The Overwhelmed Brain with Paul Colaianni | Practi

The Overwhelmed Brain with Paul Colaianni | Practi


If you're annoyed with affirmations and tired of being told to "think positively", then this is the show that leaves out all the fluff and gives you practical, down to earth steps to help you create the life you want: With less stress and more happiness. This is practical personal growth and development with a strong emphasis on emotional intelligence, living authentically, being in alignment with your values, and honoring your boundaries to empower you to create the life you want. If you're serious about self-improvement and maximizing your potential, but are jaded about all the talk on the "Law of Attraction", then you've come to the right place. Welcome to the personal growth show for critical thinkers.


The Toxic Episode - The toxic relationship - Validating toxic friends - Enabling Toxic Behavior  

Toxic relationships - friends, family, coworkers, and more. What can you do if you can't get away from them? Do you even know how to get away from them? How can you continue the relationship when you have no choice but to be with a toxic person? This episode gets into toxic people, including what one reviewer said about my show: Stay Away! I read that review on the air, and also read a couple letters from people that deal with toxic people in their life. Today's episode is brought to you by Casper. Get $50 off a mattress when you use the promo code "brain" during checkout at

The Spiritual Lessons Connecting the Past to Present - Letting Family Hit Rock Bottom - Alone on the Holidays  

There's a spiritual or philosophical correlation between an event that happened to you in your past and what is happening to you today. You may not recognize the significance of your behavior today, but when you are able to make the connection between present behavior and prior emotional events, it's like plugging a lamp into a socket and watching the light fill the room. The circuit between the past and the present is completed and negative emotions can diminish or disappear. It sounds a bit "out there" but there is a process to go through if you want to try it out yourself. In segment two, I read a letter from a woman who doesn't know when to let go of family members that seem to be struggling but really aren't doing anything to get out of their struggles. At what point do you let them hit rock bottom? Is it okay to stop trying to help and just let them be until they are ready to make changes on their own? My answer may be a little controversial but it will help you move forward and become a better, healthier you. In the final segment at the end of the show, I talk about what you might be able to do if you're not looking forward to being alone on the holidays. You may or may not want to be alone, but what can you do to feel connection? If you're not a fan of alone time, maybe this will help. Today's episode is brought to you by Contact Asha to learn how you may be able to get out of the legal mess you're in.

Getting better at receiving - Recovering from abusive love - Living with the affair  

Giving can feel so good, but receiving can too so why do so many people have trouble receiving? Do you reject gifts or other offers? If so, why would you take the honor to give away from the giver? If you've not thought about it like that before, this segment is for you. In segment two, I read a letter from a woman who feels like she's wasted three years of her life with her emotionally abusive boyfriend. She is no longer in that abusive relationship, but still feels the pain of the loss and the regret of the decisions she made. I highlight just what there is to be grateful for in this situation and talk about the process of self love and compassion. In segment three, a woman holds a secret from her boyfriend. She kissed another man and doesn't want to tell him because he is "blissfully unaware" a woman kissed someone outside of her relationship and now holds on to the fact that she cheated on him because she doesn't want to make him feel bad. Who she'll be in the relationship will be who she is until she gets over it or expresses it. If you decide to not tell, can you live with the guilt. And do you want him to live with a continuous liar. Whatever your values tell you to do is what you should end up doing otherwise you won't be happy. Thanks to Away for sponsoring today's episode. Go to and use the promo code "brain" for a cool smart case today!

Selfish or self-sustaining? - The mom who wasn't there for me - Obsession about my partner's history  

What is acceptable to you and what is not? What is considered self-sustaining and what is selfish? I read an email from someone who's in constant battle in his mind, unsure if he's honoring his personal boundaries or just being completely self serving. He also gets into a debate in his mind and over analyzes to the point of indecision. There's a way to decide, and it involves the question: What what you do if you were completely fearless or not afraid of the consequences? That will usually give you the right answer that honors your boundaries. In segment two, I read a message from a woman who's mom never stepped in to help her kids when they were being abused. She's forgiven her abuser, but not her mom. In fact, she feel abused by her mom even today because of the narcissistic tendencies she has. She's not sure how to honor herself with her mom. Her emotional pendulum is stuck on one side and she hasn't let it swing to the other side to find out what would happen if she truly honored herself with her mom. When dealing with difficult parents, it's best to come from a place of "I love you, but this is a problem". It's honoring from love. For segment three, I talk about obsessing over your partner's history, whether it's all the great sex your partner had (and you feel insecure about it) or even the abuse they experienced (and you are overly empathic and depressed about it). Obsessing over your partner's past keeps you in the past and keeps you from improving yourself to be the best person you can be in the relationship. Today's episode sponsored by Get your free trial kit and use the promo code OVERWHELMED during checkout for your post shave balm.

How personal values affect your work - My interview on Bombshell Business Podcast  

What you value in life overflows into your business, relationships and everything else. Join me as I get interview by Amber Hurdle of the Bombshell Business Podcast ( and she shares her experience with me guiding her to a completely new direction with her business. It's the midweek show - enjoy!

Begin Healing From Childhood Sexual Abuse  

Sexual abuse should not be taboo. Survivors carry the shame, pain and guilt when the reality is that the perpetrators should be the one carrying those things. The pain of past abuse is real and is doesn't go away without acceptance, letting it come up, processing (in many ways), healing (in many more ways) and finally releasing. This episode is focused on what to do to begin healing and where to go for resources if you want to learn more. More over, there's a movement starting called The Fiona Project that today's guest shares that will help you if you are a survivor or know of one (and there's a 99% chance you know of one). Healing begins now and you do not need to be silent any longer. You are not guilty for being a victim, and the shame belongs on the one who committed the ultimate violation. Go to to watch the powerful music video by Asha Lightbearer. The video itself is moving, revealing, and a step into healing. Thank you to Casper for their sponsorship of today's episode. Get $50 off a mattress by going to and using the codeword "brain" during checkout.

The Meaning of Communication - Guilt by Manipulation - Obsessing Over the Ex  

What you say isn't always what they hear. What they understand isn't always what you conveyed. Who is responsible for the communication, you? Them? Both? Neither? It's time to explore this topic. On Ask Paul part 1, I read a message from someone who got out of a manipulative, abusive relationship with a malignant narcissist. It was a crazy time for her and she is healing, but she shares a lesson for us all. On Ask Paul part 2, I read a letter from someone still obsessing over his ex. They were together a short time but he's still grieving over the death of their relationship. What can you do when you're in that state? Thank you to for sponsoring today's episode. Go to and use the promo code OVERWHELMED to get your free post shave balm.

The Pattern of Anxiety - Saving Anger Only For Those Closest to You  

With General Anxiety Disorder, is there a chance of getting free of the consistent feelings of anxiety and panic? Is there a remote chance of feeling better or even making it go away completely? Maybe... Also, I get a letter from a girl whose boyfriend gets jealous so she gets angry which causes him to insult her which causes her to react and so on... is there a solution? I talk a little on jealousy and more on anger and the fact that we often direct our anger at the wrong people. Thank you to for sponsoring today's episode. Use promo code "brain234" and you'll get $5.00 off.

Laughing at Criticism - There Are No Terrible Children - Fixing Your Own Toxic Behavior  

Can you laugh at criticism? Do you believe in yourself enough so that when someone calls you anything less than you really are, you can shrug it off without those sometimes hard to avoid feelings? When you get to a place inside where you are proud of yourself no matter what, then you'll find yourself genuinely laughing instead of reacting when someone is being critical of you. Children can seem to do awful things, but they are a result of the programming they were given since birth. Is it really their fault they are acting in the way they were nurtured and influenced? Finally, is it possible to change manipulative, toxic behavior, and repair the damage to your relationships because of it? Both can be achieved but they require serious introspection. Heal yourself and both situations can improve and evolve. Thank you to for sponsoring today's episode. Use promo code "brain" when you're ready for a free shave kit.

Measuring Your Worth and Esteem - Jealous and Insecure in the Relationship  

Self-esteem stems from the level of self-worth you have about yourself. That's great to know, but how do you raise either or both so that you can walk through life confidently and assert yourself when needed? There's "street knowledge" then there's book knowledge. Stree Knowledge is real world experience and book knowledge is when you know what to do but don't necessarily know how to do it, or have the courage to do it. So what can you do? Listen to this segment and find out. In the Ask Paul segment, I read a letter from a jealous husband who doesn't like when other people look at his wife. He can't figure out how to get past these feelings. Insecurities abound in this segment so it's a great segue from the last one. There's a little bit of ego involved, a leap of faith, and a lot of trust that may need to be built up in order to allow the jealousy to go away. visit for legal services at a low monthly rate.

The Silent Treatment - The Drawbacks of Non-Confrontational Behavior - Permission to Hate  

The silent treatment is like an acid that disintegrates trust and love because of the withdrawal of emotions (emotional withdrawal). I can't trust you with my emotions because when you withdraw, I feel betrayed and abandoned. I also talk about the drawbacks of non-confrontational behavior and how choosing not to confront disintegrates love and bonding. When you choose to be non-confrontational, it's like telling the other person "I don't want to tell you the whole truth". And what about hate? Are you allowed to feel hate? Should you? I think it's important to acknowledge and accept every part of you and every thought instead of resisting your thoughts. Otherwise, you go around holding on to a lot of negativity which you eventually unleash on those you love. 

Indecision and Stagnation - Realizations of a New, Bad Marriage - Music and Emotions  

Permanent decisions are not always permanent, we just think they are. Even marriage nowadays isn't permanent, as much as we want it to be. And even when everything is going great, "stuff" happens and makes things not so great anymore which forces us to change or fall. There's a great quote I read about flat squirrels and indecisions (if you think hard enough, you'll understand that right away) and it makes for a great topic to talk about. In segment 2, I read an email from someone who sees every red flag in a new marriage yet doesn't walk away. Her values and boundaries are being violated and she finds nothing to love about a man she's already married to on paper. Then she asks if there is any hope. Hmm... In segment 3 I talk about how music is a great mood changer but shouldn't necessarily replace deeper reflection and processing of buried emotions Make sure to visit and use promo code brain to get $20 off your order!

Losing Your Identity in the Relationship -  The Brilliant, Worthy You - Exes as Friends - The Right Partner  

Nurturing yourself while you're in a relationship decreases the impact breaking up has if and when it happens. The more you keep the connection with yourself and don't lose a part of you in the relationship, the healthier you stay. You lose your identity in a relationship when you don't nurture yourself. When family doesn't honor you and see your worth, sometimes you just have to distance yourself from them so that you reconnect with brilliant, worthy you. Not everyone is capable of seeing what you are so it's important to continue nurturing and supporting yourself as if you were your own child or best friend.  When you partner has a friend who is also an ex, how do you feel about that? Do they talk all the time? Do they have to communicate because of shared custody of children? Do they communicate more than you'd like? It's important to understand where your line is and when your partner is crossing it, otherwise their ex becomes a part of your relationship which can be damaging if you're not all good friends to begin with.  visit and use promo code "brain" to get $50 off an awesome mattress!

Thoughts about thoughtfulness - Too toxic to stay in the Marriage - Desensitizing Rejection  

Thoughtfulness doesn't come easy to some people. Sometimes you need to go to the extreme opposite and become a people pleaser just to get closer to being thoughtful. There are other ways too of course. Also, I read a letter from someone in a highly toxic relationship that isn't sure what to do. The relationship is simply too toxic for her to stay in but she isn't leaving. What's next for her? What is she to do? Finally, I talk about Jia Jing in his 100 days of rejection experiment and how you can to take rejection easier. Visit

The Bad First Impression - Living with Debilitating Pain - Fear of Doing Whats Right For You  

Making a bad first impression is not necessarily your fault. You could be well dressed, have a great hair day, good breath, and even the best personality, but that mole behind your ear makes them think of their mean uncle and suddenly their first impression of you is that you aren't trustworthy and will hurt them. Quite a jump, but this happens quite a bit. I talk about a first impression a listener got with this show and how he criticized over 170 episodes by listening to one 15 minute segment. What do you do when that one person criticizes you? How do you not feel the emotional pain behind such a thing? In the second segment, I answer a message from a woman who is experiencing debilitating pain and is fighting her way to feeling better. She used to be active and on stage, and now she is jobless and lives with her father. Not only is there physical pain, but also suffering through embarrassment of her circumstances. She lies to friends just so they don't know her situation. Finally, I respond to a letter from someone who feels almost ashamed for staying with a toxic person, and she's afraid to leave because "what if I can't find a good man?" I think her focus needs to change. Depending on where you focus, you'll either stay where you are or make the changes you need to get out of the rut you're in. The Overwhelmed Brain is much more enjoyable when you tell two friends, and they tell two friends, and they tell two friends, and so on and so on, and so on. Today's sponsor:

The Yeah But Mentality - Life After Abuse - Rejecting Former Friends  

Ever have a friend that said "Yeah But..." to every good suggestion you made? How about when they actually ask for your advice, you give it, but they don't do it because their excuse machine activates? There are two types of people I talk about in the first segment: Yeah But people, and Okay I'll Try It people. Sure, there are millions of other types of people out there, but it's a good start. Also, I receive a letter from a woman who decided to remove toxic family members from her life and get away from abuse. She took massive first steps, but what's next? How can you recover from a life of abuse? How can you get to a place beyond where you can relax and feel good again? Finally, I read another letting about what it might take to reject people in your life. How about those sensitive people that might be hurt by rejection? Is there a way to get away from those who keep showing up when you don't want them to? Sounds like a great thing to talk about. Today's sponsor wants you to get your free will. Go to and sign up today!

Building emotional deficit - Can't find or keep friends - In Love But Still Cheated  

Should you receive for everything you give? You bet, but maybe not in the way you're thinking. You can build an emotional deficit by giving and giving and not receiving in the way you'd like. Resentment can build and you can get very tired of being a people pleaser. Also I receive a letter from someone who feels socially inept. He can't make or keep friends, and he feels awkward on dates. Sometimes being yourself is the best solution, but who are you really being during those awkward silences? Finally I talk about woman who is deeply in love with her husband yet and has a great sex life, yet still cheated anyway. She can't figure out why so I explore why even a good marriage or relationship experiences infidelity. Episode 150 today... let's celebrate! I talk about TOB's progression throughout the years at the beginning of this episode.

My Partner Changed But Is It Too Late - Guilt About Leaving the Marriage - More Manipulative People  

I talk a little more on manipulative people and share with you what might make them that way in the first place. Association and dissociation may play a role in their behavior. If you're not familiar with those terms, you will be after this episode. And, what if you do all this healing and growth but you realize that your partner doesn't want to change? In fact, they are happy just where they are, dysfunction and all. But instead of leaving, you decide to create accountability and tell them if they don't shape up, you're shipping out! Then finally, after two years of hard work, they finally grow into the person you can appreciate and respect. But... are you still in love with them? Is it too late now? I get a letter that addresses that very question. How about guilt for thinking about leaving your abusive spouse? Yes, people can actually develop guilty feelings for thinking about leaving someone that disrespects and even abuses them. That's an important topic to discuss, so let's dive into that too. Today's episode is brought to you by Get $50 off using the promo code "brain" during checkout and get an awesome mattress to boot (free shipping in the US and Canada).

The Dyfunction of The New Normal - Offending Defensive People  

Has dysfunction become the new normal for you? Are you in a relationship where your toleration for bad behavior is so high that you don't even recognize what's bad for you anymore? That sounds like a topic for discussion if you ask me! Also, I read a letter from someone who wants to know how to deal with defensive people. There is a path to working with those types and becoming aggressive or offensive back is not typically the best way to handle their behavior. You may have to become a bit of a sleuth. Find out more in today's episode!

Strength in vulnerability - What if divorce is a mistake? - Never happy without someone else in my life  

Vulnerability is the final step into your strength. Your emotional core contains all of your emotions, your shame, fear, guilt embarrassments, sadness and also your joy, happiness, peace and lot of other good feelings. But in childhood, we learn to close off that core and only let in and out so much because we've been emotionally wounded. Letting those defensive walls come down lets both the bad and the good out, but only the good sticks around when you do it right. Also, I read a letter from a woman who doesn't want anything to change except maybe her marriage, but that means a lot of other things have to change as well. So she's not sure if getting a divorce is the right decision.  Finally, I read a second email from a 24 year old who has chosen a career path that he is unhappy with. On top of that, his girlfriend left him and he is not happy unless someone else is in his life. Lots to talk about today. Thanks for listening!

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