy, with Kelli Gettel

Over the last couple of years that the Beyond Your Past Podcast has been in existence (including the previous name of Surviving My Podcast), I’ve had the pleasure of talking with dozens of incredible guests on a variety of topics. Everything from Dissociation, to PTSD, DID, Anxiety, along with clinicians and coaches discussing various trauma informed modalities used with their clients, and countless survivor stories that always leave me feeling so encouraged and honored to speak with such incredible people.

The power of sharing your story can never be underestimated. You never know how much you’re going to help someone who you’ll never meet.

This episode focuses on a topic that I have not yet covered on the blog or podcast to date; autism and being a survivor. So when Kelli Gettel contacted me and wanted toAutism_Awareness_Ribbon - beyond your past podcast share her story of living with Autism, PTSD, Narcolepsy, and being raised by a Narcissistic parent, I knew this was going to be an episode that would be as educational as much as it will be inspiring.

Kelli is an entrepreneur living in the central Pennsylvania area, and a parent of 3 children, including a 4 yr old who also was diagnosed with autism. As you’ll hear on the podcast, Kelli has overcome tremendous odds in her life, as so many survivors do, and wants to help others understand life with the challenges she faces. By doing so she wants to educate others that these are not reasons to stay silent, isolated, and living in fear or shame. Rather, by utilizing the power of research and learning about your situation, you can find ways to adapt and overcome, and reach others with a positive, stigma fighting message.

Some of her challenges we discuss on the show include:

  • Life as a female, living on the autism spectrum; including when she was diagnosed, the struggles of non-verbal communication with others.
  • How Narcolepsy affects her relationships, and how Narcolepsy can be a form of Dissociation.
  • Sensory Struggles; the challenges of not being able to filter out surrounding sounds and distractions to be able to focus on a single event or conversation.
  • Social Rules & Protocols – how she had to, and continues to learn how to interact in a social setting. Things that come natural to others have to be learned and adjusted too, which can cause struggles in relationships of all types.
  • Her ability to think in pictures; in her mind she sees life in the form of pictures and moving images, so trying to translate that into words and communicate her thoughts can be a huge challenge.
  • We also touch a bit on her life growing up with a parent who had narcissistic tendencies, and how she’s learning more about understanding her alters and using the IFS model to help.

As you’ll also hear how Kelli is so proud of her youngest son, who, diagnosed with autism, taught himself to read before the age of two and is a huge Beatles fan, knowing every song they’ve ever written and nearly everything about the band. Which also leads into our chat about some of the things that she wants to share about how she’s adapting to the daily struggles that multiple diagnoses can bring:

Education has been so important to Kelli; especially reading books to help understand what she’s experiencing, and make sense of the challenges in her life. She shares some of the books that she has found especially helpful; some of which you might recognize:

This was such an incredible podcast, and as you’ll hear there was no way we could fit in everything that Kelli wanted to share, in just one show. So be on the lookout for future episodes with Kelli as we dive a bit deeper into particular areas of her life.

If you’d like to connect with Kelli Gettel, you can reach her on Facebook. If you would like connect with her, she requests that you please be sure and let her know that you found her via the Beyond Your Past Podcast.

Thank you again Kelli for joining me! Your story is inspiring, your resiliency is amazing! I look forward to future shows with you.

Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

Thank you to my incredible sponsors of the podcast – iNLPCenter.org and Daily Recovery Support

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

 

Podcast – Ep. 79 – Julie Coons, the Challenges and Triumphs of Sharing Your Story as an Author

I’m so honored to welcome back returning guest, Julie Coons, to this episode of the Beyond Your Past Podcast. Julie first joined me back in October 2017, to discuss her upcoming book at the time, This Does Not Leave This House. That was an incredible show, and the first time that I was introduced to Julie, and learned more about her amazing and heart wrenching story of being a survivor.

Julie tells us that the inspiration for the title of her book, “This does not leave this house”, comes from being raised in a family where she was told regularly by her father, “what goes on in this house, stays in this house, it was their family secret and nobody’s business but theirs.”

As outlined on JulieCoons.com –

Raised by an abusive, narcissistic mother (who once tried to trick her into having an abortion), Julie Coons was also raped in college by a stranger and later married an abusive man who threatened to kill her if she ever tried to leave. Suffering from physical and mental torment resulting in very low self-esteem, Julie often felt so completely alone during the many struggles of her life that she tried to take her own life.

This book is her true story—telling all the secrets she was never allowed to tell to encourage and motivate others to heal their own lives and break the cycle of abuse. Her story shows that there is hope and life after abuse. Now that the secrets are finally out, Julie has found freedom.

So can you.

This Does Not Leave This House is a raw, poignant, and secret-revealing memoir written to lead a movement to break the silence of abuse and finally end its vicious cycle. With strength and resiliency, Coons provides a voice for the silent abused, letting them know they’re not alone. Justice and hope can prevail. The abused can become victorious. Read the heartbreaking true story of her journey to triumph above overwhelming obstacles.

I wanted to bring her back to see how things have been going since the release of her book, and discuss more of how her life has changed, the struggles she’s faced and the trials that she’s overcome and used as a learning experience throughout the process. As you listen to our chat, we’ll discuss many topics, including:

  • Expecting backlash from her family, and what it was like to not get any at all.
  • The response of her friends who offered her incredible support and validation.
  • The struggles of being an author and a survivor of childhood trauma, including the memories that resurface while writing.
  • How writing a book is not necessarily as cathartic as you might think at the time, and in fact can be retraumatizing as old memories resurface and new ones come to light.
  • Dealing with reviews and comments, both positive and negative, and the struggles of not letting those define her or invalidate her story.
  • Updates on the situation with her mother and where she is now with those challenges.
  • Her new work of fiction, titled “Why She Lied”, is in the works, and Julie shares how that book is coming along and why she’s writing it.

All this and much more on this episode of the podcast is waiting for you, so grab those headphones or plug us into your car and join me as I chat with Julie.

I encourage you to check out JulieCoons.com for more information on her story, a link to buy the book on Amazon, and to sign up for her newsletter so you can stay in the know as she progresses on her new book.  Follow her on Twitter @JulieCoons1

Special Thanks to my Amazing Sponsors iNLPCenter.org and Daily Recovery SupportPlease consider checking them out and exploring how you might benefit from these two incredible resources. 

Oh, and don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast and leave a review on your favorite podcasting app…that would be so awesome and I’d sure appreciate it!

If you’d like to be a guest on an upcoming podcast, just contact me anytime right here!

-Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

 

 

Podcast – Ep. 78 – Dissociative Identity Disorder, and the Living DID Program, with Erika Reva

On this episode of the podcast, I’m talking with returning guest Erika Reva, of The We in Me. I first met Erika through Twitter, and I reached out to see if sheErika Reva - The We in Me - Podcast might be interested in writing a guest blog post for Surviving My Past. To this day, her story is still one of the highest viewed posts  on the blog, which speaks not only to her ability as a writer, but her genuine desire to share her story, continue her healing journey, and also help others who live with DID.

Since then she has joined me on the podcast to discuss DID and Self Harm, and we’ve remained in contact through social media and periodic emails following each other’s journey. After one such recent email exchange, I learned of a new program she had created, called Living DID. After hearing more about it, I knew I wanted to see if she’d be interested in coming back on Beyond Your Past, to share with us how this program came to be, what it’s about, and the feedback she’s received from participants who’ve taken it.

As Erika outlines:

The feedback has been wonderful and many others with DID & trauma disorders have contributed their stories and journey’s for us to share as various examples throughout the discussion based course. Each week we delve into detailed discussion based lectures that pertain to various topics on DID.

Week 1- intro to us (The We in Me) and the course.
Week 2-  Protectors, these parts that are often demonized and feared will be discussed
Week 3- Triggers
Week 4- Littles, the young traumatized parts that are protected and hidden
Week 5- The problems with Docs, we have 2 systems who have also agreed to join us and discuss their struggles as well as our own story and several others who have given us permission to share, so they can remain anonymous.
Week 6- Therapy, an in depth look on what therapy can/does look like for someone with DID and as the psychologists ways to best help them.
Week 7- Relationships & Closing – Focus this final week will be on relationships within the system, people such as romantic or friend type relationships as well as the correlation of BDSM & the trauma community that is vastly overlooked.

As you’ll hear, Erika has fostered collaborative relationships with her local NAMI chapter, and the Chicago Police Department to help educate first responders on how they can prepare for and have a better understanding of, the challenges of walking into a situation involving victims of trauma and those living with DID.  She’s also been invited to speak at an event sponsored by #SickNotWeak, not-for-profit corporation started by Michael Landsberg.

It’s always such a pleasure to talk with Erika, and to discuss Dissociative Identity Disorder with her and others who live with it and have decided to take their story and use it to try to help others. The more light we can share on this topic, the more we continue to educate ourselves and those who are affected with DID.

Be sure and follow Erika and her work with Living DID on , TheWeInMe.com – and follow her on Twitter and Instagram @TheWeInMe.

Oh, and don’t forget to subscribe to Beyond Your Past on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, iHeartRADIO, Spotify, or your favorite podcasting app! 🙂

Matthew Pappas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

Podcast – Ep. 76 – Vennie Kocsis – How Trauma Manifests Itself in Adulthood – Food Struggles

Trauma manifests itself in so many ways in our adult lives. While we’d like to think that “what happened in the past, stays in the past”, the unfortunate reality is that regardless of when a traumatic event(s) occurred, the effects last long into adulthood.  That’s not to say that there isn’t hope for healing, because I absolutely believe that there is, but we must first understand what’s happened and then we can begin to heal from it.

For someone who spent about 30 years ignoring those effects, it was quite a shock when I finally did start to confront all those memories and bring them to the forefront instead of leaving them stuffed away in a shoe box, in the back of the closet of my mind. “Out of sight, Out of mind” can no longer be an option when we start to deep dive into recovery. As intimidating as that can be, it’s also an opportunity to learn more about ourselves. Being able to put the puzzle pieces in place, and shine light in the dark corners of our minds can yield incredible awareness and lead to self-compassion in ways that we never dreamed of.

Vennie Kocsis - Guest Podcast - Beyond Your Past

One of the struggles that I have faced my entire life, and most certainly as a result of childhood trauma, is in the area of food. Or better put, realizing out how unhealthy of a relationship I’d had with it for most of my life and finding ways to turn that around. Not out of guilt, but out of self-awareness and compassion for who I was, what I went through, and where I wanted to see myself in the future.

My guest, Vennie Kocsis, joins me on this episode of the podcast to discuss this particular aspect of how trauma manifests itself in our lives.

Vennie is an author, artist, poetry writer, and survivor survivor of Sam Fife’s Move of God cult.  My creativity is the therapy by which I have survived the memories of my childhood abuse. There are many  caves where memories hide out, and I intend to travel them all in this lifetime. I am raw. I am flawed. I am open and here without shame, to tell the true story of my own childhood. I write to survive, and I write for those who cannot find the words to tell their own story. Most of all, I write for those who cannot express it. For you, I give my heart and all of my tender parts.

I first met Vennie several years ago, through Twitter, and almost immediately we hit it off as friends and fellow survivors. Our mutual respect for each other as survivors and being willing to share so openly about our struggles, helped form a lasting bond of friendship that I value so much.

Her insight into the world of surviving some of the most horrific abuse imaginable has helped her in using her voice and talents to reach a huge audience with a message of hope and resilience. A message of finding ways to tell your story, and not be ashamed in asking for help.  To that end, not being ashamed to admit that she is still a work in progress, as we all are on our own journeys. She uses her book, Cult Child, her art and poetry to convey what’s in her heart both now and when she was experiencing the trauma first hand.

It’s real, it’s raw, it’s vulnerable, and it’s all about not being ashamed of who she is and the message that she has for the world.

In this podcast we cover topics related to food and survivors:

  • Self Shame with how, when, and what we eat.
  • Why dieting doesn’t work for us
  • Reparenting ourselves when it comes to food
  • Moderation
  • Lifestyle Changes
  • and more!

As you listen to the show, we hope that you’ll feel validated and encouraged with the realization that you are not alone. The struggles of looking at ourselves in the mirror each day can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be that way for the rest of your life.  Making small changes in our lifestyle and a conscious effort to give ourselves a break for a change, can be just the ticket towards finding that self-love and acceptance that’s been absent in our lives for so long.

This is the first in a series of how trauma manifests itself in adulthood, so be sure and watch for future episodes on other topics of being a survivor.

You can learn more about Vennie, her book “Cult Child”, check out her poetry and artwork, on VennieKocsis.com.  Be sure and follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram as well, @VennieKocsis.

-Matthew Pappas

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

 

Podcast – Ep. 75 – Rachel Grant, Survivor Struggles and Mentally Ill Labels

Living in today’s volatile and controversial world can take its toll on anyone. With so much violence happening around the world, discord among not only world leaders across the globe but certainly in the US, and the phrase “mentally ill” being tossed around in context to some of the most heinous crimes in recent history, and it’s no wonder we can feel unsettled.

For survivors, it’s tough enough navigating daily life in the wake of a traumatic past, but add in all of the pressures of being bombarded with news and current events 24/7, and the struggle gets exponentially more difficult.

I too struggle with my own thoughts and even my most trusted coping strategies are taxed to their limits at times trying to stay grounded while “fighting the good fight” as it were, to raise awareness and get involved in areas that I’m passionate about. It feels like an uphill battle that gets steeper and steeper, even with the best plan and self-care strategies in place.

Rachel Grant - Sexual Abuse Survivor Coach, Podcast GuestThat’s why I wanted to spend some time chatting with friend, colleague, and returning guest to the podcast, Rachel Grant. From the very first time that we collaborated back in the earlier episodes of the show, we’ve developed a friendship and mutual respect for each other not only as advocates and survivors, but as everyday people just trying to find our way in this world and make a difference while we continue to heal.

Rachel Grant is a Sexual Abuse Survivor Coach, with an M.A. in Counseling Psychology. Her website, RachelGrantCoaching.com features not only her individual and group work with survivors, but also her book “Beyond Surviving”, Facebook Group, Master Class, and free and low-cost Audible Downloads covering topics such as Shame, Boundaries, Abandonment, and much more.

 

Some of the topics that Rachel and I discuss on this episode include:

 

  • Feelings of Shame and Triggers that can arise in regards to the mass violence and political climate across the world.
  • “Mentally Ill” labels being tossed around in negative and stigmatizing ways in regards to school and church shootings, gun control, world leaders, and those who suffer with depression.
  • Getting involved in causes that we believe in, and trying to do too much.
  • Looking at labels in a different context, as a way to help feel inspired and educated, and provide direction towards treatment and resources.
  • Learning to pause, think before we speak and react, when it comes to highly charged situations, reducing anxiety, and in everyday life.
  • Using “service” to help get out of our heads, reduce burnout, and re-energize for not only our own journey but our involvement in causes we are passionate in.

Thank you again Rachel from coming back on the podcast and sharing your insight and heartfelt message for survivors. I’ve learned so much from you and I look forward to our collaborative work in the future.

Be sure and check out RachelGrantCoaching.com and follow her on Twitter: @CoachRachelG.

-Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

 

 

Podcast – Ep. 74 – Chip Fisher, the alternative to traditional treatments for Anxiety, Depression, and Insomnia

If you’re anything like me; someone who’s suffered with anxiety, depression, insomnia, and perhaps you also live with PTSD, then you’ve likely tried many, many different types of treatments. Everything from supplements and medications, to oils, meditation, holistic approaches, and much more. The list is seemingly endless, as is the frustration of exploring so many options to try and find what works for you, even if it’s only some of the time.

If you do live with any of those mental health challenges, or know someone who does, this alternative to traditional treatments might be something you consider exploring. My guest on this episode of the podcast is Chip Fisher, President of Fisher Wallace Laboratories, based in New York, a medical device company that specializes in a wearable device to help with Anxiety, Depression, and Insomnia.

Designed collaboratively by world-class engineers and doctors, the Fisher Wallace Stimulator® uses proprietary waveforms to gently stimulate the brain to produce serotonin and other neurochemicals responsible for healthy mood and sleep. Proven safe and effective in multiple published studies, the device is cleared by the FDA to treat depression, anxiety and insomnia.*

As Chip explains, In 2001, renowned addictionologist Martin Wallace, PhD, CCN, CAd, was unable to find any means of coping with the depression that brought him to a standstill in the aftermath of eight hours spent trapped in a building at Ground Zero on 9/11. In 2002 he discovered the Stimulator, originally created by brilliant engineers Saul and Bernard Liss, and used it to successfully treat his depression.

Wallace and Fisher met not long after at a business conference, and Chip was so impressed with the lack of side effects and the incredible results that using this product produced, that he began using it himself and still does today.

You can read more about the story of how this device came to be, and the science behind it, over at https://www.fisherwallace.com

One of the things that I was most interested in, was how survivors of trauma might benefit from using the Fisher Wallace Stimulator.  As is often the case with trauma survivors and those living with PTSD, the brain’s normal functions of stimulating the production of and regulating neurochemicals such as serotonin, cortisol, and dopamine, is hampered. As a result, living with hypervigilance, anxiety disorders, insomnia, as well as other mood disorders is all too common.

This device using patented technology to gently help the brain begin to resume its normal duties in this manner, and as a result countless patients have experienced life changing results.  You can also check out his Ted Talk, in which he reveals some of the science and history behind the development the Stimulator.

As he explains, this device is painless, and most patients experience nothing more than a slight tingling sensation if anything at all. It can be used at home, while traveling, virtually anywhere, and see results without any serious side effects.

In addition, Chip himself lives with Depression and Seasonal Effective Disorder, so he knows first hand some of the struggles that the users of this device live with each day. He too tried countless traditional methods to help with his symptoms, including talk therapy and traditional drugs, but mostly found that they did little to help and some of the medications had severe side effects.

By taking proven technology that originated in 46 A.D., with a physician using a Torpedo Fish to help treat Migraines and Gout, has developed into state of the art technology that can be combined with many digital health applications to help treat some of the most detrimental mental and physical health conditions in modern history.

If you’d like to learn more, check out FisherWallace.com for device information, pricing, clinical trials, and more. Thank you again Chip for coming on the Beyond Your Past Podcast and for the research that your company is doing to help those who struggle in the areas of Anxiety, Depression, and Insomnia.

-Matthew Pappas, CLC, CPNLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All conversation and information exchanged during participation on the Beyond Your Past Podcast, on BeyondYourPast.com, and BeyondYourPastRadio.com is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Nothing on these podcasts or posted on the above mentioned websites are supplements for or supersedes the relationship and direction of your medical or mental health providers.

*https://www.fisherwallace.com/pages/how-it-works