13 Transcript: How to Live a Slower, More Authentic Life (with Kris Vaughan)

Click here to download the PDF version of the transcript.

J: You're listening to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast, episode number 13.

K: I look back and I spent so many years of my life with no joy because I was so focused on trying to live a life that I thought everyone needed to see of me.

Intro: Welcome to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast, stories of vibrant women living happy lives. And now, your host, Jen Riday.

J: Hey here, Jen here and this is Vibrant Happy Women. On our last episode, I chatted with Whitney Lang and she shared her story of finding her bliss despite her struggles with anxiety and depression. If you or anyone you know struggles with anxiety or depression, be sure to listen to that episode by going to jenriday.com/12. On today's episode, I'll be chatting with Kris Vaughan and she shares her story of overcoming severe adrenal fatigue and also some wisdom about being the person you were created to be. I just love Kris's energy, her positivity is contagious and you're going to love this episode, so we'll go ahead and get started.

In this episode, I have the pleasure to chat with Kris Vaughan, a certified herbalist who works with women who are seeking natural support for their chronic illnesses. Kris teaches herbal medicine classes and founded the Herbal Wisdom Institute. Like me, Kris hosts her own podcast and it's called Herbal Wisdom. She lives in Prescott, Arizona with her husband and 2 teenage daughters. Welcome, Kris.

K: Thank you for having me. How are you?

J: I'm doing great, how are you doing?

K: Wonderful.

J: Well, we like to start out our shows with a favorite quote from our guests, do you have a favorite quote you'd like to share with us?

K: Mine is pretty simple and it is, “Just be.” And this came to me what during a time of prayer and meditation. I was going through a lot of anxiety and a lot of feeling like I wasn't enough.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: Wasn't good enough, wasn't doing enough, wasn't creating enough and… and I would meditate and I would pray and I kept saying, you know, “God, tell me something big to do with my life,” you know, as if I hadn't already been doing enough, right?

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And after months and months of really praying for this big message in my life, I was sitting one day and it was as if he whispered in my ear and he said, “Just be.”

J: Mm.

K: And I broke down in tears because I was like, “I don't know how to ‘just be’.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: “Like, what does that mean?” And so I spent a lot of time really resisting that because what I thought at the time was that ‘just be’ meant, “Just be still, just do nothing,” and that was terrifying because I was this self-proclaimed superwoman who could do it all and could do it perfect.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And so that terrified me to just sit still.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: But what I came to realize was ‘just be’ meant, “Just be who you were created to be.”

J: Ooh, yes. (Laughs)

K: And I went, “Oh, I got it, I love it. I can do that.”

J: So who were you created to be? Have you figured that out?

K: I have. Yu know, just… and it's really been in this last year that I have finally come to understand that I am this super driven, passionate, creative woman and I always have these big ideas in my head and I always have, you know, 10 things going on in my life. But I was created to be this creator of things in my life, but to do them in my own quirky kind of zany way with joy. And I look back and I spent so many years of my life with no joy because I was so focused on trying to live a life that I thought everyone needed to see of me.

J: Hmm, I love that. So tell us a little more about your… your zany side that you're letting loose, what does it look like?

K: You know, I have come to really embrace that I'm a hippie at heart. (Laughs)

J: Mm! (Laughs)

K: Which, you know, I… I remember growing up, I had an aunt who was kind of a hippie and I remember all of my family would always talk about her and say, “Oh yeah, but she's weird.” And I liked all the things that she was into, the spiritual things and, you know, the… the tie-dye and, you know, meditation and all of that and… but I didn't… I didn't accept that in my life because I didn't want to look like I was weird.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: I wanted to look like I was this professional person who had it all together and had this charmed life and could achieve all these great things. And if I embraced this kind of free-flowing hippie kind of way, that I was going to look weird and that everybody wasn't going to take me seriously.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And so now I go, “You know what? I can be this hippie.”


K: Because I’m a herbalist, right?

J: Mm-hmm.

K: But I can do it in my own way…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … and still have all these things in my life that I want to have.

J: I love that. So everyone's probably wondering, we all have a little bit of weird in us, how did you overcome the fear of what others were thinking?

K: You know, I came to this realization and I thought, “You know, I just have to finally put it out there, and the people that that matter to me are going to either come along with what I am and what I'm doing or they're not.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: “And I have to not fault them for how they feel.” You know, I have family that they do make fun of me, they call me a witch doctor.


K: Because I use herbs, you know?

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And I just now laugh with them rather than being offended by them.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: Right? I had to make this conscious choice to go, “Listen, this is who I am, this is what I love, this is what I do in my life, and these people are not going to understand my journey because they're not in it.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And that's okay.

J: Right.

K: It just had to be a conscious choice that it was okay for me to be who I am.

J: And what would you say have you noticed is different in your life now that you've embraced being the person you really are?

K: Oh, there's definitely a peace that I have in my day. You know, I used to have a lot of anxiety because I always felt like I had to… to be a certain way and I had to do things in a certain time frame. I didn't want anybody to think I was lazy so I was constantly in motion physically, as well as my thoughts were constantly going 100 miles an hour. All day, every day, I would wake up that way, I would go to bed that way and it was this feeling that I was never enough.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And now, I have this peace that, “You know what? I don't have to be enough for anybody else.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: “I just have to be enough for me.” And each day, I can go, “You know, this is what I'm looking to do today, and if I get to it, great, and if I don't because something else came up, then that's… that's what I take care of.” And I don't have this need to… to push myself so hard anymore, but it took really living that way and getting sick for me to come to that realization; I had to get sick…

J: Hmm.

K: … for that to change.

J: So I'm suspecting that leads into my next question which is your low point, am I right?

K: Yes.

J: Okay, tell us about that.

K: Okay. So, you know, being this very driven person who could do, you know, a million things all at one time and I was always looking to achieve something, my friend, Melanie, called me up one day (this was 2 years ago, 2014) and she… we live in Prescott, Arizona where the Whiskey Row Marathon is held each year which is one of the biggest and toughest marathons that there is, okay? And so Melanie calls me up one day and she says, “Hey, Kris, how about we walk the Whiskey Row Half Marathon together? What do you think?” Now, if you don't know, a half marathon is 13.1 miles.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And, you know, I was exercising a lot, we were hiking a lot, but I… you know, I'm not the most fit individual because of certain health conditions, but I exercised. Now, in my mind when she said this, the first thing I'm thinking is, “Are you nuts? That's 13 miles!” but what seemed to come out of my mouth was, “Sure, sounds like fun!”



K: So we began this really hefty 4-month training schedule to get ready for this marathon. Now, going back a little bit just so you have a little background, I have hypothyroid and Hashimoto's, which is an autoimmune thyroid condition. So it makes it difficult for me to really push myself in very strenuous activities.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: So in my mind I'm going, “Kris, what are you doing? This is not good for you, this is not healthy!” but my superwoman mindset was going, “No, you got to do this. You told her you're going to do it, you have to do it; you don't want to look bad.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: So I did it. And it… I was even thinking… feeling this way up until the morning that I left to go to the marathon, I was like, “Don't do it. Don't do it. Don't do it,” but I gave my word so I went and I did it. And I'm glad I did, it was a… it was a really great achievement, but I came home from the marathon, I took one rest day and then I went right back to this intense training schedule, but now, instead of walking, I was running.

J: Ooh.

K: Because in my mind, “If superwoman can walk 13.1 miles, she dang well better be able to run it.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: So that's what I did. And it took about a month before I woke up one morning and I almost couldn't get out of bed; I was in a complete thyroid crash.

J: Whoa.

K: Debilitated, fatigued, my hair was falling out in clumps, every joint ached, I couldn't concentrate on anything. I had this intense brain fog and I went, “Oh, no!” because I knew what I did to myself. And I had to really stop at that point and take a good, long, hard look at how I was living, what I believed about myself, and was what I believed really true? And… and this really plays into that decision then to begin to live a bit more authentic life and slow down and really start to nourish who I am and what feeds my soul. And so the first thing that I did was, I made a choice to slow down. You know, I always lived in a way that I could not stop for 5 minutes because somebody might think that I was lazy. And so… well, I remember one day…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … I made this choice I was like, “Okay, today, for 30 minutes, I'm going to sit down and watch TV,” that was not something that I ever did. And I remember my daughter, she walks in the room (my teenage daughter)…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … and she stops dead in her tracks and she goes, “What are you doing?” I go, “I'm watching TV,” she goes, “You never just sit and watch TV.” And so I was like, “Okay, bingo,” right there, you know, “Wakeup call, life has to change,” right?

J: (Laughs)

K: Because if my kid is going, “What's wrong with mom?”

J: (Laughs)

K: “She’s just sitting,” (Laughs) there's the problem (Laughs). So I began to schedule times into my life where I would sit and do nothing. You know, it didn't have to be for all day, it could be for 5 or 10 minutes. But in that time, I was not going to check email on my phone, I was not going to get on Facebook, I was not going to write a blog or, you know, anything, I was just going to sit and be mindful of…. you know, if I was on the patio, be mindful of the breeze, be mindful of the birds, you know and just come back to life. And then I had to really re-examine my reality, these distorted beliefs that I had of myself, you know, “Where did I begin to feel like I had to be this perfect, driven, professional person?” And I remember, when I was younger, my mom gave me a necklace that had a turtle on it, and I want to say it was probably like 10 years old and I thought, “Oh, that's cute! It's a turtle!” And then I heard her say to somebody, “Yeah, I gave Kris a turtle because she always takes her time at everything.”

J: (Gasps) Oh.

K: And in my mind, I heard, “Kris is lazy.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: So this became this distorted reality in my world that people thought I was lazy.

J: Yeah.

K: And when I realized that that's why I had this fear, I was like, “Oh my gosh, that is so not true,” you know, she didn't even mean it that way when I talked to her about it and… but I took it that way; we do that all the time in our life.

J: So how did you overcome that… that thinking?

K: You know, I always have friends around me who have always said, “I don't know how you do everything you do,” right?

J: Mm-hmm.

K: So when I look at that statement, I had to go, “Okay, does that statement match with ‘Kris is lazy’?”

J: Right. (Laughs)

K: So if everybody around me was looking at me and going, “How do you do everything that you do in a day?” then that does not equal lazy. So that was this distorted truth that I could just throw out; it doesn't matter anymore.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: So I just had to deconstruct these things, you know, and there were a few different things that came up, but that was the biggest one.

J: So how do you view yourself now? If you were to have a statement about yourself, it's not, “I'm lazy,” but what have you replaced that with?

K: So I am a vibrant, passionate, inspired woman who is vibrantly living a life of purpose.

J: I love that; vibrant, of course, is such a good word. (Laughs)

K: Right.

J: Well, so you made it through that low point by deciding to take care of yourself and scheduling this downtime, were there any other changes you made that helped you live vibrantly like you are now?

K: Yes, I began to really focus on nourishing myself. And that means that I had to nourish myself, of course, with food; so I had to really look at how was I feeding my body and was it appropriate for me. And through that, I discovered, you know, that I have multiple food intolerances which make my health condition worse if I eat those, so I had to really…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … pull those things from my diet and load myself with very nutrient-rich foods…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … so that my body had a chance to recover from the stress that I had put it under.

J: Right.

K: I also had to nourish myself with proper medication. Now, being an herbalist, I love to do natural things first, but with the particular health condition that I have and the way that I crashed myself, I have to use pharmaceuticals.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And being okay with that had to be important to me. I had to give myself permission to be okay with that because that's what my body had to have. And then I also needed to nourish myself with things that were just for fun; they weren't for work. You know, I found that I always did everything for work, and when somebody would say, “So what do you do for fun?” I didn't have an answer. And so I had to find those things again that were fun for me. And so, for me, that's… you know, I love to go out hiking and I love to go and… like, I'd love to have a barbecue and hang out with friends or go out dancing. I had to begin to put those things back into my life just so that I was doing something fun.

J: Can you explain more about what was happening in your body when you were crashing it and then, in contrast, what you were doing when you were having fun, how that was healing for you?

K: Sure. So when I was in the point of my thyroid crash, there was this just overwhelming fatigue, and as if my arms and legs were always stuck in buckets of cement; they were so heavy. And to get up and just go from the living room to the kitchen was a chore, but I still had to get up and function and go to work every day, you know? So, you… you know, as women, we just do what we have to do. And then I would come home, and by 6 o'clock at night, I was crashed out; I was in bed asleep, done, I could not deal with life anymore at that point.

J: What's the diagnosis for this or what name or label do… would you give this?

K: Well, the condition is hypothyroidism…

J: Okay.

K: … and Hashimoto's thyroiditis which is the… which is an autoimmune condition that attacks the thyroid. And so these are very common symptoms of this, but when you're in, what I… what I refer to as a thyroid crash, your levels are so low that you almost cannot function.

J: Okay.

K: And my hair was falling out, like if I ran my hand through my hair, I would bring my hand out and it would be full of a clump of hair.

J: Oh.

K: And, you know, it was like every 2 days having to clean the drain of the shower out because I was losing that much hair. And you know it's bad when your husband looks at you and goes, “Wow, you're getting a bald spot on the side of your head!”

J: So how did having fun help to heal that?

K: So what… when I go and do something that is fun, it's like I can finally take a deep breath and it forces me to slow down and be appreciative of what I have in my life. The big thing with hypothyroidism is it typically affects people who are these very driven people who never stop pushing.

J: Okay.

K: And the body seems to say, “Well, if you're not going to slow down, I'm going to make you slow down.” So when I consciously do these things that can rest my body, rest my mind, make me laugh and get me out of a state of anxious living…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … then the body goes, “Oh, okay, this is how we're supposed to feel.”

J: Okay.

K: “This is good; this is a comfortable place.”

J: So you started having fun and your body responded by realizing, “Hey, I don't have to be frantic and frazzled all the time,” so you began to heal, and then what happened?

K: So it was about… it really was about a 2-year journey of healing because, you know, we don't get sick overnight, even though sometimes it feels like we do, and we also don't get well overnight, it takes some work. So for… for about 2 years, I had to really focus on nourishing my body, paying attention to my medications, doing things that were fun, and not being this workaholic that I had always been. And it was amazing just a month ago when I had a thyroid lab done, it was the first lab in 2 years that came back normal. (Laughs)

J: Yay, you did it!

K: And I was so excited and I feel the difference because now, I can wake up each day and my mind is not going 100 miles an hour and I don't feel like every day is an emergency.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: You know, I can wake up with this peace that I am living my purpose and it's going to happen in exactly the way it's supposed to happen. I'm a work in progress and that's exactly where I'm supposed to be.

J: Yeah, accepting that you don't have to be perfect right now.

K: Right.

J: It almost sounds like when you're in that 100 miles-per-hour mode that you're just pumping cortisol all day; the stress hormone.

K: Absolutely.

J: And then, eventually, your body says, “Enough,” you know?

K: Absolutely.

J: So would you say that hypothyroid… hypothyroidism and Hashimoto's are also related to adrenal fatigue?

K: They are, definitely, and that's really probably what… when I talk about a crash, that's probably exact what's happened is that the adrenals have crashed.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And thyroid and adrenal work very, very closely together. So when your thyroid is depressed, your adrenal function is depressed. And so you have to really pay attention to both, and more so for people that are hypothyroid as opposed to hyper, you know, they… you can crash in 2 different ways, but, yeah, the adrenals are really important to pay attention to and that… you know, I always say, “Life is… you have to live like life is no longer an emergency.”

J: Mm-hmm. So as a… as a herbalist, do you have the chance to work with women who have faced a similar problem?

K: I do. Probably 80% of the clients that I work with have similar issues. If it's not hypothyroidism, it's some other type of an autoimmune condition. I tend to work mostly with complicated chronic illness, things that, you know, the doctors say, “Well, this is just how it's going to be; there’s nothing we can do,” and that's where herbs really have a fabulous place in our health care plan because they work in the body very different than a pharmaceutical does. Now, I used… so I still take the pharmaceutical medication for my thyroid, but I also nourish myself with herbs that support my adrenal function, that support my nervous system so that it can calm down, and that modulate how my immune system functions so that it's not always in this overactive confused state, which is what autoimmune conditions are. You know, I say, “The immune system becomes like a drama queen and it starts reacting to everything.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And so using herbs with autoimmune is wonderful because it gives the body the ability to understand how to come back to a place of normal function.

J: Mm-hmm. So I have a friend, one of my best friends, who is often so, so tired and she just feels like she can barely function. If she wanted to work with an herbalist or with you in particular, what would you need to do?

K: So someone could contact me through my website which is prescottnaturalhealth.com or if you have an herbalist in your area, that's nice too because they… they are going to have knowledge of the plants that are right in your local area and your body responds really well to plants that are local to you. But I work with people by phone as well so, you know, people can always contact me through that website, prescottnaturalhealth.com. And when I first begin to work with someone, we go through an initial assessment which is very much like when you go to the doctor, and we go through your whole health history and any medications that you're on so that I make sure we're not choosing any herbs that might negatively interact with something that you're needing to be taking.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And then from there, I choose herbs that fit what we are trying to work on, what health condition we're working on, but also herbs that fit with the personality and the energy of that particular person.

J: Hmm, interesting. So where did you learn about herbs?

K: I learned about herbs in 2008, 2009 I did an herbalist certification program, it was a year-long program, in Tempe, Arizona…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … and began… when I finished that, I began clinical practice in private practice on my own and have just been continually working, continually learning, and I was drawn to sharing what I know; that's a big passion of mine is sharing with other people how this can change your life.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And so then I started my herbalism school as well here in Arizona.

J: Nice, that's really exciting. I love herbs myself, I take several, and after our interview, I'll have to stick on the line with you and get some tips (Laughs). So I have several questions that you can tell us about your… you can answer to tell us about your favorite things. The first one is, “What's a favorite personal habit that contributes to your success today?”

K: My favorite habit right now is, every day, I have ‘un-cocktail hour’ with my husband.

J: (Laughs). And that means?

K: And I call it ‘un-cocktail hour’ because we could just sit with water, we don't have to have an actual cocktail. (Laughs)

J: Ah, yeah.

K: But this is, you know, 30 minutes when we each come home where we sit on the patio and we just get to reconnect with each other, catch up on each other's day.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And it's kind of my breathing time where I get to remember that he's my best friend.

J: Ah, that's… that's brilliant. You know, while you were talking you said, “Sit on the front porch,” I don't know why it came to mind, but I used to grow… I grew up watching The Waltons and they would always sit on the front porch swing and chat. I envy that way of life when people used to have time to sit, so I think it's brilliant what you're doing and I… I hope more people will take inspiration from what you're saying and add more of that to their lives; it's great.

K: It is so important, and I grew up watching that show too so I remember exactly what you're talking about.

J: (Laughs) “Good night, John-Boy.”

K: That's right.

J: (Laughs). Okay, share your favorite easy meal that you love to eat regularly.

K: Oh, I love kebabs on the grill…

J: Ooh, yummy.

K: … with steak and peppers and onions and zucchini and bacon and… (Laughs)

J: Ooh, yeah.

K: Marinade… I marinate each… you know, all the vegetables and the meats and then we skewer it and put it on the grill and then I eat it with some rice pilaf, and it's so yummy.

J: So do you have a marinade recipe you can share with us?

K: Yes, I use a blend of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

J: Mm.

K: And then I do like garlic and onion and salt, pepper and… oh, what is the other thing I use? You know, I kind of like throw the kitchen sink in sometimes.

J: Yeah, but as long as we understand the base…

K: Right.

J: … that sounds delicious.

K: Yeah.

J: Onion, garlic, perfect; that's all you need.


K: Hey, as long as you have garlic, you're good.

J: Mm-hmm, it's true. So what's your favorite household possession currently?

K: Oh, it's books. I'm a bit of a bookworm.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And I have loads and loads of books, of course, on herbs. And, you know, I had a birthday recently and my dad said that he was going to get me this herb book about Cherokee herbs and my mom said, “Oh, no, she wouldn't want that, she has enough books,” and I was like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa! Hold up, you don't ever say ‘enough’ and ‘books’ in the same sentence; that just shouldn't happen.”

J: So do you have a favorite book?

K: I do. I read this book probably about 10 years ago and it's called ‘TrueFaced’…

J: Mm.

K: … by Bill Thrall and Bruce McNichol. And these 2 guys are pastors at a church and they wrote this book about how we walk through life wearing masks of what we want other people to believe about us. You know, you go into a party and everybody goes, “Oh, hey, how are you?” and you're like, “I'm great!” and you put on your ‘I'm super successful’ mask?

J: Yes. (Laughs)

K: Right? But, in reality, these masks begin to crack and everyone around us can see those cracks, but we don't think they can see it.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And so he… they teach you in the book to take these masks off and show your true face to people; and it was fabulous. So that was my favorite book, it really changed kind of how I interact with people.

J: So now, you're… you're being your hippie weird self, right?


J: And we all have weird. Oh, wouldn't that be the most exciting world if we could accept that diversity is beautiful and just love everyone's weirdness?

K: That's right.

J: I’d love that idea, mm-hmm.

K: Yeah.

J: Share a favorite item on your bucket list.

K: Tiny house living in the woods with my hubby after my kids are grown and moved out; which is coming soon.

J: Aww.

K: And, you know, I just crave the serenity and we really still like each other so…

J: Aww, good!

K: … that would be pretty fun to… to be alone out in the woods in a tiny little house just, you know, sitting on the porch and…

J: And… and why the tiny house?

K: You know, we used to have… we… we never had a huge house, but we had, you know, 1800 square feet and it was full of stuff. And there were times in our lives where we made a lot of money and we were miserable. And over the last several years, we have downsized quite a bit and we've gotten rid of a lot of our stuff and so we live in a very minimal way already, although I still think we could get rid of more. And what I have found is the more stuff that we got rid of, the more love and joy that came back into our life.

J: So what do you do if… what… what should people do if they want to live minimally, but they have a spouse that won't get rid of the stuff? What do you tell… what do you say for them?

K: Oh, that is difficult and I understand it because I would love to get rid of my TV, but my husband says…

J: (Laughs)

K: “No way, no how that, is staying.” And he's got the big huge TV, right…

J: Mm-hmm.

K: … like the biggest one he could get. And so you kind of have to take baby steps.

J: Yep.

K: And, you know, you can get rid of the things that you both agree on and then you have to compromise on those things the other person really feels like they need to have, right?

J: Mm-hmm, right, right, compromise.

K: So you do it a little bit at a time.

J: Right. What is the best advice you've ever received?

K: Well, you know, I really it goes back to my saying of, “Just be.”

J: Mm-hmm.

K: You know, just be who I was created to be with no apologies, with no guilt…

J: Mm.

K: … and to accept that I have this beautiful positive nature about me, and those who matter will love me that way.

J: Yeah. So when you shared your favorite quote of ‘just be’, you mentioned that you had spent a lot of time praying. Would you say your confidence about just being yourself has any relationship to having received an answer through prayer about that?

K: Oh, it absolutely does because, you know, I… when I got that message, you know, I mentioned earlier, it was as if God whispered in my ear. And it was so strong at that moment that I could almost feel his breath on the side of my face. Have you ever had an experience like that where it is so real?

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And so I could not deny where that message came from. And I live in a way where I know God doesn't make mistakes.

J: Mm-hmm.

K: And I can't say to God, “Well, yeah, but…” because he's like, “Oh, no, no, honey, I made you, I know who you are, now you need to know who you are.” And that gave me a lot of comfort because God didn't make a mistake when he made me to be this weird quirky woman that I am.

J: Yes! Oh, if everyone could know that.

K: Right.

J: Thanks for that.

K: You're welcome.

J: So looking back on your life so far, tell us about your happiest moment.

K: You know, I don't know that my happiest moment was any one big event. I mean, of course the day I married my husband and the day my daughters were born and we all loved those moments, but I think, for me, the… the moments that really make me stop and take a breath are each day when I come home, I get the biggest longest hug from one of my daughters.

J: Yay.

K: And she's so funny because she will hug me and seriously not let go for about 2 minutes.

J: Wow.

K: And at first, I would fight to get away because I had all these things I had to do, right? But then I realized, if I stood there and I accepted that hug for as long as she wanted to give it to me, after probably about 30 seconds, I wasn't ready to let go of the hug either.

J: Aww.

K: Because I could breathe and I could feel my body just relax. And so I know, when I come home each time, she's given me one of those hugs, and then she does it again before I go to bed.

J: Ah.

K: And so it's awesome.

J: Oh, that's so awesome. You have a charmed life if your teenagers are doing that. (Laughs)

K: I do, very much so.


K: She still likes me, she thinks I'm not cool, but she likes me.

J: Ah!


J: So, Vibrant Happy Women, I want you to know that you can find links for all the amazing things Kris has been sharing with us by going to jenriday.com/13. So a link to that book, ‘TrueFaced’, and the link to her website and maybe that recipe she shared we’ll put there. And so, Kris, we have reached the big question of the Vibrant Happy Women podcast, and that is the happiness formula. What would you include if you had to create a formula for your happiness?

K: My formula for happiness would be walk in the woods, laugh at silly things, and acknowledge that you are a work in progress which is right where you are supposed to be.

J: Right where you're supposed to be; mm, beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, and before we sign out, give us a parting challenge, something we can all work on in the week ahead.

K: Okay, so here is the challenge, and that is to find one thing in your life that really feeds your soul and then to schedule that one thing into your life at least once a week, because this will really help you to slow down, take a breath and find your joy again.

J: Hmm, thank you so much, Kris, I've really enjoyed listening to you, and I think we'll definitely be having you on the show again someday.

K: Thank you, Jen, I really appreciate it, it's been fun.

J: Take care.

I had such a fun time interviewing Kris and I think she's so fun and upbeat and she and I are becoming fast friends already thanks to this interview. And be sure to join me next time when I chat with Lori Jones, a children's book author of the book, ‘Riley's Heart Machine’, which was inspired by the story of her daughter's heart defect and how she as a mom and they as a family where to cope with that challenging, challenging time. Until then, take care.

Outro: Thanks for listening to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast at www.jenriday.com.