Dr. Zoe Shaw, A Year of Self-Care

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Asked & Answered

Ask Dr. Zoe – Coping With Anxiety Biblically

‘Coping With Anxiety’ Asked: I recently realized the extent to which I have struggled with anxiety all my life. What are some healthy, Biblical coping mechanisms I can use when anxiety and panic set in? Dr. Zoe Answered: Dear Coping With Anxiety,   What I love about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is that it is completely Biblical. The Bible says, and modern CBT research has proven, that getting control over your thoughts is the best and most efficacious treatment for anxiety (and depression). The Bible tells us whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about those things and the God of peace will be with you …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – How Can I Prepare My Kids for Back to School?

‘Motivated Mama’ Asked: School is just about to start here in our neck of the woods. My anxiety level is slowly growing each day because I am a motivated mama who likes the kids to be prepared for the transition. We have four school-aged children (ages 5, 9, 12 and 16) all of whom seem to be clinging to summer and uninterested in going back to school. What are some of your best tips for making the transition from summer vacation to back to school with your children? Dr. Zoe Answered: Can you really blame your kids? Long, lazy summer days, no school work… Summer was made to cherish! But school time is quickly zooming here, and it’s time to get prepared. …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – Can I Detach from My Aggressive, Disrespectful Teenage Son?

‘Mamma b’ Asked: My son’s dad is a malignant narcissist and has been a terrible co-parent. […] Before puberty we were so close, then I had four years of heartbreak. My mum abandoned me (also a narcissist). I thought if I got away from the toxic situation as a baby but still allowed him to see his dad, then he would be okay. But for the past year he has been triggering my PTSD from a lifetime of narcissistic abuse. I felt like I was back with his dad: the lying, the manipulation, the complete lack of empathy even though I’ve taught him ? It could just be a teenage thing; he’s 15 and I think he has daddy issues. I had …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – What Steps Can I Take to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed?

‘Over Feeling Overwhelmed’ Asked: Dr. Zoe, Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I just want to give up. There have been things in my life (like chronic illness) that have helped me develop more grit. I now know that I can keep going if I have to, but my first reaction to feeling overwhelmed is usually wanting to quit (if possible). It’s like I just want to escape. I have learned a couple things, like telling myself if I have gotten through the things I’ve gotten through, then I can do this, too. Also, reminding myself to chunk things down into smaller steps helps. I think I see the big, overwhelming thing and feel like it’s impossible to figure out… so just doing one …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – How Can I Connect More With My Teen Stepdaughter?

‘Jan’ Asked: How do I even begin to connect with my teen stepdaughter? She is 15-years-old and disrespectful to her mom and me… Having already raised five of my own, I don’t have much patience for her entitlement and laziness. She is involved in many activities like show choir and cheerleading but truly her attitude is horrid… I understand life is not easy and she wants to fit in… The only time she is nice is when she wants me to buy her something. Her mom doesn’t know what to do with her and often gives in because she doesn’t want to fight. My husband has severe health issues and is firm, but quiet… So then she just stays in her room. …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – How Can I Find Time to Enjoy Life?

‘Samantha’ Asked: I don’t feel like I’m living the life I want to be. I work during the week (and I love my job so I’m not trying to find an alternative to a 9-5) but on my days off (weekends) I end up running errands and doing household chores. How do I live a more fulfilled life while still working a traditional job? Dr. Zoe Answered: The only way to live the life you want is intentionally. Your work is not your life. It’s the thing you do to pay for your life. Hopefully, you are passionate about your work. Even so, it’s important for you to separate the two and intentionally live out your other passions. As a busy, working …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – Should I Stay in My Marriage at the Cost of My Happiness?

‘Languishing in London’ asked: Hi Dr. Zoe, I am currently in an unfortunate (self-induced) situation and am in need of clarity. I have a difficult decision I must make, one in which will affect several people’s lives in a hurtful way— regardless which path I take. With that, I will dive in. I have been in the same committed relationship practically my entire adult life. We have two children together and the youngest will be 19 this year. The word committed is used loosely here. We have not been good to each other in different ways. I have been unfaithful and he is unwilling to meet me halfway in terms of our financial wellbeing. I remain fiscally responsible for the lion’s share …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – How Can I Parent with More Authority?

‘Struggling to Lead My Kids’ asked: Hi, Dr. Zoe, I have a 5- and 3-year-old and I already see how my kids run me over in a lot of ways. They listen to their dad and respect him much more than me. When it’s just me at home with them, they speak to me and treat me much differently (worse) than when he’s around. I wonder if it’s partly because they’re more comfortable with me since I’m always home with them. But I’m also sure a lot of this is because I struggle with saying no and sticking to boundaries. I’ve always been more of a follower than a leader, and I see my struggle to be a strong leader of my …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – How Can I Get a Promotion at Work?

‘Want a Promotion’ Asked: One of my goals for this year is to get a promotion. What’s the number one thing I can do to get noticed at work and prove to my boss he should promote me? I hate talking about myself but I know I’m good at my job and I’m valued in the workplace. Dr. Zoe Answered: I love working with women to help them get promotions! What better time than the new year to go after that promotion! There isn’t just one main thing that can lead to the promotion of your dreams. It’s a combination of things. So, I will give you the top ones: The most important thing to understand is that your value at work …

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Ask Dr. Zoe – I Don’t Desire Sex—What’s Wrong?

‘Sexless in Seattle’ Asked: Dear Dr. Zoe, For most of my adult life I’ve struggled with not being interested in sex. I’m not a victim of sexual assault or abuse, I’ve just never had much interest. This is a struggle I’ve kept to myself due to hearing comments from people like, “I’d kill myself if I didn’t like sex.” I’ve been with my husband for seven years (married for almost two), and he is so patient and kind with me. I wish it could be enjoyable, but I don’t know what to do! Help! Dr. Zoe Answered: You are not alone. Despite our sex-crazed culture, there are others who struggle with this issue as well. It actually wouldn’t be an issue at …

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Dr. Zoe Shaw is a licensed psychotherapist, educated at UCLA and Pepperdine University. She has a private practice in sunny California and a virtual practice working with people all over the world! She is a motivational speaker, podcast host, life coach, and fitness fanatic.

Dr. Zoe is also a busy wife and mama of five, which fuels her desire to help women attain the elusive balance between work, life, self, and relationships through cultivating healthy minds and bodies. Her passion is to help women find their strength, embrace it, and share it with the world. But sometimes, you just have to laugh at yourself along the way!

Do you have a burning question about yourself, your relationships, or your parenting? Send it in, and Dr. Zoe will give you spot-on advice as a life and relationship expert. But don’t worry, she’ll balance her honest answers with grit and grace.

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