Today marks 100 episodes of the Feminist Wellness podcast. And I’m so grateful to be here with you today, my darling, to mark this milestone. Whether you’re new to the show or have been a longtime listener, if you’re ready to overcome codependency, perfectionism, and people pleasing, to take back your sense of self, self-love, and self-worth, keep listening. It’s going to be a good one.
This is Feminist Wellness and I’m your host, nurse practitioner, functional medicine expert, and life coach, Victoria Albina. I’ll show you how to get unstuck, drop the anxiety, perfectionism, and co-dependency so you can live from your beautiful heart. Welcome my love, let’s get started.
Hello, hello my love. I hope this finds you doing so well. So, wow, today marks 100 episodes. Time is such a phenomenal and non-linear thing. It feels like 1,000 years ago I embarked on this journey, but also just yesterday.
One of the main takeaways for me is that doing this show each week for 100 episodes has been an act of pure love. For you, for myself, for the collective, for our healing. Sure, there are weeks that I don’t really feel like it, but I showed up anyway. And I showed up for so many reasons. Because as a human with as much privilege as I have, I believe it is vital to be of service. Because the things I share are the things that changed and saved my life, my relationships, and continue to shape my world. And so, I want to share them with you.
And because this show is a commitment I made. Not only to you, but to myself. And a huge part of healing my codependency is making myself, my own heart, my own desire the central focus of my life. And I want to do this show every week. It brings me immense joy, which I hope you can hear in my voice. And so, I show up.
I also am working, as most of us are, on ever increasing myself trust, and trusting myself to show up each week to record this show shows me that I can trust me in every other area of my life.
And finally, when I take the time to get super thoughtful about the topics I share here I grow in my own understanding of them. And that is a serious gift. So, thank you for being here, for receiving the show. I am so grateful. Grateful to connect with you.
And I’m so grateful to get your sweet emails to podcast@VictoriaAlbina.com, to get all of your sweet DMs on the Gram telling me how much this show has helped you. And if you’re not following me, do so now. It’s so fun to connect there. And I share a lot of content particularly interviews I’ve done on other people’s shows. Instagram Lives, where I bring fun, amazing people on to chat with me. I share that there and I can’t really share those things on a podcast. So, Victoria Albina Wellness is me on the Gram, go follow me, it’s really fun.
And, in honor of 100 episodes I have a request. I would be so delighted if you could subscribe, rate, and review the show wherever you get your podcasts. And it’s particularly useful on Apple Podcast. So, there’s this weird thing with the algorithm where more people can find the show more easily if more episodes are downloaded, it has more reviews, et cetera. So, I’d be super duper grateful. And to thank you I’ll be sharing my recommended reading list with you, honor system style.
So, here’s what you do. Go on over to Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your shows, rate and review the show. And then go to VictoriaAlbina.com/readinglist. Nice and simple. And put your name and email in there and then you’ll get a copy of my top recommended books sent to your email, after you head on over to your email server and confirm your subscription. So, go get to it. I’m a nerd, if you’re listening you are likely a nerd. We love books. So, I’m excited to share that list with you.
One of the beautiful things about doing the podcast each week, and now reflecting on 100 episodes, is that what really matters in this work has become even clearer to me. And I spent some time looking back on the last 20 years of my life and what lessons have helped me the most. Then I also spoke with my clients, the folks who’ve taken my six-month overcoming codependency course about what teachings have supported them the most in their own healing. Themes emerged; lessons became more evident.
So, this week I want to share, without further ado, my biggest takeaways on the road to reclaiming your mind, body, and spirit. To knowing your worth and value, to overcoming codependency.
So, first, in my own life it was a lot to start to see the thought habits of codependency, perfectionism, and people pleasing as they showed up in my day to day. I thought I was just this altruistic loving person who just wanted to help others. So, of course I put their needs above mine. And then was wicked resentful when they didn’t reciprocate.
And, you know, my thought process went, doing this, being that martyr, that savior, trying to fix other people, well it was just what I learned. It was what I was socialized to understand. It’s what good girls do, what good Latinas do, what was expected of me in order to be loved and safe. And it hit me hard to see how these survival mechanisms of putting me last were harming both me and my relationships. To recognize just how much guilt, shame, and resentment I was carrying around in my mind, body, and spirit.
At several points in the early days of working to overcome codependency I thought I was sunk. That I was so broken and things would never change. And I believed what I heard, that I had a disease, a sickness, that I had defects, and deficiencies in my core character. That these habits, well what I now see as habits, are just who I am. And that I would never not be a codependent.
And what I now know to be true is that I, that you, that we are not broken. It’s not that we are codependent, perfectionist, people pleasers. We just have those thought habits. Those patterns in my mind, body, and spirit but, my beauty, it’s not who we are. I’ll encourage you to not put those labels on you. Not to take on the mantel of being some kind of person, as all of those words can define the complex entirety of who you are because they can’t. And they are so limiting and imply that you can’t change.
My sweet kitten, you’re a human, humaning along, seeking safety and connection at every turn. You have thought habits in your mind and the imprints of the emotional and energetic experiences in your body. Those habits of mind and body, thought and posture are survival mechanisms you picked up, likely in childhood. To get through the stress, distress, trauma, or chaos you were going through or living in, at home or in society.
Those stories, those patterns live in neural grooves in your brain. They live in your body’s tissues. But they don’t need to define you. You are plastic, moldable, changeable, shiftable, teachable, coachable. And you can change your habitual reactions in life into intentional and thoughtful responses.
This I know to be true because I’ve lived it, am living it. And have helped hundreds of humans to shift these old patterns by showing them how to manage their minds, regulate their nervous systems. And attend to themselves and their bodies with self-love, self-acceptance and a return to the truth. You are perfect and worthy of love just as you are. Nothing about you needs to change now or ever for that to be true, you were born that way.
Two, self-care is not selfish. Putting yourself first is absolutely vital, especially when you have lived a life where you have come last at every turn. Or you’ve been the martyr, savior, saint for everyone in your world. And codependent, people pleasing, and perfectionist habits we learned that we need to put ourselves last, to work ourselves to the bone in service of other people’s wellness and joy. To delay or defer our own dreams so that others may live into theirs. And none of that is true.
For humans socialized as women we are often taught to be good girls, wives, partners, mothers, even employees we need to continue to put ourselves last. And absolutely nothing could be further from the truth. This lie keeps women and humans of all genders taught to see their self-care as selfish from blossoming. Find finding true self-love and living from it, into it. That keeps our internal sense of self-worth dependent on others validating us, and that just sucks. Because it’s never possible for someone else to fill your emotional cup. And expecting them to do so isn’t kind to you or them. And it’s a one-way ticket to, you guessed it, Resentment Ville, USA.
Three, it’s not your job to manage or fix anyone’s life, mood, energies, worries, anything. It’s your job in this life to focus on you. To fill your own emotional needs. And to then give, give, give from your overflow. From your emotional, physical, and financial abundance. The abundance of resources in your life, which means giving what you can when you can. But never at a cost to your own wellness.
Collective healing is vital. We need each other. And the people who love you, truly love you, love it when you give without resentment or harm to yourself. And when you ask for the mutuality we all deserve in interdependent relationships, as autonomous and interconnected humans. Remember that, my darling. And check in with yourself before you say yes to taking care of others before you’ve taken care of you.
And If you’re tired, angry, hungry, run-down, spiritually or emotionally exhausted you are in no place to show up for others as your best self. And you get to pause to check in with you. With your inner children, your nervous system to see what you really need to recharge and replenish yourself. Drop the story that you can or need to fix or change anyone else. Eyes on your own paper, my love.
Four, boundaries are vital to happy, healthy relationships. Keep it simple, keep it direct, keep it honest, keep it unemotional, keep it loving. Remember that boundaries are all about what you will do to take care of you. And are never, ever, ever about changing, manipulating, or controlling anyone else. We state them, “If you do X, I will do Y.” Stay on your side of the proverbial street my darling. It’s better for you over there.
Five, trust yourself and love yourself. I know, I know, both, like, sound trite like, “Oh just laugh at yourself.” But it really is the key to it all. I also know that it can be super challenging, both cognitively, in our bodies, and in our nervous system. So, I guess that’s not both. But it can be really challenging when we’ve lived with codependent cassette tapes on repeat in our minds for our whole lives telling us that other people know more about what we want and need, and what’s good for us than we do.
But again, none of that is true. What is true is that you were born absolutely perfect, whole, and amazing, and worthy of your own trust, your own love. Once again, because it can never be said enough, you are not stuck, broken, or in need of fixing. Your own self-love and self-trust, living from your own heart are the medicine you need. The medicine you’ve been searching for. And it’s all within you, always has been. Right there in that big open heart.
Get to know yourself and start to experience what it feels like to live from your heart, from your body, not just from your head. Learn how to be your own best friend, to celebrate you on the daily. To talk to yourself tenderly, often, and even out loud. One of the things I’ve done that’s been so sweet is to pick a little sweet tender nickname for yourself and to call you that, again, often and even out loud as you re-parent you each and every day.
As always, I will encourage you to start slow and to start so small. Take little, teeny, tiny, kitten-size steps towards your goals. Drink more water, pee when you have to. As much as your finances will allow, eat nourishing whole food. Get more air, and sun, and nature. Even if for now it’s looking at a tree outside your window, taking a trip to the park, or having a conversation, a relationship, a connection, with a three-dollar houseplant from the bodega.
Honor yourself and treat you like a tender baby because you are one. Honor your goals, and dreams, and ambitions, and desires like a fully functional grown-up adult because you are one. Set tiny goals, minimum baseline style, and build trust in yourself as someone who shows up for you, who has your back on the daily. This is re-parenting in action. Showing up as your own most loving inner parent to sooth, support, motivate, and care for your perfect inner children.
Listen, if beating yourself up worked it would have worked by now. You get to drop that story, my angel, that being mean to you will get you anywhere. I like to use a silly sweet voice to talk to myself because I like it and it feels good. And if English isn’t your first language, try speaking to you sweetly, tenderly, as your own most loving parent in your native tongue.
Yesterday I was in a rush and I spilled my mate everywhere. A couple of years back I would have been really harsh on myself. Like, I won’t even repeat what I would have said but instead what I said is [Spanish]. In English, “My darling Vicky,” Victoria, Vicky. Vicky in Spanish. Please do not call me Vicky in English, but in Spanish I like it. “You spilled all the mate, my love, what is happening in you that you’re moving so quickly?” Use whatever gentle tone works for you, just see what resonates. And if it feels silly that’s great. That’s often a sign that you’re feeling vulnerable, and that’s a fantastic thing to get comfortable feeling with yourself.
Six, I think we’re on six, I lost track. But anyway, well that’s funny because we’re about to talk about perfectionism, ha-ha. A side note, a couple years back I would have paused the recording. And maybe would have like gone back and listened to that last 15, 20 minutes to make sure it was actually number six. But instead, I’m just going to move forward because perfect is the enemy of good and done.
So, six maybe seven, who knows. I really crack me up, I am such a sweet, silly, goober. All right, sixish, perfectionism is sneaky and keeps you from joy. Either procrastinating your dreams away or obsessing over every detail like, “What number are we at in the list?” Always dissatisfied, malcontent, feeling exhausted, overwhelmed, and behind some proverbial eight ball.
However, it shows up for you, perfectionism makes you think there is some magical, perfect, 100% correct way to do everything under the sun. And while it’s totally available to you to stress yourself out getting lost in the minutia, it doesn’t serve you, ever.
One of the most powerful lessons of doing this podcast is just this, that A+ work just isn’t a real thing. Because that mindset that it has to be perfect keeps you perfecting it, never actually getting it done. And torturing yourself in the process. Meanwhile, A- work, some days even B+ work, but let’s be real, I’m aiming more for A-. I’m in process here folks. That work is done, and dusted, and delivered, and that work is out there being of service to the world. Whereas striving for the A+ keeps you from sharing your gifts with the universe.
And trust me, I agonized over the early episodes of this show. And let’s be real, they’re like a thousand hours long each and they have like all these references and footnotes. I totally made my own head spin about it because my perfectionist, codependent, people pleasing inner dialogue said that what you all thought of the show was a reflection on me. Me as a human mammal and it’s just not true. What you think of the show is a reflection on what you thought of the show. Beginning, middle and end of that story.
But when we complete what we do with who we are of course we’re going to stress out about it. The more you build trust in yourself that you’re doing the best A- job you can do today, the easier it is to get it out the door. To stop struggling with it. The more you truly love yourself the more you can detach yourself from what you fear others may think of you.
Remembering that most of the time when our brains say we’re worried about other people’s opinions, we’re actually worried about beating ourselves up if someone disapproves. Or if we don’t think we measured up to some totally imaginary, total perfectionist fantasy story in our own brains. So, you get to learn to ground yourself in your own deep self-acceptance and self-love. And when you do so, my darling, you become unstoppable.
Sevenish, healing and overcoming codependency requires patience, self-love, dropping the judgment of self and others. Which we so love to do, because when we’re in judgment we’re not in acceptance and it’s like this false narrative within us that we’re keeping ourselves safe by always seeing what’s wrong, what’s bad, seeing the negative.
Semi side note, my favorite example, and this is one I used to say and hear from my clients all the time now is this judgment story that goes, “I do so much for them and they never do the same for me.” And that story is so super codependent because we’re judging someone for having boundaries when we have none. For not being grateful for something they didn’t ask us to do for them. And then we judge the crap out of them for not playing by our imaginary rule book for them. Right? So fascinating.
A client literally said this yesterday, she was like, “You know, my husband, like, I always wash and fold all of his clothing and then put it in the drawers for him. And he never even says thank you.” And I was like, “Did he ask you to do this?” And she was like, “No, but just, like, it needs done and he should be grateful.” No sweet pea, he didn’t ask you to do it and if you’re doing it for him to say “Thank you, I validate you. I appreciate you. You are worthy.” There’s something to look at there, right? Anyway, just popped into my brain because it was fresh.
What we were talking about is that healing form codependency requires patience. So, if you are currently in process with all of this work, and seriously, who isn’t? I’ll invite you to pause and to remind yourself that there is no finish line. There’s no there to get to, there’s only the incremental growth that healing brings. And healing doesn’t mean living a 110% joy filled life. It means knowing how to anchor yourself in yourself. To come back home to you.
Every time you waver or life throws you a curve ball, don’t stress it, don’t rush it. Instead, invest in yourself the way you invest in everyone and everything else because you’re truly worth it. Invest your time, energy, resources in supporting yourself, in getting the support you deserve. And trust that you’re well on your way.
Practice showing up for you. And the dividends, the payout, in joy, peace, and self-love will be beyond anything you could ever imagine. At the end of the day dates, partners, friends, parents, children, all of those relationships can fade away. And to go all former hospice nurse on it, the most important relationship you will ever have is the one that you cultivate with yourself.
All right, my sweet beautiful love, thank you for listening. It’s been an honor and a privilege to show up for you, for me, for the collective healing each and every week for 100 weeks. Here’s to many hundreds more to come.
And, a reminder, go get your free book list. It was so much fun to put together. And, of course, it’s just a start, right? I’m a constant nerd, constantly reading. So, I’ll keep adding books to it as I feel moved to. So, head on over to Apple Podcasts, leave a rating and a review, go to VictoriaAlbina.com/readinglist and put your name and your email in there to get the reading list to your email. Just go confirm your subscription and it will be yours. I love a good reading list.
Finally, at the time of recording this episode there are just 2 spots left in my February masterclass. So, learn more about it at VictoriaAlbina.com/masterclass and apply now. Once this section fills up, I’ll open a wait list for the next offering.
So, if you are ready in this beautiful new year to dedicate yourself to you. If you’ve had the resolution of self-love, journaling, meditation, growing in your self-trust on your resolution list for way too many years, now is the time for you to get the support and care, community, love you deserve so you can overcome codependency and live your life on your own terms.
Again, you can apply at VictoriaAlbina.com/masterclass.
All right my beauties, I’m going to put a nice, soft little hand on my heart, connect in with my breath. I’ll invite you to do the same. Remember, you are safe, you are held, you are loved, and when one of us heals we help heal the world. Be well my beauty, I’ll talk to you soon.
If you’ve been enjoying the show and learning a ton, it’s time to apply it with my expert guidance so you can live your life with intention, without the anxiety, overwhelm, and resentment so you can get unstuck. You’re not going to want to miss the opportunity to join my exclusive, intimate group coaching program, so head on over to victoriaalbina.com/masterclass to grab your seat now. See you there. It’s going to be a good one.