Mental Wholeness Step 7: Boundaries

Are you willing to protect yourself, your alignment, and your personal space?

Would you love to give and receive openly with more love in your heart?

Healthy boundaries are about both of these things. It’s both keeping unwanted, harmful things out, AND letting the good things in.

What do I mean when I say “boundaries”?

I think of a boundary as the line where one thing meets another. They might be visible, like a door, a wall, or a fence, or they might be invisible, like the border between states or the energy between people.

Remember that energy body we talked about back in step 5? Your energetic self has boundaries all it’s own, and you have the ability to impact those boundaries with your focus.

Boundaries are ever-changing things, they can be different moment to moment.

We live in a time that it’s more important than ever to be able to express ourselves about our boundaries – what we will and will not accept in our lives & with our bodies. We must be prepared to state our wants and needs explicitly for the people around us, especially when miscommunications happen.

At the same time, I’ve found that it’s often possible to inspire more respect from others for your boundaries without needing to bring it up explicitly at all.

This is because your boundaries all start inside of you – they need to be enforced on the inside first. (There’s also this thing that my clients and I call energetic communication in the program Surrender Strategy).

At the core of Boundaries is understanding what you deserve, and insisting that you will treat yourself in alignment with that. Other people will follow your lead.

Again, we’re embodying the energy of the person who is already living the vision you created back in clarity. You can allow your experiences in the emotional alchemy process to guide you. Understanding & evaluating how you feel is a great way to figure out where your boundaries lie, and what you need from yourself and others to feel satisfied.

You deserve to feel deeply comfortable and satisfied. You deserved to have your needs and your dreams fulfilled. Everyone does.

We also deserve to have support around this.

When you start noticing and communicating your boundaries to the people around you, there might be a bit of an uncomfortable blurt phase. During blurt phase, you’re not quite sure what to say in the moments your boundaries are crossed, and you haven’t quite learned how to soften your words with love yet (a nice thing to do, especially for those closest to you).

Plus, as I mentioned earlier, boundaries can be tricky and they move around all the time, depending on the context of whatever situation you’re in.

Sometimes we become limited by our own beliefs around the treatment we should and shouldn’t accept, as opposed to what truly feels right for us as individuals, and our relationships can get all mixed up because of that.

We need someone to hold space for us and reassure us about what’s possible for us and what we deserve.

This can be complicated stuff to sort out, but it’s so worth the effort.

When you start to feel safe and powerful in your own skin, your whole world will change. You’ll open yourself up to experiencing more and more love-filled goodness, as you build your confidence that you deserve it & you give it to yourself first. This is what healthy boundaries will provide for you.

So, take a deep breath, connect with yourself, and ask: Where in my life am I accepting less than I deserve? What line is being crossed there? How can I better respect this boundary within myself today?  

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue the conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

(If you’re looking for some video content about this, check out these throwback videos on push/pull relationships, for people-pleasers, How to Get More Confidence, Power & Respect, or How to Get rid of Toxic Relationships.

I’ll be back soon with our final component of Mental Wholeness – Trust.

Mental Wholeness Step 6: Emotional Alchemy

It has been said that emotions are energy in motion – emotions are energy moving through our body.

Practicing emotional alchemy will help you take the reins back over this process.

This is the component that usually sparks the most resistance – for both my clients and myself. We live in a world that fears emotion, and as a result, most of us fear our deepest emotions too.

One time, as a teenager, I remember feeling so much heated rage running through me that I ran outside and laid down in the winter snow.

The strategy actually kind of worked… better than anything else I’d found, at least.

Of course, I looked nuts to everyone around me at the time.

I’ve experienced literally writhing in emotional pain, feeling so alone… I really struggled with my emotions for a long time.

My feelings are so strong, and I never received tangible guidance about how to deal with my strong emotions effectively – without shoving them down.

Shoving my emotions down only ever led to anxiety, substance abuse, and total meltdowns when the weight got to be too much. Thank goodness my stored emotions never developed into full-blown physical illness.

(Here’s an article that talks about the link between emotional health and physical health).

We are always going to experience a full spectrum of emotion. Highs, lows, and everything in between. (Recognizing and embracing this is an important part of Acceptance).

We need a way to deal with the challenging emotions in a manner that doesn’t sink us.

Especially when you’re someone who feels things really strongly, like me.

It is 100% YOUR responsibility to manage to way you feel. Emotional Alchemy is all about honing your ability to feel good unconditionally – regardless of your life situation or what the people around you are doing.

Thinking you can rain positivity over your challenging times or just “love and light” your way out of every conflicting feeling is called spiritual bypassing.

Emotions aren’t inherently good or bad, they just are. All emotions are valuable. When we welcome the full spectrum of emotion, we’re welcoming a full and diverse life.

When we shut ourselves down emotionally we create a breeding ground for disease in our bodies.

Emotional Alchemy is all about switching from resistance to curiosity when it comes to your emotions – curiosity without judgment.

Nothing stuffs an emotion down better than feeling like you shouldn’t be experiencing it, so leave your judgment at the door.

Then take three basic steps:

  1. Lean into what you’re feeling. Try to understand where you’re coming from without judgment.
  2. Feel the feeling completely, until you feel a relieving shift in your body. (I’ve processed emotions that took days or weeks, but usually this part only takes minutes or moments).
  3. Examine the perspectives and interpretations that led to your feelings. Examine the role you played in the creation of the emotion. Are there any new understandings that could create more connection with yourself and the people around you? What can you learn from your experience? What can you do differently & what will you repeat again in the future?

It is extremely helpful to have outside support while diving into Emotional Alchemy, especially during the third step.

When people come to me for a consultation, this is without fail some the first guidance I give them – start looking at your unprocessed emotions that are weighing you down. That’s why I created the Emotional Alchemy Starter Kit – it’s a great first step for anyone considering working with me, and it provides more in-depth step-by-step instructions for deepening mind-body connection and processing emotions.

I’ve also talked about emotional alchemy in this video.

For now, I’ll leave you with this question: What emotion is waiting right under the surface of your awareness, ready to be felt?

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue the conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

I’ll be back soon with the next component.

Mental Wholeness Step 5: Energy

When I talk about energy, I’m talking about a lot of different things. (Not solar power, gas, electricity, or windmills).

Here’s a bit of what I mean by “energy”:

I’m talking about your energetic body – your unseen vibe that mingles with the energies of the world & people around you.

This includes your chakra system. The chakra system was regarded as our energetic body in ancient eastern traditions, each chakra corresponding with parts of our physical body. Our chakras provide a bridge between the Earth and the universe – a bridge that runs straight through our bodies.

I’m speaking about vibration too. Everything in this world carries a vibration, and we are no different. We tend to attract things that are vibrating at the same frequencies as we are. I talk a lot about vibration in this video.

I’m referring to your spirit/soul & the life energy flowing through you.

Generational patterns impact your energetic state, too.

Using your energy to your advantage is all about being the person who’s already living the vision you created back in Clarity right now.

What are your thoughts, feelings, and actions reflecting about you to the world? What thoughts, feelings, and actions will you experience when you have what you want?

Start living your vision NOW.

Throwback video: The #1 Question for Success: Who Are You BEING?

It’s worthwhile to seek alignment & balance of our chakras and to intentionally raise our vibration.

We can do this by bringing our body into greater physical alignment – our chakras align more easily when our body does too – or through intentionally connecting with each chakra.

When we choose new thoughts and new patterns of behavior that are more aligned with what we want to create, we impact our energetic state.

We can use outside supports like crystals and energy healers. Check out a couple of my favorites: Hilarie Mae Dahl and Melani Marx. I love enlisting energy healers as part of my support team.

The energetic body has been described to me as a light bulb – without care, it can get a little clouded and dusty over time. Taking steps to clean up your energy – choosing new thoughts & actions, seeking energy healing, processing stored emotions, tending to your physical environment, etc – cleans up the bulb so you can shine more brightly in the world.

You don’t NEED crystals or anything outside of yourself to make adjustments to your energetic state. (Though, those sorts of things can definitely be fun and beneficial if you believe in them). Still, if you come to rely too heavily on tools outside of yourself, it’s easy to feel like a victim of your state and your surroundings.

At the end of the day, YOU control your energetic state, you only need to learn how through practice.

You have the power to work with your energy, heal your energy system, and even to project your energy, just by applying your focus and intention to this concept.

That being said, this is another area that you really deserve some extra support from someone who can help you see the full picture.

I’m a certified energy healer as well, so this is another tool I use with my clients.

Take some deep breaths, remember where we’ve been so far, think about where we’re going, and ask yourself… Who is the person who already has what I want (or something close to it)? Can I be more like that person right now? How does that person FEEL? How do they make others feel?

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue the conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

I’ll see you soon with the next component.

Mental Wholeness Integration (1)

Now it’s time to integrate – to take some space & let what we’ve been working on really sink in.

Remember when I mentioned that commitment is needed to see the best results? This is one of those times where commitment will make all the difference.

It’ll be at least a few days before I continue sharing the components of Mental Wholeness with you. During that time, consider re-visiting the topics I’ve already shared: Acceptance, Body Buzz, Beliefs, and Clarity.

These make up the ABCs of Mental Wholeness. When I’m not feeling myself, practicing Acceptance, Body Buzz, Beliefs, and Clarity never fails to reconnect me. Applying these four components alone can help you feel much better quickly, and inspire the next step you need for whatever situation you’re in.

Here are the questions we’ve explored so far:

What are my intentions here?

What does Mental Wholeness mean to me?

What am I most resisting in my life right now?

How can I be more accepting of myself and others today?

What can I do to bring my body more love, comfort, and pleasure – right in this moment?

What would make my body buzz right now?

What beliefs are holding me back from fulfilling my purpose?

Am I ready to let go of those beliefs today?

If I’m not ready, what will it take to get ready?

What beliefs would be more helpful when it comes to accomplishing my goals?

What am I creating right now?

What do I WANT to create?

What will I see/hear/smell/taste/touch when I’ve succeeded?

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue the conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

I’ll see you in a few days to continue with the next four components of Mental Wholeness – Energy, Emotional Alchemy, Boundaries, and Trust.

Mental Wholeness Step 4: Clarity

Clarity is a very powerful tool.

When I talk about clarity, it’s all about having a clear understanding about what you want and what you’re working towards.

This works both internally, as a feeling, and externally, in our ability to communicate clearly about what we want and need from others.

We’ve already started dipping our toes into this pool. Body Buzz is a surefire way to connect with your desires, and having empowering Beliefs about what’s possible for us is important here.

What does clarity feel like to you? See if you can access this feeling and lean into it right now.

A well-developed sense of clarity will help you stay on track regardless of what’s going on in your life.

Most people approach clarity as a fleeting feeling that they don’t have any control over – it comes and goes, feeling amazing while it’s there and horrible when we can’t find it.

It’s important to realize that clarity is something you can cultivate.

Clarity is available to us in every situation if we’re willing to look. All you need to do is use the information around you to understand more about what you want.

When times are tough, it’s actually really easy to think about what you want – when you’re surrounded by what you DON’T want, you’ll receive some great information about what you’d prefer instead. Don’t get all worked up about not having it yet. (Remember Acceptance?) Realizing what you’re working towards and putting some intention there is a very important step.

Challenging emotions can become useful here, too. They’ll alert you when unhelpful patterns are playing out in your life, inspiring what you’d rather experience instead. They can highlight what needs to change about your life experience to cultivate the feelings you’d love to have.

This component has been essential for me when it comes to getting through hard times. I use clarity – my vision for what I’m creating – as my light at the end of the tunnel. My candle light in the dark.

And when times are groovy, clarity helps us decide which actions to take. More importantly, it can help us decide which actions NOT to take, and what to say “no” to.

Understanding what feels so amazing about the good times can help you cultivate more and more goodness in your life.

Here’s a video I made about Clarity, if you’re hungry for more.

Take a deep breath, connect with the highest version of yourself, and ask: What am I creating right now? What do I WANT to create? What will I see/hear/smell/taste/touch when I’ve succeeded?

Stepping into the feeling of what you want is very important. More on that next time.

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue the conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

Stay tuned for the next component of Mental Wholeness, coming soon.

Mental Wholeness Step 3: Beliefs

Have you noticed areas of your life where you seem to create the same experience over and over again?

That’s a part of your human design.

Humans behave in patterns.

As we grow up in the world, we interpret what’s happening around us and develop patterns of behavior that are designed to keep us alive. Our most difficult experiences get coded as “survivable” and we create them with our thoughts, choices, and actions over and over again.

Our beliefs are one of the main ways that these patterns function… what you believe to be true guides your actions and your decision-making.

What we believe determines our reality.

That’s how the things that we “know” can become our biggest enemy – because they limit what we’re able to see and experience in our lives.

The patterns and beliefs that we developed as kids are rarely still serving us when we’re adults.

The good news is that we can change our beliefs, and changing our beliefs changes our world.

We have the power to change what we believe, and harnessing that power is key to creating the lives we want.

It’s challenging to identify & meaningfully work with our beliefs and patterns without outside help. When it comes to these things, we can be pretty blind and stuck in our ways.

Again, that’s part of our human design. We’re wired to survive – to stay safe, to belong, to feel loved… whatever that meant for us when we were kids.

When our system picks up on us trying to change a belief or pattern, it kicks up defense mechanisms to keep us repeating the same old thing. It actively TRIES to put blinders on to unknown possibilities – which are interpreted as “unsafe” because we’ve never experienced them before.

This really matters when you want to accomplish things you’ve never experienced before.

Having qualified support is invaluable here, and you deserve to have high-quality support.

I’ve created a step-by-step process to shift beliefs.

This entails accepting and understanding of how you acquired a belief in the first place, finding gratitude for how it’s served you, and exploration of other possible interpretations for early events – so you can embrace beliefs that are more supportive of your success.

I described the process for changing beliefs step by step here in this video.

I have an arsenal of coaching & NLP tools that I use to help my clients shift their beliefs as well. Again, support is a real game-changer when you’re working with this component especially.

Today, I’m urging you to trade in your old disempowering beliefs about what’s possible in this world, for beliefs that serve your success.

Repeat after me: I am enough, I am loved, I am safe. I am free, I am worthy, I am valuable. I am capable.

The work that I do is of the highest service in this world.

I have value to contribute in every situation I’m in.

I am a powerful creator of my own reality.

Making money is easy. I have all the time in the world. I know how to get what I want.

Do you catch my drift?

You get to choose beliefs that light you up inside.

Take a deep breath, tap into the wisest version of yourself, and ask this question:  What beliefs are holding me back? Am I ready to let go of those beliefs today? If I’m not ready, what will it take to get ready?

What beliefs would be more helpful when it comes to accomplishing my goals?

As we move forward, start collecting evidence that supports new, empowering beliefs. Notice what comes up throughout your days.

Please share in the comments. Message me for more privacy.

This can be a really tricky component to navigate. If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue the conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

I’ll see you soon with the next component.

Mental Wholeness Step 2: Body Buzz

Your body has the potential to lead you towards everything you’ve ever wanted.

Body Buzz is all about tapping into this potential, so you can use your body as your wand in the world.

There’s nothing and no-one you can trust more than your body.

Your body is a magical vessel that carries your consciousness (and your soul/spirit/divine connection, if you believe in that sort of thing).

It has the ability to heal itself.

It can guide you towards the fulfillment of your purpose… through following your desires & what feels REALLY GOOD. How freaking cool is that?

You may say that you’re sick, or you have evidence your body isn’t a friend of yours.

If that sounds like you, I challenge you to reconsider. I’m confident that you’re going to get a lot farther working WITH your body than you will while you’re working against it.

Hating your body IS working against it.

The way I see it, Body Buzz works in three layers: body love (video), prioritizing physical comfort, and seeking pleasure.

To tap into this component of Mental Wholeness, love your body exactly as it is. Choose to prioritize your own comfort and physical well-being. Seek activities that bring your body pleasure, and be willing to experience good-feeling things on deeper and deeper levels.  

This is about nurturing a deep connection to your body. Period.

It’s not just about “taking care of yourself” by forcing your body into activities/diets/procedures that logically make sense to you.

Get curious and LISTEN to the messages your body is sending you, on a moment to moment basis. Nurture a smooth line of communication between mind and body.

Create a routine that taps into these principles to train your body to buzz on the regular – no substances required.

(Of course, you’re free to dabble in substance as you wish, you won’t find any judgment here).

Replace parts of your routine that you do because you “should” or you feel like you need to with things that your body actually WANTS and loves.

Is your body craving macaroni and cheese? Eat up. Thoroughly enjoy every bite. Don’t shame yourself for it.

Without the complications of shame and negative self-talk, your body can ask for what it wants & you can give it to yourself – without judgment.

Make sure you drink lots of water and eat lots of veggies, too. Notice how that feels in your body. Be willing to learn about your body’s unique dietary preferences. Seek a balance that makes YOU feel good – as opposed to judging any food as inherently good or bad. Try to eat in a way that brings you pleasure – before, during, and after.

Instead of running on a treadmill or doing exercise that you hate doing, do something you love – like putting on one of your favorite songs and dancing around at full blast, or going for a walk outside.

Stretch your body lots and have plenty of orgasms.

I just stopped writing this to stretch out my spine. I didn’t even need to get off the couch to stretch things out in a way that felt really satisfying.

It probably looked kind of funny, but whatever.

Prioritize asking your body what it needs to feel loved, more comfortable, and turned on to sensation in each moment – then deliver on what it’s asking for. Look for answers inside of yourself. See what happens.

Connecting & communicating with your body in this way will not only help you feel better NOW. You’ll feel better and better over time.

Let me give you another example of how this works with what you’re already doing throughout your day.

Recently, I was removing some standing water our malfunctioning dishwasher. A potentially annoying situation, yeah?


Throughout the course of my task, I was crouched in uncomfortable positions. I worked with my body and listened to what it needed. I stood up and stretched out my hips, legs, and spine, moving around as often as I needed to. I’d make sure my stomach was engaged, taking some weight off of my legs and hips.

I fed my ears with podcasts I love and some of my favorite vinyls, to bring some pleasure into the mix.

Making myself more comfortable and finding opportunities for pleasure made the whole experience much more enjoyable – about as enjoyable as trying to fix a dishwasher can be.

I left the situation with my mood intact, maybe even improved – even though I wasn’t able to get the dishwasher working again.

When your body, your love of your body, and pleasure (without judgment and shame) lead your choices, you’ll become happier and healthier for the rest of your life.

Tap into your body & love it up in this way.

It will lead you exactly where you need to be, and it’ll feel effortless. You’ll become more aware of what you want, and more able to make your desires a reality.

Take a deep breath, feel all the way out through your fingers and toes, and ask this question: What can I do to bring my body more love, comfort, and pleasure – right in this moment?

What would make your body buzz?

What actions are you inspired to take? I’d love to hear from you in the comments or in my inbox.

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue this conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

See you soon for the next component…

Mental Wholeness Step 1: Acceptance

This is where we begin. Acceptance.

Acceptance is welcoming things as adequate or suitable, receiving those things as they are.

Today, I’m asking you to accept basically everything.

Not an easy ask. So…

Why is this important?

We tend to spend a lot of time and energy resisting things in our life that just… are.

We are who we are. Other people are who THEY are. There’s nothing you can do to change what’s happened in your life so far bringing you to this point. So, you might as well accept it.

Stop spending your valuable energy fighting against the things you can’t change.

When we resist our current circumstances, we can’t see them clearly. We blind ourselves to opportunities in the current moment for expansion, satisfaction, and pleasure. We leave ourselves uncomfortable, biased, blind, and powerless.

Accept everything.

Recognize & receive yourself, others, and the world in general – as is.

It doesn’t mean these things will never change (though, it could mean that, and that needs to be OK).

Accept yourself, first and foremost. Accepting yourself is at the heart of accepting others & the world around you. All of your quirks and oddities. Allllll of your different personalities, including your absolute worst traits. Everything you were told is “too much” or “not enough”… screw that. Accept it & love those parts of you fully.

Accept the full spectrum of emotions. Happiness, Sadness, Anger, Jealousy… Joy, Excitement, Despair, Loneliness, Nostalgia, Misery, Numbness and everything in between. All emotions are acceptable and they can all teach you something valuable about yourself and where you’re going.

Accept your body exactly the way that it is. Yes, exactly the way it is. Right now. It’s perfect because it’s complete & you’re alive and breathing. Especially if you’re reading this right now, your body is working beautifully.

Accept the world exactly the way it is right now. All of the ugliness, all of the injustice… it all exists inside of each of us. Accept the part of yourself that relates to the ugliness – it’s in there. Until we accept that, we won’t be able to effectively do anything about it.

Accept other people for the imperfect humans they are. Love them hard anyway.

Accept that you are worthy, you are good enough, you are loved. Right now.

Accept your life exactly as it is right now.

Accept your full power – recognize that you can impact anything about your life when you want to.

This, and more, is acceptance.

Take a deep breath, tune into the wisest part of you, and ask this Question: What am I most resisting in my life right now? How can I be more accepting of myself today?

Share in the comments, or send me a private message!

You can find more about acceptance here in this video.

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue this conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

I’ll be back soon with the next component.

Welcome to Mental Wholeness Step-by-Step

Do you feel connected to the highest version of yourself?

Do you know what it feels like to be rooted in purpose and integrity?

Are you confident in yourself and your decisions?

Lean a little bit deeper into that feeling right now.

Do you have a way to access this feeling – and maintain it – whenever you want to?

If you’re saying YES – that’s amazing!! – you’ve probably learned that self-realization is an endeavor that will continue to evolve forever.

If not, you can’t really afford to ignore this.

Welcome to Mental Wholeness!

Mental Wholeness will help you fine-tune your connection with yourself – and, in turn, your connection to others and the rest of existence.

I created Mental Wholeness as a step-by-step for getting our mental, physical, and energetic ducks in a row, so we can build easy momentum towards our biggest goals. It’s helpful to intentionally repeat this over and over again to create a consistent alignment within yourself over time.

Focusing on these steps is sure to stir up some goodness in your life. It’ll make you more magnetic to the things you want. You’ll access a deeper sense of spiritual alignment, too (if you’re into that sort of thing).

You’ll become more deeply who you are.

It won’t all be rainbows and butterflies, but Mental Wholeness also gives you a place to go when life happens and things get rough. It’ll keep you moving through, acting as a compass to ensure you come through hard times on track towards your deepest, truest goals.

You only need to choose to practice.

As with anything, committing to keep going when it gets rough is required to get the most out of this

Still, I bet you’ll see some cool things happen for you in the upcoming weeks if you follow along with me and take some of this to heart.

We’ll be walking through the eight components of Mental Wholeness, one by one: Acceptance, Body Buzz, Beliefs, Clarity, Energy, Emotional Alchemy, Boundaries, and Trust.

Best Practices and What to Expect

I hope you’ll hang with me in the comments! For each component I’ll give you a question to consider and I’d love to hear what comes up for you. (Feel free to email me to keep it private)

Here’s today’s question: What would you love to see happen as a result of learning about Mental Wholeness in the upcoming weeks? What are your intentions?

Also: What does Mental Wholeness mean to you?

To be successful with this, dedicate some focus each day to exploring & experimenting with what we’re talking about.

It doesn’t need to derail your day.

(Though, if you do have time, I find writing to be a great container for exploring. Feel free to use the questions as writing prompts).

All you need to do is remember our conversation while you’re doing your everyday thing and get curious.

When you think of it, remind yourself of your intentions, and ask yourself – what does Mental Wholeness mean to me?

Keep in mind as we go through that these things weave together and layer on top of each other. I’ll LOVE to hear any connections/insights/thoughts you have!

Applying these things in your own way is more important than sticking rigidly to my outline.

That being said, you deserve to have plenty of support as we move through this.

If you’re looking for personalized guidance, support, or just to continue this conversation, feel free to email me any time – info@briannamcinerny.com. I’d love to connect with you.

I’ll be back tomorrow with the first component…

Reflections & What’s Next


Merry Christmas from me, nine years ago.

Happy Holidays! I hope the season is treating you well.

This can be a challenging time of year, especially when life isn’t quite what you thought it’d be.

I do love this photo, but looking back, my smile wasn’t what it seemed. I was pretty miserable at this point in my life.

About 6 months before this picture was taken, I’d started a transformation. After bawling my eyes out to a friend about the loss of my first love to suicide – 5 years after that loss – I *finally* realized that no-one else would ever be able to rescue me from the pain I was feeling.

I’d been trying to find help outside of myself, to no avail. It was time to turn inward.

Taking full ownership for the way I was feeling & embracing my ability to do something about it was a huge turning point for me.

I connected with a suicide prevention organization and became a volunteer. I continued to work hard on my degree in psychology.

However, I didn’t realize then what I know now about turning points and personal transformation. Now I know that choosing to get started is the easy part of the process.

Learning how to sustain a totally new way of life can be hard, and it often gets worse before it gets better. Trying to make a change throws you into the fire deeper than you were before. Any time we commit to change, we’ll be tested.

I wasn’t doing well when this picture was taken. I’d developed wild anxiety, feeling completely insecure and inadequate most days.

I had panic attacks keeping me awake almost every night. Severe panic attacks, checking doors and windows multiple times over hours to make sure they were locked, terrified that I would never wake up if I fell asleep. Etc.

Being in my body was uncomfortable, so I was abusing myself with tons of chemicals – caffeine, nicotine, amphetamine, alcohol – every single day. I wasn’t eating enough and I was barely sleeping. (I’m sure this played a huge role in my anxiety)!

I felt unsupported in most of my relationships, and I’m sure I wasn’t very supportive for my people either. I had no idea how to communicate with the people in my life.

I’d buried my emotions for a long time, and everything started to come out.

While I believed I could have an impact on the world, and big dreams lived inside of me, I had no idea what I’d do after graduation.

I just knew that the world would be a happier place if I could help it’s people feel better.

Over the last nine years, I’ve been working on it, and I had to help myself feel better first.

I slowly took space from relationships that weren’t good for me. I continued volunteering, learning lots about suicide prevention & grief support. Being in a community that understood what I was going through was really helpful. Eventually, I started working as a mental health case manager, then working with clients for the first time threw me deeper into anxiety again.

At that point, I saw a therapist for a few years. I learned about fitness and nutrition, energy healing and other alternative health options while I continued to work in mental health.

With all of these things combined, I lifted myself out of the grave I’d been digging myself all those years. I started to feel genuinely happy again, about six years ago.  

Many more challenges presented themselves along the way… a traumatic car accident, relationships, and breakups, friend dramas, deaths, rejection from a graduate program (enter questioning – WTF do I do now?), injuries, dating, unhealthy/challenging work environments, more deaths, an arrest for DWI…  Plus, leaving my traditional career path to start my own business, which is by far one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

With each challenge, I refined my tools for coping and I learned some new ones. I’ve taken steps backward and forward, some wobbly, some that put me on my ass.

Overall, I’m deeply satisfied with my life.

I’m a LOT better at work, life, and relationships than I used to be. (The results my clients receive are even more stellar). I know how to positively impact the people around me – I don’t even need words to do it. It’s all about who I’m being in the moment. I love myself more every day, which allows me to give more to others and receive more from the world.

This makes for a much more enjoyable holiday season.

Life is going to hand us challenging times. Always. My program Mental Wholeness provides us with tools to use those challenges as fuel – so they can make us stronger rather than taking us out. With Mental Wholeness in hand, we’ll always know exactly how to stand back up and keep going when life puts us on our ass.

I’ve consolidated a lifetime of passion, time, resources, and energy into this foundational program for myself and my clients.

Don’t get me wrong, Mental Wholeness isn’t *just* for challenging times – it’s actually most helpful (and genuinely magical) to start practicing when things are going well – it just comes in extra handy when the shit hits the fan.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing the Mental Wholeness process step by step, here on my website and on Instagram. Consider taking me up on this holiday gift. Follow along and join in the conversation. Make sure to follow me if you want to stick around for that. @briannamcinerny

And until next time, I hope you enjoy this holiday season to the fullest. Sending all of my love to you and yours. We’ll talk again soon.