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Episode 121: Teenage Anxiety and Parental Self-doubt with Angela McMillan


I’m delighted to introduce Angela McMillan. She is the founder of Elemental Health and is an accredited counsellor and coach who works primarily with young people who experience anxiety. Angela has made it her mission to help anxious young people and the adults in their lives develop tools and strategies to help them recover from anxiety and thrive.

So what is this episode really about?

Being a teenager is always tricky but right now there are so many additional layers of complexity right now –  recovery from the pandemic, the climate emergency, choices around identity…

In this conversation, we explore the ways we, as adults, can recognise anxiety in teenagers, including physical, emotional and behavioural symptoms. Angela shares how her own journey with an anxiety disorder has helped her find a truly holistic approach to both living with and recovering from anxiety.

We also discuss the importance of resourcing ourselves, and how we can offer those resources to the teenagers in our lives.

Self-doubt and self-blaming can get in the way of connecting with your teenager. Angela talks us through how to ensure that the work you do with your teenager is focused on them (not you) and the importance of working as a team to navigate tricky emotions.

Why should you listen?

If you are a parent and your teen is having a tough time coping with life right now, this conversation will be really helpful.

Perhaps you’re using tools to help your teenager already, but you get the sense there are more effective ways you can connect and work with your teenager.

Or perhaps you have a teenager in your life that’s going through a rough time, but you don’t know how to approach them.


The author mentioned: James Hillman

Angela McMillan Elemental Health:

Angela McMillan Instagram:


You can quote me on that…

Every time we take care of ourselves, we are able to travel back in time and offer some compassion and love and care for our younger selves.” Sas Petherick

If anything is happening that is out of the ordinary, then that’s a really good opportunity to have a conversation about that.” Angela McMillan

One of the things that can happen is – we want to mind read. We notice our teenager is withdrawn or behaving in a way that isn’t recognisable to us and we try to think of all the possible reasons as to why that might be. We might blame ourselves, our family, the friendships that our child is in, and sometimes we forget that the only way we’re going to find that out, is to sit down, connect and find out what is happening.” Angela McMillan 

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