Episode 53

Hillary Larson - Anxiety and the Search for Home


December 9th, 2020

49 mins 48 secs

Your Host

About this Episode

Hillary is a knitter, but not in the knitting of fabrics, more the knitting together of people and projects and possibilities.

Hil and I met years ago by coming together on a digital marketing project. This experience snowballed into an epic friendship that, in many ways, feels like it spans many lifetimes.

Our talks effortlessly flow, always feeling like 10 minutes but more often they end up being hours of deep conversation covering a myriad of topics. I find her endlessly fascinating because she’s a deep thinker with an endless well of insights.

Though I feel like I’ve known Hil for lifetimes, we finally only met in person last November in NYC. She’s got the gift of bringing peace and perspective to every conversation and relationship I’ve seen her contribute to and this one is no different.

Sit back and enjoy the levity and love that comes through in this beautiful woman’s expansive heart on a topic that so many of us struggle with - anxiety.

Hillary Larson had a life that most people might dream of. After studying at the BBC and the Royal College of Art in London, she moved to New York and landed a dream job producing nationally syndicated radio shows. She interviewed celebrities from Bette Midler to Ozzy Osborne.

She eventually moved back to the West Coast and found herself unexpectedly establishing a literacy program for gang kids, eventually working with both children and adults in the roughest parts of Portland.

Her success was evident on the outside. But underneath, anxiety was ruling her life, sometimes preventing her from leaving her own home. Until one day, after a thirty-plus battle with anxiety, she heard the words that would eventually heal her.

Show Notes:

  • Anxiety is currently a huge subject, we are in extraordinary times now for many reasons and anxiety is a topic we can all relate to.
  • Many people don't necessarily realize that the feelings that they have are anxiety.
  • Anxiety can take many forms. If someone had asked Hillary if she had experienced anxiety she would have probably said no, but a culmination of events that include the death of a loved one and a terrible car crash brought her anxiety into focus.
  • Anxiety can often feel like a terrible weakness, somehow a reflection “that you can't get your act together,” and many can suffer from it in chronic waves to the point of debilitation.
  • The pandemic has tapped into collective anxiety and it's forcing many of us to look more closely,
  • Sometimes anxiety can be a disguised gift that forces us to journey into the abyss to look more deeply and compassionately at what frightens us.
  • Anxiety brought Hillary on a search that led her to a book called “The Diamond in your Pocket,” and it taught her the value of being with what is without needing to fix or make it go away.
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