The Anxiety Project

Excessive worry,  Self consciousness, Panic, Perfectionism, Self-Doubt…. These are just a few of the signs of anxiety. As Business owners, we often see these queues as a sign of weakness, or something for us to “push through”. 

That can’t be further from the truth.

We need to do better. We owe it to ourselves to do better. It’s no secret that women, by nature, put the needs of their families and loved ones first. And that is honorable… as a woman, I commend you. But there is a line we need to realize. We can’t keep pushing when our tank is on fumes. We need to see the signs before it gets too late. 

…. And you are not alone

#TheAnxietyProject is a movement to make sure as many women across the globe know they are not alone in this journey.This week, our worlds are getting a lil smaller. Let’s show the world that women can come together to love, support and enable healing, and care. Let’s end the stigma associated with Anxieties, and Anxiety Disorders.


These amazing women so courageously share their experiences with anxiety so we all may know that we are not alone. Their complete interviews are below.

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Patricia Alix

Fancy Girl Design Studio


“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is that gut-wrenching feeling of not being in control of what’s happening to you. It’s a feeling of helplessness that keeps you awake at night. 


How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?


What kinds of things do you worry about?

Safety for my family, financial stability, violence all around the world, the success of my business, my health, my children’s health, my children’s school performance, things I said to people, how to market my services. I also worry that my parents are getting old, and how I can help provide for their needs later. There are so many things on my mind, all the time. 

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

I’ve had insomnia for 3 years now. I lie awake in bed thinking of everything that I can’t control in my life. 

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

Yes, I have terrible social anxiety. I don’t know how to do small talk; I dislike talking on the phone because I never know what to say or how to say it.  As a result, I never have face to face client meetings and communicate solely thru emails. 

There are many more but that’s probably the most obvious one I can think of. 

When feeling anxious, what have you tried to cope or overcome them?

I do both. I cope with my anxieties directly by solving whatever problem there is to solve. I also avoid triggers if I can, like social situations that cause me great fear. 

Normally I get anxious if faced with a situation I can’t seem to control. So I find a way to control it, or my reaction to it. Self-talk is really helpful.  

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

You have to accept that there are things beyond your control.  What you can do is change the way you react to the situation. 


Jessica Serra Huizenga

The Confetti Bar (and Simple Unsweet // JSH Books // Monarch Workshop) (most of my anxiety related stuff is chronicled at

@theconfettibar @simpleunsweet @jshbooks @monarchworkshop


What is anxiety to you?

To me, anxiety is when everything feels overwhelming; that LIFE is just too much. My mind races, it gets harder to breathe, and I feel like shutting down.

When I was in college I had a doctor tell me I had anxiety when I had an episode where my heart was racing and my fingers felt numb. I would never have considered it out of control until about 5-6 years later in the summer of 2014 when I started having regular panic attacks and even ended up in the emergency room because of them.

At the worst of my anxiety, I worried about everything, but mainly I became consumed with worrying that bad would happen to someone I loved. 

Because I lost both of my maternal grandparents to cancer six months apart in 2008 and then lost my dad in a motorcycle accident in 2009, it was easy for doctors to dismiss my anxiety as something neurological based on traumatic experiences. I, however, knew something else was going on when it literally felt like my mind & body were not in sync. I don’t know how else to describe it other than I knew something wasn’t right and it wasn’t all just in my head. (For the full story on my experience with anxiety & diet, see more here:


Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

Now I know that if I eat sugary foods, my mood changes and I start to get anxious, therefore I keep my diet as clean as possible.

I 100% would rather eat right and feel good (and happy!) than feel anxious again.

Favorite Quote

I’m not sure of the exact author/source, but this one sticks with me: “One day she finally grasped that unexpected things were always going to happen in life. And with that, she realized the only control she had was how she chose to handle them. So, she made the decision to survive using courage, humor and grace. She was the Queen of her own life and the choice was hers.” (I think the source is Queenisms)


What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Honestly I would encourage anyone dealing with anxiety to take a look on what they are putting into their bodies. If a diet is full of sugar, processed foods, wheat, caffeine, and chemicals, chances are it is affecting much more than your waistline. I just read an article regarding a new book called “A Mind of Your Own” (although there is lots of information on the connection of your gut health to overall wellbeing). From the article: “Not one valid study has proven that depression is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain,’ says Kelly Brogan, MD, a New York City-based holistic women’s health psychiatrist and author of the recently released A Mind of Your Own. Dr. Brogan says science is showing us that depression is primarily an inflammatory condition, like chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. (In other words, its origins aren’t neurological.) Her belief is that the most powerful path to the brain is through the gut”and therefore treating depression with antidepressants that only affect the brain is akin to taking Tylenol for a piece of glass in your foot.”


Ashton Kelley

Ashton Kelley Photography

@ashtonkelleyphotography @akpretreat 

Snapchat & twitter – @ash1ok

Facebook – /ashtonkelleyphotography

Pinterest – @ash10photog


“You can do anything, but you can’t do everything.” 

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety to me is a battle. It’s the struggle every day to not give in to feelings of self-doubt, de-valuing myself, or fearing I’m not good enough. Anxiety is the monster under the bed, haunting all of my good days, waiting for the weak moment I may become vulnerable to my own emotions. It’s being scared that at any moment, I may not be able to handle what the world throws my way.

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

I, unfortunately, learned about my anxiety at a young age. My childhood was hard, and I grew up too quickly. This caused me to take on responsibilities at a young age, and not only my stress but other peoples’ as well. 

I worry about letting people down the most. I’m a people pleaser, and the thought of disappointing someone can cause me a lot of sleepless nights. My fear of not living up to any expectation, the pressure to be perfect weighs on every decision I make. I’m always thinking about what needs to be done next.

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

Honestly? I cry, a lot. I realized through peers shaming me that I cried more than the average person, that I took things deeper to heart, and that I would battle with my temper as a result. It took a long time to embrace that feeling stronger than others, loving harder, and being more emotionally committed is NOT always a bad thing. It can be a strength in many ways, like provoking emotions from a couple on the wedding day or empathizing with a client’s bad experience. These connections prove so genuine because they come from a place that is, and can be seen right on my sleeve! 

I feel anxieties in situations where I lose control of things, or things are just simply out of my control. I also feel stressed if I think someone is upset with me, even if it’s in my head.

I’ve been advised, medicated, and living with anxiety and depression for 30 years. I have opted, from my experience, to try and cope with the reality of my emotions. Medication left me feeling dull and like a stranger to myself, and I didn’t like that. I’d rather feel too much than be numb. Life’s for feeling, and everything happens for a reason. I have to try and believe that God gave me a bigger heart because there is something I’m to do with it. 🙂

I like to take a hot shower and get away from the world. I find that if I’m anxious, I can easily be over-stimulated around other people. Taking a moment to myself and meditating or just focusing on my breathing can really help calm me. I also love to turn on a good song and dance it out!

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?


Don’t be afraid to talk to someone, to ask for help, to admit that you’re struggling… Every day is a new day to start all over and to tackle your emotional struggles. Just remember, you are in control. It’s alright to lose that control from time to time, as long as you regain it with confidence and learn something from the fall. 


Elena Murzello

Author of The Love List

Instagram and Twitter: @ElenaMurzello 

Keep Calm and Carry On.


What is anxiety to you?

When my input of time and energy does not equal a balanced output of product in the time that i expect things to unfold.

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

It was not until my 30’s, when I was no longer in a relationship that I recognized my anxieties around certain events in my life.

I used to worry about things that I could not control, such as decisions not decided by myself. Now I try to only improve on things that I can control – like my own actions and my feelings toward people.

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

I don’t think there was an initiating incident, rather a realization over time. Certain themes would come up over and over – because I didn’t learn from the last time.

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

As I said previously, I try and shrug off things that I cannot control. When matters are in others hands, I take comfort that I have given the situation 110% of my energy. 

Cope or avoid anxiety triggers?

I would try and do both. Sometimes you can’t foresee triggers and since every situation is different you have to recognize what can be a trigger for you. 

Overtime, I have learned that “No” actually means “Not now” or “not this person”. A redirection is usually to something better. A pause is means there is a greater lesson. Being open to understanding this, rather than being frustrated can be quite helpful to aid in your growth. 

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

When something frustrates you, take the time to figure out why. What is the real issue at stake? A band-aid solution will only get you so far – and you would not have learned the valuable lesson.

Whitney Hansen

Whitney Hansen Coaching

Insta: @whitney_hansen_co

Twitter: @whitneyhansenco

Facebook: Whitney Hansen Coaching

“Don’t take life so seriously. You’ll never get out alive.”



What is anxiety to you?

I use Tony Robbins definition of anxiety. He says anxiety is the feeling that you can never completely win. 

And that’s exactly what is to me- the constant feeling that no matter what you do, it’s not enough. 

It took me a while to realize that I had anxieties. It finally it me when I started gaining weight, had very disruptive sleep, and feeling like I always had a million things to do even though I actually didn’t. 

The things I worry about most tend to be fairly petty. It’s common worries like, “what will they think of me”, or “will anyone care?” Even to this day, I get anxious thinking about ways to grow my business.

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

Let me preface my answer with this- I do not believe I have a serious medically diagnosed condition of anxiety. Clinical anxiety is a very serious thing that can be life-altering and lead to depression. 

But when I realized I was experiencing mild forms of anxiety was when I couldn’t sleep for a month straight. I “normally” fall asleep immediately when I hit the bed, but when I was first starting my business, working a full-time job, and in grad school, I felt paralyzed. My sleep was affected and I felt emptiness. I felt like no matter what I did, it would never be enough and I was always behind. Anxiety creates an intense sinking feeling in your chest. 

Anxiety creeps in whenever I find myself comparing where I am to where I think I should be. That’s when it becomes the worst. We always think we will be at a certain place in our lives and when we get there it and aren’t where we thought it can lead to anxiety. 

Whenever I heard stories of entrepreneurs that made $100,000 their first year of business, I got discouraged. It a constant battle trying to focus on your own stuff and allowing your life go at its own pace.

Frankly, I don’t think it’s possible to not compare your life to others. We all fall victim into this, but we have to be aware of the detriments of doing so. I have to remind myself every single day that business is a long-term game and every day I’m planting the seeds that will grow to create the future. 

I much prefer to cope with anxieties. I believe all feeling, anxiety included, should be listened to, analyzed and respected. 

Anxiety is stemming from a place of fear. We all know that fear is at times both rational and irrational. But our brains aren’t great at deciphering between the two. 

My strategy for coping with anxiety comes from the book “When Things Fall Apart,” by Pema Choden. Pema mentions that instead of trying to ignore sadness, anxiety, or any other negative emotion, allow yourself to feel it. Close your eyes and imagine anxiety as a floating object. Then watch the anxiety float by. 

This sounds cheesy, but it really works for me. Another thing that works like a champ is unplugging from all thing digital and going for a hike. Being in nature makes me realize how little things matter in the grand scheme of life.  

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Take time for yourself, ask for help often, and remember it doesn’t all have to be done today. There’s no such thing as an overnight success. That person you’re comparing yourself to put in the work for many years before you heard about them. You’re doing just fine. 🙂 


Emylee Williams

Think Creative Collective

@thinkcreativecollective (insta)

@thinkcreativekc (twitter)

“No amount of anxiety can change the future”

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is a true body takeover to me. It starts slowly with a million things running through my head, then my eyes will start darting around, then a headache might form and finally a pit in my stomach will take up residence until things either get checked off the list or the issue is resolved. 

I’ve had anxieties since I was very young, maybe 6 or so. I didn’t have coping mechanisms for dealing with crowds, sudden change of plans or even if my parents weren’t getting along so I would let it pile up and eventually it would boil over into a burst of tears and holding my breath. The cause of the anxieties changed as I grew older, but how I dealt with them stayed the same, because I didn’t know any other option. 

What kinds of things do you worry about?

It’s more so of what I don’t worry about. There will be everyday things like getting work done on time or accomplishing all the errands in a weekend. But I can tell when I’m anxious that I’ll begin to worry about totally illogical things (like what’s my plan if my husband dies today). In order to stop thinking about it I usually have to go through the entire scenario and have my plan of action to these ridiculous things so I can be prepared. I think if I know what to do in every worst case scenario that maybe I won’t worry about it anymore, but that’s never true for me. 

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

When I had my worst panic attack ever in a parking lot my freshman year of college. I had just gotten a speeding ticket and this small thing brought my world down. This $70 setback made everything seem impossible and that I couldn’t possibly come back from this thing. In my mind everything was ruined. It was after that when I thought maybe everything else was weighing on me more then it should. I needed to learn coping mechanisms for everyday stresses so a minor blip wouldn’t cause me to freak out. 

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

I still feel some social anxieties in large crowds or loud places, but my anxiety (spaz behavior as I call it) happens when there are just way too many things to do or I’m responsible for too much. It helps if I map everything out with due dates and if I can give tasks to anyone else I will, but one problem with my anxiety is that *I* have to do most tasks so they can be done the best (but that’s another issue, haha). 

I think with my anxiety I know which situations to avoid (sitting in General Admission at the ballpark is one of them, for instance), but with everything else I just have to find systems that help me cope. I can’t avoid a to-do list so I have to find a way to manage it where it doesn’t drive me crazy. 

So, it’s twofold. I can give in to my anxiety (like when we moved and I *had* to have our kitchen, bathroom and bedroom set up before I could fall asleep so I would feel better). Luckily, I can unpack an entire house in like 2 days, ha! There are other situations where I just have to take a breather. Go walk around Target, take a hot bath, use calming essential oils (these are my every day routine!). It also helps to tell someone else everything that has to get done, if I can get it out of my head it won’t swirl around so much. 

Favorite anxiety crushing quote:

“Don’t believe everything you think” and “No amount of anxiety can change the future”

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Don’t keep it to yourself! Talk it out with someone who is really empathetic and give yourself some grace. Also, hands down Stress Away and Valor essential oil have radically changed my anxiety. The Stress Away calms the breathing and let’s me focus and the Valor gives me the confidence to tackle situations without fear. 


Kelley Carter

Kelley With Love

Instagram: @kelleywithlove

Twitter: @kelleywithlove


“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is unnecessary worry about a moment I cannot change or have not yet lived. It’s when I am not living in the moment and have allowed stress or fear to build up and become undirected.

I work as a mental health professional, so I think it took going to school to get my professional degree to realize that I might actually have some of the symptoms I was learning about. It was eye opening to know that most people at some point in life experience anxiety symptoms and that they can be triggered really at any time.

I worry a lot about my future. I worry about the whens and the hows of getting where I want to be. For a while I even worried that I was working in the wrong profession.

I realized it may be a little more when things became overwhelming and I just wanted to do nothing at all instead of all of the things I dreamed of doing.

I usually only experience anxiety when I’m working on new endeavors in entrepreneurship. I don’t avoid the anxiety, I try to explore it. I allow myself to feel it without judging myself. Then I get to the bottom of why I feel that way. Then I reach for a better feeling and then another better feeling until I’m at a happier place.

I’d much rather deal with it than avoid it. When I deal with it, I gain control. If I avoid it, it controls me.

I like to focus on problem solving. It helps me to look at exactly what I’m feeling, the problem that caused me to feel that way, and then to brainstorm solutions and create a plan for dealing with the problem. I also pray, meditate and talk to loved ones. It’s always good to have outlets and those are mine.

Favorite anxiety crushing quote:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. -Psalm 23: 1-2

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Know that you are not alone! If you are feeling unusually stressed or overwhelmed, write down what you are feeling. Try your best to get to the bottom of the root cause of these feelings (i.e what led you to feel this way). Once you identify why you feel that way, identify what you can do to feel better when you do get anxious or worried. What thoughts might you need to stop and what thoughts might you need to focus on in order to feel better? Try practicing mindfulness and focus on living in the moment. Identify outlets and use them when necessary. Try to be more proactive with your life by making plans for some of the more routine things that happen in order to leave extra time for some of the more unexpected things. Build a strong support system of loved ones and business besties you can turn to when feeling overwhelmed. If you feel like doing these things aren’t helping, don’t be afraid to seek professional help.


Casha Doemland


“…If you can’t go through an obstacle, go around it. Water does.”

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is the racing of my heart as every fear and worry under the sun enters my mind. It is the beginning to a never ending tangent of thoughts that seep deep down until I choose to either express it or have a breakdown. Anxiety is a lack of control. 

It took about two years to fully recognize that I have anxiety and it was not built up in my head. 

What kinds of things do you worry about?

Is everything under the sun a solid answer? I have a tendency to seek control of myself and what happens to me, which is sort of unrealistic as I cannot control everything. I worry that I will not be taken seriously because of my age and the length of my resume, which leads into a huge list of other items I worry about. It’s a chain reaction of situations I create within my own head, yet always looping back to “Am I qualified to be where I am? Do I deserve to be where I am? Am I sure I have what it takes to be a bad ass lady entrepreneur?”

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

The moment it decided to kick it up a notch and I began experiencing anxiety attacks. The moments where my face would go numb, my heart would race, my entire body felt like it got 10 degrees hotter, I could not catch my breath, my head would go light and I felt as if everything around me was crashing. The attacks varied in time, but the numbness I felt afterwards always lasted a couple of days.  

My anxiety comes and goes for the most part, but there are certain situations when it arises without fail. For example, whenever I make a drastic impulse decision and the moment arrives to execute it.  

It has also been fairly apparent as I take the plunge into world of creatives and entrepreneurs. 

I would prefer to cope with my anxieties head on, to overcome them if possible to have one less thing to worry about. 

About two months ago, I switched up my morning routine to combat my anxiety. I begin each morning with morning pages, meditation and yoga. If I am out and about, I cope with the anxious feeling through deep breathing while placing my fingers on certain pressure points, reaching out to a friend, or just taking a beat to really process my thoughts realistically. 

I stepped away from the start-up travel company because I valued my health over the title. I thought I could grit my teeth and bear it, but every morning I woke up with the anxious feeling in my chest. It was not a decision I made lightly, rather created a detailed list and wrote about for nearly three weeks. Additionally, I felt I should be true to myself and my own passion projects. When my anxiety is at a high for a constant flow of time, I lose my creativity. As a writer, having a permanent state of writer’s block is just the pits. I have a few ideas up my sleeve and will be making the proper strides over the next couple of months to hopefully see one or even all become a reality. 

Anxiety crushing quote:

“Water does not resist. Water flows. When you plunge your hand into it, all you feel is a caress. Water is not a solid wall, it will not stop you. But water always goes where it wants to go, and nothing in the end can stand against it. Water is patient. Dripping water wears away a stone. Remember that, my child. Remember you are half water. If you can’t go through an obstacle, go around it. Water does.”

~ Margaret Atwood


What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

I would offer a few pieces of advice.

1. Understand that you are not alone.

2. Meditation is your best friend; if you live a busy life, I sometimes meditate for 10 minutes prior to falling asleep at night if I don’t fall asleep during.

3. Create a solid support system. Find a shoulder to lean on and ear to listen. 

4. You are a bad ass! Do not doubt that for a single moment. You deserve to be where you are and to have your wildest dreams come true. So keep on keeping on!


Abagail Pumphrey

Think Creative Collective

Instagram – @thinkcreativecollective

Pinterest –

Facebook –

Twitter –

“Make Ideas Happen.” 

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is that nagging feeling inside your brain that fills you with doubt, worry and self-conscious thoughts. 

I have had anxiety since I was a young child. I was bullied in school for my weight and it really took a tole on my self image.

As an adult I have learned to put other’s thoughts aside, but instead have anxiety about more person and life goals that are self imposed. 

Here is a quick and dirty laundry list:

– Being good enough (am I really talented enough to make my dreams come true)

– Forgetting things (I wouldn’t survive without a calendar and a checklist)

– Letting people down (Am I doing enough? Am I helpful enough? Am I satisfying what people need from me?)

– Being a good wife (Am I pulling my weight in my marriage? Do I make my husband happy? Does he need more from me?)

– Being a good friend (Am I supportive enough? Do I speak in their love language? Do they like having me around?)

– Being a good business partner (Do I provide enough value? Am I meeting her expectations? How can I support her more financially so that she can live the life/lifestyle she wants?)

– Being a good person (Am I active enough in the community? Do I make an impact on people in a positive way? Do I donate enough time/money/talent?)

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

It is constant!

I have a constant fear that what I am doing isn’t enough. Just thinking about it makes my blood pressure go up, my heart race and my head hurt. I know this is unhealthy and obviously I need to work harder on letting it go.

It is so constant it is hard to say, but in particular I think it is surrounding roles in my life – as a wife, friend, business partner, family member, volunteer, etc.

The triggers are everywhere so I have learned to cope with them. Sometimes I am better at it than I am at other times.

Generally I just have to slow down and give myself some space. The anxiety is generally self imposed. No one is walking around screaming “Abagail you aren’t awesome. You suck in fact.”

My favorite things I have added into my life to cope is deep breathing, quiet/alone time, prayer, yoga and essential oils.

My mantra is “Make Ideas Happen.” I live and breathe it. It is a reminder that I am the only thing holding myself back from what I want.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Stop being so hard on yourself. You are incredible talented. Use your gifts to make an impact. Let go of the doubts, regret, negative self talk and constant fear. It’s your time to shine.


Bola Onada Sokunbi

Clever Girl Finance

instagram – @clevergirlfinance

twitter – @clevergirlcgf

facebook –


What is anxiety to you?

Stress! Not getting things done, falling behind, feeling like I can’t catch up, feeling like I will fail. Wanting to give up, crying it out, feeling sorry for myself. Stress, stress, stress!

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

I’ve always known but being a business owner takes my stress and anxiety to another level.

What kinds of things do you worry about?

Not being successful. I’m ok with that though because I’d know I would have tried my best but the thing that gets me stuck is – am I REALLY trying my best? Enter anxiety and stress. Like is my best really my best? If I fail have I REALLY tried my best? That’s the kind of stuff I worry about.

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

Getting a serious case of vertigo

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

When I don’t take breaks because I think I am the invincible queen of the universe and I can do it all.

I rather avoid the triggers. I need to take breaks.

I step away from the MAC lol. I go outside and play with my kids. Make myself watch TV, go to the gym, something not related to my computer.

I am not useful to my cause if I am sick.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Calm down and take breaks. Breaks keep you sane. They help you think straight and they keep you working at 100%. Take. the. breaks.

Melinda Watts

GLAM Camp for Girls


“But if not, He’s still good” Daniel 3:18

What is anxiety to you?

Being completely overcome by what is to come and not being able to be settled in the NOW. For me, anxiety comes when I lose sight of what I know God has said and am focused on what things look like with my natural eye.

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

As soon as I stepped out into business full time. I knew that it was a crazy dream I was believing would come true and each day, I had to work my faith!

What kinds of things do you worry about?

If I am giving my family the best of me while I pursue my passion. If after all of this is said and done will I feel that I have done what I’ve been called to do. 

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

When one of my girls would be calling my name but I was so busy trying to focus on my “To Do List” that I completely missed a moment with her.

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

I feel the most anxious when I am conducting an interview with a potential team member. I often feel the pressure to know all of the answers to put them at ease. This makes me feel pretty anxious.

Definitely want to cope with them. I don’ t to block any new experiences that could promote my own growth. Truly allowing God to direct my path and listening to His voice has been one of the best Trigger Blasting (yep, trigger blasts) practices that I’ve learned.

I either walk away from my computer/phone/email or put on worship music and take it down for a bit. Most days I do a combination of both. Certain music can calm our nerves and anxiety and worship does it for me.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Do your absolute best and leave the affects up to God. We cannot control ANYTHING but ourselves. Learn to let go and let what is meant to happen, happen. Letting go is a sign that we really believe that good things will come back to us. Do what you love from a place of love and know that it will all work together for your good! 

Melisa Boutin

IG @melisaboutin

 Twitter: @melisaboutin

“Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action – Walter Anderson”

What is anxiety to you?

An immobilizing feel in situations of overwhelm

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

A few years

What kinds of things do you worry about?

Not being able to change from my work situation to a sustainable business

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

Recognizing that I have felt this way before and it had an impact on my daily life

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

In situations where I feel like I don’t have control over something that is holding me back. I try to cope. I think about what I can do to change what is causing the anxiety and do it.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Recognize it and get to the root of what causes it and what needs to change to minimize it.

Brittany Butler


missbfab across the board

“Get comfortable with the uncomfortable because that’s where growth happens.”

What is anxiety to you?

Gosh, so many things. One of the main reasons I took so long to get back in business. It is that feeling that you have to control every outcome. You are playing things over and over in your head, that it just stops you from moving or action.

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

I believe I knew for awhile. I just didn’t want to take the steps to let it go, it felt like no way out. I couldn’t rise above my mental thoughts. 

I worry about everything, my kids, my home, my family, my last day on earth. Anything I can worry about, I find a way to.

When I couldn’t do anything without worrying the effect it would have on others. I was silencing myself for the “perfect” outcome for others. 

I had a lot of anxieties about speaking in front of people. I avoided it my whole life, until recently.

I cope with them.  I realized for me, action is the only cure. I have to counteract the thoughts in my hand. Even if I speak in front of people and it goes horrible, I know I can do it. Little by little it removes the anxiety.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Just stop it! Just stop it in its tracks, and don’t feed into the anxiety. Your life or business isn’t a race. We are in this for the long haul, so take your time!

Emily Gaul

Emily Events

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety for me is the constant uneasiness I feel. It’s the feeling of never being able to relax and feel like I have everything under control. 

I have always known that I have anxieties. I’m a Type A perfectionist who’s biggest critic is myself. Feeling anxious and uneasy has kind of always been a part of my life. 

I constantly worry whether or not I’m doing enough. Am I using my skills to the best of my ability to serve others well? I worry that I am not making those that I love proud. I worry that I’m not as good as the other thousands of creatives that I compare myself to. 

I realized my anxiety was more than just being overwhelmed by my to do list, when I was becoming noticeably distraught. I was unable to focus on a task for the constant worrying that it wasn’t going to be good enough.

I usually feel anxieties when I am in a room full of people I don’t know. I also feel anxieties when I am unsure of a situation, when I’m faced with a new experience and uncertain of the outcome. As easy as it would be to avoid these situations, I try my hardest not to. I tend to naturally be quite the introvert. Over the years I have tried to challenge myself to go out of my comfort zone and face the things that make me anxious. To my surprise, I usually feel much more confident after facing these stresses. 

I would much rather try to cope with my anxiety. I feel as though I can often times train myself to respond appropriately to these situations and avoid the feeling of anxiousness. 

When I feel anxious, I try to remind myself that I am not alone. When I’m faced with a new situation and maybe don’t feel like I’m good enough compared to others, I remind myself that they all started somewhere and that they too, probably had a feeling of anxiousness at one time or another. The truth is, we’re all people and yes some people may be more educated, have more money, seem to have their life together more…the list goes on and on. The truth is, however, that at the end of the day we all have our insecurities and doubts. We need to not dwell on these things and instead embrace our uniqueness and focus on celebrating those things. 

Favorite Anxiety crushing quote:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Stop the comparison game! You are good enough. You’ve got this, everyone started somewhere. You have a unique voice to share with the world. Don’t let your insecurities or doubts quiet that voice. 

Rachel Sheerin

She Sells

@SheSellsSheSoars (IG)

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety for a long time was something that happened to other people, but NEVER to me! I was such a bull going through life that I never stopped to ask myself “Hey, is this frantic energy positive or negative?”. Anxiety to me is a negative energy that you hold onto without agreeing to. It’s like a friend who makes you carry her luggage through JFK on the day before Thanksgiving – Girl, I’ve got enough of my own shit, I don’t need yours too!

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

Well, I am 29 now so…. 29 years. Isn’t that sad? Not in a pathetic way, just a frown and sad comforting hug to myself way. I always thought anxiety was something that happened to others; I thought they were “overreacting” and “negative” – turns out they were just listening to their minds, while I was moving so fast in my career and life I never paused to realize I had the same things. Anxiety is a tricky bitch like that.

My worry comes from a happy place, oddly enough – a place of limitless possibilities – that there are SO MANY paths I can take, things I can do, people I can interact with, dreams I can dream (and achieve)… it’s just overwhelming. I worry about which wonderful roads to go down, and the regret that I will choose the wrong one, miss the big chance, and screw it up. The negative self dialogue I had for most of my life didn’t help with this as well – have you ever met a confident self-doubting person? It’s confusing as hell.

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

The crying myself to sleep every night because I felt like I would be great at anything in my life since I was pulled in a zillion directions was a good sign. That happened for about 3 months straight, ending in the decision to leave my 6-figure job and leadership position so I could concentrate on my mental and physical health (something I had been neglecting for almost a decade).

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

I feel anxieties in the quiet moments alone, after I’ve been inspired. I am gregarious and love learning, so I absorb as much as possible all the time from places and people. Learning is exhilarating and speaking with people is one of the true joys of my life. But when the after-glow fades, when the inspirational words fade from the front of my mind, and I am left with my 20 pages of notes, ideas and quotes… that’s when the skies open and the OMFG Anxiety hits me hard and basically stops me in my track. I wouldn’t ever try and avoid these situations, so I am left with managing and preparing for the aftermath instead.

Cope, 1000%. I think challenges make you stronger in general, and I will never know when being in control of my anxiety will save someone else from pain or devastation. That may be dramatic, but hey – it’s real.

I am a talker, but traditionally have only talked about the good stuff. The happy stuff. The positive stuff that makes us tingle with inspirational goosebumps! So in coping, I have become more vulnerable and that’s helped. My friends never judge me for having an off day. My husband is an endless cheerleader and good advice giver. Meditating has also been a life changing practice for me – the art of pausing to relax, recenter and prepare for any battle that may mentally come my way? I totally get why little bald monks have been doing this for thousands of years.

I often stop myself and think, “What a great problem to have”. Gratitude and thankfulness trump everything in my life. I live in a world that is beautiful and full of possibilities. I am safe. I am loved. I am supported, even when my mind and anxiety try and play tricks on me. This statement always brings me back to reality long enough to be like “OK, lady, move along here” and leave the feeling and thoughts behind.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

TALK ABOUT IT! I love The Anxiety Project for bringing us all together, because we all have the same story – just the details are different. If you think someone is strong, that is just because you don’t see their weaknesses. Everyone deals with anxiety in different areas and seasons of their life, so be that person who breaks the mold. Talk to a friend, a counselor, a coach, your pet – anybody with a set of ears and a caring heart. You’ll be amazed how light you’ll feel after sharing – and yes, it’s not easy. But then again, where’s the fun in easy?


Olive and Tate



What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety to me is a part of who I am, it has shaped some of my thoughts, actions and feelings but not always in a bad way. I work hard to keep my anxiety in check but also never deny that it’s a part of who I am. Anxiety for me means staying up at night worrying endlessly, planning for all types of scenarios, never forgetting a mistake made and always second guessing. 

Looking back, I have always had anxiety, I just didn’t know that other six year olds weren’t laying in bed at night planning what they would do if their parents died. I wasn’t officially diagnosed until I was in my twenties when my then fiance (now husband) stepped in and asked that we do something about my mental health for the sake of our relationship. 

I worry about the classics: what would I do if my husband died, how I would explain that to our soon, what I would save of his for our son, if I would move away from our home, how I would go back to work full time. I worry about my son and his happiness, mistakes that I’ve made (including those that I made many, many years ago), if I said the wrong thing or if I made myself look foolish in front of others.

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

My now husband stepping in during our engagement to tell me that what I was going through was affecting our relationship. It was actually the night after our engagement party and I spent the entire party in knots, worried that everyone was miserable, no one really wanted to be there, there were too many guests, not enough guests, our hostess wasn’t appropriately thanked, and on and on. 

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

I feel major anxiety when I am in a new situation that I cannot plan for – especially if a group of people or new people are involved. Group dynamics tend to really cause my anxiety to surge because I simply can’t plan for all of the outcomes. I also have major, major anxiety when I ride in the car with someone and traffic is bad or the driver is seemingly not as in control as I would be. Again, when something is out of my control and I cannot plan for all of the scenarios 

Well, I take medication daily to manage my anxiety and I try not to avoid situations simply because they stress me, but now that I am a mother, I have to work hard to maintain my mental health for the sake of my son so if an event or activity will cause me extreme anxiety and I will have my son with me, then I am more likely to simply not put us in that environment.

I try to stop the thoughts – rationally say in my mind that I have anxiety and the irrational thoughts are just not fact. At this point, even identifying that I am being irrational is a huge step and helps me to calm the stress knowing that I’m dealing with anxiety thoughts and not rational ones.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Anxiety is not something to be ashamed of, it’s just the way our brains are wired, the way we were made. Acknowledge your anxiety and that you live with it every day and are, despite the struggles, extremely successful and hardworking. 

Taylor Rivera

Taylored Events


“You have to be your biggest cheerleader or you won’t STAY motivated”.


What is anxiety to you?

To me anxiety is the constant feeling of worry and fear that gets in the way of living a full potential life. My day to day activities are often interfered with fear.

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

It took almost 3 years to recognize the signs of my anxiety. Throughout all of my college years I experienced anxiety without any awareness. I constantly worried if I was choosing the right path. I worried about everything a typical college student worries about. “Will I be successful?”, “Do I want to do this the rest of my life?” 

 I started to realize that I questioned everything, whether good or bad and never felt content. I let the everyday questions scare me. When all of these signs started to effect my everyday life is when I realized this couldn’t be normal.

My worries vary from personal to business but I must say I worry most about my business. As a creative I am constantly worrying about work. I’ve been in business now for 6 months and I think my biggest fear is willI I be successful? Will my business grow? Will I reach more people on social media platforms? and most importantly do people understand my brand? 

Although I realized I had anxiety about 4 years ago it wasn’t until about 5 months ago that I realized it can’t be ignored. My first anxiety attack is when I realized this isn’t “simple worrying”. 

I remember not being able to explain how I felt at the moment to others.  It was a normal day and at the time I didn’t have any events lined up. I began scrolling through Instagram and immediately while looking at my feed felt the worry kick in. The questioning of do my pictures look like theirs? Is that why I’m not getting business? How do I get more followers? I realized the fear and anxiety at that moment was taking over my dreams. My anxiety was getting the best of me. 

The hardest part of creating a business is start up and I did that and couldn’t even give myself credit for it because I was preoccupied worrying if I met the standards of social media and “my followers” instead of worrying about being original.

Having the time to sit and think is what makes my anxiety kick in. When I’m in the process of planning or creating i’m in my zone and it usually doesn’t occur because I often have a long to do list thats keeping me occupied. It seems to occur when I’m researching ways to improve my business. I’m nervous of not knowing the outcome. Im a planner I feel the need to be in control everything but that’s not how life goes and I’m slowly learning how to live a happy life not a fearful life.

I think that both coping and avoiding triggers are important when dealing with anxiety. It really depends on what causes your anxiety that may make one technique more suitable than the other. I noticed what triggers me is doubt. For me, coping with my anxiety is easier than avoiding triggers because when I cope I’m facing the issue at hand. I can’t avoid doubt but I can stop it in it’s tracks.

When I’m feeling anxious the first thing I do is put my phone down, turn my computer off, and just think. The questions of fear running through my head. I try to answer those questions for myself.  If Im worrying at the moment of “how will I be successful”? I write out a list of what I accomplished in the last week and what I plan to accomplish moving forward as a lady boss. Immediately, I can feel the stress relieved. I have turned myself from my own enemy to my own cheerleader with this method. I’ve learned to not just do this when I get anxious but to do it the start or end of every week to avoid the stress altogether. I also have learned to take time for Taylor not Taylored Events but Taylor. If I don’t grow my business can’t grow. 

My mother is very empowering with her words and advice and I’d like to share what she had said to me not to long ago. Although I found many quotes that were powerful and true, hers sticks with me the most. I figured I share it with you because It’s not anything you can look up on Pinterest or Google. It’s also coming from a place of someone who’s been there done that, to a person who needed the guidance. 

” Well the first thing is that you recognize what you are feeling. but the MOST IMPORTANT thing is to make a change. You need to find out what is making you unhappy. It’s not easy to change the way you think but it is necessary if you ever want to be happy. Not successful, not rich, not an awesome job but HAPPY. You alway need to have ambition and strive for more but not at the cost of beating yourself up. You have to be your biggest cheerleader or you won’t STAY motivated”.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

You are not alone! Don’t be afraid to speak up and most importantly don’t be afraid of the voice inside. Anxiety begins with your thoughts. Take time to realize what it is you think about and what fears and worries you deal with. Write it down and tackle it one by one. It’s ok to have anxiety, it’s not ok for you to let it take over living your life with full potential. When business gets hard take a day for yourself. Don’t let thoughts of fear and worry get in the way of all that creativity girl!

Vanessa R. Williams

VW Media, LLC 


“I am powerful beyond measure.” 


What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is the feeling of overwhelm, uneasiness, and fear. Anxiety causes you to feel helpless, unfocused, and stagnant because you’re unable to move past mental blocks.

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

I’ve known I’ve had anxieties since at least middle school–especially social anxiety. As I got older, I also developed anxiety with my career.

What kinds of things do you worry about?

I worry about people’s perceptions of me–even when I’m at the grocery store! I worry about consistently creating excellent work for my clients. I worry about ever really being “good enough” just as a human being.

I realized my anxiety was more than just “simple worrying” when it became a habit. It became frequent enough that I started expecting it to happen with every potentially uneasy, stressful, or new situation.

I feel the most anxious when I’m faced with social situations–especially large group settings. These types of situations are very draining–and somewhat scary at times.

I’m facing my anxieties head on. A bandaid doesn’t heal a serious wound. I challenge myself to initiate conversations and willingly attend social events. The only way to become “comfortable” with certain situations is to experience them frequently. The only way you get better at anything in life is with practice.

When I feel anxious, I take some time to work on my mental mindset. I recite affirmations like, “This is one of the best days of my life,” “I trust the process of life. I am safe,” and “I am enough.”

One of the quotes that helps me overcome anxiety, and really, any situation, is, “I am powerful beyond measure.” I think a lot of times, people underestimate how capable they are of creating the life they want. Everyone’s current reality is a result of everything they’ve ever thought about themselves–and the world around them. You have to believe in your power.

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

For a Happy CEO dealing with anxiety, I’d recommend: 1) surrounding yourself with tons of affirmations–repeat them to yourself until you believe them. affirmations are some of your best weapons when dealing with anxiety. 2) make time for yourself. when you feel your best on a daily basis, you’re more likely to be at ease when uneasy situations occur. 3) establish a genuine, open, and trustworthy relationship with a family member or friend you can talk to–even if it’s someone you follow online and can relate to. you shouldn’t deal with all your emotions on your own–this is what makes situations–and life–seem unbearable. surround yourself with positive people, books, podcasts, and media at all times!

Sharon Beason


Instagram, Twitter, Facebook: @womeneur

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone” -Neil Donald Walsch


What is anxiety to you?

Worrying about things in the future that will unmercilessly grab hold of your mind and hold it hostage

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

Realized it early on. I have A-type personality and put lots of pressure on myself by setting high expectations on myself and those I work/interact with’

What kinds of things do you worry about?

What?! Operating and overseeing Womeneur Lol

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

Not much. I am very self-aware, so I know all bout my “goods” and “bads” and what needs improving

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

It’s mostly about work, concerns with everything working out as I envision regarding planning and executing all things Womeneur

Cope or avoid anxiety triggers?

Cope with of course because it used to be much worse. My goal is to work with what I can control and remain ‘present’

I talk to myself about not being able to control what’s outside of my control. I can only take charge of what I can control and it really helps

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Stop beating yourself up over things you cannot control. Start taking charge of the things you absolutely can control. Your inner voices are your own worst enemy, so keep them all positive!

Ashley Marie Wilson


@sacredrebel for both IG + Twitter

“Is this something you would still be trippin about in a year?”

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is an overwhelming feeling of uncertainty and panic that begins to outweigh any ounce of healthy perspective and instinct I would normally have. 

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

Pretty quickly. Anxiety is something that’s been an underlying thing for me since I was young. 

Over the years I’ve been able to recognize the triggers and signs that I’m going down a path where the anxiety and what it creates is about to overcome my thoughts or feelings. 

What kinds of things do you worry about?

It depends on what’s going on in my life but it’s usually money. Sometimes it’s stressful relationships. Sometimes it can be when my schedule feels “too full” and sometimes it can be related to my daughter. The older she gets the more I worry about her and sometimes it creates anxiety. 

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

My family and I had moved over to Malaysia and Thailand for a few months about two years ago. God had put it on our heart to quit our jobs, and move out there purely out of faith.  This entire season pulled on every one of my anxiety triggers. Lack of money, lack of a plan, lack of security… and with a one and half year old daughter too. My husband and I were literally on a faith walk for things as simple as food. Now, throughout that time there was a lot of once in a lifetime things going on. It was a real adventure. Yet, on the plane on our way home I felt guilt. That there had been way too many moments where I wasn’t present because I was worried about money or what the next move was. I realized then that my worrying or trying to over control what was ahead was useless and actually tainted valuable moments where I should have been available to them.

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

I’m a planner, so uncertainty in general creates the anxiety. I’ve found that I can’t avoid uncertainty in any of the areas that create the stress so I have to learn how to almost work with them and maintain a certain perspective that keeps them less powerful. 

I tried avoiding for years, it just created suppressed anxiety. Now, I try my best to cope or have a plan for when it triggers. 

When I was younger I tried medicine. When I was in my teens and early twenties I drank too much and smoked too much. Now that I’m an an adult with a strong relationship with God, that is how I overcome. I lean into the anxiety and trust that it’s for a season of growth or to highlight an area I haven’t fully trusted Him with. It’s not easy and it’s doesn’t make it go away, it just allows me to see if from His perspective, which in turns calms my energy. 

I always ask myself “Is this something you would still be trippin about in a year?” It helps me make the trigger smaller, less significant. Basically, I try and put the trigger in it’s place so it doesn’t overcome me. For me, it’s about taking the power in my own perspective back. 

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

For me, it all centers around faith and seeing each situation as a journey of development. Anxiety can debilitate or it can be used to help you identify areas where you are currently growing in. I would encourage them to invite the anxiety in and use it as a transparent guide to a truth that’s within them, a truth they have the ability to overpower. 






What is anxiety to you?

That feeling of being overwhelmed by deadlines or expectations.  It can revolve around work, family, friendships, body image…anxiety has no boundaries.  And sometimes it pops up for no real reason. 

How long did it take you to recognize that you had anxieties?

I think I recognized it in my 20’s but brushed it off, thinking I just needed to try harder to be happy or at peace.  

What kinds of things do you worry about?

Will my business continue to thrive if I slow things down a bit?  Does my son feel neglected when I am home…but working all day.  Can I meet that deadline?  Should I take on another opportunity, when I am already stretched thin? Instagram, Facebook, SnapChat, Twitter….so many places that need attention. 

After I had my son, I had PPD.  I can remember going to dinner with two of my best friends and feeling so low.  I was worried about everything.  It was draining my energy.  That deep seeded anxiety was stealing my joy.  They picked up on it and gave me an action plan. I called my doctor the next day. :

Do you only feel anxieties in certain situations, if so, what are they, and do you usually try to avoid them?

I’m a total introvert.  So, networking is like pulling teeth for me.  Going to a cocktail party ranks right up there with a root canal. Not gonna do it unless it is an absolute necessity.  

Avoid or cope with anxiety triggers?

Both! There are certain things or even people that I will avoid since they do not pull out the best in me.  But, that doesn’t give me a free pass to stop growing or learning to move out of my comfort zone. 

Deep breathing techniques and daily walks are amazing!  I touched on PPD earlier and during that season of my life I took medicine.  Having a great support system and surrounding myself with people that love me helps so much too!  So many times we can focus on the negative and think that it defines us.  That’s not true.  Anxiety, depression, fear, etc…that does not represent the whole person. 

Favorite Anxiety Crushing quote:

Isaiah 41:10

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”


What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

Be honest with yourself.  Anxiety is never easy. It can steal your life…your joy! If you feel completely overwhelmed, it is okay to take medicine to help. Seek out an expert in your area who will monitor how your body responds to your new prescription.  Talk with a trusted friend and make sure you have someone in your corner to help you navigate the ups and downs. 


Megan Martin

Megan Martin Creative

IG: @meganmartincreative 

FB @MegabMartinPage

“Whoever said being anxious gets more accomplished?” 

What is anxiety to you?

Anxiety is a debilitating fear in our lives that pulls us away from acting on the things that matter. 

I think we all have anxieties at some point or another in our lives. I’m painfully aware when anxiety grips me. 

One of my biggest pain points of anxiety is the fear of people’s perception of me. I’ve battled this for as long as I can remember, but only recently was able to define it. 

What did it take for you to realize this was more than just “to-do list” stress, or “simple worrying”?

I have a personal coach who really helped me flesh this issue out. She guided me to dig into what this fear has done and is doing in my life and why I can’t continue in the pattern anymore! It has been so eye opening. 

As a brand designer, I often feel anxious when I submit proof work to my clients. I get so nervous while waiting for their response! The best way I’ve learned to combat the negative emotions is to immediately move onto another task in an effort to get my mind off all the “what ifs.” 

I think life is going to happen no matter how hard I try to avoid, so learning to cope with anxiety seems like a better answer. Recently I learned the concept of “Managing your state.” Your “state” at any given time is made up of your focus, your emotions and your physiology. When in a state of anxiety, you can often find me focusing on the fear or worry of the situation, feeling tense and unsure, and most likely sitting bent over with my hands in my head. Managing you state is about actively changing these three elements to step out of a negative state. In the case above, I could easily change my focus by doing a task like getting up and cleaning my office, which would change my physiology from sitting and defeated to standing, moving and breathing easier. The shift in focus and physiology naturally helps calm our emotions so that we can process a situation more calmly and clear headed. So simple yet so powerful! 

What advice would offer another Happy CEO on dealing with anxiety?

“Believe you can and you’re half way there.” Teddy Roosevelt. 

I seriously love the book The Go Giver. It’s such an impactful read for running a great business, but more than that it is so impactful about the kind of person I want to be beyond my boss role.

One quote from The Go Giver that has stayed with me is, “Whoever said being anxious gets more accomplished?” 

Do you find yourself feeling so anxious to get that to do list done? Why do we do this to ourselves? Being anxious and over stressed won’t help us be productive. I’d even say it will produce more mediocre results. Take a deep breath and decide today to just take things a little slower. You just might actually enjoy those tasks!