July 1, 2021

E81 How to Get Out of your Own Way and Heal with Paris Prynkiewicz | CPTSD Podcast

In this episode, we have guest speaker Paris Prynkiewicz, talk about How to get out of your own way and heal. And also how to take control and be responsible for your mental health.
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In this episode, we have guest speaker Paris Prynkiewicz, talk about How to get out of your own way and heal. And also how to take control and be responsible for your mental health.

Learn more about Paris Prynkiewicz: https://www.instagram.com/masteryourmental/

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Follow me on Instagram @MichaelUnbroken

Learn more about coaching at https://coaching.thinkunbroken.com

Get your FREE copy of my #1 Best-Selling Book Think Unbroken: https://book.thinkunbroken.com/


Hey! What's up, Unbroken Nation! Hope that you're doing well. Wherever you are in the world.  I'm Michael Anthony — author, speaker, coach, and advocate for adult survivors of childhood trauma and you are listening to the Michael Unbroken podcast.

Today, I'm joined by a very great friend and guest Paris Prynkiewicz. Paris, how are you, My friend? What is going on in your world?

Paris:Michael I'm doing awesome. So happy to be here today and dive into this conversation with you and just get into it today. So very excited about it.

Michael: Yeah, me too. And so we've crossed paths a few times across social media. Do me a favor because I recognize are people who don't know who you are. What's the high-level talk to me about what you're doing in the world, what your place is, and what your goals are right now?

Paris:Yes, yes, of course. And I'm so glad that we cross paths and got the chance to connect an opportunity to make this conversation a reality. So, what I do is like you said, so my name is Paris, I'm the host of The Crooked illness podcast, which is entirely focused on bringing more conversations to the table around, mental health and mindset to make more of these conversations more normalize and less stigmatized and to create a platform to have other guests. Come on, share their stories with me, their lowest moments, whatever that may be what they learn from these times in their lives, and really highlight that and bring and see the value in that and bringing that to the table and you guys can find me on mainly Instagram. So, at Crooked illness https://www.instagram.com/masteryourmental/, I'm also on Facebook. There's a Facebook page as well, https://www.facebook.com/masteryourmentaland anywhere you guys get or podcast, it's just crooked illness, and that's really kind of the little background on that, but the reason I decided to launch the podcast is, it actually stems from my own story and my own experiences. And I get into that a little bit in, the episode, some of the episodes. But I'm also in the process right now of finishing my book and working on getting that published and we're on all the steps into that.  But pretty much my entire focus and what I really love diving into more than anything is mental health and mindset and the relationship that those to share and the connection that is there between the two of those things.

Michael: Yeah. And I think often when a lot of things come out of those creative and I think most all endeavors are creative to some aspect at all. It all stems from this place within us when we are either inspired to seek or create change or be we recognize that we understand or know something. And I think about very much what this podcast is, I believe that it is my duty to give knowledge that I know and understand to the world and reciprocation for me, receiving an incredible change in my own life.  What is it that spurred this for you? Because I think there's a lot of people who have been in these moments of facing mental health adversity, and maybe they've overcome, or maybe they're in the process right now, but often they're in this place of, okay, well, what do I really do here? And I've said before, I'm a proponent of not during your story. I don't think it's a necessity in order to create change in growth. But for those listening, what was your journey? How do you go from where you were to where you are right now?

Paris: Yes, I love that question. I think that's a great great thing to highlight. So I think so for me, the biggest piece of getting into this and really creating the podcast, creating this platform, was overcoming the stigma that I had tied to my experiences with bipolar disorder. So, I called the podcast Crooked Illness and that stems from two perspectives that I have. So the first perspective is when I was 19 years old, I was diagnosed with SMI which is seriously mentally ill, bipolar 1 disorder hospitalized at the time struggling really, really badly from inside the walls of that hospital. And then at 23 years old, I came graduated from school and ended up accepting a job at the very same Clinic that I used to be a patient at and I would go and receive services for an entire year. So I kind of got to see things from both sides and I call Crooked illness because, at the time when I was struggling at my worst, I could not see how I was being crooked to my own self and treating my own self and then also treating others that way as well. And then being on the other side of working in the field, I saw that same stigma in other people. And I always thought, when I was struggling I'm like, this is something that I shouldn't talk about something that I shouldn't share with people, but it what I, and I and for years and years, and years. I would just, I didn't deal with a lot of unresolved trauma. I never wanted to talk about it, face it deal with it, and I just kind of followed me around and it kind for me and my case, I like basically just allowed it to sit there and fester and just not face it and deal with it. And I finally was like, you know what, I really want to talk about this and tell my story because you know what I'm like I could potentially help more people by doing this than just hiding it and bottling up and keeping inside myself, and watching it continue to hurt my own self and, you know, do that to myself and also in other and hurt other people in the process. So, I decided to talk about that and also kind of share some of the experiences that I had on both sides. So, what did it look like for me - You know, when I was struggling at the time, why where did that stigma come from, why did I develop this stigma? Where did it come from? How did I overcome it? What steps that I take with that and that's something that I really love discussing because I feel like, you know, especially anything related to mental health. I love conversations about stigma, you know, ways to decrease the stigma ways to defeat the stigma ways to overcome the stigma because for me I felt like that was the biggest piece that was keeping me from moving forward in all areas of my life.

Michael: Yeah, and that parley is so much with the concepts and ideas behind Think Unbroken because when I sat with this and it used to be something different like 5 years ago, it wasn't thinking Unbroken, and that just kind of came to me one night, but it was so much about recognizing that the parallel between what you're saying, in my experience, as I have been sitting on this for so long that I can't possibly continue to move forward in my life until I remove the stigma that's associated with it. And now, my journey obviously, very different than yours. But again, it does parley in many ways and especially facing mental health, ailments, and youth. And growing up a teenager with a bipolar mother and a narcissistic abusive mother. And, you know, the list goes on and on and on and getting into my 20’s and recognizing, okay, wait a second. I'm actually standing inside of the house that I am burning down, because I'm not yet stepping through this, but that's a scary place, and it’s a scary moment. And, and you'll be hospitalized that at such a young age, must have been a terrifying experience for you and I know that there are people who are listening right now who say, okay, but how do I know if I'm in this place in my life, where either a, I'm ready to actually deal with this or do I need to be hospitalized or there are so many questions that all often come up. Talk to me a little bit about what that journey was like for you as your first stepping into recognizing that you've been really facing the implications of trauma that now has now turned into, bipolar?

Paris: Yeah. So the biggest piece for me was at the time when I was struggling, I had done not have awareness. I had no awareness of what was going on. It was almost like I was just living every single day kind of. And I was putting myself, you know, in situations that weren't good, you know, environments where I wasn't safe and it was ultimately because I kind of stopped caring about trying to feel like I could get better or heal or move forward any kind of way because you know, I remember, when I actually went into the one, I was actually hospitalized. I put myself there because I remember, you know, I was actually a misdiagnosis 16, which happens a lot to a lot of people, you know, going through that and, you know, getting a diagnosis being on different medication. So, I was diagnosed with depression at six and then at 19, when I was hospitalized, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. And the thing about that is my aunt is also bipolar and I would bring up sometimes, you know when I would go to my appointments and my psychiatrist, I would say; you know, I think this is what's going on with me and they would say; You know, know and it was because of how I looked on the outside. They would say; you know, you're working, two jobs, you're getting straight A's, you know, you have a good relationship, you know, you don't, there's nothing that seems questionable here like nothing like that. So and it was almost like I at the same time was I wanted to have that facade until like maintain this image of I was fine you know I'm okay I'm doing well it's great you know nothing is going on here because that was kind of the expectation that I thought that I had to have because growing up every conversation I was ever a part of related to mental health or bipolar was always very negative. You know, it was never I never heard anything good about that at all. Like that and that's really what kept me afraid of bringing up the fact that I was struggling with that because I was afraid of the judgment, the shame.  And also kind of, you know, growing up my mom, sister had that and my mom would tell us, you know, all of these, you know, horrible, terrible things that were going on with her, and I could never understand it. Because every time I was around her, I never saw any of that. So I'm like I just found it really hard to understand comprehend. I just didn't know. Know a lot about it or what was going on, so I kind of just kept pretending. I'm like, I guess this is just how it is you know I just have to keep living like this.  I'm and I would just keep saying to myself, you know, you're fine, just move forward. But the point for me is it was very difficult to move forward because you know when I was 16, I went through a sexual assault and never talk and didn't talk about it for a long time and I just I would tell myself, you know, it's fine just move on, move on and that was kind of because where the environments I was in that's really what everyone would say. You know, like you don't need to there are was seen as a bad thing. You shouldn't be talking about your problems. You don't need to do that, or you're seeking attention if you do this. So all of that stuff that I was seeing and hearing really basically scared me into not wanting to go there, not wanting to have these conversations, not wanting to share things with anybody because I felt like I had to somehow try to just overcome it on my own and that became very difficult because you know bottling up all of that for years and not dealing with a not talking about it, not processing it, not addressing it, nothing! Came out and ended up affecting my relationships, things that I was, you know, working on doing and it was really the breaking point of when I was hospitalized and got the diagnosis. And, I just started to learn more about myself and what was going on and that was the first time in my life where I was like I'm done hiding and pretending like I'm fine all the time. I don't you and then and I sat there and I thought about it I'm like why would I want to continue to live my life pretending? Like, I'm okay every single day when I could do something different. I could do something different with this and change and move forward, and I never felt like that was possible before but you know, it and it took me like years to get to that point of where, you know, I'm like, I can finally overcome this deal with it address it, process it, and work through these things because for the longest time I thought that I never could do that.

Michael:Yeah. That's so incredibly indicative of the nomenclature of Western and especially American society to want to push this stuff down to make it seem like it never happened and because of that somehow we're supposed to be stronger and you hear that often and especially in communities of color and Mel communities where it's like this didn't happen or if it did, stop crying about it, get over it, move on, grow up, man up be an adult about it. When we don't recognize one of the worst parts of that conversation is long term. It's not viable because eventually the longer and this is my experience, the longer you stuff it down, the more that it consumes you, and the further that you try to fight it the more that it wants to get outright. What I'm curious about is what was the lead-up. What parts of this were symptomatic in a way that was noticeable in which you thought to yourself, okay, I actually need to seek help something here as off.

Paris:Yeah, so for me, probably the biggest thing was. So when all this first started right at 16, so I got I was misdiagnosed with depression, I went through periods, right of where I had deep depression, and then when I went into mania and that's when I started to notice as I would just have endless amounts of energy, you know, I go work at 5 a.m. Go work, one job then, go be a cashier. And go out and just party and drink and then just try to do things to distract myself and all and I'm like how am I not tired? I'm just going and going and going and I just had just like racing thoughts and all of the stuff and like this doesn't seem and I'm like I was never like this before. I'm like, this isn't I wasn't like this, you know, a year ago, And I was just sitting there questioning like what is going on like where is this coming from? And you know, I remember I would bring it up some of my appointments and then again. I think it was kind of the aspect of I didn't seem that way on the outside, so it's kind of like hard, I guess. I don't know if it was like to believe that what I was saying, was, what I was experiencing, but a lot of people around me just didn't see it. You know, they were like. And that's what I often hear to like, of course, when you like see things on the media of, different celebrities who pass away, you know, from suicide, and a lot of people say, oh, you know, I had no idea, you know, this person looks so happy. I had, where did this come from? And I feel like that's kind of like a little bit relating to like how I was or people would say you know that doesn't seem you don't seem like you're struggling right now. You look, you don't seem like you're in a bad place right now, you don't seem like you're out of control right now and I just felt like I'm like this is not okay, this isn't normal for me to be, you know, doing all of these things and just getting so upset. I would just it was almost like I was just in this kind of black hole mentality, I like to call it because every single day I was just basically doing things the way that I would talk to myself to like the inner dialogue I had with myself, was extremely critical, very harsh and then it that just came out like the world around me.

That's how I really was and I just became this person like to the point where was very difficult to be around me I can imagine and that's when I was like, you know, something is something needs to change. Something needs to change because this is not good, I don't want to continue living in this state in this way, way of, however, it is these dots, I'm having these things that I'm doing and just feeling like there's no way to come out of this and actually have a good life or hold and to actually be happy and feel fulfilled and have a good life. And I'm like something needs to change and that was the scariest part, like, you mentioned, you know, being hospitalized at 19, you know, was terrifying and honestly, it was this the scariest experience I've ever had in my entire life? But I needed to be there, I know that I needed to be there more than anything because I really needed to actually like wake up and realize that, it's okay to not be doing well. And that was something that I never thought was a thing, because like we mentioned, growing up this was always very taboo, like, don't talk about your problems, like we don't want to hear, you know, we don't want to hear about this. We don't want to get into this conversation, this isn't something.

Should we be talking about are focusing on, so I was just bottling it up, and as you said, when you do that for your experience it ended up consuming you because and that's what happened to me. And I mean it just was I mean, honestly, like just the different things that I saw two, I mean, even in the hospital made me feel because I remember talking to every single person on my floor and just, he liked hearing them and hearing their stories and the experiences that they had, and I'm sitting there thinking. “I could change the circumstances, my life like I have power over that I have control over that and for the longest time I felt out of control, I felt out of control. I felt like I had no control. I felt like I would never have control but then knowing that I'm responsible for how I respond or react to situations really kind of got me to start opening my eyes and saying, okay, there are steps that I can take to make this better. There are things that I can do to come out of this black hole mentality and actually start changing things in my life start doing things differently.” Start implementing new habits to actually get me to the place that I would like to be in.

And that's really what I like to, get into people too. “If you ever struggled or are struggling, that is fine. That is okay, there’s nothing wrong with that.” And I feel like sometimes it's shamed almost, and like, look down on if you're struggling with anxiety or depression or bipolar schizophrenia that's seen. It’s not seen in a favorable light, but I think “if we shift that focus and make it so that it's more normalized, that people, we all have had issues at some point on some kind of degree with our mental health, and if we can make this more normalized, then, more people would probably feel more comfortable talking about these things and having these conversations and seeking help, and it wouldn't seem so stigmatized, I think.

Michael: Yeah, I agree. And you know, I think that's what this is, right? So much of, not only what I do, but what you do and so many people are doing right now is normalizing this conversation, because, you know, I think in looking back on my experience, it was very much like, if you talk about this, you're weak, figure out how to get over it, because if you don't, then it's your fault that your life sucks. “But the part that I hadn't yet rationalized and I share this, a lot as you so much of this, work is picking up other people's trash out of your front yard and the way that you do that invokes responsibility. And I think that's a really hard word for people to hear around mental health because they often relay that with the idea that somehow they're not being responsible for themselves, to begin with to an extent, that's probably true, right? You live within your mind in your body, you have to be the one in control of it but on the other side of it is no one's ever said that. That's okay, so it's a very odd juxtaposition. And when you're faced with that juxtaposition and then you have to figure it out, okay?”How do I honor what I know is true at this moment and I look at you putting yourself in hospitalization as being a profoundly powerful and I would imagine the enlightening moment, but also the situation of recognizing that you were the one who had to take control of your life if you wanted it to create change, because I would guess, and I don't want to put words in your mouth but a lot of the conversation back and forth that you were having with the people around you, probably didn't help, right? And I would think that there must have been some kind of moment where you had an ultimatum to yourself. And you said, alright, take control, talk to me about what that was like, for you to finally, like, take control and be responsible for your mental health, though, you know, and especially with something bipolar its chemical, like you have zero control over it, but you have to have control. What's that juxtaposition like for you?

Paris: Yeah, I love that you bring that point up because I was actually talking to someone else about the things in life that you can control and things that you can't control. And right? So you know, having that diagnosis and having that imbalance is something that I just can't control. So but you what you can control is where you go moving forward with that information. How are you going to respond to that? What are you going to do about that? Or what do you, you know, what's the next step, right? So I have control over that, you know, I don't have control over having the diagnosis and all these experiences that I had but now I can do something about it, today. So what I decided to do and, honestly, out of everything I've ever done, you know, there are be medications, all kinds of different things or whatever it is. You know, the biggest thing that has made the difference for me is actually working on myself, working on my mindset, working on the dots and reconditioning that, and the way that I speak to myself, right?” So working on this inner critic of myself versus like this inner cheerleader and trying to choose that more, choose that. More side of positivity, rather than focusing on the negative.” So it would be almost so common for me every single day to wake up and my feet, hit the ground, and I just go to, like, everything that sucks. Like, I do, I have to go to this place that I don't like or, oh, like I have to deal with this person. I'm gonna fight with, you know, what, someone about this, and it was all it just turned into like this snowball, spiraling effect of everything that was wrong and then everything that could potentially go wrong for the day.

So, that's the mindset that I started all my days. That's so what I had to do was, you know what, I'm going to stop this, this is an issue. So I started to recognize that and I started to recognize patterns that I had as well and different behaviors that I had that were hurting me and hurting other people. So I said, what can I do about this to change this? What can I do to make this, to make this go away, and to substitute something else, and it's placed that will benefit myself and benefit other people and keep me in a better state of mind. So, what I really started doing was just reading a lot of personal development books, listen, and you're listening to a lot of podcasts journaling, gratitude was huge for me. And I used to think that was I literally when I was struggling, I used to think that was so dumb. What is it going to do for me to sit here and write down three things, I was grateful for and that was because at the time I had a very, very hard time, even identifying one thing that I was grateful for because I was so focused on everything that was wrong, everything that could go wrong. That I couldn't even see the blessings that I had. I couldn't even see the things that I did accomplish because I was so focused on all of this stuff that it literally consumed, all of my thoughts. And I said you know what, I'm going to start looking at the things that I have, the things that I'm grateful for the things that I'm looking forward to and doing that all of that stuff, the gratitude, the journaling, changing how I speak to myself, those things were really, really got me to this place of now.

We're now when I start my day, and I end my days, I started on the best foot possible because I'm going into it with a mindset of appreciating where I am right here in this moment instead of saying, you know, all you know, I'll be happy once this happens or you know, and then once you get that, then it's well once this happens then I'll be good. No. And so saying that you can create that and “we can manufacture our own happiness within ourselves and that's the biggest thing too.” Is that to notice is there are little things we can do every single day that can become habits, that can help us “be in a good place and stay in a good place, you can continue to learn and grow.”And that's really what I love. Honestly, is just every single day continuing to learn more things. Discovering new resources, you know, related to mental health and like having more of these conversations connecting with people, you know, whether that be through social media, or in person, and just having more of these conversations and figuring out what we can do to really make this a thing. We're talking about mental health struggles, which is going to be as common as talking about the weather. So it's not even, it's not even a thing where it's weird anymore. It's just like it's completely normal and I think honestly if we were able to eliminate that stigma once and for all then that would actually have a huge ripple effect on many things. Like so many different things that are going on in the world. Of course, when you turn on the news, you see all kinds of things like you know, like shootings killings all these different things, people in and out of jails, in and out of treatment centers, in and out of hospitalizations. And what can we do to really work on that? And I think kind of the root of the problem, maybe mental health and you know, overcoming unresolved trauma and making these conversations possible to be had without leaving people feeling like they can't talk about it or else, you'll be judged, you'll be called a week and I actually think it's a lot, it's harder to have these conversations in the beginning, because of course, you're vulnerable, you're putting yourself out there, you're exposing your own stuff that maybe you don't even feel comfortable talking about yet. But that, but the power in doing that opens up so many doors for you, really to just move forward and lift that burden out from under you, I think.

Michael: Yeah. Absolutely.  And I think about this, to this conversation as a whole in Western society and in particular in America because we do such a poor job of it is on a scale of 1 to 10 at point five, right? I mean like we're literally just beginning this process because I remember not that long ago even myself having these moments of; okay, being triggered isn't real, that's for people who are soft bipolar fake people are just making that up. I'm not depressed, so why is this gun in my mouth? I have no idea and just thinking about my journey through that and sitting and recognizing, and reconciling a lot of the experience to be. No one had ever said that it was okay, right? And I think that as we continue to head down, we start to fulcrum shift and now things start to be okay. But so much of that is really within the way that we think and consider ourselves in the world and our environment. And I look at these times where you'll personal growth was right there in my face for years. People around me were always saying you should check this out, go and do this and I would sit there and I would look at and go. This is nonsense, who does this? And now, thinking in retrospect now being in this for well, over a decade that so much, personal growth is about creating boundaries, within yourself, that's through personal responsibility. And what I'm curious of, as when you were in this place of deciding, to make the choices and to become responsible for you how much of that experience was permission granted to you from an external source, versus permission that you gave yourself? Because you were tired of your own bullshit.

Paris: Oh yeah. So I think, honestly, the majority of it came from within myself, but then I also had, you know, people around me like you were saying, you know, look at this, look at this opportunity. And I'm like, what is that going to do for me? You know, I'm like, what is this going to help me with? And that was because of the time still, I was very afraid of bringing up my own stuff working through that because I didn't know what was going to happen. So I finally had to tell myself, you know what, if you're not going to try this, You're not going to do this, you're either going to stay the same or because we have three options, right? So we can stay the same, we can move forward or we can go backward. And I'm like, do I want to go backward? I want to see what that's going to be like, and it was almost like I had to say, you know what, “I'm going to start noticing things and paying attention to myself more and trying to care for myself, more in a different way.” Instead of just saying, like this is the way I am, you know? Just this is just how I am. And, you know, I could continue living like that and just making excuses, blaming other people for everything, but like trying to find something to put blame on instead of saying, you know what? There have been things that have happened, that have been terrible that I've been unfortunate, but I can decide today if I want to move forward. And how can I do that? How am I going to go about that? Or I can stay here and just hope that one day, it'll be good, and I won't have to deal with any more or I can just, you know, continue to work myself up into this negative, self-talk of this sucks, life sucks, you suck, everything is terrible. So, I was like, you know what, I'm done, like, living like this, because it's not working. I'm like, this isn't, I don't want to keep getting up every single day and having this mentality. And I'm not gonna feel good like this and I just it's not going to work. So I'm like, I'm gonna start doing this. I'll start, I went to the conference with some of my friends from high school, and that's, you know, when I really started to say, you know what, if all these people can get up on stage and talk about their stories, share their experiences and talk about how they overcome this. And maybe I can do that too, maybe I can start taking steps toward that, and then I was like, what am I going to do to do that? And that's when I said, I need to figure out how I can overcome the stigma that I've attached to being bipolar to having these experiences. And how I can snap out of this. And that's when I decided to tell my story and put that out there and then make this platform on crooked almost a place for other people to also do that as well. And you know, share with me, what has helped them, like what has helped you through, whatever it was that you experienced or went through.

What did you learn from that? What did it teach you? All of these things because I think conversations like this are so powerful because we either have these conversations or we have silence where we don't have them or we're talking about them in a negative way saying, you know, if you ever struggle, you're weak, or that's bad, or that's not something we want to get into, but I think if we can reframe this and like you said, shift that focus of. Oh! That's not something you should be talking about, or no one wants to hear about that. “Talk about something more positive. If we can shift this towards people feeling like they can share their experiences”whether you have a diagnosis or not, whether you been hospitalized or not, whatever the situation or story or struggle, maybe just making it. So people can feel like it's okay to have these conversations dead of. I can't do that because then people might think I'm weird, I might get judge, known as in I want to talk to me anymore. I'll get all kinds of mean messages or like all this hate on me for doing this, and because that's the thing is people are at least for me for years. I didn't feel ever think I would be comfortable and I can't even imagine, where I would be in my life if I still felt that way. And you know that's really what I like to give people is that hope of you know, you can talk about whatever it is that you experienced you went through and come out of that, you don't have to stay within that struggle, you don't have to stay in that place forever and that's really what, I like to focus on and focus on the still the solution based stuff, right? So what can we do to move out of the problem, move out of the struggle, move out of these issues that we’re having or having experienced? And how can we move out of that into something that is going to get us feeling good? Happy about our lives and into a solution-centric model and out of this, just struggle that we feel so consumed by.

Michael: I think it's for lack of a better term. I think it's delusional to not believe that there's potential on the backside of doing the work because that is such a self-narrative, that is painted through extrinsic sources where people around you go? Well, why bother? Look at how this person is? Why do this? Why do that? And you know I come back to one of my mentors. “- Tom bill, who often says; struggles guaranteed success has not.” And I look at my life as being a self-defined narrative against the word success, right? Only measure myself versus myself that said there's still struggle every single day. I don't think and this is my personal perspective.

I don't believe that the get this gets easier but the tools get better.And one of the things that I really am, I feel is a mist in mental health, conversation right now is this idea that you're going to go and do a couple of things, a magical, your fucking life is going to be great, that's not true. What I would love for you to talk about as we start to head into the end here as talk to me about working through your struggle while you have tools?

Paris: Oh I love that! I definitely agree with you. Know the fact that the tools getting better and there's always going to be that struggle because you know, for me still even to this day it's not like I wake up and just because I did all this stuff and just because I went through years of whatever I did to try to become better now all of a sudden I'm great like I never wake up and feel sad, upset, hurt, angry, nothing. I'm just fine all the time but what I do now is I have awareness of that and before I didn't so It was because I was so consumed with whatever it was that was happening at that time that I did not see how unhappy I was because that was just the way that I thought that life was for everyone. So, I didn't have awareness. And now I've been able to, pay such better attention to myself. So like if I'm in a situation or whatever it is and you know, I'm feeling overwhelmed, I'm feeling stressed, I'm feeling hurt, I'm feeling sad, I'm feeling something. I pay attention to that and I noticed that and Instead of ignoring it and just pushing it away and saying, you know, oh like I don't need to have feelings or like this whole thing of like I'm catching flights not feelings or like, I don't have feelings. You know, making it more normalized to actually work through that.

“And I think, honestly, the biggest tool that has helped me was it was that mindset work. But also you know continuing to do these things on a daily basis and not just saying okay, you know, I'll get up and write in a journal and then, maybe next week, I'll do some, do it again or whatever. Just do it every day, being consistent, and paying attention to,” when I'm not feeling good, when I'm not feeling and in a good spot, and what can I do to do about that?  And instead of, you know, letting it really consumed me and just really like, take over my mood for the entire day. So doing that, I think is a big thing, but yeah, I mean I think everyone has I know different things that they've done or different things that they tried to overcome certain struggles, they have had, but I think all of it, honestly, for me, at least his has been helpful to have it all together, so like, doing these different things. And I think that there be also is a good thing too, and I think that there's been like a shift towards how people are talking about therapy now. Because I feel like, you know, ten years ago when I was, first starting there be, it was, it seemed very I remember like going into school and saying, I have to leave my class early because I have a therapy appointment and the teacher would be like, Oh! you're in therapy like why are you in therapy? That's what, are you doing?  Why are you doing that? And it just felt like a very judgmental thing and really weird that you're doing that very shameful. And now I feel like it's we're moving into this place of now. It's more acceptable to say, hey like I've been to therapy or I go to counseling or, you know, I do these different things and I think that's a good thing because like you said, I think there is only good can come from continuing to have these conversations and really bring up these different things because it makes it more normal for other people to feel like they can access that stuff too, instead of feeling like I can't ever go there with anyone.

Michael:Yeah, and it is normal, right? And so much of this experience is shared. I mean, there are eight billion people on planet Earth and to think for a moment that someone else has not had a similar experience as a little asinine. Now, of course, everyone's experience won't be the same. That's not how it is, but we often parley and as a communal species, that's how we heal, that's how we grow, that's how we change. I mean, everything that I know I've learned from someone else, right? I don't know that I've ever actually had a completely original thought in my entire life and because of that, I rationalize, okay, if you want to get better, be around people who are better, right? Learn from people who know get in with experts therapy, go and do whatever it takes, and ultimately the question I always ask myself is, what are you willing to do to have the life that you want to have?

And then on the backside of making, that declaration following through on it. Paris has conversations absolutely incredible! I'm loving talking. I think that one of the best things that we can do is exactly what you're saying, and that normalizes it have the conversations talk about this, but as we start to run out of time here, I'm going to ask you my last question, my friend and that last question is, what does it mean to you to be Unbroken?

Paris: Oh my gosh, to me. What it means is to continue every single day and that pursuit of learning about yourself growing and continuing to educate yourself on, you know, different things that you've experienced in your past. And you know how those things are continuing to come up every single day in your life and how to best work through that. So, you can have the quality of life that you want to have. You can have, you can have the life that you have always thought about, but you've got it, it's never possible, you know, that's not possible for me.  “So I think being on being unbroken is really recognizing that, yes, like, you have struggled in the past. Yes, there have been things that have been very terrible that have taken place in your life that have happened to you, but yes, you are also in control of how you respond today, moving forward and you can create a better life for yourself. Moving forward, from those things that you don't have to remain feeling broken based on those events that took place. You could choose to Be Unbroken by those events and in taking those experiences and pulling lessons from them and taking that and making it into something useful,” like how can I apply this to potentially help other people? What I experienced what I went through? How can I what can I do with this? You know, what is there something I can do with this that could help other people? If so what is that? What does that look like?

“And just continuing to every single day, you know, just try to be better, try to like, continue learning continue growing and just really taking care of your mental health and making it a priority. And you know, let other people that they can do that as well. So that's really to me like what it means to be Unbroken.”

Michael: Couldn't have said it better myself, my friend.

Unbroken Nation! Thank you so much for being here and listening.

Michael UnbrokenProfile Photo

Michael Unbroken


Michael is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, speaker, coach, and advocate for adult survivors of childhood trauma.

Paris PrynkiewiczProfile Photo

Paris Prynkiewicz

Podcast Host

Paris Prynkiewicz is the host of the "Master Your M.E.N.T.A.L" podcast. After receiving both her BA in Psychology along with her MBA in Healthcare Administration, Paris's passion for mental health only continued to grow. But, after receiving a diagnosis of bipolar 1 disorder from inside a psychiatrist hospital at 19 then returning to work at the very same clinic she was once a patient at, Paris decided to dedicate her life to working toward helping others shatter stigma, conquer their struggles and start to craft the life they had always envisioned themselves living.