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May 9, 2022

Episode 46: You're Not a Bad Parent, You're Just Having a Bad Day with Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy

In this episode, DJ speaks with Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy, fellow podcaster and mom of 4 who has made it her mission to help stressed moms manage their emotions so they can stop being snappy and respond with patience and calm. Listen in as they discuss strategies to avoid your own emotional outbursts and how to purposefully manage your own emotions when interacting with your children so you stay calm and grounded.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy is a Mom of 3 boys and 1 girl who has been  married for 13 years and resides in Twin Cities, MN. Elizabeth became a stress coach for moms after struggling implementing gentle parenting because she was internally feeling burnout, overwhelmed and stressed. Now, through her website, coaching and her Emotionally Healthy Legacy podcast, Elizabeth teaches moms to prioritize their needs and ways to relax the nervous system as well as in the moment emotion regulation strategies to avoid emotional explosions.

• [3:11] Elizabeth talks about her own wellness journey that led her to her current mission of helping stressed moms manage their emotions so they can stop being snappy and respond with patience and calm.
• [4:46] “ Respectful parenting, positive parenting is 1000 times harder when you are exhausted, overwhelmed, burned out, mentally struggling…”
• [7:42] Elizabeth explains the different sections of our brain that help us respond positively with our critical thinking brain vs. when we are exhausted and stressed out, responding with the emotional part of our brain. 
• [10:18] Elizabeth shares a tip on recognizing when your body is tense or you are overwhelmed or overstimulated… recognizing it so when you start to feel these emotions rise up, that you don’t act on them and say or do hurtful things.

Do you practice any strategies for your own emotional regulation when interacting with your child(ren)? Tell us about it and tag us on Facebook or Instagram @littleheartsacademy!

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Guest Information
Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy


DJ Stutz  0:13  
Hey, you're listening to Episode 46 of Imperfect Heroes, Insights Into Parenting, the perfect podcast for imperfect parents looking to find joy in their experience of raising children in an imperfect world. And I'm your host DJ Stutz. And today I am talking with fellow podcaster. Mama three, and stress coach, Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy. Elizabeth is the host of the Emotionally Healthy Legacy podcast, which is a weekly podcast and can be found in most places, you're going to get your podcasts. And Elizabeth teaches moms to prioritize their needs, and ways to relax the nervous system, as well as in the moment emotion regulation strategies. Whoa, that's a lot to avoid emotional explosions. Have you ever had those I have. Avoid beating yourself up when you get frustrated, and take the time to reflect on what happened, why it happened. And then make a plan for next time. This is so much more productive, there's so much to learn. So let's get started.

It is so easy to get down on yourself and make excuses and worry that you're a bad parent and fear that you just might be raising an Axe Murderer. I know because I have been there, I wouldn't yell at my kids. And then I would give them a punishment that was way too harsh for the actual crime. And then I would just feel terrible. And I would think all of those thoughts I just mentioned, I think messing things up once in a while, is just part of being human. And it's also part of learning to be a good parent. And let's face it, what works with one kiddo might not work for with the next kiddo. And so you feel like you're just always behind that learning curve. Elizabeth, Andreyeveskiy. And now I've learned to spell that correctly, has some amazing advice on how to take those moments, and instead of emotionally assaulting yourself, just learning to recognize the signs that you're having a hard time, take a step back to reflect and learn. And you'll see what I mean. Let's listen. 

I am joined here with Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy. And she's one of our imperfect heroes, a mom a podcaster. And her podcast is Emotionally Healthy Legacy. And Elizabeth, I'm going to let you kind of explain about your podcast and what you do.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  3:11  
Yeah. Hi, everybody. My name is Elizabeth. I am a mom of four kiddos. So I have three boys and a baby girl. So it is pretty busy in our home. A lot of action and noise, especially when all my kids are home at the same time. So never a dull moment. And I have a podcast called emotional, healthy legacy. A few years back, I got on a journey of emotional wellness. And I was introduced to gentle parenting. And I really struggled with it in the beginning. And I've learned a lot since then. And I learned a lot about emotional regulation, helping kids with their emotions, but I kind of focus more on mom and how mom feels and ways that moms can support themselves. So then they can implement all the things that come with like meeting their children's emotional needs and being available emotionally and setting like a positive energy in the home. And my focus is mostly on moms and supporting them to help them show up as their best selves for their families.

DJ Stutz  4:27  
And that's so important and we concentrate a lot on our kids and how they're feeling and how we help them process. But if we're not emotionally Okay, we're gonna have a tougher time helping our kids process when we're not processing well ourselves.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  4:46  
Oh 100% I feel like my personal perspective on this, especially like gentle parenting respectful parenting positive parenting is 1000 times harder when you are in fasted, overwhelmed, burned out, mentally struggling, it almost feels nearly impossible. Yes, you can still implement some of the things, but it is way harder for your brain to implement all those strategies and continue without getting off track, I guess. And so that's why I'm so passionate about doing things proactively, that moms can support themselves. So then they have the energy and the ability to show up like that for their kids and their best selves.

DJ Stutz  5:32  
Absolutely. And it's interesting, I did an episode a couple of weeks ago, his name's Paul Henderson. And he wrote a book called A slave no more. But it's talking about being a slave to your past. And so when we're letting the things that happened to us in our past, or even offenses we took when even maybe offense wasn't meant, or we get in that negative, bad things always happen to me and all of that stuff, we can become a slave to that. And it really takes that processing that you're talking about, to be able to get that turned around, come to terms with it, and then move forward and find success.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  6:19  
Oh, yeah, for sure. I feel like a huge part of my journey is relearning the things that I've experienced in my past. And especially when it comes to parenting specifically, I've noticed that if I'm under any sort of stress, or extra overwhelmed or just exhausted and tired, my brain tends to go back to automatic ways of parenting that I've done for years. And really, it's the way that I was raised. And even though that's something I don't want to do anymore, like throwing out threats, and just raising my voice and stuff like that, but it's so much harder for me to not do that when I feel overwhelmed or burned out or super tired and exhausted. So I feel like a lot of it is our past, we'll come up and show up because we have to really reteach ourselves and reprogram our brain to respond differently. And if we're exhausted, our brain doesn't have the energy to actually do that.

DJ Stutz  7:20  
Right. And you bring up that great point that if you're exhausted, and your brain doesn't have energy, all of these negative thoughts and anger, and all of those things use up so much energy that it does exhaust the brain literally.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  7:42  
Yeah, yes, for sure. So here's the thing. In one of my earlier podcast episodes, I taught the people that listen, a lot of the moms and I still mentioned it a lot about three different parts of the brain that kind of help us with our emotions and our behaviors. And our frontal lobe, I call it the thinking brain, that's the part of the brain that helps us make positive choices. logical thinking like this is you and I talking right now, this is when you make choices based on your values. This is when you respond positively when that part of the brain is active and turned on. But when we are triggered when we're overwhelmed, when we are burned out, when we are exhausted, our brain shifts to emotional part of the brain. And that is further back right in the center of our brain. And that part of the brain doesn't tend to make such a great choices. This is when we're verbally disrespectful, and rude and just snappy and just agitated. And we tend to react instead of respond positively. So for under stress, we are in that part of the brain. And we find ourselves reacting even though we don't want to. Because what happens is, when that part of the brain turns on, it shuts off that positive thinking part of the brain. And that's why it makes it so challenging to make positive choices in the heat of the moment when you're so emotionally charged. And then we have our survival part of the brain that one is fight flight or freeze and that is when you lose your marbles. That's when you're freaking out. That's when your kid is throwing things and maybe you want to physically hurts. That's when you're really like super triggered. And so just kind of understanding the three different parts of the brain and what you need to support yourself to stay more in your thinking positive part of the brain. That's kind of like what I teach moms, let's focus on proactive strategies to support yourself. So you are more in your thinking brain so you are less triggered. And then what do you do when you are triggered so you don't act on those triggers and react negatively?

DJ Stutz  9:49  
I think a big part of it is even recognizing which part of the brain you're using. So you may suddenly be on the fight flight or freeze and you didn't even realize I see that you've gone there. What are some of the things that a mom or dad, we have parents and even grandparents who listen in on our podcast? But what are some of the things then that you can do to help you? Maybe recognize where you are?

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  10:18  
Mm hmm. Yeah. So one of the things is that I teach my moms in the heat of the moment. So if you don't do things proactively to support yourself to like, calm your nervous system down to give yourself a little bit of white space in the day, all the in the moment, strategies will be harder to implement. So I'll stand by that because I know that's how it works with myself and a lot of other moms that I work with. So in the heat of the moment, just recognizing, if you start feeling tense, kind of like, what happens when I feel frustrated, I raised my voice, I get a little bit snappy and rude, my body starts to feel tense, I feel extremely agitated, and I just want everyone to stop. I feel overstimulated. That's kind of like what happens with me when all those negative feelings start to come up. And recognizing that, like, knowing kind of like how your body feels is one. And the biggest thing that I have is like, I could plan what I will do when I feel those emotions, so I don't end up acting on them and saying or doing hurtful things. And that is something you do proactively, I call it the when then statement, I got it from another parenting specialist that I thought was so cool and amazing. But you create a one that statement when I feel frustrated, and I feel like I want to blow up, then I will do blank. For me. It's deep breathing, if I can physically walk away, if everyone is physically safe in this circumstance, obviously not always possible, depending on your kids and your family. But if I can, I will walk away remove myself from the stressful situation. If not, I will just take deep breaths and remind myself this is hard. And I got this, what you need to do is, so what you tell yourself in the heat of the moment will either push you further into frustration or anger or it can send a safety signal to your brain to help you kind of de escalate and calm down a little bit. So if let's say your kid is throwing a tantrum, and you start getting frustrated, and your automatic thoughts are like, oh my goodness, they are rebellious, they're gonna grow up disrespectful, they're going to be jerks, that sends a more of a threat to your brain, and your brain wants to have even more control. And when it feels out of control, it's gonna freak out even more. But if you tell yourself, I have a good kid who's having a hard time, right, or you tell yourself, this is challenging, this is frustrating. And I can handle this, I can do hard things, or this moment will pass. Or like one of my favorite ones is like this is what it is right now. I don't like it. And I'll get through it. And when like, I'm telling myself a phrase like that in the heat of the moment that sends a safety signal to my brain. And that helps my brain to kind of slow down the reaction time. And I do deep breathing a lot. I do a lot of deep breathing. And it tells you what the coolest thing was. When I started practicing deep breathing in the mornings before my kids would get up. I had my alone time. And I proactively did some meditation and deep breathing. Two weeks in, I noticed that my body's started to implement deep breathing in the heat of the moment on its own without me initiating, like, oh, I have to deep breathe, because what happens is in order to deep breathe, it requires your thinking brain to remind you that but it shuts off in the heat of the moment. That's what makes it so hard. We kind of know what to do. But in the heat of the moment we forget. And we react, right because it requires our thinking brain and it shuts off. And so when I was doing deep breathing proactively, I would be a few minutes in the mornings, I would just lay on the floor with my eyes closed and just imagine myself in a peaceful place. And I just take some deep breaths. My body's like, Oh, I know what you need to calm down and to de escalate and I know what calms you. And so my body would just start deep breathing and I'm like, Oh, I didn't even initiate it. But I would catch myself deep breathing in the heat of the moment. And that would really help me stay more calm and grounded even when my kids are either super loud or are having a hard time and having a meltdown. And I was able to let them borrow some of that CO regulation because I was able to stay regulated.

DJ Stutz  14:58  
That is So true, I've seen that. It's something that I've worked on and grown to develop on my own. I'm much better at it now that my kids are grown and gone, though. It's an amazing. But I use this with my students. And actually, you get to a point, or at least I did, that the noise, or the undesired behavior doesn't even bother me anymore. It's like, oh, here we are. So he needs this help. And I don't get frustrated with it. That's been such a blessing for me, as a mom, as a grandparent, and especially as a teacher right now, I think you are right. And think of the example you're setting for your kids. So you're teaching them those strategies that are working so well for you.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  15:57  
Yeah, I mean, not every time. But there are times where I'm like, I need a break. And I will communicate that with my kids. I feel very frustrated right now I need a break. Or I'm trying to do some homework with one of my kids. And one of my boys has a really hard to have homework, and it can get really tense quickly. And I will tell myself, I'm going to I say it out loud. I'm going to take some deep breaths, because I'm starting to feel really angry right now. And I don't want to do or say anything hurtful. And I have my son, watch me do that. And so not always, does he borrow my energy, but there are times where he does you know, and obviously, that is so much better than me getting sucked into it. You know, I'm not saying I'm perfect. There are definitely times when I get sucked in. But when I go back at the end of the day, and I kind of circle back, and I'm like, what happened today? Why did I get pulled in into all those big feelings that he was experiencing? Why did I react? There's always a deeper underlying reason. It was either, I was super tired. It was either I was hungry. It was either I felt overwhelmed with things that were happening, or right now, as we're recording, there's a lot of things happening in the news. And I have family in Ukraine. And my mind is really consumed by those things. And so my energy is going towards that. And it's so much harder to regulate myself, because that requires a lot of energy, right, right of your brain. And like, or maybe I had a conflict with my spouse. And I was thinking about that. And I internally am struggling because of that. And it's so much harder to regulate. So there's always a few, maybe I'm grieving something, right? Maybe I'm grieving, a loss of something or a friendship or whatever. And so, or like when I went through miscarriage, that was a harder season because I was grieving the loss of a baby. And so I couldn't regulate myself like I normally would, I couldn't, I kept finding myself reacting because everything felt like too much in that season in my life. So like, when you do end up losing with your kids, which I think a lot of us struggle with that instead of beating yourself up. At the end of the day, like I'm a terrible mom, I lost it again with my kids, I would invite you to get curious and ask yourself, I wonder why. Today I lost with my kids. I wonder what was going on for me. And like one of my favorite phrases that I use a lot. And I say it, I'm doing my best. And that is enough. I'm a good mom, who had a hard day, or who's having a hard time. In the heat of the moment. Sometimes we do end up getting sucked into Vega motions or children's or own and I think what's important is later owning it and apologizing. But I think that just none of us are perfect. We all make mistakes. And what you tell yourself is going to feed mom guilt. Or if you get curious and be like yes, today was a hard day. I did lose it with my kids. I'm still a good mom. And I did my best and that was enough. And I'm curious, I wonder why I lost it. What was going on for me? Was I just super exhausted maybe I need to go to bed earlier was I just didn't have enough support and I feel super overwhelmed. How can I maybe get more support on my team? Always I think like getting curious is so much more beneficial than just beating yourself up and that creates even more negative right and then you feel even worse, isn't it that creates more reaction later on.

DJ Stutz  20:01  
So yeah, and it's funny because these are the same kinds of things that I am working to teach my students. And now most of them do have some special need issues. We do have a few typicals in the class, but most of them have some type of special need issues. And even the typicals helping them ask those same questions. How am I really feeling? And when they're three and four, you're totally able to start with that. But then think about, that's a good thing for you, too, as a parent, to take the time and say, Oh, why did I react that way? One of the big things in early childhood, as we say that all behavior is communication. They're communicating through their behavior that something is going on. But that's not just a little kid thing.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  21:03  
No, it's not adults are the same way. And I tell you what, that is a really good phrase. And I am really learning to see things from that lens. But I tell you what, when I am exhausted, when I'm overwhelmed, when I am stressed out, my brain tends to go back and see things from the lens that I have for 30 years before this, right, the way that I was raised. My kids just misbehaving. They want either attention. They want their own way they want control. My kid is being naughty, and they're resisting me they're disobeying. And so instead of seeing it as a communication thing, my kid is struggling and they're trying to communicate something, when I am overwhelmed and stressed out, I see it from the other lens, even though I don't want to, and I have to be so intentional, to shift my lens. And that's where like an affirmation or a mantra comes in, like, I have a good kid who's having a hard time. You know, or my kid is not giving me a hard time they're having a hard time, like, you know, something similar to that. But if I do things proactively, I teach my moms a lot of things that they can do practically like meeting their basic needs, getting enough sleep and eating meals, because when you are sleep deprived, you're you know, obviously, you know, there are seasons, when you have a newborn and stuff when you're super sleep deprived, when you're hungry, your brain literally does not focus its energy on emotional regulation, it focuses on the unmet basic needs, it cannot give energy to emotional regulation. That's why you find yourself a lot more reactive. If you're sleep deprived, right. That's why when people are sleep deprived, they can't even focus on their driving, your brain cannot focus on the other things, right. And there's this term hangry, it's true, it's a real thing we receive with ourselves, right? We completely react when we're so hungry, right. And so like basic needs is like number one. And then the other thing is, I teach my moms to create some white space in their day, may it be in the morning, maybe in the afternoon and create a quiet time or some sort of period in your day where you just center yourself, ground yourself. It could be journaling, it could be reading, it could be just meditating, it could be visualizing, it could be just anything that really calms your nervous system so that your baseline is not frustrated and agitated, it is more common ground and you have a lot more space in between to handle things that are not going your way.

DJ Stutz  23:49  
Right. So I was thinking when you are facing a really difficult situation. And it's not just a one day thing, or a week, whatever. But it's something that's really difficult for a longer period of time, such as your concerns right now with what's going on in the Ukraine. Or if it's something where you've just gone through a marriage split up, and you don't get over that in a day or two. And you're having to figure out where are we going to live? How am I going to feed my kids? Am I going to keep my kids? What are all those things? And those dragged out for extended periods of time and they are huge emotions, draining emotions. How do you take care of yourself in a way that you're able to then take care of the kids?

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  24:56  
Yeah, so I've had I had a season like that in my life where things were really, really hard. And things were really tense. And for about a year and a half, things were really, really hard. And so there are a few things that were extremely helpful for me. So one of them, I went to therapy for myself, personally, so valuable just having someone there to listen to you and being able to like explain even why you feel that sometimes you're so confused why things are so hard. And I had a great therapist who was really helpful with helping me also take action. Yes, there's you talk about that as like, okay, what are you going to do about this? What are you going to do differently? What boundaries are you going to set? So she was really helpful with that. So having a therapy and the right therapist, I think is really valuable. And if you go there a couple times, and you're like, This just doesn't click this doesn't feel right, look for somebody else. So the right therapist, you're just gonna know they're the right one. The other one is having a support system. So if you're going through something like you're grieving the loss of something, something super heavy in your life, that is just a season, right? Not just like a day, having a support system is absolutely crucial. You will burn out if you don't have a support system, you will you just well, you have a limited amount of energy and strength. You're only human, and taking care of yourself can be really hard on its own plus taking care of your kids. Because when I was going through that season, I was also going through depression. And man, oh, boy, it was hard. Every day felt like survival mode. And for about two months, things were so heavy, I thought I would get up in the morning. And I would remember I had two things on my to do list is to make a meal for my family and do a load of laundry. Well, on top of like, you know, watching my kids are taken care

Unknown Speaker  27:04  
of. Right? Because I was I was anybody.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  27:07  
Yes, yes. And I was a stay at home mom. And just the two things felt so hard and overwhelming. It felt so insane. And so that was just really, really hard. And I don't know, if I could have done without a support system. I don't think I would have make it through. My sister came a couple times a week, she would help me watch my kids and get things done around the house. My mom would give me some meals and some friends would drop off some meals. Also, when I was going through a miscarriage that was also the hard season where a family stepped in and friends stepped in and church steps in to help and harder situations like that. And just asking for help. People want to help, right like there's lots of people who are let's say her their kids are out of the house and they love to serve others. I've had women who brought me meals that are like I love to cook, she's like a love it and bringing meals to others. So just at least for me being in a community of church was so helpful. So having a community and support and going therapy were huge. And so then there's a few other things like how do you take care of yourself and actually process everything that is happening, right? Because even right now as the wars happening in Ukraine, there's a lot of big emotions that I'm experiencing, because I have family there. And so I need to not just keep it inside of me because I collect stress and then eventually you blow up, right? I need to process everything. So here's some ways that are really good with processing emotions. And one of them is I journal, a journal a lot. Does it take time? Yes. But it's either that or emotionally vomiting on my family, call it so I emotionally vomit into my journal even let's say I have conflict with my spouse for example. I know that in the heat of the moment, I'll say hurtful things. And if I noticed myself being a little bit disrespectful, and just being snappy, I'm like, I need to pull back and I need to journal get it all on my journal, get it out of my brain that calms me. And then we can talk and I will be much better and much more respectful. And so like I call it emotional vomiting, so everything put it in your journal, there's so many studies that show that journaling is helpful. If you don't feel safe keeping it afterwards you I don't know who you live with and what like you can rip it up you can burn it I don't know. But if you don't feel safe, you know with you know, somebody may be reading it but talking talking to a safe person. So there's people that are not safe. But there's people in our lives, I would really encourage you to have a good support system, you'll probably have a people in your lives, but talking to somebody who will be just a listening ear and just empathizing with you and just not trying to change, not trying to fix things by just being there. Somebody that maybe even as a spiritual leader who can pray over you, you know, and mentor, you just like, that was like when I was going through my heart sees my life, I had my therapist, I had my family, my support system, and then I have spiritual mentors, they came to my house, and they just, they listened to me talk, but also they prayed over me, and they read the Bible over me. And that was really, really encouraging and helpful for me. The other thing is, we tend to collect a lot of our stress in our bodies, right? If we don't process it, it just stays in our minds and our bodies, even you'll have high blood pressure, and you'll have pain in your neck and your body will feel stuff. So moving your body is another great way to process those emotions. How many times have you heard people like, oh, I need to just clear my mind and go on a walk, right? Because there's just so much chaos happening, moving your bodies really, really good. So it could be stretching, it could be going on a walk, right? It could be sometimes if you're really angry, you need to like punch a bag or something to get all those frustrations and anger out that's better than you know hurting somebody else right?

DJ Stutz  31:30  
Most of the time.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  31:35  
Guys, even like for my kiddos, I have a box with a bunch of random papers that they can like wreck and crumble and we throw them at a wall, I'll get in it with them, maybe like I'm so angry, and I'll crumble and I throw because they're not hurting anybody. And it's a healthy way of releasing that build up tension in your body. I love listening to music. And you could do singing or playing an instrument that also was really calming to process your emotions and let them out. For me, I just love listening to calming music, just like meditation that really calms my brain when I just feel on edge or super kind of tense. Some people like to draw or paint picture therapy or like drawing therapy. You know what I'm talking about? I don't know the official name, though. Yeah, but you know, that is also really good to get your emotions out, you know, let it out versus at collecting Island size. So those are some ideas to just processing it and getting it out.

DJ Stutz  32:40  
Yeah, I agree. I really loved what you said about the spiritual side of things, too. I know for me, that's just been a huge help. When I was going through my rough years, I had four little kids, we just moved to Las Vegas, the youngest was severely ADHD, and would scream and fight and kick and hit and throw tantrums. And I had no family there. And my weak husband was working 80 hours, and sometimes 100 hours in a week, so that I could be home and take care of the kids. And I felt so isolated. And I actually resented the time that he was spending at work, because I needed help. But finding that faith community helped so much, and having people pray for me and give me blessings. And that really made a difference for me. And another thing too, was just making friends with people on our street. So there were other stay at home moms, not a ton, but we had a clan. And so we would go out and do things together. So that we were all watching our kid at the park or in the summer

Unknown Speaker  34:14  
went to the Burger King because they had the indoor play area because it's 117 outside and with byleth Small coke and get it refilled for two hours while we're

DJ Stutz  34:28  
it's but it was a release and it was something that really helped me get through.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  34:36  
Yeah, having like a community of women who are also are supporting and encouraging. And I would also really encourage you to tune in how you feel after you spend time with people like with those women, for example, because there are times that it might not be the best circle. If you walk away and you feel More drained, you feel down, you feel discouraged. You feel like your worst mom, your guilt sets in even more. And just like, obviously, they're even like online, there's plenty of communities that are just negative vibe negative energy, oh, I would really highly encourage you to learn how you feel after you spend time with these friends, because if it's a good group of people, you feel uplifted, you feel encouraged? You feel better, even though you guys shared your struggles. That's, that's good. And that's normal. But how do you feel afterwards? Right? I think it is really like, I can share my struggles, but is, let's say, um, I share my marriage struggles and somebody's like, bashing the husband even more, and it gives such a he's such a jerk, you know? Versus, okay. It seems like you guys are struggling with us. That is hard. I can see how that's really hard for you. Well, are you open for some advice? Are you open for some suggestions, maybe let's come up with ideas. That means you can communicate with him. So he understands you better, or whatever, versus all the negativity?

DJ Stutz  36:16  
Right, I did have one of those friends. And she was so helpful in so many other ways. But I realized I couldn't share my marriage issues with her. Because she was oh, he's awful. He's terrible. And she was funny and interesting, but she would always be more blaming him. And so when I talked to her about marriage issues, I would come away more angry at my sweetheart than just feeling heard. So I realized she was a great friend for this, this and this part of my life. So I didn't need to abandon the friendship. Yeah, I just needed to realize that oh, here are the fences,

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  37:01  
no boundaries, right boundaries, what you talk about with her and what you don't, because, you know, recognizing if it's helpful or not, and how you feel afterwards. So yeah, exactly. Right.

DJ Stutz  37:14  
Exactly. And so another thing I think, is, when we're looking for a therapist, and you're talked about knowing whether they click or not, sometimes, especially if you're a stay at home, mom, you can feel like you don't have access to that. What are some ideas? Or what are some things that you have in mind, when you're in that situation,

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  37:42  
even like when you stay at home, and you don't have anyone to watch, you don't

DJ Stutz  37:45  
have insurance, you don't have insurance kids, or your spouse is not supportive of helping you pay for that when you don't have your own income.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  37:57  
Yeah, when I went to therapy, there was a hard season in our marriage. And that therapist that I was recommended, did not take interns in it was like 150 per hour. It was a lot. We were in a financial situation when things were kind of tight. But we could, I could, you know, I could do it if I really, really wanted to. So here's the thing that was, so I told my husband, it was at a point where I'm like, I don't care. I'm having a really hard time. I'm really struggling. And I need help. And I don't care how much it costs, I will go get help. And if you don't want to pay for it. I have people in my life who are willing to help me. I had family, I had the church, the church can pay. A lot of times they have funding, we usually have somebody in our life who is a little bit better financially off, and you can like talk to them and be like I had siblings and my husband's siblings were, they were in a position. They're like, hey, we see that you're struggling, if you need help, we're willing to pay. And so I was fortunate enough, where I had the church, and I had family and friends who were willing to help out if I was financially and then I remember I one of my husband did not want to accept their help. I'm like, okay, that's fine, then you're gonna have to pay for it. Right and and I went and I went, I'm like, I'm at a point where I'm at a breaking point. I cannot afford this for our children for the sake of our kids. I'm so miserable. I'm struggling so bad. I have to get help. I have Do right. And so it was kind of like at that it was a very, very that type of season in our marriage and just and therapy has transformed my life God used this Christian therapist and psychologist to completely change everything I learned about boundaries. You know, I learned about codependency I learned about emotional regulation, like all the things right. And so it was completely this is where I am now because of everything that I learned. But I think that if you feel like you don't have access to it, praying for God to give you an opportunity to go, and a in reaching out to people in your circle, and be like, Hey, do you know if anyone ever really needs supporting I do know of anyone who is financially able to help out. And one of my friends said she's like, Don't rob somebody of a blessing to help you. There are people in our world in our circles, that they have the financial means, and they would love to bless you with that. They would love to give that money. So you can go get helps, so you feel better. That's one of my goals. When I get at a point in my life where I am financially abundant, I would love to pay for other people's therapy appointments. It is so transformative. It is so much needed, it completely changed my life. And I don't want anyone to not go because they don't have the financial means. So I would love to bless other people in that way. And there are people like that in the world who are more than happy to financially, like help out like that. So just ask, just ask is like, Hey, I'm having a really hard time I really need some support. Do you know of anyone who is financially able to help out? Because the therapist that really would be helpful for me, it does not, you know, I don't have insurance or it's not covered by insurance or whatever. So that would be like my go to church, and reach out to family and friends and even ask if they know anyone.

DJ Stutz  42:10  
Yeah, that was my go to was church as well. And I think you and I have yet another thing in common is, both of us have goals of when we're able to make some money off of what we do here that our goal is to actually help others through that. So this is a means for us to be able to reach out and help people in these areas. So I applaud you on that goal. So if people want to reach out to you, or listen to your podcasts, do you have any programs that you use to help other parents? How did they get in touch with you? Yeah,

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  43:00  
so my podcast, emotional, healthy legacy, it is on iTunes, Google podcasts and Spotify. I also offer a free stress management call. So if you go to my website, emotionally healthy legacy on the front page, you're gonna have access, where you can book a free stress management call is 45 minutes, we get to kind of talk about things that are really heavy right now. And we come up with an action plan at least one thing that you can implement, to kind of reduce some of that mental stress, maybe it's just mental stress that needs to be reduced by, you know, like, doing things that calm your nervous system down. Or maybe it's an action step, like we need to talk to your spouse about something or that will reduce your stress load. Also, I have two programs I have. It's called the emotionally healthy mom, it's a membership, it's a monthly membership. So we focus on one topic of the month and like let's say, meeting your needs, meeting your basic needs. And then like keeping each other accountable. We do zoom meetings twice a month, and to check in with your with each other. Or we'll talk about processing emotions or creating a when then statements. So each month has its own topic, or like releasing control of things that we can't control because if we try to control things we can't write, we create extra stress for ourselves. And so focusing on one topic of the month and then taking actionable steps to implement it and having accountability and a supportive community. And my other way I support moms is one on one coaching. I have a program for one on one coaching and that is customized to you. And we talk all about meeting your needs. We talk about proactive ways to support yourself so you are more calm and grounded to begin with emotional regulation in the heat of the moment setting boundaries, staying regularly Didn't when your kids are having a hard time, and all the things that have less stress management and emotions, big and challenging emotions,

DJ Stutz  45:09  
those are great programs. So we'll have all of that information in our show notes. So moms can find you and get some added help. So as we start winding things down a little bit, I feel like I could talk to you forever. But I always ask my guests the same question. How would you describe a successful parent?

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  45:37  
Ah, that's such a loaded question. So there are a couple of things that come to me like right away that jumped out at me, I feel like a successful parent is able to recognize their emotions, and is able to stay in control versus being controlling. They're controlling themselves, they're in control of themselves, versus trying to try to like control their children. I think that is a huge part. And the second part of it is owning your mistakes. So when you do mess up, when you do end up losing it, owning it, and not saying to your kids, you made me do this, you made me but like owning like, I messed up, I raised my voice. That was scary. I'm so sorry. Next time, I will try to do better. Or next time, I'll take some deep breaths, or whatever it is, but owning your mistakes and setting an example to your kids. And that way.

DJ Stutz  46:45  
Boy, you've got it. Yeah, that's a huge piece of it. And I think owning it and letting your kids know it's okay to say you're sorry. And then have a plan on what you're going to do next is awesome. Well, Elizabeth, Andrea offski. I am so glad we got to spend this time together. And I hope that down the road, we'll have another conversation. So thanks for being here.

Elizabeth Andreyeveskiy  47:15  
Thank you so much for having me. Appreciate it.

DJ Stutz  47:18  
Absolutely. So much good advice and great ideas. I can't express how much good it does to think and plan and then get help when needed. Instead of just beating yourself up. Or worse, just making excuses and then making no changes or growth. Elizabeth advice is great. And if you want to learn more about her, all of her information is in the show notes. And you can find her podcast, the Emotionally Healthy Legacy podcast pretty much anywhere where you find your podcasts. And I keep on asking. But while you are looking over the shownotes go ahead and leave a rating and review and take the time to give the podcast a five star rating. And when you do that the ratings and reviews make the podcast easier to find. And we are able to help more families have you hit follow yet. Make sure you following the podcasts so you don't miss anything. And then those following along with the ratings and reviews help us find more people to help. I know you've been waiting for it, it is finally aired the amazing summer workshop and you're gonna get it at my website, which is And you can register and have access to the workshop, as well as a ton of resources. So we've got the scavenger hunts, and we've got information on how to make a travel map for your kids. We have got checkoff list of things to remember when you're traveling. We also have something that will help you at the beginning of the summer to set goals. Why set goals? What kind of goals should you set? And then how do you track them to see that you're making progress? A lot of times as you're working along, it just feels like you're not getting anywhere with the kids. But when you take time to pay attention to what's really happening, you find that you are making a lot of progress. And this is why teachers actually take data and they write down anecdotal notes. And they put all of this together so that they can see oh, well, Joey got 50 on the first test, but he got 55 on the next. That's an improvement and you can track that. It may not be where you want them to be yet, but you're on the way and isn't that all that matters. So this is such a fun workshop. And I'm so excited to have it ready for you guys. And I hope that You'll go and check it out and be a part of my Instagram family. You can follow me at imperfect heroes podcast, and you're gonna get helpful hints and tips and information on upcoming episodes and events. And I even pop on live every once in a while. And so I'm going to be looking for you. Next week is Rachael Bailey. As we talk about helping our kids get through those really big emotions, tune in and see what I mean. And until next time, let's find joy in parenting.

Transcribed by

Elizabeth AndreyevskiyProfile Photo

Elizabeth Andreyevskiy

Stress coach for moms

-Mom of 3 boys and 1 girl
-Been married for 13 years
-Lives in Twin Cities, MN
-Became a stress coach for moms after struggling implementing gentle parenting because she was internally feeling burnout, overwhelmed and stressed
-Teaches moms to prioritize their needs and ways to relax nervous system as well as in the moment emotion regulation strategies to avoid emotional explosions