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Unwrap Your Holiday Stress: Prep for The Holiday Season with Ease w/ Dr. Tanya A. Royster
Episode 2522nd November 2023 • Joyfully Black • Joy Dixon Paul
00:00:00 00:40:06

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In this special pre-holiday episode, psychiatrist Dr. Tanya A. Royster joins us to unravel the intricacies of festive season emotions. Together, we explore the crucial importance of self-care, especially for women, during this bustling period. Dr. T shares expert advice on managing family expectations, recognizing signs of holiday-related stress, and the heartfelt reminder that sometimes, just being present is the best gift of all.

We delve into the rejuvenating power of crafting new traditions and the essence of proactive planning to ensure a smoother, joy-filled season. Dr. T also sheds light on the true spirit of giving back without overwhelming oneself and offers compassionate guidance on navigating the poignant challenges of grief and loss during festive times. Tune in for a heartfelt conversation filled with actionable insights to make your holidays both joyous and mindful.

What To Listen For

  • 9:55 The importance of self-care during the holidays, especially for women.
  • 14:16: How to proactively manage family expectations or holiday discomfort 
  • 15:55: How to know when you’re experiencing holiday-related stress
  • 19:21  Understanding that your presence is the present
  • 23:20: Create new traditions 
  • 25:20: Plan ahead to make your holiday season easier
  • 27:33: How you can still “give back” with less stress
  • 29:43: How to navigate grief and loss during the holidays
  • 34:35: What Dr. Royster creates space for in her life

Where to Find Dr. T

Instagram: @drt4abetterworld

Linkedin: Tanya A. Royster, MD

From My Soul To Yours podcast

Books + Resources Mentioned:

From My Soul To Yours podcast

Stay In Touch With Joyfully Black

I'm Every Woman by Whitney Houston

Fight Song by Rachel Platten

Transcripts

Joy Dixon:

Hello there and welcome to the Joyfully Black podcast where we have candid conversations with black women on nourishing their mental well-being, while balancing career, family life and community care. I'm your host Joy Dixon, a public health professional turned woman in tech and lover of seeing people thrive in their zone of genius.

Hi, y'all Joy here. Before we dive into today's episode, just a heads up, your girl's audio gotten a little wonky from time to time, but the guests you can hear her perfectly. So just bear with me in the beginning. Because today's guest Dr. T really imparts some great strategies for navigating the holiday season without tearing your hair out. And we all want that right. Hashtag keep our edges. Anyway, thanks in advance for listening, and remember to subscribe and share with a friend. Now. Here's today's show. So I am so pleased to have Dr. Tanya Royster, aka Doctor T. And she's a psychiatrist, a dynamic teacherwith skills possibly across many platforms. And she started A Better World, LLC to support individuals and organizations and their ability to pursue their God. She also provides life executive coach, organizational assessments and organizational support. And it's also of course, if she weren't busy doing that she's also served city and state governments academic settings, or Tinker at a university sports medicine has taught in a host of packet. Of course, she understands complexity organization designed to support local populations and has published results provided service to profession and community and for right now Dr. Royster see the home of the Jackson Five, Gary, Indiana and is a graduate of University, as well as Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, both her General Psychiatry, child and adolescent psychiatry was sick and all things. Her goal is to support her journey to divorce better. Dr. T also has a podcast called, From My Soul To Yours. And I will share the link in the show notes where it's available. Podcast, Spotify, Amazon Music podcast. Welcome to Joyfully Black, Doctor T!

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Thank you so much for having me.

Joy Dixon:

Good, I'm so glad you're able to come. So Dr. T would have guests on the show. I've always loved our guests, the levels that are only 2% of the estimated 41,000 psychiatrists this as early this year. So there's about 41,000 of all psychiatrists, 2% are black. You have like psychiatrists, we all know sometimes that, you know, being the only one. Tell us a little bit about your interesting journey into the field of psychiatry. Like how did you

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

you know, I say this is truly my God-given path. This is what God put me on this earth to do. I say God truly knows that I'm stubborn and hard-headed. So he told me when I was a little bitty little girl, you're gonna be a psychiatrist. And I didn't even know what that was like my mom. And my parents met in college and didn't finish college, initially, because they had me. And so I was the first one to go to college to finish college to be a doctor. So it's not like there's a legacy of healthcare in my family. But there is a long legacy of caring and a legacy of community and a legacy of taking care of those around you. So my mom says when I was a little girl, somebody said, Oh, what do you want to do when you grow up? And I said, I want to be a psychiatrist. And everybody in the hair in the room had whipped around. What is this little girl talking about? So it's truly the only thing I ever wanted to do. And so I just followed my spirit, I listened. And I just kept doing it. And the thing is, I didn't even know what a psychiatrist did except help people. Okay, and so, I've done that, as you said in my bio, a whole lot of different ways. And that's what I love about the work that I do. I can do it one on one with patients. I can do it for a state organization that's trying to serve a whole community. I now do it for like executives, usually people of color who have obtained a lot of success, but something still doesn't feel right. Like and it's like you know, you're not like Clint equally depressed or you're not, you know, maybe you got a little anxiety, but you just don't know like, why do I still feel this way after all of these great things have happened to me. And so I just really like helping people on to the next stage of their journey, whatever that means for them. I also love doing trainings, I love teaching. So I do a lot of trainings and education. So you know, I don't know if people know what a psychiatrist does. Most people think they just prescribe medicine. But that's probably the smallest part of my week.

Joy Dixon:

So what would you say takes it takes up the majority of it?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

The majority of my time is the consultations with other organizations, the coaching, the trainings that I do other teaching, I mean, I do love to teach my patients, my clients, everyone how to be better, like a better world, right. And so a lot of that has to do with self care. A lot of that has to do with listening to your spirit, listening to yourself, learning to trust yourself. I think, you know, medication is an important tool. But I think everybody thinks as a psychiatrist, I'm always gonna go to medication. And I'm like, No, I think medication is an important tool, but there's so much more work that you have to do.

Joy Dixon:

Yeah, I appreciate you sharing that journey, and also the fact that it's not something you;d expect a child to say.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

This is why my only explanation is that it has to be God, because it wasn't on TV. It wasn't something my parents knew about. It wasn't anything. And actually, for many years, I just kept repeating it. I want to be a psychiatrist, I want to be a psychiatrist. I want to be a psychiatrist. And it was actually a fifth grade teacher who was like, what does that mean? And I was like, I don't know. Look it up. And so she literally made me look it up made me write a little report. She's like, I think it's great if you want to be a psychiatrist, but know what you're saying. And it was like a very powerful lesson. So many times, we just repeat stuff. And I believe it came from a good place. But I still didn't know what it meant. I didn't know what steps it took to get there. So that was really an important, simple thing that someone did for me.

Joy Dixon:

It really speaks to the value of having people in your life who may not be a part of your part of your social circle. They see some interest, so

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

let's find out. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And pushing, encouraging you. Yeah.

Joy Dixon:

Well, I really appreciate you sharing that journey talked about how, you know the type of folks that you work with where usually high powered individuals successful folks who are finding themselves sort of at a crossroads or feeling dissatisfied, despite accomplishments. And I am I am curious, what what do you see are some common themes you're working with?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

So that's a great question. And let me also clarify, like I see, I don't want to say everyday people, but I see everyone. So in the patient clinical practice, I because I like to give back, right? So I work at a rural clinic, in southern part of Illinois via telehealth, actually, and many of the patients I see have limited or no insurance or the public insurance. And the interesting thing is that there are some commonalities, regardless of whether my patients come from farming or poverty or high powered corporate America. And so the first commonality is that they all just want to be happy. And I also want to add joy, that in addition to those high powered in my executive coaching, or life coaching, which I actually call soul coaching, because I think the only way to heal ourselves is to bring all parts of ourselves and go from the soul out. So I call it soul coaching. And so there are some common things, even between people that are in rural America, and high powered executives and everybody wants to feel like they belong, a sense of community. No one wants to feel isolated. No one wants to feel ridiculed. Everybody wants to belong. And that's probably the biggest theme that I work with. As you kind of ascend the ladder of success, particularly as a person of color. It gets lonelier and lonelier and lonelier. The Surgeon General has just started talking about and I'm saying finally, but just started talking about the the pandemic of isolation, right? I think that COVID-19 made people realize how important connection is. Those of us in this field have known that forever, but that sense of isolation Where the success can be lonely. And so my clients are, you know, reach these heights, and they feel disconnected. They don't feel they're connected to their own passion. They have a sense of their purpose, but they don't feel like it drives them anymore. And they don't get the same joy and pleasure that they did on the way up. And then they start to question like, well, what am I doing? Right? And I think those are kind of universal questions and themes that we all struggle with. Yeah,

Joy Dixon:

absolutely. And speaking of a sense of belonging, the holiday season is coming up. So we know that can be a tricky time for very whether you're high on more than class scale, it can be stressful medical experience. Yes. Can you share some some general insights on the importance of self care during this time, especially for women? epidemic of loneliness, by that phrase, I'm going to come back to that a little thing that just resonates. For me in regards to the holiday season approaching? What are what are some share about Sony?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Yeah, yeah, Joy, I love talking about this at this time of year, because people always, you know, TV paints the holidays, as a happy time, as you know, family and connections for a lot of people family is not fun, you know, it is very stressful. Whether it's a sense of responsibility that they put on you, or whether you put on yourself, right that the holidays can be very, very stressful. So the first part of self-care is to learn to limit things that don't feel good. You don't like it, don't do it, or do as little of it as you can. And a lot of times people work on their boundaries and limits setting all year. And then the holidays come and suddenly, they're like that little kid again, it just wants somebody's approval. There's just once you know, Santa Claus, to bring them a gift if they're good. And they let all the things that they've done all year to protect themselves to heal themselves to take care of themselves. They just relax it. And so the first thing is just maintain your boundaries. Feel good about setting limits, I always say no is a complete sentence. You don't have to explain why you don't want to go over uncle so and so's house or to Aunt so and so's barbecue. No, it's a complete sentence. I was so proud. I had a patient a couple of weeks ago that told me there was a big family wedding and she was desperate to attend. But she didn't want to go because the person who abused her was going to be there. And this is a 50 year old woman. And she was like, I don't want to be in that person's presence. And so she had a choice of either not going and not saying anything. Or saying like, Look, you guys, we all know this happened. I don't feel comfortable. So this is why I'm not going and you can decide if you want me there, he can't be there. And you can make the choice. But this is my boundary. And her family said, You're right, we're sorry, he won't be there. We want you there. And so just remembering all the work you've done throughout the year, and being okay, with keeping those boundaries, setting those limits. And then I also say don't be afraid to reach out. I have episode of my podcast coming up called bound Family is fine, right? Sometimes we're not born with a biological family that meets our needs. But we find people along the way, that embrace us that love us, they support us, they care for us. But then around the holidays, we're like, oh, I don't want to intrude, I don't want to you know, be a bother. And so we don't reach out and stay connected to the people that have been with us and supporting us on our journey. And so it's really important to remember, be brave, be bold, ask for what you want. They might just assume you're coming. They may not even think that they need to invite you right? And you're feeling like Oh, I'm not in their family.

Joy Dixon:

I really appreciate you sharing, you know, the sound family because or like the chosen family being said some people's family of origin is stressful. Or sometimes you just can only handle them in doses by someone around them or not. Such a reality for so.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Yeah, a lot of people.

Joy Dixon:

A lot of people was like kind of like, I can take you in doses. We all can be in the house. Yeah, not.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

A lot of times when you've done the work of healing and repairing and improving who you are and how you are the things that you went through. Everybody doesn't come along on that journey. That doesn't mean that you love them any less. That doesn't mean that they They weren't an important part of your journey whenever it was, but it's okay for you to grow beyond some of the people in your life.

Joy Dixon:

Yeah, absolutely. And then speaking of those boundaries, you know, you know, we always do that word come up. But um, so I am curious, like, how can people start to do that left? Before before Thanksgiving, before any of the other central holidays, whether Hanukkah Christmas, Kwanzaa, whatever people are celebrating, even if they're not celebrated at all, but they are wanting to gather what are, what are some ways they can collect interests?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

I think the reality is, number one, you just have to acknowledge that these things are real, like a lot of times, we want to put our hand in the sand, and next time, it'll be better or next time, it won't bother me and pretend like these things aren't real triggers that we know are coming. So the first part is just acknowledge that these are real things we know they're going to happen. If we can acknowledge it, we can prepare for it. And preparation is key, right? So make a plan, like you just said, I know, I can only do my brother in small doses. So going to spend this 30 minutes with my brother at this event. And then I'm going to either find other people to sit with or I'm going to leave, I'm going to excuse myself, but make a plan and then stick to the plan. Don't feel guilty about knowing what feels good and allowing yourself to enjoy your holidays, because you did it the way that worked for you.

Joy Dixon:

So making the plan, but what will work best for you. And some people are so used to people pleasing, or having limited boundaries that they might not even know how to identify whether it be trigger. So what are some signs that someone might be experiencing holiday related stress?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Well, if you find yourself stepping outside of your normal pattern, right, so you, you know, whenever I go over, I hate the big momma's because we all want to love Big Mama. But whenever I, whenever I go to this house, you know, I gotta sit in the car for 10 minutes and psych myself up, right? If you got a pair to walk in the door, that means you know, there's a trigger inside, right? Anytime you know what you're going to experience before the thing happens. That means, you know, that's a trigger for you, because you've already developed some strategies, whether you're conscious of them or not. And I think that's a lot of times, people don't realize that they've already developed the strategies. So they drive around the block three times, they got their favorite music they listen to, you know, they sit in the car and pretend like they're on a call, I have people that don't even smoke, they say, Oh, I gotta go outside and take a cigarette, like they have all these strategies that they've come up with, to minimize their interaction with these uncomfortable situations. And so those are all your signs that you're heading into that environment. So rather than head in and pretend like you don't know, acknowledge what your body is telling you, like I was our sixth in our gut, whatever you want to call it, it is true, we do teach children to ignore it. And that's the really bad part. And I hope that we are working on that as a as a society as a community, but we teach children to just go ahead and do it and they're like, No, I don't want to do that. I don't want to do that. But then as adults, we have to reconnect with that sixth sense, we have to reconnect with our gut our intuition and listen to it. And that's, I think one of the hardest things that we have to do in our journey is reconnect to that part of ourselves that that told us the truth

Joy Dixon:

Yeah, that makes so much sense because you're you're right many times you know, children we didn't feel like we had a voice or you know, be seen not heard. And I know that a lot of parents you know, the millennial gentle parenting as a woman who's at odds, I'm not I've raised children but I'm children. So that's very positive be so I think that's great that we're almost having to prepare ourselves to make sure that you're all safe. Emotionally of course, because obviously emotional the weekly love like you know, yeah. You and I'll say the most in the best circumstances we looked at, you know, but

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

yeah, Absolutely.

Joy Dixon:

So, you know, family, particularly with women, there is a pressure to share it. You're right during the holiday, like Big Mama. Always in the kitchen. The Auntie's are ever since so. But that pressure being a caregiver to be overwhelmed. What suggestions would you have for, for black women of color who are trying to balance those caregiving responsibilities, along with self care? We've set it back. There aren't any other specific techniques, they realize they find a lot of. You know, maybe I thought the year was holiday season. Hey, yes.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

100% true, I think it's remember that the value of you being there is not in the thing that you do, but it's in your presence itself. So I mean, I have this, like, this is a perfect example to me, when my daughter, I can't even remember which birthday it was, but maybe she was seven or something like that. And I have prided myself, I always made these very elaborate birthday cakes for my kids. I don't know, it's just a thing I do. And I was on a business trip. And I was like, literally getting home. Like the morning of her birthday, or the night before her birthday. Like it was a very, very tight schedule. And I was driving myself crazy trying to figure out how I was going to make this birthday cake. Make it to the same level as all the other birthday cakes. I didn't want to feel guilty, or for her to be upset that this birthday cake wasn't like every other birthday cake in my family was going to be there. And I was driving myself in a tizzy. And one of my really, really good friends and a thought partner said, Is she going to be more concerned about the cake? Or is she going to be more concerned about you? Is she going to be happy that her mom was there made it back from the trip? Or is she going to be like this cake isn't as fancy as the other cakes. And she was like just challenging me to think about what was really important. So she's like, if it's really important to you to do something with his cake, how can you make it so you feel good. And you show up and you have the energy to be what you want to be at this party. So I called a local bakery and I say Hey, can you make a cake with no decorations on it, just a plain cake, plain white icing, and then I will do everything else. And so instead of like staying up all night, baking a cake, let it cool, you know all the steps it takes. I got this cake already made. And then I decorated in a couple of hours. She was happy. I was happy the family was everybody was happy. But it was all self imposed that I was putting on myself. And just refocusing on what was really important. Was it really the complexity of the cake that was important or wasn't my presence for my daughter on that day that was important. And when I refocused on that I came up with a solution that still allowed me to give what I wanted to give, but also be present and show up because when I'm tired, I'm cranky, just like everybody else. Okay, so if I had stayed up all night baking that cake, and then a bunch of people came over my house, it would not have been fun. Yeah. So it's just about refocusing on what is really important about the holidays. Yeah, we all love to make our old family recipes. But you know, there are also many wonderful small bakeries that would love to make your sweet potato pie for you this holiday, you know? Yeah, support a small business and save yourself the headache and enjoy your family.

Joy Dixon:

Yes, no, you are. You are so right. And it's it's funny. You know, as I've gotten older, I noticed, you know, when I was when I was a child, and I've got other family, friends, you know, making everything from scratch, and now they're like, Oh, I'm not going to stress myself. I'll do you know, my specialty dish. Yeah, but lost the market it worked

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

out Absolutely. Right, or support a local business, you know, they will probably love the catering business. And it's also like everybody has talents and gifts in your family. So, you know, if you get a lot of joy out of cooking and bringing things for other people, maybe other people want to invite them in make it a new tradition instead of one person spending all the money and spending all of their time and slaving in the kitchen and not enjoying the holiday. Everybody do a little bit of potluck and everybody knows who should and should not bring what and somebody who has you know, limited culinary skills, they can bring the drinks, they can bring the lake, they can bring the forks, you know they can bring the games like we can work we can make this work it doesn't have To be all on one person, and then that person is so miserable and exhausted that they don't even appreciate having their family there.

Joy Dixon:

Yeah, no, you're absolutely right. By the time this airs, like my husband surprised that I have for him will be over. Not so he listened to this, you know, hey, yeah, hope you enjoy despise. But as you know, as I'm planning it for a big milestone birthdays bringing people together, so he'll be super surprised. Um, a friend of my best friend reminded me she said, you know, you can get things delivered. And I told him, I said, Oh, I'm in a season of ease. I know, on that particular day, so it's not close to where I am and obscenities getting delivered. You know, it's gonna be lovely. But I'm also like you said, you're just like, you know, you had the big remake, you know, they basically the baking for you.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Right, exactly, exactly thinking ahead, but also

Joy Dixon:

thinking, how can I make my life a little easier, you know,

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

right, you want to use your energy yet, I always like use this example, if you have 100 units of energy a day, and you take probably 30 or 40 of them just to keep breathing every day and stand up and walk. So then that leaves you with, you know, 60. And so if you spend 50 of that 60 running around like a mad person on details that don't really matter, you only have 10% left to really enjoy, relax, you know, participate, engage. So what you really want to think about is how do you use as little of your energy as possible on the stuff that doesn't matter? Right? You got to so that part you just take out of the equation. But then how do I use the energy that I have? And nobody has unlimited energy? That's just a reality, no matter how young or how old? So how do I use the energy that I have to do what I need to do in the most efficient or effective, cost effective, whatever it is way possible, but still have the energy to enjoy the president. Right? The people that are going on in my life?

Joy Dixon:

Really what that makes me think of when people say I am the gift you just said yeah, you are. Thank you for attending. Thank you for gracing today.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Absolutely. Absolutely. I wish more of us felt that way about ourselves.

Joy Dixon:

That way, are you are you like big birthday person?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

I am a huge birthday person.

Joy Dixon:

Okay, yeah, me too. I consider my birthday like a

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

holiday. It is a national it is national time your day. That's right. I feel that way about other people too, right. So it's not just limited to me, because I feel like so much of our lives is about doing things for others, celebrating others. Giving to others, whether it's at work at church at school with our children, or you birthday is the only day that you can honestly say is really all about me. And so I'm like, embrace it. If you can't embrace any other day, embrace your birthday.

Joy Dixon:

Yes, yes. You have to, especially if yours falls on a holiday like mine. Yes. You don't celebrate it. You know, you don't go out, you know, as you mentioned, celebrating others. I mean, yeah, it's it's so much fun. Now, here's another aspects about about the holiday season that people often think is not stressful, but can be. So I'm curious to know, like, how would you see the concept of giving back? What can we engage corporated into one self care practice, routine during the holidays, especially, especially mid a busy schedule.

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

So I think if you enjoy giving back, and most people, if they really give back in our open, honest way they enjoy it like there is a real joy in a piece about helping other people. The thing that becomes stressful about it is when we pile on too much when we over obligate ourselves, when we say yes to things that we either won't enjoy or don't want to do, or they're just not in our wheelhouse, like everybody has some way that they enjoy giving back. And if you just stick to that and stick to the amount of giving back that feels good. It will be good. It will be fine. Right? It will work for you. But like you said so much during the holidays, and sometimes it's formal, like you know, go volunteer at a shelter or go do this program at church or work with your son's Boy Scout troop. And sometimes it's informal, like, pick up grandma, take her Christmas shopping or you know, get Uncle Willie and go get this thing done for him or whatever. So sometimes it's formal, sometimes it's informal. And a lot of times, again, we just don't That limits, we don't say no, we don't have boundaries. And like you just said, like, maybe you could just have that thing delivered to Uncle Willie. Like, maybe you don't have to pick him up, take him there, go through all that you could just have it delivered to him, he'll be just as happy you can stop by for a visit at your leisure, but you're not fighting traffic, you know, all this then other. So there are ways to feel that sense of community feel that sense of belonging? What, however you give back formally or informally without driving yourself crazy?

Joy Dixon:

Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. Another aspect of the holiday season that often comes up is that it can be, it can be challenging, because it brings up memories of loss. We just went through active pandemic years, which, you know, fortunately, a lot of people that started 2020 did not in that way. And even, you know, a more recent loss. So how, how can individuals cope with loss, whether it's death, schooling ship, the holiday?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

So again, first, the first step is acknowledging that this is real, right? I think, especially with grief and loss. And I'm actually going through this I like to share with my audiences because I lost my mom this summer. So I didn't. I know where she is. But yeah, but so I've already started thinking about what will this holiday season be like without her? How will I honor her, but also making space for the sadness? I know, I call my mom, if I'm not in the same, you know, sitting with her if we're not celebrating together, I know what I usually typically do. So I'm not gonna pretend and then the day comes, and it hits me like a ton of bricks like, Oh, my God, Mom was not here. Like, No, I know, every day that my mom is no longer on this earth with us. So we've already started thinking about me, personally, me with my daughters and me with my siblings, and my dad, how are we going to what things are we going to continue? What things is this an opportunity to say, wow, we really didn't like doing that anyway. So what things can we let go of, and thank her for the gift of being able to let go of that. So really just thinking about it, anticipate it, but also making room for being sad and being okay with that? Do I want it to consume you? Do I want it to be all day, every day for your holiday season? No, I don't, I want you to keep living. I want me to keep living. But I want you to be okay with the fact that that sadness is real. And it doesn't matter whether you lost the person a year ago, 10 years ago, there's always a piece of you that will remember and reminisce and miss them during the holiday seasons or significant events. So it's okay to allow that in your space to acknowledge that and incorporate that. And you know, I say just just make it a part of your day like, boy, Mom, I'm gonna miss your sweet potato pie, I know that we're gonna get it from this store, like just incorporated as a real reality. And, you know, I think a lot of our angst comes from us, not wanting to feel the things that are natural to feel. And so just acknowledging and accepting that this is going to hurt. And I'm going to be able to enjoy my holidays. And I'm going to be able to celebrate and remember this person. And it's, of course, easier as time goes on the first couple years are really, really hard. But it can coexist, but one of my tenants of the work I do is helping people understand that joy and pain can coexist. We can be happy and sad. We can be going through greatest things and still have a moment of darkness that is life. And the more we can embrace that, the more we can accept that and the more we can enjoy and really live our lives purposefully.

Joy Dixon:

Yeah, I really appreciate you. You sharing that because I felt like like the theme of our conversation today has been around checking knowledge, what is crazy family dynamics, or maybe I've been creating really dynamic response. They're very busy. And you know, even even in the clinical best of families, just everyone just just the hustle and bustle of family time together and shopping and people do that and those things so that that resonates. Now,

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

that's a great summary. It is always checking in with yourself and being okay with wherever you are.

Joy Dixon:

Now, Dr. T flow We'd go today there's a question I always ask every one of my guests. And it's there's one of my favorite quotes is by Jean Bolean and it says, “When you discover something that nourishes your soul and brings you joy, care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life.” What nourishes your soul so much that you absolutely create space for it?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

I, oh, that's I don't know which one to start with. But I would always start with music. You know that Music soothes the savage beats, maybe my soul is a savage beast because I have music in my life every day, like when I'm cooking, when I am showering, like I just love to have music playing. And I love all types of music. So it might be gospel, it might be r&b, it might be hip hop, it might be rock, it might be classical. It could be anything. It just depends. But I love having music. There's just something that makes me like, WUSA, right? Just having music in the background. So music is a huge part of my daily self-care routine. You will not find a day where I have not listened to it incorporated in some kind of music. Because it really does soothe me (Iaughter) said maybe I'm a savage beast, but music really suits me.

Joy Dixon:

Now quite lovely. So since music is the same for me. Music is a huge, huge part of my life. What do you like to listen to this morning?

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

Ah, the song that I love to start my day with whether it's in my head or whether I actually play it is I'm Every Woman. It's like, it's like, I don't know, no matter what you're feeling. You cannot not smile and celebrate yourself and just feel like you can take on the day. Like so like a little piece of that song is always playing in my soul. It just it just it's amazing. I don't know why I don't know when I first heard it or I don't know what. And then there's another song that I keep rediscovering. It's called my Fight Song by Rachel Platten. And whenever I'm like, do I want to do this? That's the song that gets me like, yeah, you're gonna fight, you're gonna fight through this. You know, whatever it is, you're gonna fight for this. This is my site song. That's a cool one. Check it out.

Joy Dixon:

Oh, I love that I will have to link to the YouTube videos for both of those. Now, before we go, my last question, are there any other resources both online or offline that you'd recommend for black women, women of color to explore further self-care practices, mental health support, engagement opportunities during the holidays, but beyond

Dr. Tanya A Royster:

that they're not there are so many great creators and content out there that you know, pick the one that feels right for you, of course on hope you love mine. But at any moment, people have to do it, what speaks to them. And I always tell like, my clients like therapy is like trying to jeans. Sometimes you have this favorite pair of jeans, you've loved it, you wore it everywhere. And then you put it on one day and it doesn't fit anymore. It doesn't feel good doesn't make your butt look good. You're just like, Oh my God. But then you want to hold on to those jeans, because they were your favorite for so long. I'm like, you've got to be willing and able to let go of things that feel good in order to make space for new things that feel good. So I can't say I have a favorite because, like, just like my musical tastes, they kind of go all over the spectrum. And it depends on what I need for that day. So give yourself the freedom to take whatever you need, no matter what form it comes in.

Joy Dixon:

Wonderful. Well, thank you so much, Dr. T for spending the morning with us on joyfully black, and look forward to talking to you again. Yeah, thank you so much joy. Hey there lovely listeners. Thank you for tuning in to another episode of joyfully black. I hope that you're enjoying our content as much as we love creating it for you. So if today's episode has resonated with you or you find it valuable, please do us a favor and hit that subscribe button. It ensures that you never miss an episode and helps us reach more listeners like you. So if you've got a friend who'd love what we're talking about today, don't keep it a secret sharing is caring, after all! Send them a link and spread the word. And last but not least, we truly value your thoughts and feedback. Whether it's a topic you'd like us to cover or thoughts on today's discussion, drop a comment or send us a message on joyfullyblk.com or on Instagram. Your voice matters, and it really helps shape the future of our show. Remember, this podcast grows and thrives because of listeners like you. So subscribe, share, and speak up. Until next time Stay in the black, ya'll!

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