How Anxiety Stems from Lack of Trust & Anger

Post Date: September 10th, 2016

When I work with clients with anxiety, I first ask them to share their story.

I recently had a  client I’ll call Jess. As a child Jess felt controlled and manipulated by her parents, which left her unwilling to trust others then.. and now. Because her parents simply did not know how to express their love, she always felt insecure, unsafe, and on-edge. Like so many of us, Jess became very angry at her parents and then buried that anger deep down, locking all the other emotions with it. 

Fast forward about 20 years and Jess is still living out the same scenario in her life. Anxiety plagues her. She finds herself craving to control her environment (something she could never do as a child), and as a result she finds it hard to ask for help, she finds uncertainty terrifying and as she struggles with trusting others (and deep down herself). She is often “stuck in her head” with overthinking (another attempt to control) and can’t let herself be fully seen for fear of rejection.  

What many people don’t see at first glance is that deep down, the “emotional anchor” that is keeping Jenny stuck in this cycle is actually Anger. While there are certainly many other emotions that she has buried away, anger is one of the most important ones because it often anchors the other hidden emotions. Many times people aren’t willing to let anger go because they never EVER want a past situation to happen again. They don’t want to feel hurt, manipulated, controlled, rejected like they did when they were young, so they become angry at the source, and make a secret vow to themselves that they will control every situation to make sure that those feelings don’t come up again.  

The irony? By holding onto your anger and not letting go of the past, it is 100% guaranteed that this same story will continue to play out in your life. You will live in constant fear and defensiveness against these emotions because you are always secretly keeping them at bay – hence the anxiety. 

So the first step I had Jess do was acknowledge where she felt really angry, who she was really angry at, and why she felt the need to hold onto it. This isn’t the easiest part of my job,  but it certainly is the most rewarding. It was as if Jess had opened the doors to a whole new way of seeing the world for the first time. 

After some committed digging, she was finally able to let decades of hidden moments of anger go. Many moments with her parents, and to her surprise many more with herself. It was like unraveling a ball of yarn, slowly at first.. then letting go became her new effortless way of being.  She let go of all the feelings she thought she had to bottle up. She let go of the need to control, she let go of the need to be perfect. She began to trust – first and foremost in herself- then in others. And guess what? The anxiety naturally dissipated. She changed her entire world fairly quickly just by being willing to do the work to finally let those buried emotions go and of course to finally forgive. It was such a beautiful thing to witness.

And it was all possible because she was willing to get real with herself, and be willing to address her “scariest” emotion and embrace it- so she could let go of the pain and anxiety that constantly resurfaced for her. 

Of course this did not happen overnight. Jess saw such profound results because she was willing to commit herself to work through a program I had designed for those who were looking to uncover the source of their anxiety and perfectionism. She decided that she had enough of the disconnected relationships, “difficulty” of life, and trying so hard to be perfect all the time. She trusted herself enough to ask for help. 

So, where can you reach out for help? Anxiety is not something you are, it is an way of coping that served you when you were younger but now it’s not serving you. There are much more joyful ways of being. You can let it go, all you have to do is be willing to open that door and make a leap of faith.

If you’d like to learn more about the program that worked wonders for Jess and many others like her, you can find out more about my Straight Talk about Anger program HERE.

Have more questions? Let’s connect and have a conversation. Feel free to connect with me via email at or 336-623-9138.


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What’s the difference between Appreciation and Gratitude?

Post Date: November 19th, 2015

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the whole year. It is a special day set aside to celebrate all that I have to be grateful for.

I used to think that being grateful was important. And I still do. But I have changed my daily Gratitude practice to a daily Appreciation practice.

What’s the difference? It’s a BIG difference in my mind.

Gratitude is good. But it is inactive. What I mean is, it doesn’t carry as much energy or stamina as Appreciation. Appreciation is active because it is more engaging and carries with it more energy.


Let me give you some examples:

A) Gratitude: I am grateful for food.

Appreciation: I appreciate the life-giving nourishment my food provides and the delicious taste that I am able to  savor.

B) I’m Grateful for beautiful flowers. But I Appreciate the opportunity to be surrounded by their beauty and fragrance. And I appreciate how they beautify my environment, make it more welcoming.

C) I’m Grateful for my husband. But I Appreciate the fact he is a great provider, he listens to me. I Appreciate that he has a great sense of humor and he always knows how to make me laugh.


Appreciation delves deeper into the WHY of Gratitude.

Appreciation has more power. It recognizes myself as a co-creator of my experience and I’m engaging with something. It helps me to engage with life more.


There is value in really differentiating between appreciation and gratitude.

I can be grateful for my body. But how can I appreciate my body? I can be grateful for a person. But what are the things about that person that I appreciate?


So what and who are you grateful for today? How can you take that gratitude to an appreciation level? This Thanksgiving, and every day, contact the people you are grateful for your life. Call them. Send them a note. Let them know how much you appreciate them and why you appreciate them. Let them know all the things you appreciate about them.


Appreciation lands differently then gratitude. Get a partner and practice the difference. Saying it out loud and see how that feels.

Because we are not used to receiving appreciation, it can feel odd and even vulnerable to give and receive appreciation. In my workshops I have one exercise that really allows the attendees to experience fully accepting appreciation, and it is literally life changing once you learn how to fully accept those appreciations.

I am grateful for you. More importantly, I appreciate you being in my life, that you take the time to read this, and that you spread your gifts in your own unique way.

Yes. You Matter. Own Your Value by Appreciating Yourself. Spread That to Others Around. It’s All About You. And It’s About Being In Touch In Life.


Teresa Lea, BA NCLMBT # 1804

If you found this of value and want to find out about my work and  more ways to care for yourself, go to  or call 336-623-9138

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The 3 Things That Create REAL Change

Post Date: August 25th, 2015

Change does not have to be difficult.

It does, however, often feel uncomfortable. Even if it is a good change. Because creating change means getting outside of your comfort zone.

There are really only 3 things you need for lasting change to occur.

If you have been wanting to change something in any part of your life and wonder why things haven’t really changed, then there is one of three areas you may need to address.

In order for change to occur, you must:

  • Be Willing

  • Be Ready

  • Be Able

Sunrise on Fields with Forest in Background

1) Be Willing.

To be willing is more than just wanting to change. Yes. You must want change. But you must also be willing for that change to occur. You may say you want change, but if you have underlying subconscious beliefs that don’t want you to change, then you may find yourself at a standstill.

For example:

You may say you want deeply connected relationships. But having that means being open and vulnerable and risking being seen for who you really are. And if you don’t feel comfortable with that you may be unconsciously resisting connection and intimacy.

You may say you want to lose weight. But if you have a secret fear that becoming slimmer will cause you to attract unwanted attention from others, then there is a part of you that is not fully willing to change.

That’s why it is SO crucial to gain one-on-one support to help you uncover the unconscious beliefs that are sabotaging you before you even begin!

One question I first ask my clients is “what is the worst thing that could happen if you make this change?” Asking this helps to uncover those hidden fears and beliefs.

2) Be Able.

This is a tricky one, as your perception of what is possible is undoubtedly tied back into your subconscious beliefs once again.

We have all achieved at least one thing that we previously thought was unattainable. You wanted it bad enough, so you found a way to make it happen right? Whether it was to ask for help, to negotiate for it, or find “out of the box” solutions, we as humans have an astounding ability to creatively find ways to get what it is we want.

So the question really is.. are you making a conscious commitment to do whatever it takes to make it happen?

Read the rest of this entry »

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12 Lessons I Learned from my Cats

Post Date: July 6th, 2015

12 Lessons I learned from my Cats


Did you know that June is National Adopt a Cat Month?  

Miss Kitty while in Savasana.jpeg

I love cats. Throughout my life, my cats have been great teachers for me. If  you’ve been to my office, then you have met my healing assistant, Miss Kitty and know what great lessons she helps me bring.


Here are 12 lessons I’ve learned in my life thanks to my cats




1) Be independent and think for yourself. And be smart enough to know when it is necessary to follow.


2) Be playful, feisty and active every day.


3) Take time to cuddle and relax every day.


4) Bathe often. It is a pleasure and a luxury. And people like you more when you do.


5) Take time every day to observe and appreciate nature.


6) Be willing to entertain and be entertained.


7) Never feel guilty about taking time out for yourself.


8) Ask for attention if you're not receiving enough.


9) Know that you are awesome.


10) Curiosity is a good thing.


11) Enjoy sunshine as often as possible.


12) Give generously.


I encourage you to take these lessons to heart and see how they will change your life. It’s amazing how our animals can be such great teachers if we are only to stop and listen.


And since it's summer and the heat is rising, make sure to take extra special care of them by leaving plenty of water out for them and never leave them in your car. Their lives are precious. And so is yours.


I would love to hear how your animals bring you joy and what important life lessons they have  brought to your life. Share your story on my blog here:


Yes. You & Your Animals Matter. Own Your Value. And Take Good Care of Your Fur Friends. It's All About You. And It's About Being In Touch In Life.


Teresa Lea, BA NCLMBT # 1804


If you found this of value and want to find out about Teresa Lea and her work and  more ways to care for yourself, go to  or call 336-623-9138


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Rolling Thunder Memories, POWs & Freedom

Post Date: May 26th, 2015

rolling thunder About 10 years ago, Donnie and I rode our motorcycles in the Rolling Thunder Parade held in Washington DC. The Rolling Thunder is an annual motorcycle rally held to call for the government's recognition and protection of Prisoners of War (POWs) and those Missing in Action (MIAs). With over a million riders and spectators combined, Rolling Thunder has now evolved into an emotional display of patriotism and respect for all who defend our country.

It was a privilege to be in the presence of so many courageous souls. There was a connection and a space to share stories that normally were left untold. The area and event, in its own way becomes holy ground. A place for healing and being heard.

I felt so moved to be a part of the group we were riding with. To hear their stories. To shake their hands. To honor their service and their hearts. I wept with them. I laughed with them. And I stood in silence with them as they felt inward.

Being a part of this event opened up a place within me that I want to share. I began to ask myself questions.

  • How am I a prisoner of my own internal War?
  • How am I Missing In Action in my own life?
  • How am I feeling desperate, lost and left behind?


The men and women of The Rolling Thunder inspired me to rally my own courage to face these questions, and believe it or not, these questions began to dramatically change my life. I never realized how fear was running so much of my life.

For years there was a war within myself that was holding me hostage. It was a war filled with anger and regret and fear. I was hiding and not showing up in my life because of my own fears. Fears of rejection; of playing small, of complacency; and even the fear of being seen.


This day of memory inspires me to think of the importance of courage and as an act of courage I challenge you to ask yourself:

  • Do you ever find that fear is holding you hostage?
  • Do you ever notice that you hold yourself back, and are “missing in action” from your own life?
  • What internal war is raging within you?

I’m not going to lie, it requires courage to take your power back from fear. Because the tricky thing about fear is that it can make you feel hopeless, powerless, and even worthless (I know, I’ve been there).

But I decided a long time ago that I was tired of feeling “stuck” in my pain and I was determined to live my life without regret. I created a personal boot camp to kick myself into action to face my fears, and I’ve never looked back.

So what is your choice? Courage or regret? Pain or pleasure? Every day we have a choice to take the courageous step, the question is will you take it?

To learn more about how to overcome fear to release your greatest untapped power, check out my website at for more resources.

Yes. You & Your Choices Matter. Own Your Value. Being kind to yourself, It's all about You. And it's about being In Touch In Life.

Teresa Lea, BA NCLMBT # 1804

If you found this of value and want to find out about Teresa Lea and her work and more ways to value your worth visit our free resources at or call 336-623-9138

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How Are You Like Your Offender?

Post Date: May 12th, 2015


stuffA few weeks ago, I was one of the sponsors and support team members for a conference for Missionary Kids who had experienced various forms of emotional, physical and spiritual abuse, domestic violence and sexual abuse.


It was a time of coming together, sharing stories and healing. It was also a time to face some really difficult things in their lives and take ownership in new (and not always easy) ways.

See, people who have experienced abuse in their past often find that the cycle of abuse continues to show up in their adult lives. This shows up in the form of destructive relationships, habits, and patterns. When this happens it easy to go into a cycle of blame and judgment towards those you hold as responsible.

When we are hurting, everything feels bigger. Rest-assured you are not crazy.


There can be a sense of despair, helplessness, and defensiveness in even the idea that there is any remote way that you may be similar to your offender. I get that. I have been there myself.


Please hear me out on this one as it may be helpful.

One of the greatest gifts, in the long run (although it did not feel like it at the time) was when one of my mentors asked me to explore ways I might be similar to my offenders. It was really hard for me to even begin to think about it. And at the time I was already not far from suicidal.

But with their help I took on the challenge. Little by little I realized:

1. How I was abusing myself (my self-talk was horrible and full of self destructive and disempowering words)
2. How I was a hypocrite in many ways
3. How I was manipulative and controlling
4. How I was still in many ways pretending everything was ok when it wasn't
5. How I was lying to myself
6. How I was unwilling to tell the truth (because of the shame I felt)
7. How I was in denial (about a lot of things in my life at the time)
8. How I was shaming and shunning myself
9. How I continued to hurt myself (with my lack of self-care)

When I began to work on those things personally, I began to heal more fully. In my own way I was unconsciously perpetuating this cycle of self abuse until I was willing to look deeper within.

I am sharing this with you because it was essential for me to explore this with the help of someone who had been there and who could see me as powerful enough to break the cycle.

If you are finding yourself repeating cycles that seem self-destructive in your own life, please reach out. I am committed to helping you break all those self-critical thoughts, self-abusive behaviors, and any unconscious sabotaging that is keeping you from knowing you are really worth what you desire.

Only when you seek support outside of yourself can you begin to really break your own self-limiting patterns and deeply reconnect with those things that are most to you in your life.

You are precious, beautiful, gifted and powerful. You are valuable. And you deserve all that your heart longs for. And only YOU have the power to make it happen.

Reach out. I'll show you how. Together we can make it happen. Contact me HERE.

Yes. You Matter. It's time to Own Your Value. It's all about you. And it's about being In Touch In life.


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Have you ever experienced betrayal?

Post Date: March 22nd, 2015

I have. And I want to share how I have gotten over that.

Betrayal comes in many ways and forms. It can come from friends, relatives, a spouse, fellow employees, a boss, neighbors and more. When it does come it can destroy your relationship with that person. And it can turn your view of the world upside down.

When I experienced betrayal I felt mostly hurt. I felt disrespected. I felt judged. I felt angry. And even a little self righteousHow dare they…. And I became a bit more cynical and hard on the inside.

I began to be less social. I didn't feel safe to trust in new friendships because I expected them to end in pain too. I felt concerned others would take advantage of me so I did not reach out to help the way I would have in the past.

I stayed home more and told myself I was just taking time to heal and gain insight.  What I was really doing was building a cave, around me.

What I really needed instead was to build a cocoon.

Let me explain myself..

The Cave


caveA cave is where an animal goes for safety and to hide. Yes I needed that at the time to feel safe. But there's not a lot of room for light in the cave; Light to be shed on my own thoughts and self responsibility. Light to be shed on the stories I was continuing to tell myself that kept me in the pain cycle. And light to be shed on the truth that maybe if I had listened to my intuition to begin with, I would have not allowed myself to be in this place. I would have taken a stand for myself instead.


You cannot change the past. You can however control the stories you make up about your past. While you’re in a cave those stories focus on blame, anger, regret, and resentment. These keep you in the role of victim.


The Cocoon


coocA cocoon however puts you into the role of victor. It is the place where you seek support, heal your wounds, and re-embody your personal power and move forward wiser and stronger than before.


When you go into a cocoon you are reminded of your innate worth and goodness. You are reminded of how pain transforms you into something even more beautiful.


In the cocoon you learn to trust again. You still believe in the goodness of others, and you allow the light to shine in fully so your beauty becomes transparent to others.


In the warmth of the cocoon you begin to feel grateful for the experiences and the lessons learned. You open yourself to forgiveness in order to free your own heart to be yourself again.  (Note: Forgiveness does not excuse your betrayer's behavior. It does however keep it from destroying your own heart) You quit focusing on how you were wronged and you are reminded of what you value instead – like loyalty and commitment.


We cannot always control what happens to us. We can, however, always choose to control our own response.


"Life will break you. Nobody can protect you form that, and living alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. Your are here to be swallowed up. and when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.  ~ Louise Erdrick


What will you choose? The Cave? or the Cocoon? Bitter or Better? Victim or Victor? You always get to choose.


And if you want to move from the cave to the cocoon , reach out. I'll show you how.


Yes. You Matter. And Others do too. Own Your Value. Forgive. It's all about You. And it's about being In Touch In Life.


Teresa Lea, BA NCLMBT # 1804


If you found this of value and want to find out about Teresa Lea and her work and  more ways to care for yourself, go  or call 336-623-9138


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Heroes, Champions, & Love

Post Date: February 26th, 2015

"Humans are kind of funny. You see, when they have been hurt really deeply they often do one of three things.


1 – They lash out and hurt others.

2 – They lash inward and hurt themselves even more.

3 – They feel the need to rescue those hurting.


The human I’d chosen did both of the latter and I was counting on the third to get us together.


My heart leaped as I felt her driving up the hill. My eyes appealed to her as she slowed down, creeping past me. I was so thirsty and hungry and my body was aching and sore from being dragged along the road behind the truck of the man who had dropped me off in the middle of nowhere. Some humans can be so heartless and cruel. My heart began to sink as she drove on by. I was reaching out as much as I could with the limited energy I had left. She was going on, leaving me behind. What else was I to do? Was it already too late? But then, all of a sudden she stopped and began to slowly back up….

For three days I was patiently waiting for her to really see me, no feel me. It was the feeling that would bring us together. The feeling that would give her that desire to live. I knew it had to happen today or it would be too late for her. And I was not going to let my mission be futile and end in the loss of her life. I had not set myself up to go through those awful experiences only to now lose her. She had to see me. She had to feel me, to feel my pain to give her a reason to live.…"

The above is an Excerpt from my memoir. It is a list of short stories written through one of my greatest hero's eyes and heart. Mari.

Throughout my life, many people have been heroes or champions in their own way to me. They have inspired me to not only be the best I can be but to not compromise myself and instead be true to myself and that which matters to me.

There is one individual in particular, however, that stands out above them all that I am particularly grateful and have the deepest appreciation for. She showed me love in ways I had never experienced before. This individual is not an average person. In fact she is not a person at all. Mari was my dog, my companion, my friend. It was she who:

  • Showed me life was worth living and she gave me a reason to live

  • Reconnected me to the little girl inside of me

  • Let me see I was worthy of love outside of my work

  • Gave me permission to both play and be still

  • Taught me I had worth merely by my existence

  • Showed me what courage was and the value of pushing through pain to get to what really matters on the other side

  • Was the example of continuing to ask for what I need in different ways until I am understood

  • Taught me the importance of close observation and full participation in life

  • Showed me that life was more than about creating safety, that it was also about taking risks and living each moment to the fullest

And it was Mari who gave me permission and voice to own and share my gifts with the world showing others how to go from pain to powerful, to transform trauma to triumph, and to live fully in touch and in life.

How has love shown up in your life?

Who has inspired you?

Who has been your Champion or Hero?

Reach out the them and let them know. And deliver one of the greatest acts of love by sharing your appreciation.

And if you want to Accept, Appreciate, Forgive and Love Yourself in a way that You can KNOW You are Enough. Always. Reach out. I'll show you how.

Yes. You Matter. And Others do too. Own Your Value. Share Appreciation. It's all about You. And it's about being In Touch In Life.

Teresa Lea, BA NCLMBT # 1804

If you found this of value and want to find out about Teresa Lea and her work and  more ways to care for yourself, go to  or call 336-623-9138

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9 Ways to Prevent a Holiday Meltdown

Post Date: December 18th, 2014

What if you could head off your holiday stress before it even begins?  

What if instead of being reactive to circumstances you could respond in a way that allows you to feel completely at ease?


Here are 9 Ways to Help You be Supported, Relax Into and Enjoy the Holidays


1)  Let Go of Expectations

Yes. You read that right. Expectations of yourself and others often become amplified and unrealistic around the holidays. Let go of your expectations. Be curious and open instead. Let go of the need for perfectionism. Instead, ask for support. Be willing to delegate tasks with the belief that the support will be there if you ask for it.


2)  Don't Over Commit

It is easy to over commit by filling your calendar with perceived obligations from family and work. This often means stretching yourself too thin and sacrificing your self-care time, which is even more essential during the holidays. Be willing to say NO. Decline invitations. Schedule time for things and holiday activities that really bring you joy.


3)  Be Mindful of Family Friction

Tension often escalates and tests already strained relationships in your family when you are spending more time with them. Make sure to take time for yourself. To breathe. Again… Let go of expectations here. And practice kindness and compassion with yourself and others.


4)  Make Sure to Get Enough Rest, Sleep and Self-Care

Without proper rest you will be more apt to get stressed more easily, be grumpier, not eat as well, and even reduce your exercise. All this compromises your immune system and will make you more prone to colds, the flu and even depression. SO…  make sure that getting a good night's sleep is a priority. And make time to move your body in ways that support your self-care.


5)  Limit How Much Alcohol You Drink

If you like to drink, commit to a limit on your alcohol consumption. You may be used to having a glass of wine or beer at the end of a long day to help you relax and de-stress. Drinking more won't decrease your holiday stress. It actually amplifies it. Alcohol is a depressant so more of it can leave you feeling even more emotional, depressed or angry. Set your limit to one to two drinks a day. Oh… And be sure to have a designated driver when going out.


6)  Eat Nutritiously and Mindfully

Indulging in extra sugar and carbohydrates often comes with the holidays. Plan your nutrition ahead of time. Slow your eating down – especially if you tend to overeat when you are stressed. Eat mindfully and with gratitude so as not to overindulge and then feel bloated and uncomfortable.


7)  Be Mindful of Your Budget 

There are many ways to give at the holidays without overextending your budget. Try giving your time to an organization or person you know could use it. Give a helping hand to a mother with young children by offering to child sit or even bring in some meals to help. And give yourself permission to receive. Ask for help if you need it. People, in general want to help. And religious groups, and charitable organizations are there to help you if you need it.


8)  Be open and Honest About Your Feelings

There is often pressure to be cheery during the Holidays. This can be difficult if you are struggling with depression or grief. Ask for help and choose which activities you want to engage in where you can feel uplifted without having to fake being happy.


9)  Be Flexible

Recognize the value of tradition and be open to creating new ones for yourself. If plans change, trust it is all in Divine order and allow yourself to be curious to new plans and activities.


Merry Christmas and Happy Holy Days to you.


Yes. You Matter. Own Your Value. It's all about You. And it's about being In Touch In Life.


Teresa Lea, BA NCLMBT # 1804


If you found this of value and want to find out about Teresa Lea and her work and more ways to care for yourself, go to  or call 336-623-9138



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Life is too Short…

Post Date: December 9th, 2014

I’m going to keep this short and sweet.


Your relationship with family is important.  And life is far too short to hold onto even the smallest amount of anger, frustration or disconnection from those you love. I understood this lesson even more when Dad passed away.


It’s easy to push these thoughts out of your mind during the year, but the holidays seem to have a way of making you face these issues head on – especially when you find yourself in the middle of a family gathering!



Are you wanting to support during the holidays? I am sharing my top 5 tips to creating more authentic connections with your family.



I hope you can join me for my call “Create a Deeper Connection With your Family This Holiday




To register for a copy of the recording to listen and share as much as you'd like be sure to visit:





Be sure to pass this along to those you love. They will thank you for it!





You Matter. Connection Matters. It’s All About Being In Touch In Life.  

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