Episode 273 – Overcoming Triggers – An Interview with Crystal Haitsma


In this podcast, I’m talking with Crystal Haitsma about triggers. We hear the word all the time nowadays, but what does it really mean and how is it affecting our relationships? Listen in as Crystal and I define what triggers are and how self regulation can help us get over them. This is a great episode!

Crystal, The Parenting Coach is a Certified Life Coach and Canadian homeschooling mother of 4. She combines her background in Psychology with helpful mindset tools, somatic work and emotional processing to help parents change patterns of generational parenting. She helps you parent calm, confident kids that you LOVE to be around- simply, and in a faith-based way. She is the host of The Parenting Coach Podcast where she shares helpful parenting tactics every week. 

Find your parenting personality! Take the quiz here: https://coachcrystal.involve.me/parents-organic

Podcast: https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-parenting-coach-podcast/id1555361139

Podcast on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/0qe7qRHbEQ2cMbl4NiVVOP

IG: www.instagram.com/the.parenting.coach 

FB: www.facebook.com/the.parenting.coach


Show Notes:

Follow Amanda on Facebook and Instagram.

Join Amanda’s Private Facebook Group.

Show Summary:

Amanda: Hello everyone. Welcome back to the podcast. So happy to have you here. Now, this episode is really awesome and it may not seem like it has anything to do with the sexual relationship at first because we started out talking about parenting, but I promise you it’s worth listening to. It’s all gonna come together and you’re going to love it. 

So here is my interview with Crystal Haitsma. 

Every relationship, whether that is between partners, with our kids, family and friends, every relationship has its challenges. But what happens when it’s more than just a challenge and our nervous system gets activated? What does that do to our relationships and what does it do in our sexual relationships? 

Today I have on the podcast Crystal Haitsma, who is a parenting coach. Welcome to the podcast, Crystal. 

Crystal: Hi. Thanks for having me, Amanda. 

Amanda: Can you tell my audience a little bit about you and what you do? 

Crystal: Yeah, so I homeschool. I have four kids. My youngest is six, my oldest is 16. We currently live in Alberta, Canada, but we’re seminomadic, which just mostly means we just kind of move around whenever we want, however we want. So we’ll be traveling internationally over the next year. Um, and we both work online. So I do parenting coaching and my husband does like tech stuff for coaches websites and stuff like that.

Um, so what got me kind of into what I’m doing is that I was really not good at parenting and I always thought that the most amazing people that are so good at things are just naturally good at it and then tell all the world how to do it. And the more that I learned about the people that I love, the more that I was like, oh, it’s because they were actually really bad at that and then had to like, figure it out themselves.

Amanda: Yes.

Crystal: That was parenting for me for sure. I was like, oh, this’ll be a breeze. It’ll be so easy. And then I got married and it was so hard and I had a couple of kids, um, that were neurodiverse. We didn’t know that at the time, and their behaviors just made it really difficult for me, or I was definitely making it difficult for me, but I didn’t realize that I was.

And um, anyway, so fast forward, we kind of like hit rock bottom and got some support. And what really changed things for me was changing my parenting style. And so traditional parenting tactics were like not working at all. And I just kept trying to use them and they kept exacerbating things for my kiddos.

And I didn’t want a parent in the same way that my parents had parented and their parents had parented, and I read all the books and knew like so many of the things, like I’d met some of the experts and gone to courses, but found that it was like impossible to do because they don’t actually tell you how to do it.

They’re like, here’s some words to say and there’s, here’s what’s happening inside their brain. And here’s this lovely idea, but you’re like, but how, and it wasn’t until I found, um, tools that were more like introspective, like for my own brain and for my own nervous system and all of that, that I was like, oh, okay, wait, this part is what’s missing and what people don’t talk about in the books and what actually makes it happen naturally.

And so, um, now things are a lot more flowy, a lot more healthy within our relationships and my kids, even the neurodiverse ones, behaviors that I had wanted to change in the beginning actually did change, but not because I did anything to them or told them to change. It just happened naturally as our relationship grew and evolved.

So, um, that’s what I do now. That’s what I love helping people with. Um, and I love hiking and I love playing board games and I love reading, usually non-fiction…

Amanda: Like most coaches.

Crystal: Yeah, like most coaches, yes. I’m like, oh yeah, I probably should read a fiction book sometime.

We love to travel and hang out and I have three boys and a girl and that’s kinda, that’s kind of me in a nutshell. 

Amanda: That’s so fun. I relate a lot to what you said because I have a daughter who is bipolar and we spent many years just in turmoil. And I’m the one who took her to therapy and I’m the one who was trying to learn how to parent better. But it wasn’t until I learned how to emotionally regulate myself that I was able to parent her better. And then she learned how to emotionally regulate herself. 

Crystal: Yes. 

Amanda: And it totally changed the dynamic of our relationship. I mean, now, well, I’ll just say there was a point where things were so bad that I literally like drove her to the juvenile detention center and I was like, get out. Like it was so bad. There were days that like I would, I mean, I’m divorced from her dad. So there were times when I was like, I’m dropping her off at your house and you’re keeping her for at least two weeks because I need a break.

And like just how close we are now. I know that it’s because the work that I did on myself, that introspection. That changed the way that I showed up for her and emotionally regulated myself. 

Crystal: That’s exactly my story with my son. I was like, it’s over. 

Amanda: Yes. 

Crystal: Like I had friends whose kids had similar diagnosis to mine whose kids were in and out of the mental hospital and they would be like an outpatient and stuff. And so like that’s kind of the rock bottom that I’m talking about was like, he’s going to go in the hospital or he’s going to go live in a group home or something because it was so severe. And when I had a brother, so one of my sons has high functioning autism, I had a brother with that as well. He did move out into a group home because he did become too violent.

And so I just was like, okay, this is where life is headed. And that was kind of my rock bottom, like something serious has to change. And I felt like I knew what needed to happen. Like I knew it was parenting, but I didn’t actually know how to do it. And at that time, I didn’t know life coaching. So it took a really long time. It was like just me kind of figuring it out on my own. 

Amanda: Yep, me too.

Crystal: Then once I stumbled across life coaching, it was like, oh, okay, this is why it worked. Like here’s why it changed.

Amanda: Exactly, yes. Same story. I learned all of this way before, I mean, not way before, like a couple years before I learned life coaching and then I learned coaching and I was like, Oh, that’s exactly why it worked. Because I was changing the way that I was thinking, which was changing my emotions and how I showed up. And it was life changing. For both of us. Really. 

Crystal: Life changing, especially the nervous system regulation thing you talked about. That’s huge. And I don’t think it gets talked about a ton in the coaching world. Sometimes in therapy, sometimes not. And it’s really huge when it comes to our parenting, so…

Amanda: Well, and it’s hugely for sex. 

Crystal: Yes!

Amanda: Which is why, I mean, I do the nervous system regulation with my clients as well. But I love the perspective that you had on it, how it really affects our relationships.

I hear a lot from clients and just like people in general that they get triggered by something that someone says or does. Like when my daughter would start to escalate, I was definitely triggered. So talk to me about how you talk to your clients and stuff about what triggers are and why they get triggered.

Crystal: Yeah, so that is my favorite topic, just because I think that really is the thing that’s blocking us from the relationship that we want and also totally ties back into our sex life because if we’ve been triggered by our kids all day and then we’re like laying in bed at night and we’re just like super, super stressed and overwhelmed, like…

Amanda: Don’t touch me. 

Crystal: With a lot of things on our mind. Yes. So, um, how I describe triggers is as an emotional activation. So when my nervous system is activated, when I’m feeling like, um, kind of a stronger emotional reaction, that’s what I feel like a trigger is. And it’s different than like, I’m just tired, or I’m just hungry, or I’m just a little out of it or whatever.

Like, you can feel it, like, it like starts in your chest almost and you’re just like, {gulp} and like it’s intense. And even when it’s not a super intense trigger, like. You can feel that it’s a trigger. I don’t even know how to describe it more than that. 

Amanda: Well, I think most people like get that feeling of being triggered. A lot of times I talk about as being like emotionally flooded. I like literally can’t even form thoughts because the emotions are so strong within my body. 

Crystal: Yeah. And that like, I kept learning all this thought work and it was helpful, but only to a point. And I got to this point where I was like, there’s more to it than that and I can’t just talk myself out of this and I can’t just question my thoughts right now. 

Amanda: Right. 

Crystal: And when your emotions are high, your logic is low, right? So all these tools that we’re learning that are very cerebral are like out the window because literally our learning brain is shut down when we’re feeling high emotions.

Amanda: Yeah. 

Crystal: So, um, a trigger is just that it can be anything. It can come from like a text somebody said. It can literally come from your husband not saying anything that can trigger. 

So we’re walking around all day with these triggers and we’re not really understanding them. We often think that the other person’s the problem.

Like I for sure thought my son was the problem .Like it’s him and his behavior and his diagnosis and all of that. That’s the issue. Um, not understanding that I was really being triggered by all of that. So when I started to coach people around what was triggering in them and the why, I started to realize that they all had a deeper root, right? 

So if your kid’s not listening and like they come home from school and they throw their backpack on the floor and you have to like 70 times tell them to pick it up and they still don’t pick it up, and then eventually you yell, you think that what made you upset was that they threw their backpack on the floor.

And so how you kind of uncover what’s really triggering me about this is you ask yourself questions. So I would start to say like, well, what about them not listening to me bothers me? Like, why does their not listening bother me? 

And underneath that I would be like, oh, well they should listen.

Well, why should they listen? 

Well, they should listen because good parents have good kids that listen to them. And then I realized, I had this old paradigm, this subconscious belief that was passed down to me from my parents in what a parent-child relationship should look like. And that it was parents that tell their kids to do one thing and immediately their kids don’t question it. They obey immediately. 

And if I didn’t fit that parent paradigm, then there was something wrong with me as a mom, that I wasn’t a good mom. 

Amanda: Yeah. 

Crystal: And so if it had just been the not listening, I might have been frustrated, but I wouldn’t be triggered. But because there was layers deeper than that, that always goes back to our childhood and always goes back to these subconscious beliefs because our self-concept was developed in those first, you know, zero to seven years. 

So how our parents parented us has a huge part to play, and not even just the habits that they passed down, but these subconscious beliefs that they passed down. So whenever you’re feeling triggered at any point, which our kids are our best teachers, they’re our best triggers, they’re really like a mirror just shining in every little part of us to be like, okay, wait, there’s actually something deeper under the surface here. 

And moving through triggers takes more than just talking about it in your brain. 

Amanda: I 100% agree. So you talked about how, like you could just feel it in your body when you get triggered. What’s exactly happening in our body, do you know?

Crystal: So when your nervous system is getting dysregulated, it’s because it’s going in like it, it feels like something’s really unsafe. So it’s kind of going up into this like more not excited state, but there’s four different ways that you respond, fight, flight, freeze, or fawn. So when you’re feeling dysregulated, you’re gonna move into one of those.

So you’re either gonna like, shut down or you’re gonna get like, really aggressive. Fawn is more of the people pleasing, like making everybody else around me comfortable and try to make them happy. Freeze is like, I literally can’t move. Like, you’ll talk about people that have had past traumas where they were like, I don’t know why I didn’t move.

I don’t know why I didn’t get up and help my child, but it’s because your nervous system is just so overloaded. And so what’s really happening in that moment when you have a trigger is that that activation is kind of putting you into that mode. 

And the three ways that I often see people respond to triggers, and this comes from um, some shame training I took through Brené Brown, but she says that people respond to shame in three ways, and shame is usually the root of our trigger, why we’re feeling more triggered. 

Amanda: Yes. 

Crystal: Um, one is to move against: that’s when you’re like aggressive, passive aggressive, defensive. 

Another one is people pleasing: like moving towards when you’re like trying to make everybody else comfortable.

And then moving away would be the other one where you shut down and you freeze.

So now, whenever I notice myself doing those things, even if I didn’t initially notice the trigger, I’m like, Oh, okay. Shame must have been present there. There must have been something deeper than just like, my kid didn’t listen. I really thought it was just the thought, My kid didn’t listen. And then I’m like, why am I continuously coaching myself on this thought that my kids don’t listen to me?

When I was like, oh, it’s, there’s actually so much more meaning that I’m attaching to that. And there’s this whole paradigm that’s been passed down from, not even just my parents, like generationally and from culture and from media, that I’m still responding as if I believe, even though consciously I had gotten rid of that belief, subconsciously it was still affecting me because it was still there. 

Amanda: Yes. Well, and I see those same things happening in the sexual realm too, right? Like we get sexually triggered and we go into fight, flight, freeze, fawn because of that emotional dysregulation. Most of the time it’s shame in some way, in some form.

And we do one of those three things. Either we attack, we people please, or we hide away. And I see all three of those. Like I hear from men who like they try to talk about sex in some way with their spouse and their spouse like immediately gets like angry and defensive and it causes so much contention in their relationship. Eventually, a lot of times the men just back down. Because they don’t want to. 

I see women all the time that are doing duty sex, which is that people pleasing, like, this is something I just have to do. Right? 

Or they just completely repress their sexuality and hide away. And all three of those things come from shame, which is why we work through it so much.

So I love how there’s so many parallels to all these, I mean, it’s just relationships in general, right? We get triggered all the time in different ways in relationships. 

So I’ve noticed, and maybe you noticed the same thing too, that like when these triggers really hinder our communication. So talk to me a little bit about what you’ve seen and how they hinder our communication. 

Crystal: Totally, because I said like when your emotions are high, your logic is low, right? So let’s imagine your logic is high. Let’s think about a healthy relationship you have with anybody in your life.

It can be your kids, your partner, whoever. And in that moment, how do you communicate with them? And like when you think about it, you’re like, oh, well I probably look at them in the eyes. I probably like pause and reflect and like kind of listen about what they’re saying. I kind of wonder like, oh, what are my thoughts on that? And like I kind of give them some feedback or whatever. Like it’s this just natural fluid process of communication. 

I don’t have to sit and say, I literally was given a script from a PhD therapist, marriage therapist lady years ago, and it was like we were like practicing it and it was like, When you say this, it makes me feel this, and I feel like you’re saying this and is that right?

Like it was like, this whole paragraph that you like literally just like plop in your own words. And I was like, there is no way that’s gonna work. Even when I was taking this training through Brené Brown, I would come and like practice one of the like phrases we learned and my husband would immediately be like, you learned that from your training. Like, don’t use that on me. 

I’m like, okay because it’s just so inauthentic. 

Amanda: Yeah, right. 

Crystal: But like in the moments when we’re not feeling dysregulated, we have access to the authentic tools. That of just natural communication with our teens, with our tweens, with our toddlers, and with our partners. And so when we can figure out how to just bring our nervous system back down, we don’t need communication skills.

Like we don’t need somebody to teach us or coach us through that. Right? We’re just like, how do I talk to somebody? I’m like, well, how do you talk to your girlfriend on the phone when you’re calling to tell her about your day? Like, nobody needs to tell you how to do that. So I think it just really boils down to nervous system regulation, which came about because we actually weren’t taught it in the right way. 

What we’re talking about here is self-regulation. So the ability to like go up and go down in my emotions and come back to neutral. And also emotional regulation has to do with not having my behavior completely overtaken by that moment, by that emotion, that I can still control how it is that I respond.

So that’s what I mean by self-regulation. Well, it’s only taught through co-regulation. So here we are not having parents that knew how to co-regulate with us at all. Not even like, our emotions weren’t even like accepted. It was like if you blew up, you went to your room or got yelled at or spanked, or worse. Shamed for sure. 

So we grew up thinking emotions are wrong, they’re bad, we shouldn’t feel them. We feel shame when we feel emotions and so we learned the opposite of emotional regulation and so now we’re adults and we’re just like, okay, well I don’t know how to handle this. I dunno how to respond to the situation.

Really, it’s not like a, do I have parenting tools situation? It’s like a, what’s triggering me and why is half of the equation and the other half of the equation is how do I calm my nervous system so that I can get back to the tools that I do already have

Amanda: Yes. I love that so much. I think so many times we don’t communicate because we’re afraid of getting dysregulated and that shame coming up. Like people come to me all the time, like we just have so many communication issues when it comes to sex. And I’m like, you’re actually communicating just fine. It’s that you need to calm your nervous system down and regulate yourself so that you can actually employ them. 

Crystal: And I think it’s both. Like we need to learn nervous system regulation for sure because that’s not something that we learned. And also the only way we can teach our kids is co-regulation. So we don’t teach it through telling them to box breathe and telling them to look at calm down jars and like, you know, telling them what to do. It’s through our being and our energy that helps bring them back down. 

Amanda: Yes. It’s like I said with my daughter, like when I learned to self-regulate, then she learned how to self-regulate. 

Crystal: Then she learns how to do it. 

Amanda: Yes, because I was doing it for myself and then that co-regulation.

I think we do get into a little bit of trouble in relationships though with this because I think a lot of times we expect our partners to regulate us instead of learning how to regulate ourselves, right? So when we’re saying this, we’re not saying co-regulation, like expecting your partner to regulate themselves so that you can regulate yourself.

It’s learning how to regulate yourself so that you can show up to the relationship and hopefully they learn how to regulate themselves as well. 

Crystal: Yeah.

Amanda: And it definitely helps when one person’s doing it. 

Crystal: For sure. There’s a graph called the graph of co-regulation through the lifespan, and so it kind of just like gradually like increases.

So like a baby when they’re born, they’re like, everything is co-regulation for them. Even like their temperature, their food, their sleep, they’re everything. So their emotions for sure, you’re a hundred percent co-regulating with them. They have absolutely no access to do that themselves. 

As they get to be toddlers, there’s like a small fraction where they can self-regulate and then as they grow over the lifespan, it just kind of decreases and decreases. They’re able to self-regulate a little bit more. 

Around the age of 12 is when it starts to shift and they’re able to self-regulate a little bit more than co-regulate. 

And then by the time they’re adults, they’re almost all self-regulating and only need a little bit of co-regulation. So as adults, sometimes we do need co-regulation, but we shouldn’t use that as our primary method of self-regulation.

We should also be building, how do I self-regulate most of the time at least. And just like lean on co-regulation when I need to. 

Amanda: I agree with that. 

Crystal: And I think the other half of the equation is also like, why was I triggered? Because the other part of emotional regulation is that you are feeling an emotion, a level of intensity that matches the situation. 

When you’re triggered, it’s not usually that, you’re usually feeling a lot more intense emotion than it’s matching the situation. It’s like when you cut your daughter’s sandwich wrong and she loses it and screams for two hours. That’s dysregulation, right? 

We know what that looks like in adults too often, right? Because we’ve done that as well. So I think it’s simultaneously, how can I learn self-regulation skills? There’s some cool ways that you can do that and there’s this awesome nerve called the vagus nerve that can help, you can tone that nerve to actually build that as well.

Then the other half of it is also, what’s triggering me and why, and actually healing those things because it’s possible to heal it, but it’s not possible through just going into my brain. I have to go into my body as well

Amanda: Yes. So the other day I was feeling a little anxious. And I was like working on things myself and self-regulating, but I just asked my husband, can I have a hug? Because I know that hugging is like one of the best ways to co-regulate. Like I wasn’t expecting him to completely calm me down, but that co-regulation … And so he hugged me and he’s really funny. He doesn’t do it for very long and I’m still like, holding on until I was completely regulated and I was like, why do you like stop hugging me? And he’s like, well, cause I gave you a nice firm hug and showed you how much I love you. And then I was done and I was like, but I wasn’t done. Like, I’m hugging you to help regulate me. Like I’m working on it myself, but like I sometimes really like it to help calm my nervous system. 

Crystal: Totally. I think for people that are listening, like it’s normal to use co regulation too. But you just also want to be building skills to self regulate because what happens when your husband’s not there? 

Amanda: Yes, exactly. 

Crystal: Or it’s your husband that’s triggering you because you can’t be calmed down by the thing that’s triggering you.

Amanda: Well, and that’s exactly one of the issues with sex is like when the person that you best co-regulate with is the one that’s triggering you, then you have to figure out other ways to regulate yourself. And I see that all the time. We talk about that all the time. So all of this stuff like, figuring out how to calm down the nervous system as well as like emotional regulation and figuring out those triggers and the belief systems and everything behind it is all stuff that we do in the membership.

Crystal: And when I think of self-regulation, I think of it kind of twofold. Like there’s things that can help me bring myself back down to calm. But I can also work on toning my vagus nerve. So that’s the one that like helps you regulate your nervous system.

And so that’s why toddlers scream because it stimulates that part. And so that can be things like humming or cold plunging or even putting your hands in an ice bath. Um, it can be meditation. Like there’s things that can help so that over time you notice that you’re actually building your response so that you can respond in a better way over time. 

So I think it’s both of those. I’m always working, even myself, like we’re still human, we still have triggers. I’m always working on both of those. Like how can I calm my nervous system and practice these skills and then uncover like, why the heck I was so emotionally triggered in that moment? Because it really wasn’t my kid just throwing their backpack on the floor. 

Amanda: Yes, I know. We actually have an entire class about all the different regulation techniques that you can use within the membership. So that’s awesome that you brought that up. 

So I know a lot of this, the triggering comes from us not feeling physically or emotionally safe, right? So talk to me a little bit about how connection helps with that. 

Crystal: Yeah, that’s such a good question. So when we were younger, what we actually needed was a secure attachment. And a secure attachment means connection, like being seen and heard and valued and validated, right? Like that’s what we needed.

Well, that’s what we needed to build all of these skills that we’re talking about, self-regulation and emotional resiliency and all of that. We often didn’t grow up in homes where that was like present. Like we didn’t actually feel physically or emotionally safe or one or the other or both.

And so, we created these kind of attachment styles that people talk about and for a long time people were like, when you have your attachment style, you’re just like in it and you can’t change it. I don’t think that’s the belief anymore. 

Amanda: I don’t think so. 

Crystal: I’m pretty sure most people know that they can. Our brains are neuroplastic and we can change things. 

And so I think that as an adult, it’s kind of uncovering like, um, why am I not being valued and seen and heard in this moment? And it’s not necessarily about making my partner do that for me, but how can I do that for me in the moment?

I call it self mothering. Other people call it inner child healing. But it’s basically the process of giving myself what I did need back then. So the trigger’s going to come from one of those beliefs back then and then you’re going to acknowledge how is this triggering me right now and why? And like where did it come from? What is kind of that root belief and what did I need back then? What do I need right now and how can I do this whole process internally myself? 

You can use co-regulation for sure. I mean, therapists and coaches and partners and all of that. Best friends are great for it. But in the end, we really want to become our own regulator. We want to become our own healer. We want to become our own mother in that self mothering process. 

And as we do that more internally, we’ll feel that from our partner. Even if they don’t do any of that work, we’re still going to feel seen and heard and valued. Because what we really want is that for ourselves.

Amanda: Absolutely. I love that so much. I think so many people have kind of gotten this idea that our partner is supposed to provide all of that for us, right? Which gets us into all sorts of issues in our relationships.

Crystal: Well, I think that’s what marriage therapists are often saying too, right?

My friends are going to marriage therapy right now, and it’s like very like back and forth, like, what can you do for me so that I can feel …

Amanda: Yes. I know we talk, I talk to clients all the time, like, and especially ones that have been to marriage therapy. They’re like, okay, you know, list all of your needs.

Okay, partner, you meet those. Okay, list all of your needs. Now, okay, now partner. You meet those. And then like they do it, but then they don’t feel what they thought they would feel by it because they’re like, well, are you doing this because you love me? Or are you doing it…

Crystal: Sure doesn’t feel authentic.

Amanda: But when we learn how to do a lot of those things for ourselves, then it is authentic and it does heal that part of us. So then we can be more securely attached to our partner. 

Crystal: Yeah, it really is like, um, that self-concept that was developed between zero and seven, we’re carrying it around like this lens that we’re like looking at everything through. So when we talk about our thoughts and our feelings and thought work, it’s being filtered through this lens of how we view ourselves in the first place. 

Amanda: Yes. 

Crystal: And so we’re continuously just doing thought work on the same thing, it probably isn’t those thoughts that are the problem. It’s probably the lens that we’re viewing ourselves. And so it doesn’t have to do with our partner and what they need to change. It has to do with what is triggering me and why, and what beliefs have I carried about myself from childhood and how can I release those? Um, because they’re all false beliefs, not all of them.

I’m sure there’s some good beliefs you brought from childhood also.

Amanda: Yeah. Probably some.

Crystal: Kind of hang on to the ones that you wanna keep and release the ones that you don’t and support yourself in those moments in which, that’s why I love the term self mothering because it’s just like thinking of this like Divine Mother of like, how would that kind of being, how would that energy take care of me and how would they have when I was little and felt this way? And how can I feel that right now? 

Amanda: Yeah, that’s actually one of the exercises I have people go through at my Retreats. You and I were talking about my Retreats before we hit record, of what you think your Divine Mother would say to you? 

Crystal: Yes. 

Amanda: And I usually just have people write it down and I tell them the best thing to do is for them to record it, like voice record it, and then listen back to it over and over. But like, we can’t really do that at a Retreat, so just like, write it down and then record it when they get home. And literally it is one of the most emotional things for most women. 

I know when I’ve done it for myself, I like bawled like a baby through the entire thing because I have a very tenuous relationship with my own mother and like all of these things that I wish that she would say to me and that I need to say to myself, it just brings it all out. 

Crystal: Well, and our relationship with our parents really affects us right now. Like from what it was like when we were younger. And also connects with our relationship with God as well, because we usually view that as our relationship with our parents and whatever. It’s all just kind of interconnected.

And so the best place to stop to start really is like with us. And I do a similar, um, I do a guided meditation through that where it’s like a, kind of like a meeting with your Divine Mother and what they would say to you. And it again, like every time, like everyone’s just like bawling and processing and I love doing it and I love feeling that way. And I do it on myself regularly too because I think that, um, when all of this that we’ve been talking about, this whole episode, It’s not a lot of the like thought work. There is some there, but a lot of it is also getting into your body, right? Which is what we’ve been talking about.

Like we need to do something to get into our body, to really like settle it and to feel into it. Because  when you’re co-regulating with someone, it’s not them saying things to you, it’s not them helping you work through breathing exercises. It’s like their presence and their energy. And that’s how, that’s how we want to be for ourselves. It’s kind of like we’re learning how to co-regulate with our own inner bestie. It’s like back and forth, like ourselves doing it inside us. 

Amanda: Yes. Yes. Well, I have loved this conversation so much, Crystal. Can you tell my audience where they can find you and learn more about you? 

Crystal: Yeah, for sure. So, I am on Instagram @the.parenting.coach

I’m the host of the Parenting Coach podcast and I give lots of tips around this modality of parenting, conscious parenting, connection based parenting. 

And, um, my website is coachcrystal.ca. So you can find me all the places, and I just created a custom feelings wheel so that you can get started on this process of like kind of pausing and creating more pause between when you react to your kids so you can kind of think a little bit more and sitting with your feelings.

And so if you go to coachcrystal.ca/wheel, you can download a feelings wheel and get started. And so really the tiny little things that actually end up making such a big difference. You’re like, how could this make a difference? And it really makes the biggest difference. 

Amanda: It really, really does. Well, thank you so much for being here with me today. 

Crystal: Thank you. Thanks for having me. 

Amanda: Wasn’t that awesome? I hope you learned something and got some insight into why you get triggered and maybe some ideas of how you can fix it. Remember, these are things that we address in my coaching programs, so if you need some extra help, you know where to go.

Alright, thank you so much for joining me this week and we’ll see you next week. Bye-bye.

Leave a Reply