Hi, I’m Sheryl, and I’m so glad you’re here. I’d like to tell you a bit about myself and my experience with anxiety, both personally and professionally.
I’m very intimate with anxiety, and I consider it one of my greatest teachers. Like many of my clients and course members, I struggled with separation anxiety as a child, endured insomnia in middle school, and had my first panic attack at age twenty-one, a few months before I graduated from college (Pitzer College, 1993). That panic attack was my initiation into the underworld of my psyche and began a journey through my twenties of peeling away layer upon layer of my constructed, conditioned defenses until I arrived closer to my true self. I am still on that journey.
When I met my husband, I was pulled into a second underworld of relationship anxiety. I tell a bit of that story in one of my most popular blog posts, which you can read here. It was through that experience that the concept of projection, which I had learned about in graduate school, ceased to be a concept and became one of the guiding principles of my life. My husband and I moved from Los Angeles to Colorado in 2006, where we now live with our two sons, ages 15 and 10, from whom I learn daily how to parent and raise sensitive, creative, and emotionally awake children. They, too, are my teachers.
Over the last twenty years, I have had the privilege of entering into the inner world of a worldwide cross-section of clients and course members, whom I’ve walked beside as we’ve tracked their anxiety to the root. When we can follow anxiety and its cohort of symptoms – which include worry, obsessions, intrusive thoughts, insomnia, and somatic illness – into the inner labyrinths of self with the headlights of curiosity and compassion leading the way, fear and shame diminish and the healing work unfolds into a way of living informed by self-trust and self-love. When it comes to anxiety and intrusive thoughts, my clients and course members have been my greatest teachers.
Informed by the Jungian depth psychological tradition through my graduate training at Pacifica Graduate Institute (1997), and particularly the work of Marion Woodman and Robert Johnson, I am devotee of the unconscious and am continually amazed by its wisdom. Our culture tells us that anxiety is the problem but the truth is that it’s the distress flare signaling that it’s time to slow down and discover what needs attention in the interior realms of self. When we shift our mindset from one that sees anxiety as the problem and evidence of brokenness to one that views it as a gift filled with wisdom, everything changes.
Through my books, courses, private sessions, and blog, I have guided thousands of people worldwide. I have also appeared several times on “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, as well as on “Good Morning America” and other top media shows and publications around the globe. My next book, The Wisdom of Anxiety: How Worry and Intrusive Thoughts are Gifts to Help You Heal, will be published by Sounds True in June 2019.
We live on a creek outside of Boulder, Colorado, and I work in a studio designed by my husband. The 40-step walk from our house to my studio is one of the highlights of my day, and when I step into the space which is my sanctuary – where I connect deeply with my clients and create my books, articles, and courses – my soul alights with joy. I look forward to meeting you there.