Kris Rice provides soul care for mamas raising kids with mental health challenges. In her words Ditch guilt ~ Create clarity ~ Find freedom.

In this podcast, we explore the non-negotiables behind reaching such a state, getting over the conditioning that society presents – *perfect life, perfect kids, accomplishment* etc.

You can find Kris at https://instagram.com/krisricecollective 



Audio Transcription: 

Hi friends, this is Weisz and today is all about building resilience and mental freedom in moms. Of course, you are listening to functional nutrition and learning for kids. In the context of today’s video, I want to share that I have found my greatest freedom as a mom or even just as a human being, to be in the space of learning to be able to learn to have the time to learn, and have just the mental bandwidth to learn as long as I’m learning and I can maintain that vestige of freedom, even if that may be an illusion, you know, of growth of shrinking boundaries. And that is sometimes Huberman labs podcast or Dr. kharrazian insights on autoimmunity, or my latest book Love.

This is a book called Late Bloomers the power of patience in a world obsessed with early achievement by Richard karlgaard, and I highly recommend this book. As I learn, I noticed that my mind focuses. And as I meditate, it expands. And in this alternating journey, I feel like I stay sane. So honestly, the so called hacks that I suggest for learning challenges in kids can well be used by you, mom, to gain that elusive quality of growth and freedom. Head over to www dot functional nutrition for kids.com/learning. Lesson on I’m really happy to connect and talk with Chris rice today.

Chris transforms lives through empowerment, she provides soul care for mamas raising kids with mental health challenges. Imagine creating freedom, clarity and ease in your life, even amidst the chaos. This is where Chris comes in. Welcome. Welcome, Chris. I’m so glad you’re here. Tell us. Yeah, thank you. Tell us a little bit more about your passion and what change you want to see around you and how you came about to doing this work?

Absolutely, I would love to Well, thank you for having this conversation today. I’m really excited to be here with you. So really, my journey to motherhood has shaped where I have gotten I began motherhood, like probably every other mom having this really perfect vision of what that would look like and what that experience would be. And it took about three years of raising my daughter to realize that she had some mental health struggles that she was going to be dealing with, we were all going to be figuring out together. And that version of calculated perfection didn’t exist, it didn’t exist. And so it really led me to soul searching and asking hard questions and leaning into unknown spaces that I wasn’t used to doing, and figuring out how to do that along her side. And really figuring out how to lean into that discomfort and figure out how to feel my feelings because that wasn’t something I had ever really done.

It sounds crazy. But all those years later, like that just wasn’t an experience that I had really leaned into doing. So she was the exact opposite of me, she lived every day does still she lives on the inside out, her feelings are out there, and she has big emotions. And she is going to let you know that. And for somebody who was not that way, it took a lot of years to figure out how to honor that and how to figure that out how to figure out our journey side by side in that. And so I really came to a juncture where I had a choice and I could lean into the discomfort and those spaces that were unknown to me or I could cling to this version of how life should be. And I chose the first I chose to be brave and show up and figure out how to do this in a really authentic way. And that’s where it’s led me that this imperfect version, this messy version that I was so uncomfortable with before is everything that I appreciate in life now.

What I want to how I want to show up for moms is giving that peace of hope to know that even amidst the darkness, there’s so much good that can come from it if you find tools and resources to support yourself so that you don’t get swallowed up by the chaos. And that’s really where my methodology came from was finding and piecing together all of these tools and resources and just pieces that I experimented with for years 10 years to figure out what worked and supported me to realize this can support a lot of other moms and my hope is to really provide that change for people because as moms raising kids with mental health challenges, we we deserve that and nobody needs to spend 10 years doing that like I did. My hope is to give a fast track to feeling better.

Wonderful. Have you used a word that a phrase that I really liked calculated perfection? I think it was was what do you think that this is what we’ve been called culture to expect, as a society conditioned to expect as moms of, you know, we hear this term, I hope your baby is healthy. And I even find that blessing to be initially I thought that was normal. And now I find that to be almost bordering on offensive. So what does healthy mean? Right? So do you think about the conditioning that we’ve received from society, which makes it harder for us to accept whatever it is in life as normal? And the second part of my question is, do you think it’s just a, it’s a mind, it’s just a mind shift for a lot of things in my life, I found that it’s, you can reduce it to a one or a zero so that if you can actually make that mind shift into accepting this as okay, then then things are okay.

Absolutely. No, I think to answer your first question, absolutely. Society has very much trained us as to what we should expect and what being a mom should look like like that whole human givers syndrome that like you are going to wholeheartedly give everything you have to this person. And you actually get swallowed alive doing that like that, there’s no way any person can kind of live up to that ideal that I think society pushes on us. So taking a step back, and really being able to look at that objectively and say, you know, what, is this actually what I want out of my life? Or is there a different path, and one that feels good to me. And I think in that perfectionist controlling state that I was in, I had no perspective of that at all.

I just had this vision of what it would be. And I knew that every day, it wasn’t looking like that. And it didn’t feel like that. So when I was able to step back and see, okay, well, it doesn’t look like that. But like, is that okay? Do I actually feel okay with that? And the answer was, yes. I love her wholeheartedly for exactly who she is. I’m tell her that all the time. Because there’s, we’re going into doing some testing here later this week, to figure out some answers that we’ve wanted. And, you know, she initially said, Well, I’m really scared, because what are they going to find what’s wrong with me, and we’ve had a lot of conversations of, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with you, everybody’s brain needs a little boosting and a little calming, and that’s what we’re going to know. And so that we can help you feel the best you can feel. And so, um, you know, just kind of learning how to support each other and really grab on to those resources that we have available to us. And just saying yes to the opportunities that present themselves, you know, and it may not have looked how you expected, but like, this opportunity lands in your lap, you say yes to it, you know, things like that?

Yeah. Yeah, totally. This, I think takes us to the next question that I had, because the truth is that everything is fine. And you know, we all do, we’re all in a spectrum of neurodiversity, and there’s no condition that is good or bad. However, we live in a toxic world. And I mean, that quite literally, we are living in a world where there is no option, but to create radical changes in our lives and our kids life, when that could be food, that could be lifestyle, that could be stress management, because we are living in a radical world where we’re exposed to stressors that we’ve never been exposed to before. So and, at least as far as our kids, it starts with food and meat and goes all the way to education. Everything is a radical choice. So it’s easy to say that this is what you need to do. I can give, you know, protocols, but how does a mom, why does the mom need to be in order to get there?

It’s a great question. I feel like to me, the key is making micro changes. So again, like from a society perspective, you’re going to look at something from the outside and be like, Okay, I need to wholesale change how we’re eating maybe or like, whatever area of your life is, and you create these huge mountains that you want to climb. And I think what that is certainly the approach I used to take so I’m a super high achieving person. I’m thinking okay, great. So I know the end point I want to get to here’s how I’m going to get there fast, and you can’t do it. So to me what, where I started to feel better and create really good changes for all of us was just taking those micro change, like 1% change per day. So like maybe when she was little she would get stuck on wanting to eat one particular thing so like, I can’t even tell you how many Eggo waffles she ate like it would be impossible to tell you because that for her was comfort and we picked and choose. It didn’t it wasn’t my choice, but it was what worked for her and so we did that and but so maybe you swap that one waffle and you know what if they eat it like that’s a big deal.

Celebrate that one little change So I think it’s, it’s taking that down and making it to a teeny tiny little change that you can actually do by the end of the day, and then allowing yourself that grace to celebrate whatever it is that you’ve done. Because I’ve found so often like, we expect to hear applause from other people, like we expect to get that feedback that we want. And a lot of times, it just doesn’t happen, nobody may know that it’s happening. Even your partner in your own home may not know. So I actually like I literally write down in my little day timer, my accomplishment for the day, because if I don’t celebrate it, someone else probably isn’t going to and you know what I’m proud of at least one thing a day. So yeah, I think those micro changes and just like making it as teeny and granular as you can, so you can actually do it and achieve it and then celebrate the fact that you did and then the more you feel those wins, you’re going to create those bigger changes that you want. But you’ve got to start super tiny.

I think he said something really important here is about I didn’t think about the celebration, because we’re used to, we’re used to training ourselves and our kids as a society for applause, right? We’re putting ourselves on a stage and we’re constantly on whether it’s receiving feedback from your manager, whether it’s receiving a certain number of likes on Facebook, or Instagram, or whether it’s, I don’t know, whatever pedestal we choose to stay on to receive that feedback. That’s also part of the conditioning. And then a lot of times we do that for kids, it’s that they have done this and that and they’re number one in taekwondo or whatever, right? We’re dealing with a difference when we’re working with kids that are that are neurodiverse, then they are not living necessarily in a world that was designed for them. So the applause may not come even if it’s deserved. Yeah, yes. I think that that that is really I like what you said about applauding yourself. Because just maybe that’s where some grief comes where you’re expecting an applause and you don’t get it.
Mm hmm. Exactly. Like you can feel good about it. And then you realize, like, it’s not coming from those external sources. So then you don’t like you almost do feel badly about it. And that wasn’t the point all along. Right. Like, you had an incredible opportunity for introspection and growth.

Right. So I mean, I think we’re kind of put on a fast track for that. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely.
So this is perhaps the same question, but I was gonna ask you how, how can a mom build, there’s, there’s three things. We don’t have time recording, we don’t have the resilience because it’s just too much and the strength so that, you know, she can transform not only herself but her kid. And because we’re constantly also perhaps facing opposition from your school IEP program, maybe you’re struggling with a family because they don’t believe in what we’re doing. So there’s just it feels like you’re running, you know, on the other direction on a treadmill? How do you? How do you build that? How do you work against them?

To me, the big foundation of that is giving yourself the permission. So I would say 10 years ago, I really seek permission, more than I even realized from all the external sources to say, Yes, Chris, like, go do this, this is what you can do. And this is how you can support her or, you know, all I always turn to the outside, and I flipped that. And I know that she’s the one that taught me that again, because she lives on the inside out, basically. And so that has been the biggest shift for me is really owning that permission piece of I deserve this. And I deserve to have this time. And to not question that. And that took a very long time, I am not going to say that that was like, Oh, I had this revelation one day. And the next day, I instantly had bounds of permission for myself to go and give myself the time or the space or whatever it was, but I can say, again, going to like those micro changes, finding something that you want and clinging to that and not being in any way apologetic for wanting that. So like for one thing that I did at the very start of this journey was giving myself a morning routine because I found that when when my two girls were little like they would wake me up literally from like lurking over my head and I would start awake and it was a terrible way to wake up and I was grumpy and I didn’t want to be so I kind of took a look from outside and I was like okay, I very much want to greet them in a different way for the day.

I want to feel better in this day. So how could I change that like to me the crux was, I don’t care to be startled awake by somebody else. I’d like to wake up on my terms. So I started waking up 15 minutes before them and it was a guest but I aim to wake up a few minutes before that I literally just sat and had coffee by myself. And that was it. But sometimes on especially come the pandemic, sometimes literally, that 15 minutes was like all I had to myself in the whole day. And if I gave myself that time, that was enough to nourish me to give my heart when it needed to then show up differently in the day. So for me, permission started with having to do something that like, nobody else was even up for.

Nobody else was even awake for because it was almost too hard to be like, hey, I want to go take an hour to do this by myself outside the house, it was just too far of a leap. So for me, it was like, I can control what time I get up, I can figure out what feels good to me. And nobody has any reason to say otherwise. And that started that ball rolling. And it started building those habits to be like, Okay, well, I did that. Now look what I could do here. So I think it’s the figuring out that ground for you of where can you start? And then what? Just give yourself that piece? Actually just give yourself that piece because then you’ll figure out like, Well wait, the other things don’t fall like nothing else is left behind. Because I gave myself this, what else could I do also, to feel better? Because what’s astounding to me is like without having any conversation around it, the more you do that, the more your family has those boundaries and knows what pieces your non negotiables are like, what do you need to feel better? And what are those expectations? So that has really created some really nice healthy habits in our house. And everybody kind of gets that grace and respect to be like, Okay, you need to go have some time by yourself. You got it, go do that, you know. So I think it started with me. And not it wasn’t even a conversation. And then it just became a natural conversation, once it sort of was more seen and just kind of unfolded in daily life.

Fantastic. Thank you, I always like to ask about what people’s non negotiables are, because I find that a lot of their principles can be distilled into their, into their non negotiables. And top three priorities. I feel like you’ve already given us a lot that could be interpreted as non negotiables. And maybe, maybe we can re encapsulate or maybe you can redefine or restate other non negotiables. But I wanted to ask you, what are your non negotiables? And I’ll add a second question to this. You can answer in any order? What is the first thing or first things that you would like moms to do? Or have in their toolkit? Maybe it’s the same question, actually.

I feel like we all want to create more freedom in our lives. So that’s doesn’t matter who you are, or what your family what your circumstances are like, you want to be able to create more freedom in your life. And I think that is really a pillar of non negotiable to me. So like how did I back into that to be able to create that sense of freedom and not feeling like I’m stuck in the chaos every day, because when I was trying to live this perfect life, it felt chaotic, because it was never matching what I was expecting. So to me, I think at a super tactical level, my non negotiable is meditating every day. So that started with maybe five minutes of sitting by myself and quiet and that it started at that. Now I do it twice a day, my kids absolutely know when to expect that they know I’ll step away if I need extra, that is my reset to make me feel to make my body feel calm to make my mind present. And that’s really that’s a huge pillar of what I do is just make making sure that I am honoring my energy. And if it doesn’t feel good, I know how to reset it now where before I used to just run faster, which did not work.

So you’re saying that the non negotiable is could be different for each person, but it has to be whatever it is that gives them more freedom. So yeah, find out what do you need to do? Maybe? I think there’s a lot of stepping back here, right? Because on the surface, it’s not what it seems to
be. I would totally agree. That’s a great way to say it. Yeah. As we wrap up, if you could give three tools talk about three tools that moms can have in their mental health toolkit in the resilience toolkit, so that it translates to action because everybody wants wants to move forward in life and something is holding them back. What would these three tools ideas, advice, be?

Yeah, I have a great resource I would love to share with your listeners. I’ll absolutely give you the link to it. You can head to krisricecollective and I have what I believe to be a wonderful toolkit for people so it I call it the 62nd Mama reset. And it gives you three tools to be able to reset your body and mind in less than a minute. And I kid you not that we use them every single day in our house. And they’re again, they’re they’re pieces, tools, resources, ideas that I just had to come across and experiment with and figure out what worked for us. But I can tell you that it started with, usually me trying it and then being like, this doesn’t actually just have to apply to me.

What if my daughter sits beside me and gives it a try to so to me, the power of these tools is there simplicity, I think a lot of times, we can think that, like, the tools themselves have to be complicated, or the processes have to be hard. And I always say that life is hard enough as it is our tools and resources should be as simple as possible. And that should make them effective. And so these three ways, which I’m happy to go into if you want me to. But those three pieces that I cover in the reset guide, are literally ones that we go to every single day. So that is Chris with a krisricecollective.com. And you set forward slash Reset, reset, reset. Okay, do you have any? Thank you, Chris. Thanks. That was a lot of really great ideas, information mindset shifting strategies, I would say? Or what do you have anything you’d like to wrap up with any final thoughts for our listeners?

Sure. I mean, I would say the biggest piece to me is Don’t lose hope. Ask the questions that are that you don’t know the answers to as I look back on my motherhood journey, that was really where the honesty started unfolding was being okay with not knowing the answer, but trusting that something needed to be asked and that something was off and needed supporting. And that was really scary and unknown, to not know where to go not know where to turn or who to ask, but just trust that those answers will be revealed. And so that’s what I would encourage you to do if you have that nagging feeling that something should be looked into, or you should do this or that however it is for you, whatever that voice is telling you. It has purpose and that is where your training, your change can really unfold. Thank you for sharing that with us, Chris. It was great having you here. Thanks for coming. Thank you. Thank you. It’s an honor to be here. Thanks for listening. Don’t forget your learning strategies at functional nutrition for kids.com/learning. I will meet you again next week. Bye.