How To Use Stress To Improve Your Life

In today’s fast-paced world, stress is often viewed as a negative force that we must avoid at all costs. However, what if I told you that you can actually use stress to improve your life? It may sound counterintuitive, but harnessing the power of stress can be a game-changer. Today we will learn about that and much more with our guest Dr. Dravon. Dr. Dravon is a multi-talented individual with experience in various fields. Dr. Dravon shares her expertise on stress management and the importance of reframing stress as a natural part of life. She also helps mothers with embracing stress and making stress your friend.

How To Use Stress To Improve Your Life | MomCave LIVE| With Dr. Dravon

Embracing Stress and Making stress your friend.

Jen:   Welcome to MomCave LIVE, where we may have lost our minds, but we haven’t lost our senses of humor. I’m Jen, and our guest tonight is one that is near and dear to something we all need help with. We’ve got Dr. Dravon James. Hi, how are you?

Dr. Dravon:   I am so good. I’m so excited to be here with you and your audience today.

Jen:  We are excited to learn from you and your wisdom. So you guys, if you don’t know Dr. Dravon, I would say, almost a jack of all trades in a way. I mean, a doctor who also is a radio host, a life coach, you have founded The Next Step Leadership Academy, and she was even an actress. So this woman is well-rounded and has done a lot, and I was told that you are an expert on stress.

Navigating Stress: Embracing it as a Powerful Tool in Motherhood to Improve Your Life.

Dr. Dravon:   You know, well, if experiencing a lot of it makes you an expert? Yes, I am an expert. I think what I am an expert on really is how to use stress. I’ve had so much of it, and I think we try everything, right? We tried to avoid it never worked. So I just really realized to embrace it. It was gonna be part of my journey. We were talking before the show that I have a 23-year-old, a 20-year-old. So in the midst of everything else, I was doing professionally, and it just has been a stressful journey. I just learned how to embrace stress and make it my friend and not my enemy.

Jen:   Wow. Okay, so I definitely want to get into that. So everyone here, the “MomCavers,” as we call them, we’ve got moms of all different ages. So we have brand new moms who are experiencing that stress that we know so well. And then we’ve got moms of teens and tweens experiencing that, in fact, every stage of motherhood, you know, everyone is like, “Oh, wait till they get to that stage.”

Dr. Dravon:  So encouraging. It was so encouraging to learn how to deal with stress and improve your life.

What do you think makes parenting uniquely stressful?

Jen:   Nobody would ever have children if we listened to our friends because everybody has something to say, but stress, I think, is a huge part of it, just because you’ve got so much more going on. Right? And so many more things to be responsible for. What do you think about parenthood that makes it uniquely stressful?

Dr. Dravon:  Well, I think from a mom’s perspective, and probably from a dad’s perspective, it is the only time in your entire life that you walk around, as they say, with your heart outside of your body, right? So, you know, you could, and I probably could soldier up against anything. But when it comes to our kids, we are so sensitive, and we don’t have the control that we thought we would have.

You know, at some points, the whole world has a bigger voice for whatever reason, it seems as though, and we’re so that is the time, I think we were so conscious of the future. We tend to believe that every little thing is going to have a huge impact on their future. We can’t control every little thing, and we definitely can’t control the future. So that is just stress right there.

Breaking the Stress Cycle: Finding Perspective in Parenting to Improve Your Life.

Jen:   Yeah. Oh, wow. Yeah. I mean, we think if we don’t get the kid to go to the right daycare, then they won’t go to the right preschool anymore, blah, blah, blah, blah. Then they’re not gonna get into an Ivy League college. I mean, people, it’s like a momentum of stress. I feel we think so far ahead.

Dr. Dravon:   We do, we think, and I just want to just tell you this really funny story. My daughter was in the first grade, and she was struggling. The teacher told my husband and me, “You know, she’s, she’s really doing a poor job”. And, you know, we’re thinking that she may have some issues, and you listen to all this, and I said, in the first grade, you think you can determine all of that, that’s interesting.

On the outside. I appeared very calm. But inside, you know, I was so nervous. I went home. I was reading everything. Fast forward. She’s 23 years old, a 4.0, in an MBA program, no issue. And I tell people all the time now, so you know, take everything with a grain of salt. Everybody means well, but you are calm, and just know that this, too, will pass. Don’t stress over everything. Everybody who’s an expert is just not really an expert. They mean well, though; they’re just not an expert on your kid.

Advice for new parents, this too will pass.

Jen:   So true. If anybody watching has some questions for Dr. Dravon about how to manage stress or anything like that, just pop them in the comments. We’ll keep an eye on there. That reminds me of the only advice I ever feel confident to give to new parents is that it’s like…. this too will pass. Whatever thing you’re obsessing about at this moment seems so very important. And then, once, if you just wait it out, it’s gonna go away, and then a new thing will pop up, and you could obsess about the new thing.

Dr. Dravon:  Oh my goodness. It is a rollercoaster ride. So you start to embrace the waves. The highs, the lows, the anxiety. You start to realize that through all of this, and I had a lot of it, I was a high-risk pregnancy. So it started there with both children, and you know, just everything one thing after another. And what I would always come back to, and I, life coach, this too, is I would always come back to what am I grateful for in this experience, and I would look at those little faces, and I will be so in awe of the fact that my goodness, you get here you got here.

Finding Gratitude in the Journey of Motherhood to Improve Your Life

Jen:   It’s so true. I always felt like it made the stress of new motherhood easier for me, I think because I waited longer to have kids in life. Then when I was ready, it took a while. There were some losses and things along the way. So that when I was feeling that, like, oh, my god, what’s going on, if I could just step back and if I could go to my past self and say, you have this healthy, wonderful little thing right here, the thing might be screaming, throwing a tantrum, and driving you crazy at the moment, but it is a miracle that you have this child,

Dr. Dravon:   Yeah, we share that journey. I was later in life and had a lot of losses. I would always come back to that point that, you know, this was something that many doctors said would never happen, and it happened twice. So how amazing is that? And so that would calm me down. There was, oh my gosh, you know, I often say, “Well, if I had done it younger I wouldn’t have all these risks “, but I did do it later. I did have all that appreciation. Even now, I look and think to myself, wow, you know?

Leaders in High Heels.

Jen:    Well, it sounds like they turned out pretty good so far. So that’s good news. You were telling me before we went live about The Leaders in High Heels, so tell everybody what that is.

Women's black high heels.

Dr. Dravon:    Yeah, so in my life coaching journey, I coached both men and women. What I noticed a lot about my women clients over the years is this sort of “not-good-enough syndrome.” This, along with everything we talk about parenting, we talk about taking care of their aging parents, or just caring for themselves or getting to the next level in their career or business. There was always this underlying, not good enough when this happens.

Empowering Women to Embrace Their Potential and Pursue Their Passions

So it inspired me to dig deep and start doing a lot of research on how we are wired as women and how I could be of use as a life coach. That’s what led me to create Leaders in High Heels. This means that you could be trying to lead yourself, your family, your community, or your career. Just moving to that point where you see yourself and value yourself as a leader and understand the skill sets that leaders have that make them run multimillion-dollar companies and made them start, you know, nonprofit organizations just to realize that you had that in you. You don’t really need to change a whole bunch to tap into that and do what you really want to do in your passion.

Jen:   It’s great. You guys watching. If there’s something that you dream about doing, but you’re afraid, or you have that “not-good-enough syndrome,” share it with us. We would like to talk about it. I mean, we all have those things. What are some kind of like day to day things that you do to manage stress?

Ask yourself, “Why am I yelling?”.

Dr. Dravon:  Oh, I love talking about this. The first thing I want to tell you is that stress is sneaky, and I tell people it’s like a computer virus. Things are happening in the background, and if you let it go unchecked, it will take over your system. So one of the first things I do is body scans all day long. I check in with myself and ask us. “How are you feeling?” And I wait. I wait, and I just start paying attention from the soles of my feet to the crown of my head start paying attention. Is there any tension there?

You know, usually, for me, it’s in my belly area in my gut. No surprise there for a lot of women. And I just stopped and asked, “What is that?” “What do you feel in there?” And I wait for an answer. Sometimes it’s a small whisper. “I’m scared about this. I’m scared about that.” You will be amazed at how quickly we start to internalize and chastise ourselves for being afraid. I don’t do that. I give myself permission to feel all of that. Then we’re all moms that will get this part. I start to mother myself. Oh, I started to say, “You’re okay; this will pass.” You know, “I understand how you could feel that way.” And I just watched the stress just like I would do with my kids when I tell you Middle School was those years for me.

Nurturing Self-Awareness: The Key to Managing Stress and Improve Your Life.

I really became a really seasoned mom, I think, during that period, realizing, okay, this is not a moment to yell or to question. This is a moment to soothe. I apply that to myself. So that’s one of the major things that the first steps I give people is check-in, don’t let the stress mount if you can catch it before it mounts, and you can start to Mother yourself. Think of how you would mother your children and mother yourself the same way. Oh, wow. Yeah, catch it before it starts. But if you don’t catch it before it starts, there are some things that you can do in self-awareness is important. When you start to notice what are those things that we do.

Our voice starts to go up, right? We start to feel it. I’ll give you the, you know, who started to feel hot and warm and impatient. Start to talk about those symptoms. Ask yourself, okay, “Why am I yelling? “And you’ll, you’ll yell right back. Because listen to that, listen to that, and speak to that mother, that mother, that instinct says, Okay, “I understand how you could feel that way.” No criticism. Always accepting yourself at that moment will do wonders is called. When I coach, I call it the light of awareness. Being aware of it at that moment, and accepting it without criticism, will cause it to dissipate and will help you manage stress to improve your life.

Woman stressed sitting at her computer.

Embracing Resistance: A Path to Unveiling Inner Peace and Self-Awareness

Jen:    That’s very interesting because that’s counterintuitive to me. Maybe that’s why I’m always so stressed. Because sometimes I feel like I have this feeling of stress and overwhelm. I’m like, “If I follow where it came from, then I’m going to get more caught up and more involved in it.” So I tried to say, “No, no, no, I’m not going to do that.” Then I guess that just makes it worse.

Dr. Dravon:   So we put up that wall of resistance. When we do whatever we resist, right? We’re not really good at drawing more of that energy to us, and I moved towards, I call it leaning in, I lean right into it, and what’s going on here. I can feel my inside yelling back at me, you know, this is what’s happening. So I understand. I see you can see it that way. Yep. You said that 10,000 times. I get it. And all of a sudden, because there are parts of our ego, parts of our mind that just want to be heard.

Jen:    This is getting into some deep psychology here.

Dr. Dravon:   We just want to be heard. You know, no one’s listening right, including ourselves, because we’re telling ourselves power through power group.

Jen:    I’m talking about that. Right? Yeah.

The more you ask yourself, the more often you will get the answers.

Dr. Dravon:   Giving in to this doesn’t take long once you stop and see what’s going on. The more often that you do, the answers come quicker. You start to settle down. Okay. All right. I got this.

Jen:   Okay, I’m gonna give it a try. I hope everyone else will, too. The last thing I wanted to talk about is being able to relax. I was talking to some friends about this. So it seems to be a universal thing of not being able to relax, ever. Because we feel like the moment we do, we’re slacking on something. There’s always something else to do. Life is so short, and the day is so short, and the kids need us and blah, blah, blah, so that we never actually just relax. What’s a good way to relax and how to manage stress to improve your life?

Prioritizing Your Mission: Balancing Responsibilities and Self-Care

Dr. Dravon:  I think we all go through that as moms, right? As you know, women, in general, understand your priority, like having your mission statement for yourself and asking yourself how important it is in your mission. That the dishes be done? What is that? A clean house? We all love it, but is it more important than family time? Is it more important than self-care?

The best thing you can do for your children and your spouse is take care of yourself because you’re more patient. You show up like you want to show up. So asking them was different for all of us. I mean, for some women, they will say I can’t function without a clean house. Okay, great. So that becomes part of your mission, you know, whatever that is. But then realize that everything can’t make the top five, and that’s being an executive over your life.

You are the CEO of your life, the CFO of your life, and you are the chief of everything in your life. So that means that you have to understand that I got a top five not for the day for this hour. I’m not going to be able to get all that done. And then that top five must you have to have some me time on so that you can stay top notch for those who are depending on you.

If mom’s not feeling good, the house isn’t going to run well.

Jen:    It’s so true. So true. I know it feels like a cliche sometimes to say it, but if your mom’s not feeling good, then the house isn’t gonna go well, and the family’s not gonna go well. Nothing’s gonna run well with Mom, who’s losing her crap. Yeah. In fact.

Dr. Dravon:   Even if required is in our emotions, it’s in our face. You know, Maya Angelou said that “If you pay attention to children, when they come in, the first thing they do when they come in the house as their mom is there, they want to look at their mom’s face. And they react to that.” That’s why that is so important. While we’re not Stepford women, we’re not always going to be in a great mood, but we want to be given the best of ourselves, whatever that is. Some days, a 10 is the best week. On some days, a two is the best. Whatever it is, we want to be given the best that we can at that moment.

Jen:    That’s so true. Thank you so much for exploring all of this with me, you guys. You have got to go check out Dr. That’s the website? Yes, yes. There are so many things there that will help you, and Dr. Dravon can help you in many, many ways. Let’s continue this conversation. You know, MomCave is a place for us to all try to relax and try not to be stressed. Because the stress is going to be there no matter what, that’s life, but we’re going to just keep doing our best to lean into it. So thank you so much. And here’s to a stress-free evening for everybody. Yes,

How to manage stress to Improve Your Life.

Dr. Dravon:   That is a stress-free evening for all of us,

Jen:   Right? I’m gonna leave this laundry right here. And I’m going to go upstairs, where it’s even more of a mess, and I’m gonna have dinner with my family now. So you’ve given me permission and advice on how to manage stress to Improve my life. Thank you, guys. Thank. Thanks for watching. See you soon. Bye. Okay,

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Dr. Dravon professional photo.

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