Aging in Style with Lori Williams
Aging in Style with Lori Williams

Episode · 1 month ago

084. The Anxiety Sisters: a safe space to talk about anxiety


Anxiety can happen to anyone, regardless of age.

However, it can show up in different ways, in different intensities, at different times, among different genders. The conversation around anxiety has also become much more open in newer generations than in the past.

Still, anxiety isn’t discussed often enough – particularly in senior circles. That’s why Senior Living Expert Lori Williams invites ‘The Anxiety Sisters’ Abbe Greenberg and Maggie Sarachek to share their experiences. Authors of The Anxiety Sisters Survival Guide, they’re trained counselors, mental health advocates and anxiety sufferers themselves, with an online community of more than 220,000 in 200+ countries.

Together they discuss:

· Their journey with anxiety and how they became ‘The Anxiety Sisters’

· The anxiety spectrum and different ways it manifests

· Causes of anxiety

· Anxiety management techniques

And more.

Topics discussed:

- Anxiety / Generalized Anxiety Disorder

- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

- Medication and SSRIs

- Panic attack tips

- Hoarding

- Anxiety causes

- Anxiety and aging

Takeaways from this episode:

- The stress ‘fight, flight, or freeze’ response is the biological cause of anxiety. Hormones, medications, dementia, isolation and genetics can also impact anxiety levels.

- Though women are supposedly 2x as likely to suffer from anxiety, men may not report (or understand) their anxiety, or they redirect their anxiety as anger / rage since it’s more socially accepted.

- Instead of trying to avoid anxiety altogether, it’s helpful to prepare for it. Carry a bag with different items inside to calm your senses, like lavender fabric, photos, or medication. That way you're ready if a panic attack strikes.

- Be aware of how antidepressants or SSRIs can interact with any drugs you’re taking, and discuss health concerns and effects with your doctor.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Anxiety Sisters' Survival Guide:

The Spin Cycle with The Anxiety Sisters Podcast:

The Anxiety Sisters' Website:

To suggest a topic, be a guest or to support the podcast, please email

For more senior resources and to sign up to the newsletter, please visit:

Nobody talked about how anxiety felt or how depression felt, and so we know, for people who are seniors even more than for our generation, I think it was something very whispered about. Possibly, but not so. When you come to like our facebook page or you come to one of our seminars or our podcasts, you hear other people who have the exact same experiences that you do. And then people say to us, Oh, I thought this was just me. Realize this was the thing or their particular symptom. I didn't know that other people couldn't drive on the freeway or that other people were afraid of medical appointments. I thought it was just like me being crazy, quote unquote, and then you realize like, oh no, there's so many people out there feeling the exact same way. That alone takes away a lot of the shame. The content available in this podcast and on Mary William Senior Servicescom has been produced for educational purposes only. The contents of any episodes do not constitute medical, legal or professional advice, do not reflect the opinions of this company, any of its parent companies or affiliates and do not create any type of professional relationship between the audience guest and the host. No person listening to this podcast should act or refrain from acting on the basis of the content of a podcast without first seeking appropriate professional advice and or counseling. Nor shall the information be used as a substitute for professional advice and or canceling. Worry. William Senior, Sir Viss LLC, expressly denies any and all liability relating to any actions taken or not taken based on any or all contents of this podcast. Welcome to aging in style with me, Laurie Williams. I'm an optimist by nature and I believe you can follow your dreams at any age. My grandmother's journey with dementia ignited a passion in me to work with seniors. I've spent the past thirteen years learning about seniors and aging, and my mid S, I followed my own dream and found it my company, where I use my expertise to help seniors locate housing and resources. On this podcast, we cover all aspects of aging. Join US each week to meet senior living experts and inspirational seniors who are following their dreams. The fact is, we're all aging, so why not do it in style. I welcome to today's episode of aging and style. Today we are talking about a topic that affects so many people, no matter what your age, whether you are a preteen, a team, middle aged older person. It affects all of us and its anxiety. And we have two amazing guests on today. They actually wrote the book the anxiety sisters. They are the anxiety sisters and their names are Abby Greenberg and Maggie Sarah Check. They are trained counselors, mental health advocates, researchers, educators, writers and longtime anxiety suffers. In two thousand and seventeen they launched their online community, which now includes more than two hundred and twenty thousand people in two hundred plus countries and territories. That's amazing. Together, the anxiety sisters write an award winning blog and host a podcast called the spin cycle. Having learned to live happily with anxiety, they spend their time coaching anxiety suffers and conducting workshops and retreats all over the US. Their new book, the anxiety sister survival guide, was released by Penguin Random House in September of two thousand and twenty one. So welcome thank you for joining us today. Oh, we're delighted to be here. Thanks for having us. Sure, so, why don't we just get started? How did you become the anxiety sisters? Well, we met in college and both of us were suffering with anxiety, but we did not have a name for the symptoms we were feeling and we stayed very close graduated from college. You know, stayed very much in each other's lives and right when we graduated from college, I would say, the anxiety started to hit new levels for each of us at different...

...times, but it really started to become a problem in our daily functioning. So we like to call that decade our decade of the s where we went anyone who would take our money. We went to see you, the neurologists, the psychiatrists, the past life regressionists, the acupuncture the aroma therapist, whoever was around and wanted to take some money, and a lot of these people were very helpful for us and and we started to understand a little bit more that we had anxiety and we also started to understand that that we had a lifeline in each other. You know, we were each other's biggest supporters and lifeline in the person. You know, you can always call your friend and say I'm really struggling today, and together with therapy and medication and learning a lot more about anxiety, our connection is really something that helped us tremendously, and so that really helped us and we realized that we were the two of us, but we wanted to help other people find community and understand this whole idea of anxiety in a lot deeper way. HMM. Absolutely, and I know there's there's generalized anxiety, right, and then there's like a situational anxiety. So, like, can you kind of speak to that a little bit? The different types of anxiety? Sure, there's a lot. Yeah, on the anxiety spectrum we maxine. It is a continuum. So you know, if you're a human being, you've had anxiety, right. It's part of the human experience. Pretty much everybody knows what it feels like to have those butterflies in your stomach or even a lot of us now are unfortunate enough to understand a panic attack. But you can have a panic attack once or twice just being a human being and not necessarily being anxiety sufferer. So there's a continuum. You know, you can have mild anxiety. You can have moderate generalized anxiety, where you weary a lot, you find yourself catastrophizing, maybe you obsess a little bit about certain things, it's hard to let things go and that maybe you have panic disorder, which is getting a little more on the severe end of things, where you know you're functioning is being disrupted, because anyone who's had a panic attack knows that you would rather do anything other than have another one of those. There are just horrendous and you're having them frequently, it can really interrupt your ability to function. But then there's also obsessive compulsive disorder, which is something I'm diagnosed with, and that's on the anxiety spectrum. That's I would say that's the more more severe form of anxiety in the sense that it can really interrupt your functioning, or any anxiety really can, if it gets to the point where it's in control of your decision and it's deciding who you'll see, where you will go, what you'll do. But also phobias, something that very specific, something can trigger you into panic symptoms. That is also considered anxiety. Hoarding is a type of anxiety. Is that okay? Yeah, a lot of things that fall under the rubric of anxiety. So we really look at it as a continuum and we really only see it as a problem when it shrinks your world and starts to spend its time in the driver's seat and you really are losing your ability to make your own choices. HMM, and I mean with our senior population, we do see that that happens inter see youse. You mentioned hoarding, because that is something people will call me and they're concerned about and an older family member who is hoarding. So that is a form of anxiety. So and they maybe never did that when they were younger, but as they've gotten older they've started hoarding. So that's I think that's helpful to know what causes anxiety. I mean I'm sure there's several things that cause it, but what are some, I guess, typical causes of it? My husband. Oh, no, I mean sorry, that's just today. Normally I in...

...yeah, yeah, it's money's inherited. You get it from your kids. In terms of biologically or using neuroscience, anxiety is triggered in your brain. It's a combination of regions, but the main culprits are a part of your brain called the Amygdala, which is the seat of our fear center, and that, in conjunction with the hypothalamus and a couple other spots in the brain, they get together and they decide whether or not you're in danger. And so when we feel anxiety for a legitimate reason, less to say, like true anxiety, you see a snake and that would have more broke anxiety and anybody is that poisonous, is my life at risk. So then you're a Migdala, which is your body's lookout system, is going to yell to the Hypothalamus, alert, alert, put the body in fight or flight right now, and so that's when we get signal sent to our adrenal glands to send off the adrenaline in the cortisol, and our digestion shuts down and our big muscle groups start to get blood pumped to them to get either flee or fight an enemy. Everything happens in pursuit of survival. And so that stress response, that fight or flight, is the biological cause of anxiety. What anxiety can be caused by any number of things. I mean, we wrote a chapter and at they're probably at least thirty or thirty five things listed in that chapter. We always say that trying to figure out exactly what caused your anxiety may be a bit like standing in an anthill and wondering which one bit you. Doesn't mean your hormone changes, if you're a woman particularly, can cause anxiety. So that happens in all the different age stages of life when your hormones are in flux. HMM. Medications we take can cause our anxiety. Dementia can cause anxiety. Being isolated can cause anxiety. There's just so many genetics can cause things either's so many, many things. Grief and loss, absolutely losing either people close to you, friends, family, but also losing your capacity to be as independent as you wants work can be a very anxiety provoking experience. And because we talk so little about the process of aging and both the good things and the really difficult things, we really don't talk about it publicly very much. I think that sense of sometime shame with the aging process, I think the sense of not always understanding what's happening to us or what's happening to people that we love, all of that can really contribute to the anxiety that that we start to get m absolutely and as we age. I mean they're just there is loss that comes in, you know, we retire. That's loss of what we did all of our life and especially for men, and who they were all their lives, and then loss of espouse, loss of parents, loss of you know, so much as we age. That brings me to the topic. What about men and stress and anxiety? Because we talk about women all the time and about anxiety. You always hear that, but what about men? Well, we should just say that even though we are the anxiety sisters and our community is called the anxiety sisterhood, thirty percent of our people identify as male. So we are for all genders and all types of anxiety. It's just that our experience is sort of as soul sisters, and so we thought that was more catchy than, let's say, anxiety community. Yes, but really we work with men as well, and there's this thought out there that women are twice as likely to suffer from anxiety disorder as men, and at Nice and I don't know if we think it's quite that despair it in the sense that a lot of men don't necessarily report their anxiety as an experience of anxiety. They don't necessarily think of it that way and they're not as likely to be able to, you know, to report the anxiety that they're feeling so that it doesn't get counted per se as much in the research and the literature. A lot of study participants...

...are a female. These are people who volunteer for the such studies. So it's a little skewed, but women certainly are more likely to experience anxiety that than I don't know. We don't know that it's twice as likely because, you know, for some men we have lots of anxiety brothers who will say things to us like, you know, I Geez, I didn't even know I had anxiety until I met y'all. I'm realizing that the things you're talking about. Oh yeah, I do feel that, but you know, I just figured I come home from work, going to need a couple of drinks to settle down. I didn't think of that as having anxiety, you know. So men do experience it, may be in different ways and certainly there's different sociological causes for men and for women. You know, are we're still our western culture is very achievement based for men. So there's solutely external pressure for achievement and being on top all the time, being a breadwinner. It's still very much alive and well. Hm, I think that that causes a lot of anxiety for men. Absolutely as well. I'm definitely, and I mean man. Maybe they don't they didn't understand that term or they weren't calling it that, like you said, that they came home and their self medicating with a couple of drinks and then they feel better. But but it's good that they have the label now. They know what it is, they know how to label that feeling that it is anxiety. Is What that is. A lot of men who say, Oh, I don't have anxiety, but you know, I've trouble sleeping, so I take a little out of an I go to sleep everynxiety. Okay, we get it. Insomnia and is a huge symptom a particularly in men of my I also think that men sometimes are looked at as certain men have a lot of rage or a lot of anger, even if they're not abusive or hurting anyone or anything like that, but they tend to because that's so much more acceptable in a man to show anger. And often, often that anger is very much connected with anxiety, because we have fight, flight or freeze and that fight response is one of the ways that that it's still socially acceptable from men to respond to situations is sort of with that defensiveness or aggressiveness. That's very interesting. So as anger could actually be their anxiety. Absolutely, or women do. Yeah, yeah, we have a lot of women who report that too. It's just in a woman when we see anger. Still in this society it's less socially acceptable for a woman to be angry. We're supposed to be nice, you know, but definitely a lot of women also say they're very irritable, you know, are they're snapping at everyone. Men, you know, while they're not allowed often to say feeling anxious, they can become sort of angry and rageful and that's the way their fight, their fight response comes out. Very interesting. So what are your favorite anxiety management techniques? What can people do to kind of manage these feelings are having? So one thing we want to say is that depends sort of what the feelings are. You know, panic is one thing and generalize anxiety is another and OCD is another. So it's sort of depends where it's coming from. But one thing for people who have panic is that on our website. We have a panic button and it's on the top of the website and it's abby. Basically, you press it, an abbey kind of tops you through your panic attack. That's cool recording and we don't know who presses it. We just know it's pressed about one five hundred times a week. Is that right? It's like it's quite a lot. I might be on me. Yeah, there's my teenager press it. We know people of all ages, including elderly people, who find it really helpful. That's one thing we tell people when you have panic. But we also have so many other techniques depending on what's going on. You want to talk...

...about the Spin Kit Abbey? Sure, sure, so. We as anxiety sisters, we believe in prepping for anxiety. We think. Well, we know that when you prepare for anxiety you take away a lot of its power to surprise you. Right, because it's the sneak attacks that create all that intensity. Right, you're standing on the grocery store, you're minding your own business and suddenly you feel like your heart is racing, where you can't catch your breath, or you're getting a high, you're starting to itch. Why is that? And you're suddenly saying, wait, a minute, what's wrong with me? I'm standing here a grocery store, there's nothing wrong. Oh my God, this must be I must have something wrong with me. I better call the doctor. And that then increases the symptoms. What we pay attention to grows so MAG and I are big fans of number one, not trying to stop anxiety, and that sounds really counterintuitive, but what we pay attention to grow. So if we try to say, if we put all our energy into I'm going to stop this anxiety, this panic, then guess what? It intensifies. It says, oh no, you don't, I'm sticking around, because don't forget, your brain is trying to keep you safe. Right, all evolutionary. Your brain is trying to help you survive. It doesn't want you to be able to think about anything else. So if you try to fight that, your brain is going to win. Your brain is going to outsmart you and keep you thinking about it and create even other symptoms that are distracting you and you'll just be spinning in circles. We we liken it to a riptide. Right, you can't and st it, you have to swim with it. That said, there's a lot you can do while you're experiencing anxiety to make the experience less awful. Right there ways to help yourself manage and kind of ride that wave through the anxiety, and one of our favorite methods is something we call a spin kit. Very simply, a spin kit is a portable first aid kit for anxiety and it will be different for everybody because different things work for different people. But basically we had a cap getting a bag or a box or something portable and putting in it three types of things, things that will calm your senses. So maybe, like for me, my sense of smell gets a little crazy when I'm anxious, so I love to have a piece of fabric that has lavender on it, or I often, you know, with my mask that I wear when I go out. I will put lavender on it so I'm smelling the lavender. That's very calming to me. A lot of people love the smell of orange or Burg a mot or CAM emeal. There's all different sense. Whatever works for you. Some people are very tactic. They love something something soft to stroke, or worry stone in their hands that they can play with or a fidget spinner, something to keep their hands busy and and, you know, and to occupy them. Mags keeps her crochet with her wherever she goes so she can just kind of pull out her needles and it's just enough of a distraction that she's not trying to fight her anxiety, but she's given her brain something else to focus on to and that's going to take the intensity down. So it's like distracting, is what you're saying. Is Distracting your brain. Basically I'm southing. You're also symptom symptom relief. So if you're like mags and you're a stomach anxiety person like that's where you feel it mostly. She carries toms and gas x and mint tea that will settle her stomach. If you're an anxiety sister who takes a medication, like a sedative, that you would always carry out with you so that you're ready if you get headaches with your anxiety, would want to carry Eccandrin or tile on or whatever you take for your headaches, etc. And also some things to ground you, to keep your feet on the ground, because sometimes when we're experiencing anxiety, when we're quote unquote, spinning. HMM. He don't feel connected to the here and now. We're kind of off somewhere right we're floating a bit, and so the grounding things put your feet from only on the ground and keep you in the present, such as, let's say, a very strong mint like an altoid or tic n right. That sharpness is going to keep you right here in the present. We're big advocates of everyone having a spin kit. And what would be in Maggie spink it will be different from what's in my spin kit. Like I keep pictures of my cats and my spin kit because that very soothing to me. If Maggie had pictures of my cats and her spin t spin kit, she would panic more. have different things, but the ideas that you are prepared for the anxiety or the panic when it shows up. What's not going to happen is you're not going to say,...

Gee, I wonder why that's happening. You're gonna say, Oh, I know why this is happening and luckily I have my spin kit. I think that is an amazing idea and I'm going to make my own spin kid and one for my daughter to spink parties. Yeah, fun, yeah, help people. It's important to make your own spin kit because, like abby said, something that may help you may not help your daughter. Right. So exactly? You know, we've put stuff in our spin kit and taken it out because we realize, well, that that thing wasn't that helpful for me, so let me put something else in. You know, each person is a little bit different in terms of their senses and what feels good and what distracts them enough but doesn't require too much concentration. Okay, wonderful. What do y'all think about medication if you get to the point that you need anxiety meds? I mean I know there's all kinds of things out there for anxiety and depression, but what are your thoughts on that? What we always say is that we are not pro big Pharma, but we're anti giving your life over to anxiety. So sometimes that includes medication for people. Now, medication comes with some very serious side effects at times, and sometimes we call them front and center effects because they don't feel like they're on the side. We both take an SSRIRI. We've both, at different times, have taken Benzo diazepans other kinds of medication. I think the thing that we think about medication is that know what you're taking. Know the interactions, especially as you get older, with other types of medications. You know, we've run into more than one person who was on a medication and didn't realize that their antidepressant, their ssur, could interact with it, you know, and they're doctored and catch it either. So you know, we have a lot of things to be aware of and a lot of questions to ask your doctor. So don't let someone just sort of throw you a prescription and say try this, like you want to know what that is, why they're giving this to you and all these possible effects, especially when you have other health concerns to HMM. I think that's really good advice and I know and reading through your book, you mentioned some different different ways and I've had people talk about different things like acupuncture, meditation, and I feel like some things work for different people and for me meditation works very well for me to kind of calm my anxiety, but it, you know, may not work for my daughter for someone else. So are there other techniques, any like that that you advise or can recommend? When magazine I set out to write a book, We said that we were going to write a book that was not prescriptive, because when we were looking for help in the bookstore, and that's the first place we went, we got a little panicky because a lot of the books on the market, who are written by really smart folks, are very should oriented. They tell you what you should be doing or you shouldn't be doing, and coming from the suffer's perspective, that can feel a little bit shaming, hmm. And that's another I just want to add to Maggie statement about the medication. You know, we don't believe anyone should be shamed for their treatment. What absolute treatment they are using to make their life better so that they are have agency and they can make their own decisions. If it's medication, fantastic, if it's not medication, fantastic. Whatever works. But when we set out to write a book, we know one size doesn't fit all. I remember I had panic disorder and one of the books I picked up said, you know, number one, under no circumstances should you take medication. Well, I have to say, and Max also agrees with me, having had quite a few panic attacks herself, that if you have panic disorder where they are showing up all the time, like on a daily based, US it's impressive...

...if you can manage to work that out without any medication, even on the temp but even on a temporary basis, because that you know to start using techniques like meditation. It's you can't do it if you're in the middle of a panic attack. You have to have some way of getting out of that cycle. For me that required medication and then I was able to start using other techniques. But you know, hearing some of that you shouldn't be taking medication, my first thought was up, I'm screwing up. I'm taking medication to try to control my panic. Clearly I'm not doing it right. And Max and I say, you know, you can live very happily with anxiety, just not with blame and shame. MMM. So we literally have hundreds of techniques in the book because one size doesn't fit all. It might not even fit the same person two days in a row. So yes, we believe in meditation, we believe in breathing, we believe in acupuncture, but also Tai Chi and walking in nature and communing with animals and gardening and floating therapy and Himalayan salt lamps for some people are really helpful. I mean other words, there's so much that you can do to help manage your anxiety at we don't want ever to say this is what you should do or here's the thing that's going to work for everybody, because we just don't believe that's true. Hmm, I think that's excellent. One of the things we try to do in our book is when we were writing it, we put ourselves in the position that we were once in which both of us had different periods where we could barely leave the house. I would say. So we when we try to think about something, we said, okay, so you know, we know it's great to get out side and walk in nature. It's like one of the things that both of us do that is most healing for us and most helpful. But when we can get out of the house, that walk in nature seems very nice, but it's not something you're going to be doing. So what else can someone do in that situation? Will they can bring plants into the house. They can have plants in their house. That that gives you some of that. You can have pictures of nature, believe it are not, or look out your window at nature. The research has shown so many different things you can do, depending on what level you are at with your anxiety. So that's really important to us too, because we know there's economic restrictions, there's physical restrictions, there's, you know, transportation restriction. So we have we have things you can do right now for yourself or things you know that, if you are able to, you can go and try. Hmm, I think those are great tips, especially if we have a homebound senior who, yes, you know, maybe they're bed ridden or maybe they just really they can't leave the house, they don't have transportation or vision issues anything like that. But you can do those things. Like you said, have a plant, maybe a Roman therapy, pictures, any other things you can think of for our seniors. So many we have so many techniques from, you know, different small breathing techniques. Now some people we know what I was at the height of my panic. Any kind of breathing technique made me hyperventtal late. So we're not saying that's good for anyone everyone, but we have things you can do with water, putting it on your forearms or your wrists. Cold water is often incredibly helpful for panic. So we have that level of ideas that need. Crochet. A lot of people liked or doing crafts. That can be incredibly helpful, creativity of all types. So we really try to make sure that we've covered things from what you can do if you're really homebound for whatever reason, and many, many people with severe anxiety are homebound, even if they are physically healthy. Excellent tips. Okay, I love your book and I love how it's written. It's very easy to read and I haven't read every page of it, but I was just, you know, kind of scanning through because I just got the book and I'm it's my goals to read it this weekend because I saw so many helpful tips for myself, for my daughter. You know, we...

...both have some anxiety. Hers is a little more extreme than mine and I know she doesn't mind me talking about it. I called her right before this and told her, Hey, I'm interviewing these ladies and I'm super excited for you to listen to this and read the book. But it's very easy to read, like I mean they just opened it to, I mean journaling. That is it. That's an excellent tip to right there. Crocheting, knitting, all these different things, all these anxiety management gems, as this chapter is so if people want to buy book which, if you have anxiety, you definitely need to go buy this book. Where can they find it? Anywhere you buy books? Okay, it online. You can get it an independent bookstore, target Walmart, farms and noble, Amazon, wherever excellent is called. The anxiety sisters survival guide will put a link to it also, and then tell us about your podcast. It's called a spin cycle with the anxiety sisters. We put out two episodes a month and we alternate between having guests or also experts in the field or talk about new therapies or people with books out about anxiety. And then we also do what we call a BF cast, which is where we sit down just the two of us and talk like anxiety sisters. We make one particular topic that seems to be buzzing around our community. It's that, you know, we have a lot of discussions going on every day and so we figure out what people are really thinking about right now and anxiety and then we tend to target that and try to have a discussion about it and ask the tough questions and tell the truth and laugh a lot. HMM after. Is always good, good medicine there and I think that's great that you do that, because they think a lot of times people feel alone and you know, I think this way. Maybe other people would think I'm crazy if I say this, and so I think it's wonderful that you bring that out into the open and you, like you said, the no saying that no judgment for having anxiety or depression or it's just what it is. People are made to feel comfortable and normal. This is it's not abnormal, you know well. But where we chose the monitor anxiety sisters, because anybody can be an anxiety sister right. It's you know, it's kind of a fun thing to say I'm an exactly. It's much less threatening than saying, yeah, I've generalized anxiety disorder. Yeah, you know that. That sounds heavy. It does. I love anxiety sister, so I love the that instead of, you know, I suffered from anxiety or whatever it may be, in a in a senior, more senior communities, because we do know that. Luckily, for college age kids, often there's still a ton of stigma in many ways, but they're a little more comfortable talking about mental health issues. I just ran into a friend WHO's also an anxiety sister, whose daughter was hospitalized for some mental health issues in college and she said to me, you know, the beautiful thing is like her friends all came and like it didn't scare them and they talked about it and and I thought that was wonderful. But I do know that for those of us were a little older or a lot older, there was such a stigma talking about these issues. I mean that was part of what Abbey and I struggled with. We were in college in the late s and it wasn't talked about to the point where we didn't really understand what was going on with us, because nobody talked about how anxiety felt or how depression felt. And so we know, for people who are seniors even more than for our generation, I think it was something very whispered about, possibly, but not so. When you come to like our facebook page or you come to one of our seminars or our podcast, you hear other people who have the exact same experiences that you do and then it's kind of like a lot of people say to us, Oh, I thought this was just me. Realize this was the thing, or they're you know, particular symptom. I didn't know that other people couldn't drive on the freeway or that other people haven't left their house in a while...

...or were afraid of medical appointments. I thought it was just like me being crazy, quote unquote, and then you realize like, oh no, there's so many people out there feeling the exact same way. That alone takes away a lot of the shame. HMM. I mean, you're a hundred percent correct and say that and and I've noticed that. I mean I'm fifty eight, so same thing. My generation nobody talked about having anxiety or depression or anything at all. Nobody talked about it. It was just, I guess, almost taboom. You just didn't to tell people if you had something like that going on. And my daughter is nineteen and everyone's talking about, you know, Oh, I have anxiety or I have this, and they're just so open about it, which I mean that's kind of makes me feel like for her, like take a deep breath at uh Gosh, you know she doesn't have to feel shamed and that she has to hide these these feelings of anxiety. Right exactly, and I was going to say that Magaz and I spent the last decade interviewing. Now it's thousands of anxiety sufferers of all ages and backgrounds. I mean, and in our book we put snippets from a lot of our interviews. We have people in there that are in their S. HMM. You know, anxiety in your later years is very common but not talked about. HMM. It's part of it, as the problem with Western cultures treatment of aging to begin with, right. I mean that you had the older as a woman, especially the older you get, the more invisible you become. MMM, so that, I'm sure you know. You talked about that quite a bit. That's anxiety provoking, it is, and you know that's part of you know, what I try to do with this podcast is celebrate aging and I'm, you know, immersed in a world where, you know, a lot of my friends are in their s and to me I feel like people miss out on so much by not being able to know people in their S. whore have to have that stigma that they're old, that they're different than us or whatever. They're not anyway. They're just they're just older. That's it, and that is something that there was a point in my life where I would say, Oh Gosh, you know, I can't imagine when I'm sixty and I just turned fifty eight and I thought, you know what, I am turning that over. Now I am going to be excited about turning sixty, because you know what I really am. I'm excited to turn sixty. We're going to age. I mean that is I mean, if we're fully enough, Ye, like exactly it. It isn't very good. Yeah, yeah, so I feel like it's starting to change in our society and I hope it will, and I think by having these kinds of discussions, I really I do feel that it is starting to change. I hope so. We have so too, because we're going there. Yeah, we'll just keep talking about it right there. We're gonna be there very soon. And then I far the work you do is so important because just listening to some of your podcasts, they're still is. Even though we in some ways are getting more open, there's still so much about aging that, if it's not taboo, it's just not discussed. It, let's not talked about, even from metapause on. It's just from financial planning to understanding different types of cognitive decline. I have someone in my family who's dealing with we don't know if it's Alzheimer's. Are another type of dementia. But other people in my family do not understand it at all and sort of see it more as a choice, then something happening and so and and I think that's part because, like they don't have the knowledge of dementia one on one, you know. So I think when I do try to explain things to them, it really helps absolutely. I think that's why it's so helpful to have the discussion you're having. HMM, I completely agree, and it's just people are scared of what they don't know. You know, they don't they don't know what's going to happen when you age and of course nobody wants to have dementia. Doesn't mean just as we get older we're going to get dementia, but it's a possibility. But I think to have these open and honest discussions about it and why it's making us feel anxious maybe about aging definitely helps.

And I just I want people to know that just because you are sixty, seventy, eighty, ninety, whatever age you are, that it doesn't mean that you no longer have purpose. You have purpose at any age and I feel like younger generations don't understand that or don't know that don't value seniors in our culture, and that is what I hope ultimately is changing. I feel like it is, but I don't know for me because I'm so close to it, I'm so immersing the senior world. So yeah, it's hard to say, but I hope that it is changing. I think sometimes what happens that you know, I talked to abby about this. Sometimes, all of the stuff about movement and exercise and eating well, it's all sucks so important, but I think certain people tend to think like, Oh, if I do all these things, I will not age. My number will go up, but I will not age. And it's understanding that you know, certain body changes and certain changes are going to happen to all of us, you know, and that there's ways to manage and adjust and ways to feel good and but they're going to happen. And and it's sort of like it's sort of similar to anxiety and certain senses, because I think often there's this idea if I just do this, this and this, I won't be anxious, and we always say that's that just not practical. You know, in life, like anxiety is an important emotion. It's one of our emotions and it's really import Porton now. Some of US have anxiety disorders and others don't, but Abbey and I always say we sort of know what to do with our anxiety right now, by this time, pretty well how to manage it. But we're wired anxiously, so like we're gonna have some anxious times. That is how we are wired and it's more about really understanding it, just like with aging that that helps with the management and the planning and everything else and trying to retain as much agency as you can in any given situation. I mean, you know that we try to teach people with anxiety to not, you know, to not sort of succumb to the notion that up that's it, I'm anxious, so I can't do these things. So and the same thing. We don't want some to say, well, I need so I shouldn't be doing these things, you know. I mean my father is meeting me in Europe in three weeks. He's in his s and he's meeting me in Europe for three weeks. It around. So you can't tell that man that that he's in his s because he doesn't feel like it. He you know, and he has physical stuff. He has things he has to do with, but he doesn't have the mindset of my age is a limitation and and that's and I tell people, your anxiety does not limit you. It gives you a superpower in certain ways, because you're really a sensitive person and you really have an intuitive connection that not everyone has that's paid attention to. It's the same thing with connection. We always say one of the most important things we talked about in our book is really this idea that connection is one of the ways that you can really manage your anxiety, and that is, you know something abby and I were talking about this morning with aging, how important that pieces is, that that you have connection and community. That makes all the difference. It really does. You're so correct. So connection, and I love what you said, abby, about it being a superpower. I think that's a really positive way to put it and I like that a lot. Well, don't you think there's a lot of superpowers to being older? To I do. I the older I get, the worst my body feels, true, but the more wisdom I really feel like I have in the more understanding of humanic like of the deeper issues I could not have possibly understood in my younger years and I'm grateful for that. You know, it's like, yeah, I wish that, no, with that certain thing, body parts stayed a little perkier, but you know everything, I agree with you there. You know, it also with aging things that when you...

...were younger, that you would think, oh, I don't want to say that, or I don't want to do that, I'll be embarrassed. I don't you know, you don't think that anymore. You just like this is who I am, like it or not. You know, it's just more you're more, I'm sure of yourself and more comfortable in your skin. Yeah, I just think there's so much to be gained. I mean some of the best conversations Maggie and I have had of been with people that are older than us. A lot of wisdom to offer and a lot of life experience to share, and we do need to celebrate that. In this culture it's not celebrated and it needs to be. It does absolutely and that is my goal. Thank you for the work you do important. Thank you, and thank you so much for taking, you know, taking your journey and all that you've learned along the way and putting it together in the book and put it with your community and helping so many others. You're helping so many people with us. So I just think it's amazing what you've done and shared your experience. Thank you so much. That's we're so welcome. I could talk to you both all day long. I know we need to wrap it up, though, but I just want to make sure people know where to find you. So you're on facebook, right, and it's, I'm guessing, anxiety sisters. I think sisters were quite easy to find. Okay, and your website to the website, orbsite, www dot anxiety sisterscom. We're on instagram. What do we add? Anxiety sisters at the at the anxiety sisters and sorry, the anxiety sisters. And you can email us. We answer all our emails at ABS and Mags at anxiety Sisterscom, but you can put our every single email we get. It takes a few days but we answer every email. So please, any questions you might have, thoughts, comments were interested. Okay, wonderful. Well, we will put all the information with the podcast when we put it out, and then I'll also have it on my website. Some people can find you and my website is Lorie Williams senior Servicescom so you'll see this podcast all the podcasts, and please share this with your friends and family because I think this is such an important conversation and there's so many people out there, probably the older ones, who are suffering in silence and we want them to know that anxiety there's nothing to feel ashamed about and that there is there is help for you. Don't join the free community, no matter what your age, no matter what your gender, no matter how much your little anxiety you have. We we welcome you. So come to anxiety sisters. Is Free. Excellent. Thank you both so much. Thank you. Thank you, thanks for listening. We'll see you next week. Bye. Bye.

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