The Autoimmune Wellness Podcast Episode #10: Step 5: Breathe – Our Stories

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Welcome to The Autoimmune Wellness Podcast Season 1! We’ve created this podcast as a free resource to accompany our upcoming book, The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook: A DIY Guide to Living Well with Chronic Illness.

Episode #10: Step 5: Breathe – Our Stories is an episode all about our real experiences with stress, from how things look when stress is seriously mismanaged to the impact of our ideal routines. We talk about how autoimmune disease itself is a source of stress that cannot be changed and how we’ve approached that, as well as “good” stress like parenting or running a successful business. We both share the things we do that are most effective in our efforts to control stress and give tips for you to try out in your own stress management process. This episode is a great match for listeners who want to know if we are zen masters or real human beings!

If you aren’t sure if Step 5: Breathe, needs your attention, check out the “Where Are You on the Stress-Management Spectrum” self-test in Chapter 5. This test will help you identify if this is a low, moderate, or high-priority area. Moderate and high-priority scores means this area needs your action.

How to listen:

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If you’d like to download the .mp3, you can do so by following this link.

If you’d like to play the episode right now in your browser, use the player below!


Show Notes:

  • 0:00 Intro
  • 1:51 The importance of Breathe
  • 2:23 Angie shares what happens when she mismanages stress
  • 4:03 Mickey shares what happens when she mismanages stress
  • 5:30 Physical illness as the result of run-away stress
    • Angie shares about coming down with Mono
  • 9:13 Parenting and other sources of “good” stress
  • 11:23 Mickey’s stress management routine
  • 14:51 Angie’s stress management routine
    • Prioritization
    • Scheduling
    • Connecting
    • Practicing Gratitude (public expressions of appreciation)
    • Praying/Meditating
  • 17:23 Angie talks about finding ways to disconnect even as a business owner
    • Taking personal breaks results in professional rewards
  • 19:06 Mickey talks about finding great joy in work with boundaries
  • 20:04 “The Friday Feeling” (you guys know what we’re talking about!)
  • 21:41 Specific stress management steps mentioned in The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook that have meant to most for us
    • Identify
    • Eliminate
    • Reframe (and the positive impact on dealing with autoimmune disease)
  • 24:56 The power of reframing for managing stress that cannot be changed
  • 25:24 Self-care is not selfish (specifically for mothers)
    • Angie discusses “The Plane Crash” scenario
  • 27:40 Daily/Weekly/Monthly/Yearly habits to cultivate for stress management
  • 32:00 The importance of vacations, both short and longer breaks
  • 35:00 Your homework for Step 5, Breathe!
    • Try out the “Mindfulness Tips” in Chapter 5 of The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook to try out ways to bring your mind into greater awareness of your present experiences.
  • 35:21 Outro

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The Autoimmune Wellness Podcast is a complimentary resource to our forthcoming book, The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook: A DIY Guide to Living Well with Chronic Illness. Support us in our mission to revolutionize how autoimmune disease is viewed and treated by pre-ordering your copy today!

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Check out the previous episode, Episode #9: Dan Pardi on Sleeping Optimally, and the next episode, Episode #11: Jason Handler, Lac. on Stress Management. For the full podcast archive, click here.

About Angie Alt

Angie Alt is a co-founder here at Autoimmune Wellness. She helps others take charge of their health the same way she took charge of her own after suffering with celiac disease, endometriosis, and lichen sclerosis; one nutritious step at a time. Her special focus is on mixing “data with soul” by looking at the honest heart of the autoimmune journey (which sometimes includes curse words). She is a Certified Health Coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Nutritional Therapy Consultant through The Nutritional Therapy Association and author of The Alternative Autoimmune Cookbook: Eating for All Phases of the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol and The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook. You can also find her on Instagram.


  • Karen Kelly says

    Hello from Melbourne Australia, You girls are awesome. I’ve only listened to 2 of your podcasts so far but relate to everything, I’m often smiling or laughing when listening…I think Mickey and I are very alike????
    Keep up the great work.
    With love, Karen x

    • Angie Alt says

      Thanks so much for listening Karen! We appreciate those that are laughing along w/ us!

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Thanks for listening Karen!

  • […] out the previous episode, Episode #10: Step 5: Breathe – Our Stories, and the next episode, Episode #12: Step 6: Move – Our Stories. For the full podcast archive, […]

  • Meredith says

    Hi Ladies,
    I am loving your podcast :). Thank you sooooo much. You two have an amazing gift for sharing extremely helpful knowledge about how we can heal ourselves. After listening to this episode, Mickey’s idea of calendaring vs. a to-do list really stuck with me. I’m a to-do list person through and through, but I’m also certain it is responsible for A LOT or even MOST of my stress :(. Mickey, I’m wondering if you could share a bit on how you made the transition and what your method of calendaring looks like. Thanks again!

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Hey Meredith! I use Apple’s iCal because it syncs between all of my devices. Literally everything I do is in my calendar – if I think of a “to-do” item, I schedule it immediately. If I don’t have time in the week, I have to reevaluate my commitments and either schedule the new task to a different week or bump something in the current week. If it is something someone is asking me to do, I can confidently say I don’t have time. If I want to have “unstructured time” that is not planned, I block it out in the calendar so that it doesn’t get eaten up by other tasks. If I’m working on a long term project, I just set up a recurring event for X hours a week so that that time is always dedicated in the calendar. And, of course, I am intimately familiar with the ebbs and flows of autoimmune disease, so I always leave ample “buffer” time in my schedule should I not be feeling well.

      Not having a to-do list has totally changed my anxiety levels especially as it relates to working for myself. As I’ve perfected this, I have learned how to “underschedule” myself more and more, leaving me more time to focus on cooking and taking care of myself. Not having that “list” that is never ending weighing over my head has changed a lot!

      Hope it helps you Meredith!

      • Meredith says

        Thanks, Mickey. Very helpful. Yes, my list is my nemesis, I’m certain of it. A while back, I did try switching over to calendaring, but ended up basically just continuing to load up each day with way too many to-do items and consistently still feeling overwhelmed. You’ve inspired me to try it again! More than anything, I think it is about changing my mindset – being able to hold back from adding something to the day when I know deep down it’s impractical and “contraindicated” for my health :). I have a 2-yr-old and work 30 hrs. a week, so the idea of scheduling unstructured time as well as “underscheduling” is something I’ll need to work toward with time. Perhaps at some point, you ladies could invite a life-organizer-type person on to your show?!

        • Mickey Trescott says

          I totally get it! There was a definite transition time when I was still unrealistic about what I could accomplish in a day. Chronic overscheduling has lead to almost chronic underscheduling, meaning, I leave lots of “buffer time” in my day (almost always too much), and very carefully consider if I can take on the time requirements of a new project before saying yes. It has meant a major reduction in stress for me, as well as the ability to be as detail-oriented and present as I like with my work. I don’t have a kid though, so I know that would further complicate things! Wishing you luck Meredith!

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