Treat yourself with kindness and allow yourself to be vulnerable

Like other kinds of love, self-love doesn’t happen overnight. It needs to be nurtured before it can flourish. Exploring positive traits about yourself can help you practice strengthening your self-worth.

With all that’s going on in our country, our economy, the world, and on social media, it feels like so many of us are under a great deal of stress. Relationships, in particular, can be stress-inducing. We know chronic stress can be as unhealthy as smoking a quarter of a pack a day. What are stress management strategies that people use to become “Stress-Proof? What are some great tweaks, hacks, and tips that help reduce or even eliminate stress? In this interview series, we are talking to authors, and mental health experts, who can share their strategies for reducing or eliminating stress. As a part of this series, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Veronica Weedon.

Veronica is a certified integrative health coach, Rapid Transformation Therapy practitioner, hypnotherapist, published writer, and the Founder of Revival Health, a practice that helps people move towards healthier relationships and a better life.

After years of her own healing journey, Veronica now helps clients uncover the root cause of their own destructive patterns, reform their beliefs, and transform their relationships and lives through a program that addresses health on an emotional, mental, and physical level.

Personally, she is obsessed with well-being, empowerment and alignment with one’s truth, and her heart melts like butter every time she just looks at her dog.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to know how you got from “there to here.” Inspire us with your backstory!

I was 13 when I was sent to boarding school. That’s where I discovered my athletic abilities, and that sport, running in particular, was one of the few things that allowed me to feel free, and at peace with myself. It didn’t take long for me to explore every sport available to me and begin coaching others. I realised I loved coaching — the process of uncovering what drives people, what holds them back, and in turn, how to support them in achieving their full potential. So, it’s not surprising that I’ve come full circle after years in the corporate world.

But the road that led me back to coaching was littered with pretty harsh life lessons.

I grew up in a very traditional family. I was taught that grown-ups always know best, that quitting is never an option, and that disobedience has consequences.

My mother also suffered from a serious illness. So, from a very young age, I had a front-row seat to what it means to lose your health — both physically and emotionally — and the effect that can have on you, as well as those close to you.

When I was young, being an athletic girl was considered very uncool. In fact, I was called butch; a beast; and a lot of other uninspiring things. I was just about as far from the popular and pretty girls as you could get. Couple that with the shame around sex that comes with a traditional family. The result was a deep-seated belief that I was not only undesirable, but unworthy.

And so, as a late bloomer, I endured sexual assault as well as a string of relationships that left me ruined — emotionally, mentally, physically, and some even financially — each one worse than the one before. The kicker for me came several years ago — a relationship so toxic it sent me to hospital many times over, left me depleted of all energy and hope, and brain fog so bad I could no longer focus or function properly. I felt weak and ashamed and could not believe this was my life. But for the first time in my life, I quit. I got out. And quitting saved my life.

At that point I had to make a choice. Either check out or figure out why I kept ending up nowhere. And why was running still one of the only places I could feel at peace? Acknowledge these underlying feelings of lack, unworthiness, never being enough, fear of being alone, and then identify where they come from. And then figure out how to change them.

And so coaching re-entered my life. In the form of psychologists, doctors, coaches, courses, books, nature, and so much more.

My journey back to true well-being was long and brutal, and I wish I had had someone to give me a roadmap, as well as a heads up on many occasions. This would not have made the road less tough, but it would have saved me a lot of time, money, and made me feel less alone throughout the process.

Today, in my work as a health coach, RTT practitioner, and hypnotherapist helping people debunk their fear and rebuild personal power, I use my ability to dissect people’s internal stories to listen carefully for the beliefs and filters that are holding them back.

I listen past the fear to find your strengths, your unique magic, the thing that ignites your curiosity and fuels endless exploration.

I listen for the thing you have a lot of — confusion, angst, trauma — and together we flip the script and begin your healing from the inside out. #areyounext?

What lessons would you share with yourself if you had the opportunity to meet your younger self?

I would share the two lessons in particular — both of which have the power to fundamentally change anyone’s life for the better.

The first is that I would teach myself how to self-parent. It’s one of the most valuable skills I have learned in this process of self-evolution. It allows us to self-regulate our emotions — by providing the recognition, allowance, comfort and care we all need.

The second is supported by the process of the first. It is knowing that “I am enough”. Every addiction, whether to food, alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, gambling, relationships, or anything/anyone else, stems from a place of lack. From a feeling of not being enough. Because when we don’t feel like we’re enough, we need more of something/someone else. These are all forms of co-dependence and will greatly limit our happiness in life. Knowing that we are enough is about the most important relationship anyone will ever have — the one we have with ourselves.

None of us are able to experience success without support along the way. Is there a particular person for whom you are grateful because of the support they gave you to grow you from “there to here?” Can you share that story and why you are grateful for them?

In my case it’s a small group of people, all of whom I met when I began my own healing journey. I met them through classes I took, and we share a love for, and commitment to self-improvement. We believe in self-evolution and doing the work required to process our trauma, break unhealthy patterns, and live healthier, more fulfilling lives.

We support each other, challenge each other, and love each other for exactly who we are and everything that we are still becoming. With us, it’s not about staying the same. It’s about embracing change and supporting each other through it.

Only a few years ago I never would have thought it possible to surround myself with only healthy relationships — no chaos, no drama, no pain. I’m very happy and grateful to report that it is possible.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think it might help people?

I’m working on creating an online only version of my Make Your Body Your Boss program which will be affordable to more people. The program addresses health on an emotional, mental, and physical level, because they are all inextricably linked. The program is designed for those recently out of an unhealthy relationship (romantic, work, family, or friendship) and looking to reset and move forward differently. It’s for those ready to do the work required to move towards healthier, happier relationships.

Ok, thank you for sharing your inspired life. Let’s now talk about stress. How would you define stress?

To me, stress is anything that causes your nervous system to overload. This essentially puts your body into fight or flight mode, which floods your system with adrenaline and cortisol. This is a primal survival response, positive and necessary when there is real danger, but becomes debilitating and detrimental when your system stays in this state.

In the Western world, humans typically have their shelter, food, and survival needs met. So, what has led to this chronic stress? Why are so many of us always stressed out?

I would argue it’s because many people do not have a good relationship with themselves. When we are self-aware and self-sufficient (physically and emotionally), external factors don’t impact us the same way.

For example, if someone starts yelling at you, most people are inclined to yell back, thereby escalating the situation, and taking on great stress because of it. But if the person being yelled at has a good relationship with themselves, they will be able to respond very differently. Depending on what the yelling is about, they could respond in one of the following ways:

  1. Walk away without saying a word.
  2. Understand that the person’s anger is coming from a place of fear and reply calmly, with empathy and compassion to de-escalate the situation.
  3. Let them yell it out and then give them a hug.

This is just an example, and very dependent on the situation at hand of course, but hopefully you see the difference. In all three scenarios, whilst it’s never nice to be yelled at, the situation will not bring about stress, because you know that what is happening is much more about them than you.

What are some of the physical manifestations of being under a lot of stress? How does the human body react to stress?

Physical symptoms can present in the form of weight gain/loss, chronic pain, rapid heartbeat, nausea, dizziness, IBS/diarrhoea/constipation, low libido, weak immunity, and many more.

In my case, after many years in a toxic relationship, I suffered a brain seizure and a herniated disc in my lower spine that almost left me paralyzed.

Is stress necessarily a bad thing? Can stress ever be good for us?

Sure, like with most things, there is good and bad.

For example, stress can be helpful if we are in immediate danger. The adrenaline that floods our system can help us get away. The fight or flight response built into our bodies is not only a clever but an essential design for these reasons. It’s a survival response — to help us survive!

Is there a difference between being in a short-term stressful situation versus an ongoing stress? Are there long-term ramifications to living in a constant state of stress?

Yes. When our nervous system cannot revert to its calm state (parasympathetic nervous system) due to constant triggers, physical, mental and emotional symptoms will begin to appear and seriously impact the quality of our life.

It is very common in toxic relationships, for example. I already outlined some possible physical symptoms above. Mental symptoms might include memory issues, inability to focus, racing thoughts, increased negativity, poor judgement, etc.

Emotional symptoms might include irritability, overwhelm, depression, hopelessness, burnout, short temper, inability to relax, moodiness, etc.

Let’s now focus more on the stress of relationships. This feels intuitive, but it is helpful to spell it out in order to address it. Can you help articulate why relationships can be so stressful?

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, it’s because most people do not have a good relationship with themselves.

It’s so much easier to focus on others, to blame others, to want or expect others to change. And this causes huge stress. It keeps us in victim mode and will never lead us to what we truly want.

The truth is that none of us can change anyone else. The only person we can change is ourselves. So, if you want something different, YOU must do something different.

It’s about taking responsibility for our own life and happiness. Responsibility means an ability to respond. It’s empowering.

People often stay stuck because they feel they don’t have a choice. But there is always a choice. It may not be an easy one, or one that you like, but there is always a choice.

I know this is tough love, and not what most people want to hear. Because looking in the mirror is hard. Confronting our own past trauma and flaws is hard. Doing the inner work is hard.

But until we can understand ourselves — until we understand how, why, when and where our bad habits or patterns originate — until we can be honest with ourselves, and evolve, we will stay stuck and keep repeating what we already know. We will continue to attract the same kinds of people and situations. Our mind learns by repetition and will always take us to what’s familiar.

Can you help spell out some of the problems that come with the stress caused by relationships?

I believe this is multi-layered. Depending on the levels of stress and reasons behind it, problems can begin to occur on an emotional, mental, and even physical level. The mind-body connection is very real.

Emotional problems might include symptoms such as anxiety, insecurity, self-doubt, overwhelm, chronic fatigue, sleep issues, phobias, substance abuse, depression, etc.

Mental problems might include symptoms such as procrastination, brain fog, inability to focus, memory loss, inability to ‘switch off’, negative self-talk, disconnection, lack of direction, etc.

Physical problems might include symptoms such as weight issues, digestive problems/IBS, chronic pain, headaches, menstrual problems, allergies, deteriorating eyesight, hearing issues, skin issues, etc.

But underlying all the above is that relationship stress taps into our deep-seated fear of abandonment, fear of rejection, and fear of being alone which are, at their root, primal survival fears, usually from an early age.

And these fears are the primary drivers of co-dependency, one of the hardest victim mentality patterns to handle and the best one to overcome to come home to your sovereignty. This is why my “Make Your Body Your Boss” program addresses (relationship) health on an emotional, mental, and physical level — because they are all inextricably linked.

Here is the main question of our interview: Can you share with our readers your “5 stress management strategies that you can use to eliminate stress from your relationships?” Please share a story or example for each.

Sure, and it will come as no surprise, but these are all ways to work on the relationship with yourself 😊

1. Get clarity on your values

Your values define you, what matters to you, and what’s important to you. They help you increase your self-worth because they determine what you will accept or tolerate — and what you will not.

They determine the boundaries you set or don’t. They (should) determine your priorities, and, subconsciously, they’re probably how you measure if your life is turning out the way you want it to.

Take some time to define your 3–5 core values.

Then take an objective look at your life and evaluate if your daily actions align with those values. Remember values are not just about how you behave towards others. They are about how you behave towards yourself.

2. Do something for your physiology every day

Our psychology affects our physiology and vice versa.

When we are ‘down in the dumps’ it’s sometimes hard to be positive or even hopeful. As such, focusing on our body can help bring us back to ourselves, something we can control, as opposed to all the external factors we cannot.

Whether it’s going for a walk, cooking, and savouring a fresh and healthy meal, going to the gym for a run or for a swim, do something beneficial for your physical health. It will help you feel good, and proud, and reconnect with yourself.

3. I am enough

This one is both the simplest and the hardest. Saying and knowing we are enough is one thing. Believing it is quite another. But you must start somewhere.

Write down those three little words ‘I am enough’ on post-it notes and stick them in places you spend the most time so that your subconscious can begin to pick up this message.

Look in the mirror and say those words to yourself. If that is too much, just say them out loud. If that is too much, just say them in your mind. However, you can just start saying them. The mind learns by repetition.

4. Eliminate the word “should”

Stress is often brought about by underlying guilt and shame around doing or being something (or not). Guilt and shame often appear in similar contexts, but there is a big difference between the two. Guilt is associated with an action taken and its consequences, whereas shame centres around feelings toward oneself. Brené Brown, professor, lecturer, author, and podcast host, puts it simply, it’s the difference between thinking, “That thing I did was bad” and “I am bad.”

So, forget the “I should have” — you cannot change the past. Forget the “I should” — wherever you are on your journey is OK. Just do your best. Whatever that is, it’s enough. One step at a time. One day at a time. Just keep moving forward.

5. Treat yourself with kindness and allow yourself to be vulnerable

Like other kinds of love, self-love doesn’t happen overnight. It needs to be nurtured before it can flourish. Exploring positive traits about yourself can help you practice strengthening your self-worth.

If you are reading this, then there is a good chance you are an empath, so show this empathy to yourself. If that is too difficult at first, imagine you are your best friend, and treat yourself the way you would your best friend.

The ego wants to protect you from the pain of shame, but being vulnerable is part of feeling connected. It’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives. When we’re willing to risk being vulnerable and fully human, we open ourselves up to beautiful and meaningful relationships and move away from one-sided, toxic relationships.

Do you have any favourite books, podcasts, or resources that have inspired you to live with more joy in life?

I love Louise Hay’s “You Can Heal Your Life” book. I’ve had it for so many years and continue to reference it all the time. It’s all about the mind-body connection.

I’ve also started learning about Human Design and found Karen Curry Parker’s book “Understanding Human Design” to be very helpful.

A few people I follow are Brené Brown, Andrew Huberman and Dan Koe — all about self-understanding and self-improvement, in different ways and from different perspectives.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I would love to start an “I am enough” campaign that goes viral. The more people that can see this message every day, everywhere, the better. The mind learns by repetition.

What is the best way for our readers to continue to follow your work online?

For daily information and inspiration on how to attract healthier relationships, follow me on IG @revivalhealthllc.

For more information about me and my services please visit

For free resources and more visit my bio site.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent on this. We wish you only continued success.


  • Savio P. Clemente

    TEDx Speaker, Media Journalist, Board Certified Wellness Coach, Best-Selling Author & Cancer Survivor

    Savio P. Clemente, TEDx speaker and Stage 3 cancer survivor, infuses transformative insights into every article. His journey battling cancer fuels a mission to empower survivors and industry leaders towards living a truly healthy, wealthy, and wise lifestyle. As a Board-Certified Wellness Coach (NBC-HWC, ACC), Savio guides readers to embrace self-discovery and rewrite narratives by loving their inner stranger, as outlined in his acclaimed TEDx talk: "7 Minutes to Wellness: How to Love Your Inner Stranger." Through his best-selling book and impactful work as a media journalist — covering inspirational stories of resilience and exploring wellness trends — Savio has collaborated with notable celebrities and TV personalities, bringing his insights to diverse audiences and touching countless lives. His philosophy, "to know thyself is to heal thyself," resonates in every piece.