What Athletes Teach Us About Mental Health
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
4d ago
Most offices are rife with sports metaphors, from hitting the target to being a team player. There’s a lot we can learn from athletes and those who train them about performance and mental health. And high-profile athletes from Michael Phelps to Simone Biles have contributed to the broader conversation around mental health in recent years due to their openness about their struggles.  In this episode, we speak with performance psychologist Alex Auerbach, who works with the Toronto Raptors, about how he helps athletes work through their mental challenges and keeps them performing at a high ..read more
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What Mental Health Leave Taught One Google Executive
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
2w ago
People who end up in leadership positions at huge companies are usually overachievers: they’ve succeeded in school, internships, early career jobs, and as managers and leaders. But all that success can also hide a whole lot of feelings that we push aside.  Newton Cheng, Director of Health and Performance at Google, spent a year facing those challenges head on. The world champion powerlifter took mental health leave from the company, a phrase he feels strongly about. And it let him interrogate all the ways his mind pushes him, tricks him, and tells him he’s not good enough.  He shar ..read more
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Shopify’s Harley Finkelstein is an Anxious Achiever
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
3w ago
Harley Finkelstein is president of Shopify, the e-commerce platform that has processed over 1 billion orders. For years, Harley’s anxiety troubled him but also gave him tremendous drive and energy. He realized that anxiety could actually be an advantage, and today he manages his anxiety through therapy, daily meditation, exercise, breathwork, and scheduling that protects his personal time. His deep self-awareness has enabled him to identify the tools he needs to be an effective leader and to keep his anxiety in check when it begins to escalate.  We will be back next week with a new seaso ..read more
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CVS Health’s Cara McNulty on Fighting Mental Health Stigma
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
1M ago
Much about mental health care in this country is pretty broken. In her role at President of Behavioral Health and Executive Vice President at CVS Health, Cara McNulty is working to help fix that broken system.  At America’s fourth largest company, Cara has a platform to implement new policy and change minds. She also brings her own personal story that impacts her daily work, sharing her journey with post-partum anxiety with host Morra Aarons-Mele. The Anxious Achiever returns in January with more new episodes ..read more
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How to Channel Anxiety Into Positive Work Outcomes, According to Research
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
1M ago
Work can be stressful and downright anxiety-inducing; but we also know that bit of anxiety that comes from bumping up against a deadline or having to give a big presentation to the board can spark positive energy and creativity. Bonnie Hayden Cheng, associate professor at HKU Business School, looks at the ways in which our jobs can create anxiety, and shares science-backed guidance on how to get the best out of your anxiety. The Anxious Achiever is nominated for a Signal Award. Head to their website to vote for The Anxious Achiever as Best Commute Podcast: https://vote.signalaward.com/PublicV ..read more
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Managing With Intention Can Help Us Fight Toxic Work Environments, Burnout, and Anxiety
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
1M ago
Being intentional about how we spend our time and how we treat others is sometimes easier said than done. But it’s an essential piece of how we keep workers and workplaces mentally healthy in today’s increasingly chaotic and stressful environment.  In this episode, we speak with Jacqui Brassey, a Director of Research Science at McKinsey, on what she’s discovered about toxic workplaces, anxiety, and how to combat both. Plus, we check in with Vivek Bapat of SAP about what he’s learned as a leader about how to communicate intentionally and effectively in the world of hybrid work ..read more
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The Anxiety of Money, University, and Raising Mentally Healthy Kids
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
2M ago
It’s the time of year when so many young adults and their parents are thinking about a major achievement in young life - getting into college. It’s easy for overachieving parents to put that stress on their kids to go to the perfect school. But the process comes with such a roller coaster of emotions, not just about self-worth but also the value of education and the cost of that education today. Host Morra Aarons-Mele speaks with New York Times Money Columnist Ron Lieber about the mental health issues around parenting, college, and our definition of success ..read more
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Finding the Right Work Fit When You’re Neurodivergent
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
2M ago
For all the negative stuff that social media and our online world can put out there - a lot of which we talk about in this show - there are also some pretty wonderful things. Being online can help us build community, which is something Amanda Morin spends a lot of time and energy on. She’s a mission-driven author, speaker, and advocate for issues around neurodiversity. She speaks with Morra Aarons-Mele about her own anxiety, struggles, and decision to try entrepreneurism ..read more
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Digging Deeper on Perfectionism
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
2M ago
Many high performers go through their working lives struggling with perfectionism and not even realizing it - or not understanding why they have such a need to achieve. In this episode, we continue the conversation around the roots of perfectionism, how to know if it is a problem, and what we can do about it.  Host Morra Aarons-Mele speaks with licensed psychologist Thomas Greenspon about the research around perfectionism and how it starts when we are young.  Then we hear from Eleanor Beaton, an author, leadership expert, and founder of SafiMedia, who shares her own story of perfecti ..read more
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Using Achievement - and Exercise - to Cope
The Anxious Achiever
by Morra Aarons-Mele
2M ago
Emi Nietfeld is one of those people who looks great on paper. Raised in tumultuous circumstances and facing mental health challenges in her early teens, she went on to get into Harvard and work at Google. Now as an adult, she’s an author and has faced the unhealthy reasons behind her perfectionism. She shares her story about overachievement, overexercise, and overwork as a method of control and emotional survival, and what she hopes our society can learn about relying too much on personal excellence. A note that this episode includes discussion of sensitive topics like eating disorders and sel ..read more
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