Episode 112 The Holistic Midlife | Navigating The Challenges Of Aging With Ease: Interview with Lisa Mustard

Apr 5, 2023

Do you struggle to accept the process of aging? What are the physical and mental impacts of midlife?

MEET Lisa Mustard

When I turned 40, I had a wake-up call. I was tired of going through the motions of my life and career as a therapist and wanted to pivot my skill set and do new things. Yet, I didn’t know what those things would be, so I began testing out ideas and business opportunities. Some were busts, while others were successes!

Along the way though, I have learned incredible lessons:

First, when I work in alignment with my highest values and priorities, work is effortless and fun.

Second, is that failing at something isn’t a death sentence. Failures are learning experiences. There is no failing, there’s only learning and growing!

Third is that I need to be flexible in the methods I use while staying laser focused on my goals.

Combining all these lessons has brought me to where I am today – Podcaster and Coach.

The Therapy Show With Lisa Mustard helps talk therapists learn clinical information and skills, introduces them to others who are doing incredible work in the field, and teaches them professional development and much more.

I started the podcast because I was bored with the traditional modes of continuing education and professional development. I yearned for convenient education that was fun, interesting, inspiring, helpful, and easily accessible anywhere, anytime. And I couldn’t find what I was looking for, so I decided to create it.

Find out more at Lisa Mustard and connect with Lisa on Facebook & Instagram

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IN THIS PODCAST:

  • What is midlife and what brings us to this transition in our lives? 3:03
  • What are the psychological impacts of aging? 8:13
  • Assessing your highest priorities & values 13:53

What Is Midlife And What Brings Us To This Transition In Our Lives?

  • Understanding that each person’s midlife is unique to them 
  • Learning to recognize and acknowledge when an existential situation occurs in our lives
  • The importance of pivoting and relying on the skills you’ve acquired throughout your life 

What Are The Psychological Impacts Of Aging?

  • How to embrace the freedom of allowing your body to go through changes
  • Finding what works for you when taking care of your health and wellness
  • Ways to find your purpose as you age

Assessing Your Highest Priorities & Values

  • The importance of making a list of your highest values
  • How to incorporate self-care into your daily routine
  • The benefits of taking the time to reprioritize your values
  • What are the positive aspects of midlife?

Connect With Me

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Rate, review, and subscribe to this podcast on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, Spotify, and Google Podcasts.

Resources Mentioned And Useful Links:

Find out more at Lisa Mustard and connect with Lisa on Facebook & Instagram

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Transcript

Chris McDonald: When you think about life at midlife, what comes to mind? Does it bring up fear? Dread? Most of us have fears of aging, and sometimes we struggle to accept the process. It can be hard to accept changes in our bodies as well as the mental impact of aging. In today's episode, we'll be looking at how we can reframe the whole experience to navigate aging with ease.

Stay tune. This is Holistic Counseling, the podcast for mental health therapists who want to deepen their knowledge of holistic modalities and build their practice with confidence. I'm your host, Chris McDonald, licensed therapist. I am so glad you're here for the journey.

Hey there, and welcome to today's episode of the Holistic Counseling Podcast. Midlife can be a challenging transitional time. At midlife, we deal lots of changes in our bodies, including weight gain, low energy emotionally, you may have worries about the future retirement. Today's guest is here to talk about midlife and how to bring more ease into this transition.

Lisa Mustard is an L M F T host of the podcast, the Therapy Show, and a Coach. But before we jump, Do you struggle with creating time for yourself? You're not alone. Many counselors find it difficult to find time for self-care practices. My book, self-Care for the Counselor, was written for you. It's jam-packed with holistic strategies to help you find the balance you need and the energy you're looking for.

So stay tuned at the end of the episode on how to access this book. Welcome to the podcast,

Lisa Mustard: Lisa. Hey Chris. Thanks so much for having me. I am excited to be here. Can't wait to talk about this topic with you. Yeah. So can you share more about yourself and your. Sure. Gosh, reign me in if I go on for too long.

Uh, but like you said, uh, I am a licensed marriage and family therapist. I live in South Carolina. I am also a mom and a wife, and I'm about to be 50 this year. And about 10 years ago, I had my own midlife. Oh, necessarily call it a crisis, but I would call it more like a, I call it the midlife me. Like I just kind of hit this point in my life where everything was good.

Life was good. My work was good, my marriage was good. Things with my kids were good, but I felt kind of just unfulfilled and unhappy and just unsure of if I was doing what I was put here on this planet to do and was. And so I started to think about that and I got real intentional on figuring it out at 40 how I wanted to show up in my forties.

And I think that's, Something that a lot of women go through. I mean, men too, for sure. But my, my expertise I will say is with women, cuz that's what I am and that's my experience. And for some women it shows up earlier, you know, maybe like 35, 36. And then for some it shows up later, maybe as they are getting, you know, closer to 50.

And that can be for a number of reasons. So yeah, that's kind of my, yeah, my story in a nutshell. . So what

Chris McDonald: is it about midlife. People start really reflecting, is there something about this time in our lives that might bring us to more of that reflection and maybe overthinking where we are, where

Lisa Mustard: we're going?

Yeah. I mean, I definitely, I would agree that at that time in our lives, we do start to. Question things and we start to think about things. No, I haven't done any like formal research on this. It's okay. Um, I don't have any like, studies to point people to. We wanna hear from you. Yeah. I mean, I just know what, and I, and I'll say for those of us that have children and.

Wanna be married. A lot of that focus in our twenties is spent looking for that person that we want to partner up with and procreate with. And we're also thinking about our careers, we're thinking about, but we're all, we're also just kind of thinking that those are our next steps. And for me, it was kinda like once I.

Kind of got all that stuff and are all lined up. Everything was just great. It was moving along. I was happy and then in my thirties started to kind of feel it, that, uh, maybe I was meant to do more, but I do think it's some type of existential situation. I don't know necessarily. I agree. Crisis. But for some people it's a situation that we can't shake.

And I think we need to pay attention to that. Anytime we have an existential situation in our lives, we should pay attention to it. But for me, the first one I had probably was in my late twenties. And then, you know, my second one was in my late thirties, uh, as I was hitting 40. But I do think that we go through these things and it's normal.

I mean, I, I think when humans, yeah, and I think that's

Chris McDonald: important to, to mention that, that all of these are normal. Think about the big, I call 'em the big zero birthdays, right? 40 and 50. A lot of people are like, whoa, what have I done with my life? Yeah, yeah. Where am I going? And for me it was like, have I reached the goals I've set?

Oh man, I'm , I'm 15. Oh, I have not

Lisa Mustard: Right. Yeah, I mean, I'm kind of going through that too. like, yeah. You know, four 40 was one thing. It was more of a what type of career or work do I want to be doing? Sure. Am I fulfilled in my career? Am I doing what I wanna be doing? And then as I made the decision that, hey, I have more Emmy to offer, which is really.

You know, when I started, I started the podcast in, I wanna say 2019. So I had a couple, I was in my forties, I mean, as well, into my forties. But it took me kind of trying a couple things and, and failing at them. And I say failing, as in, they just weren't for me. So I tried, you know, I tried, maybe I should go in private practice.

It is not for me. . You know, I tried, I tried, well maybe I wanna go back into, um, being like in the, the personal training world and eh, not really for me cuz I did that in my twenties and it's just not where I wanted to be. Um, really came back to, I still love being a therapist and I love doing this work, but I wanted to, I.

Pivot a little bit with my skills and, and do it differently. And I think that that's kind of the cool thing about midlife is you've acquired all of these skills, you've acquired all these experiences, and we should, I think, pay attention to them and learn from them and make meeting with them. And if it's time to do something new and different, we'll give it a go.

I think

Chris McDonald: that's part of it too. It's like we're looking, for me it was like looking on the horizon of above like man, I got existentially, I have fewer years left than when I was in my twenties and, and you can't procrastinate. I feel it cuz it's like, oh man, retirement could come up sooner than I think and oh boy, so what am I gonna do to spend my time in?

And I guess for me is like priority shift. Well how do I wanna spend my time?

Lisa Mustard: Exactly. Yeah. And that's a big of the big part of my. When I realized like, yeah, that, that what she said of you realize you have less years on this earth than you, you used to. Like, that'll wake you up . Like, that'll, that's serious.

That'll keep you up at night too. You know, not just wake you up, but it'll keep you up. And uh, I think that's where a lot of our midlife stuff comes from. It's just, yeah, you know, what do we wanna do? And you're right, I mean, retire. You know, when you're in your twenties and you're figuring out your career and you're, you're thinking, oh, it's so far away.

It's so far away. But you get into it and you, you're churning along, you're moving along, and the next thing you know, you're like, no, really, it's gonna be here before, before you know it. So, yeah, it, it, it was a big aha moment for me. And like you said, it sounded like you were working within your priorities.

Your priorities, you got real clear on them. And that's the first thing that I will, uh, suggest is to anybody going through this is to get really clear on what are your priorities or what are your highest values, and are they, I mean, are you living them congruently and authentically? Because I don't, I don't know if we pay attention to that too much.

Because we're so busy in the busyness of day to day.

Chris McDonald: Yeah, true. It's definitely food for thought. And I think for me too, it's, it's the seeing over the horizon that, wow, what does that mean to actually qualify for a senior discount in like years and a A R P and what does all this mean? Isn't it almost like a meeting and purpose thing with life?

And why are we here? The existential part, I think, keeps coming.

Lisa Mustard: Yeah, I mean, I remember when my mom got the double a r p magazine in the mail and I was like, God, you're old. You know? And here I am. I'm starting to get the emails and I'm starting to. They're showing up in my inbox and I'm like, wait, wait, no, that's me.

Like I'm, that's me now. It's just weird. It's just, it is, but it happens. And it's like my husband said, it's better than the alternative.

Chris McDonald: Amen. So, yeah, exactly. So I guess from your experience, what are, what are some other psychological impacts of aging or what have you noticed? .

Lisa Mustard: Yeah. Well, you know, for me, I speak from experience and, and just from the other, other women that I've, I've worked with and talked with, definitely one of the things that come up is, you know, your body starts to change, and that's kind of a hard pill to swallow for a lot, depending on, you know, gosh, the view and the value you place on your aesthetics and your figure.

But at the same time, it also can be very freeing too. It's like, well, I keep re reminding myself, well, this is better than the alternative, right? So, okay, this is what I got to work with. So let me just do the best I can with what I have. And I think like a lot of my peers, and I don't know if you went through this or not, but you know, the, not the pressure, but like the temptation maybe to inject and pull, and I don't even know what the words are, you know, to change and, and to like com to try to make yourself look.

Maybe younger is, is kind of there because it's hard to see the lines show up. It's hard to see gray hair, the gray, the gray hair's coming in. Like, I just got my hair done this past weekend, so I'm, I'm feeling very confident. . Yeah. You can't see my roots in the video? No. All right. Yeah, so I think there's, there's definitely, you know, coming to terms with the aging process and the, the physical aging process.

Um, I went to the podiatrist for the first time last week cuz I was like, why does my foot. You know, like, what's going on? You didn't have that problem, you know, 10 years ago. And just, you know, just taking care of yourself the best that you can, and if that's gonna look different for everybody, you know, for me, I know personally that means having a really good sleep schedule.

You know, working hard to get my water and just doing all the things that I can. To feel good. I'm taking my vitamins, like I said, getting that sleep, keeping my stress down, getting in the exercise, feeding myself high quality nutrition because we're all gonna age like it's inevitable. It's, it's happening.

It's happening every day. We're a day older. Our skin, our cells are a day older, but that doesn't mean that we have to mourn that I Maybe you do have to mourn it. Yeah, but you also, you have to find a joy in it. because you still got plenty of time left. Plenty of time left. Thanks for the reassurance, . Oh yeah, definitely.

Yeah.

Chris McDonald: Yeah. Life doesn't end at 40 or

Lisa Mustard: 50. No. In fact, I feel like it gets better. Yeah. I mean, I feel like I don't care anymore what people think. I used to care so much 10 years ago. Mm-hmm. , I really don't, I mean, I don't know. That's a very, that's a very c. Thing to say. Maybe I, I just feel it in my bones and I think it's, a lot of it has to do with life experiences and learning from failures and learning from things that you would call mistakes and pivoting and trying new things and realizing that there's still so much more out there to explore and to learn about yourself.

I think that's really cool. I don't think that ever ends.

Chris McDonald: Yeah, the learning, I guess that's true and mm-hmm. , and I'm thinking about other cultures like in the US that we don't value aging and everything is about youth and appearance and all the social media and how good you can look. And I think that, that when you compare yourself to some of the society's standard, of course you're gonna feel some of that effects.

And, you know, that can affect you emotionally too. But for me it's, I'm trying to get to that place of acceptance. , but it's hard. Yeah. You know, especially with gaining weight easier, you know, you can't eat the same way they used to eat. Yeah. In your twenties, . That's what I've learned with aging

Lisa Mustard: for sure.

Yeah. And I look at my, my curl, you know, and I look at what they eat and I'm always like, ugh. Like, I remember being that age and being able to eat, you know, all the pizza. And drink all the soda. Soda. Yep. You know, my, my skin paid for it. It, it is different. I mean, one of the things that I am so thankful that I started back in my twenties, but anybody can, you can pick it up at any point, is strength training.

And I really feel like the, I dub it, I call it the fountain of use, and I'm not here to sell anybody on a strength training program. , like it's not, you're not selling one today. I don't, I don't have an affiliate, but I really believe that it's just so good. All the different systems of your body, and one of the things that we lose as we get older is muscle mass.

And that I think that, I mean, and you can start lifting weights tomorrow today and see the benefit of you know what it's gonna do for you. Adding muscle, what it does for your metabolic rate, what it does for just all your. Your systems. It's just, I'm so grateful that I started back in my twenties and that's something that I recommend that women start doing sooner than later because you'll be so grateful.

And, and not just like a, in a physique type of way or a metabolic type of way, but you know, your balance and your coordination. Cuz those things definitely as we age, they're gonna slow down a little bit and stretching is so, so important as well. And I know. With what you teach and what you do, just the amount of good things that does for your, your body and your brain.

But, so I encourage women to get on a strength training program, whate, whatever, you know, about, about three days a week of strength training is, is what you need. You don't need to go to six or five, really three days of total body work is what they're showing now is, is just, just fine. So I think it's really important and then.

You know, getting enough protein is really important and a lot of women think that 40 grams of protein is, is enough. And really, if you're gonna be lifting weights and trying to add muscle, you need, depending on a lot of things. And I try, I aim for about a gram a day per. Body weight. So if I weigh one 18, I'm, I'm shooting for 118 grams of protein.

And that's a lot. It is, it is. But I'm so used to it now that it, it really doesn't feel like a lot,

Chris McDonald: you know. So were you a personal trainer then? You said

Lisa Mustard: before? I was, yeah. Many moons ago. Many moons. 20 some years ago. , 25 years ago. I can say that now. almost. So, yeah. And. Kind of going back to the priorities and values and, and I don't think that's something that we, we talk about enough with maybe our clients or within our, you know, friend when our friend groups or, or even with our partners.

But it's just knowing what's important to us and how do we show up in our values every day. And I really didn't know much about values work until my late thirties, early forties, and knowing what my values are helped me every day stay true to my goals. And I think that's really important for people to know what they stand for.

And it doesn't have to be like, I stand for it, I mean, And I worked for a military branch, and so I used to do this exercise with, with groups that I would run and I'd ask the soldiers, you know, what are your values? And they always gave like integrity and honesty and honor. And I was like, yeah, yeah, valor.

It's like, yeah, yeah, yeah. Like, you're a soldier. You gotta say that. But let's talk about you. When you take the uniform off and it's you not sergeant so-and-so, but you, you know, Joe Smith, who also does X, Y, and Z. Like, what is important to you in your life and how do you structure your time and how do you structure your priorities and, and what does that look like?

And they were just looking at me like, I don't know. How do you do that? I, do you figure those things out? I don't know. Do you have, do you have a list of like your highest

Chris McDonald: values? I know one thing that I've been working on too is I value some downtime cuz sometimes my problem is overscheduling and then I'm introverted so I need some time to decompress and breathe.

And I, and this past weekend was beautiful. I had no plans and it was wonderful cuz the problem I have is, oh yeah, let me do that. That sounds fun. And then I'm like, oh my God, I'm not even rested. And it's Monday morning. So that's, that's something that I'm trying to really be mindful of and, and before I accept an invite from someone, I'm like, wait, let me see what else is on my calendar.

Do I need a day of rest? Do I need time off that weekend? So I'm trying to really make that an important part of what I do as far as, you know, scheduling with family, saying no more to family if, if there's something coming up, cuz it, my mental health is so impacted if I am overschedule. Oh yeah. So then I've been really, really working hard on, and of course setting boundaries is something that's a skill too, that I think is so important for women.

We can all get caught up in, you know, saying yes for things we don't really wanna do. Oh, totally.

Lisa Mustard: I mean, everything you just said, it's interesting when you were sharing your priorities and your values. I was like, of course, trying to parallel process over here, like what, what mine are. And it's interesting how you framed it because the self.

Value. I say that, but I don't practice it. And when you were just kind of giving examples of what that looked like, I was like, yeah, that's it. Like that's, that's my issue is I say I do self-care and I do all the, the things that I enjoy, like, you know, go to the gym or go on a walk or, you know, make healthy food, but.

The time alone to rest and recover. It's huge. Is huge. And that is something that I took like as, and I have kids, so my life is, is a little bit different. And my kids, they can't drive yet. So we have to take them everywhere. But like that's something that, um, I have to like, Put limits on, because I could easily say, okay, I'll take you there.

I'll take you there. Because I enjoy doing some of the things that they do too. But yesterday I was like, I'm not going there. We are not getting in the car anymore today. And I'm gonna go in the room and close the door. Yes. Leave me alone . And I don't do that enough. You know? Yeah. And so it's, I think that, and I think there's some pride in there or some guilt, mom guilt in there that I don't necessarily, I'm sure want to do that because I don't wanna feel that way.

Or how am I, but blah, blah, blah. Like, no, let it go. Yeah. Like some of the other values. That it sounds like you hold too, is family. Like, I hold my family and I, I say family focus, you know, family first. If it, if it doesn't fit within the, the framework that we have set up for how we want to parent and how we want to sh you know, be as a family, then I say no cuz that comes first.

You know, like raising our kids the way that we, we feel is best. So that's important. Family. I know I said health is really important for me. It's not just for me a value, but it's for my husband. Um, we wanna live long and strong. Healthy lives and we wanna be around as long as possible. So we're very mindful about, you know, how much, um, what we eat and like getting our sleep.

And , we're very much sticklers for those types of things. But if I get outta whack with those values, I'm a really crappy person to be around. And I know that about myself, right? Yeah. Yeah. I know that. Other values that I think fun, joy, laughter are really important. Um, I have to have that in my, my day or my week.

Um, schedule time for that to enjoy things and have a little bit of fun. And even if that's just going outside and hitting the volleyball with the girls or, you know, reading a fun book or watching a fun show on tv, essay, fun, like entertaining. I'm trying to think what. What other values? You know, at this point, and part of the reason I started the podcast and I, I'm gonna throw it out there and say maybe part of the reason you started your podcast and you know, therapist listening, was we value time, flexibility, and some time freedom.

So yes, being able to create the podcast and not have to, you know, creating this other. A way to make an impact and help people is huge. And to help our therapist friends, you know, in their journeys. Like to me that I love that having a podcast gives me time flexibility, so I don't have to do that so much one-on-one anymore I can do it with to a bigger audience.

So I think that's really something special that we have and I hope. I hope more therapists out there if they desire time, flexibility, and eventually maybe some f you know, financial flexibility if they're looking for other streams of revenue to consider this as one of them.

Chris McDonald: And midlife can be a time to think about these things.

And where do you wanna go and are you happy where you are? And it's okay to pivot. You said you pivoted when you were like 40, right? Mm-hmm. .

Lisa Mustard: Yes, when I was like, I don't really wanna be doing this for the rest of my life, but I didn't wanna leave the field, so I struggled for a couple years, like, well, what does that look like?

Thankfully I had some J like my jobs were, I've always worked for a military branch, but I had some wiggle room in terms of like different positions. So it's been an interesting. Evolution. But I got to a point where I was like, okay, I kind of hit the glass ceiling with my role in my job. And so I was kind of feeling stuck and that's when a reprioritizing of my values is like, okay, well what else can I do over here in this, this area of making an impact because, oh, another one of my values is creatively making a difference.

And so I was like, okay, creative, like. I don't paint, I don't draw, I don't Oh, you don't make music? No, I don't make music . Like I don't dance, I don't do any of those things, but I like podcasting. And so for me, this became my creative outlet and I'm so glad. I'm so glad. You know, I'm so glad I took the chance and went with it cuz I feel like going into 50, it's just so grateful to have this and it and it can be

Chris McDonald: taken a chance.

Can it? So if any listeners are thinking about, gee, I've always wanted to, whatever it is, just go for it. Yeah, it is. And of. You know, doing a podcast is a risk. You're putting it out there, . It's, it's taking a brave step. I mean, I wrote a book and when I published that, it, it felt like I don't have children, but if I did, it felt like I was releasing a ch a child into the world, , because it's like, oh, bet you put your heart and soul into something and it's like, oh my God, what is gonna happen with this?

And yeah, it is nervewracking you a

Lisa Mustard: book. Yeah. You've done, you've done so much. You've wrote a, written a book. You have your podcast now you have your courses. Like you're just, I am so. Inspired, uh, it sounds like. Okay.

Chris McDonald: And then I feel like sometimes that little voice, am I doing enough? Mm, mm-hmm. , you know, is it, is it

Lisa Mustard: enough?

I totally get that. Yeah. It's like how do you know when it's enough?

Chris McDonald: It's enough, right. Yeah. And I'm glad English pivoting back to this creativity, I think that's not my value too. Cuz yesterday I did some of my art and I just, for me, if I don't have that creative outlet, I'm just. A good person either , I just have to have some way to get that out.

But I think podcasting is one way to to do that too. To be creative and with different kinds of topics and ways to help a therapist too. So that's something that I'm passionate about. Yeah.

Lisa Mustard: What kinda art do you do? It's called

Chris McDonald: Diamond painting. Have you heard of this? No, it's like there's a little, they're called drills.

It's like, it's basically like paint by numbers, but with little dots. Okay. And you just put it, it, it's thoughtless.

Lisa Mustard: There's no thought involved, which I love. I think my daughter has one of

Chris McDonald: those. Yes. It gets me out of my head and I can just be present and. It's, it's very, seems very strange of an activity , but it really just kind of centers me and I zoned out and just don't have to worry about solving someone

Lisa Mustard: else's problem.

And yeah, I can, I can totally get that. I like so over, over, um, the pandemic, when our girls were home doing school, they would be doing schoolwork and I would, when I wasn't working , I would go in the back of the house and do a puzzle and that was like, It's the most calming, centering thing. Yeah. To me, just to focus on a puzzle.

I don't know, I guess cuz it wasn't work, it wasn't dealing with kids or puzzles. Do that for me. So that's, I

Chris McDonald: love the puzzle. Yeah. I think it base is based on too, if you're more introverted, extrovert mm-hmm , like that's an introverted kind of activity cuz I'm by myself, might listen to music. So for listeners to figure out what is something that maybe matches where you are and.

Who you are if you're more introverted or both. I have to be social too. I, I have to have some social to see people, but then I need alone time. So I kind of have that yin and yang totally the

Lisa Mustard: same way. I like both. Um, both. And .

Chris McDonald: Yes. I like to say exactly. Oh, well I heard you, um, talking about it sound like some positive things that you've noticed with, um, midlife.

So I wonder if there's a good, big question too for listeners to think about. So what have I gained right in my life at the age I'm at now? What are. The positive aspects, if that's something to think about, you know?

Lisa Mustard: Yeah, that's a really good question. I like that question because I feel like I'm always, you know, a therapist, well, at least for me, I am always paying attention to how I respond and react to things going on in my house.

And in my head, , and at my job, I think I've learned to be a little bit more patient with myself. I've, I've learned that, gosh, I don't have to have a reaction to everything I've learned that I don't have to have an opinion about certain things. I think one of the things I, I, I am working on the most. Is just, I wanna just meet people where they are for them just being a human being.

Not so much their opinions or their belief systems, but we're all connected and I want to just honor that in another people. Like I just wanna show up and be me and, and just love people. I don't know how, that just sounds kind of weird, but cuz it's not like I'm meeting people at the grocery store and I'm running up to them and hugging them, you know?

Having more patience and being a little bit more kind and not being so in a rush and saying a nice, giving somebody a compliment or saying hello to little kids or, you know, just, I just wanna do that. I don't know that's what that means, but I think that's more about, you know, I am comfortable with myself, so I wanna be able to, you know, give that to other people.

I think the acceptance around the aging process, um, not sure. I'm not quite sure, you know, like if it's ever gonna get any. But I just from, like my husband says, it's better than the alternative and I have to have, have a mantra. Yeah. Yeah. I would say that, uh, I'm a lot more patient with my husband. Um, in our marriage, in our relationship.

I think the harder parts for me kind of pivoting the, the hard, hard parts are parenting and not letting my own attachment stuff from my childhood, you know, get in the way of parenting my chil our children, because that can easily trip me up if I. Aware and I'm not paying attention to my initial reaction to things cuz I can easily go to that place of, I'm, I'm nine and my dad just left.

And how do I feel like that can, you know, attachment stuff can like really get me pretty quick and, and not credit mindfulness practices with. You know, being more in tune with the moment and like, okay, I just felt something. What was that? It's not about her. That's about me. That's where I am at 50 is just trying to not let that stuff cloud my parenting.

And it's tough, you know? It can be tough.

Chris McDonald: Oh yeah. I imagine so. But

Lisa Mustard: it's, it's okay. I mean, I guess I don't beat myself up about it too much. I just try to do better parent the best I can and, but yeah, that's probably What about for you? I'm curious.

Chris McDonald: This is like, um, two, two people interviewing ,

Lisa Mustard: turning it around on you, the podcasters.

But I wanna know, like, I really

Chris McDonald: wanna know. No, I know. I think that I'm more confident. The word that comes to mind is confident because I would not go back to my teenage years or my twenties for anything in the world. A million dollars. No, cuz. I feel like over the years it's just I've grown and grown with my confidence and, and know who I am and what I want and, and more emotionally regulated than I've ever been in my life the past five years that I've been doing yoga every day meditation.

That's awesome. Adding those practices, I'm much, much less reactive. That's what I've gained. Mm-hmm. , I wish I had found it earlier, but that's okay. But I think just, just being more present because of that. , you know, is, is so important. And like you said, not caring what people think. I'm more likely to confront people personally.

I used to really run from any kind of conflict and professionally with clients. I'm just like, did you hear what you just said? Yeah. Oh yeah, let's talk about, and I never used to do that, but for some reason this is, as I've gotten older, I'm just like, I'm gonna call you out. Yeah. And I tell that client upfront.

Now I. You know, there's gonna come a point where we get going that I will call you out. I just wanna let you know. And they're like, oh, okay. Thank you. Mm-hmm. , I want, I wanna be called there. So I, that feels good. But I think that comes from a confident place, just feeling I know my skills, I know where I am.

Mm-hmm. , I know where I'm going. Mostly not a hundred percent all the time, but have some direction and that's a good feeling. Like when I was in my twenties, it was just like, okay, I'm learning counseling. I'm not sure what I'm doing. But I didn't really think too far ahead in retirement. Oh, that was a long ways.

Lisa Mustard: Right. Yeah, yeah. No, I totally get all those things too. Yeah. And I think, um, I can relate on the being more direct with clients and, and it's funny cuz it's like I'm saying this, it's like almost like I'm just, I'm gonna say this for your own good , like, I'm just gonna tell you right now that ain't gonna work.

Like it's not gonna work. You know, you're rationalizing this behavior. Yeah. Yeah it is. And it. That kind of makes it more fun in a way, like being more free and having, you know, of course being appropriate and within the relationship if it makes, if it makes sense. If it doesn't make sense, of course, you know, I wouldn't do it, but, and I love that you said that you're the most calm and less emotionally reactive you've been and you credit that you said to yoga and mindfulness?

Oh yes. Yeah. Okay. Well I'm gonna keep at it then. Cause every day,

Chris McDonald: Lisa, Some yoga now is, I sometimes will do more than once a day, you know? Cause I usually get part of my morning routine, but during the day and sometimes I'm just like, oh, I feel like doing a downward dog . Yeah. You know, in between a session because it just helps, well, helps my back too.

I have back issues, so I, I have to move. If I don't move, I'm in big trouble. Mm-hmm. . So for me it's, it's, it accomplishes, you know, the emotional but then the physical side for me.

Lisa Mustard: Yeah, I know I told you that I'm not very good at the yoga thing, but if I can reframe it as, you know, stretching for health and wellness, then I'm more there.

Go to do it. So I've been thinking, it's funny, I think about you when I go to the gym now cause I'm like, ah, I'm stretching and I'm doing like I just, you, you have imprinted on me

Chris McDonald: Chris. So see we're gonna get you doing Yoga . I'll send you my YouTube channel. Okay.

Lisa Mustard: Yeah, I'll do Okay. Send me your YouTube channel.

I will definitely check

Chris McDonald: it out. So if any listeners wanna check it out, I, I create it for both clients and for therapists in my Facebook group, the Holistic counseling Selfcare group. And so I, I just have, it's not fancy video, I'm gonna warn you, but That's okay. You know, that's where I put a lot of things, so skills so people can learn in practice.

Cuz sometimes if you just verbally tell somebody, like in session and we, we do it together, they won't remember. But yeah, it's more of that slow, mindful movement. So you

Lisa Mustard: have a group, a holistic counseling group?

Chris McDonald: Yes. How do I not know that? Yeah, Facebook group.

Lisa Mustard: Yep. And is that for people who are interested in holistic counseling?

Yes. Cool. Now

Chris McDonald: it's for therapists. Therapists. Okay. Therapists and I need to join and self-care too. So we kind of go both. So, but yeah, it's a really supportive, wonderful group. Got lots of great people in there and so far, knock on wood drama. Yeah, well

Lisa Mustard: maybe that's a podcast episode that I could have you come back on my show and talk about is, you know, creating a, a group and the intentions behind all that because Sure.

That's something that I've dabbled with in the past, but it overwhelms me to think about. Yeah, and I'm sure lots of other therapists out there are thinking the same thing. Like, I would love to have a group, but it's a, there's a lot I imagine that goes into

Chris McDonald: kind of Yeah, that would definitely be a good episode.

Mm-hmm. , I have a lot

Lisa Mustard: to say on that. It's coming y'all. We will get that together

Chris McDonald: for you. Yes. We'll get that for you. Yes. . Well, Lisa, this has been great. I feel like, uh, we both learned from so much from each other.

Lisa Mustard: Yeah. I'm so glad we connected. Thanks for having me on your show. Yeah.

Chris McDonald: And one more question.

Mm-hmm. . So if you could go back in time, what would you tell your younger self that you know now?

Lisa Mustard: Oh gosh. What would I tell my younger? That is such a good question. Probably, I would say trust yourself more. Trust your gut. Trust your instincts. Trust. Trust what you're feeling. Not so much trust what people around you are telling you you should do.

I hope that makes sense, but yeah, that does. Just think about some situations from my past that, hmm, if I had listened to myself or to my gut, definitely life would be a lot. But you know, hindsight's 2020. Chris .

Chris McDonald: Yes, I know for sure. And that's one of the benefits of aging is that, that we can hopefully learn from a lot of our mistakes.

But thank you so much for coming on the podcast. So could you tell my listeners more about your podcast?

Lisa Mustard: Sure. So, um, for those of you who do not know of my show, it is called The Therapy Show with Lisa Mustard. And some of my episodes are approved by N B C C for continuing education, and I am going to, Offer your listeners of the Holistic Counseling Podcast, a free, free, free, free continuing education contact hour.

So what you'll do is you will go to the website, which is lisa mustard.com, and then you'll click on the tab that says Pod courses. And there's 12 right now to choose from a third. 13th one that's coming soon, but there's 12 to choose from. And when you go, when you pick one that you wanna purchase, you'll just, there's a space for a coupon code.

And all you need to do is type in the word holistic and hit apply coupon, and you'll get a free pod course. And how it works is you listen to the content and then afterwards you take a short little self-study quiz, fill out the evaluation, and then you can download your certificate of completion. So the coupon code is holistic.

Chris, I know you'll probably put that in the show notes. Yes. But, and then the, the website is lisa mustard.com and you just go and pick out your pod course and the coupon will expire. We'll say it'll expire June 1st, just so we know. We put a time limit to it. But yeah, and also if you go there, you can also get one at half off too.

So it's like you get when you go to the website, you can just get one or half off when you sign up before. Um, my excellent. Mm-hmm. , thanks for

Chris McDonald: offering.

Lisa Mustard: Oh yeah. Happy to. I'm excited to give your listeners something. So thanks for having me.

Chris McDonald: And thank you listeners for tuning in today. If you haven't got a copy of my book, self-Care for the Counselor, do yourself a favor and get it today.

And you can find it at www.holisticcounselingpodcast.com/resources. And this is Chris McDonald sending each one of you much light. Till next time, take care. Thanks for tuning in to this episode of the Holistic Counseling Podcast. Check out my resource page, which has amazing holistic resources and discount codes for products that I have personally vetted.

Head on over to www.holisticcounselingpodcast.com/resources. Your support is appreciated.

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Self-Care for the Counselor - a holistic guide for helping professionals by Christine McDonald , MS,NCC,LPCS