Photo by Lidya Nada on Unsplash

For most of my life, I thought that my initial reaction to a challenging situation was the only possible way of reacting. Unfortunately, my initial reaction usually ran along the lines of anger, extreme disappointment, annoyance, frustration, or panic.

I allowed my emotions to dictate my reality. If I became frustrated by the actions of someone else, I allowed myself to believe that they did something wrong. When I started panicking over a project at work, my anxiety clouded the fact that I was capable enough to figure out the right solution, just like I always did.

It wasn’t until…


Lessons Learned From a Porta-Potty

I apologize in advance for the not-so-luxurious metaphor 🙂

If you’ve ever been to a music festival or a similar, outdoor event, you might know the terrors of having to use the porta-potties. After frequenting my fair share of festivals, opening those disgusting potty doors, cringing, holding my breath, and blocking the experience out of my memory, I braced myself for a week-long stay at Burning Man in 2018 which would mean a solid week using the facilities.

But entering the first porta-potty of the week, I was pleasantly surprised by its cleanliness. …


Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay

Hello, my name is Kayla, and I’m a recovering self-help addict 👋🏼.

I began my quest to overcome the anxiety, depression, overthinking, and incessant negative thoughts I experienced for most of my life 8 years ago in the Amazon bookstore.

I sifted through dozens of resources on happiness, overcoming negativity, finding meaning and purpose in life, and more. Over the years, I amassed and read hundreds of books, fiending for antidotes to my pain.

As I was reading the helpful resources, I would think, “YES! THIS! It all makes sense! I agree! Amazing!” I felt a sense of relief and…


Image by Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images

When I was a little kid, my favorite go-to phrase was, “IT’S NOT FAIR!” Any time I was unhappy or didn’t get my way, those were the first words guaranteed to come out of my mouth. So much so, that my parents morbidly joked that they were going to inscribe them on my tombstone. Oddly, that image still makes me chuckle.


Photo by Artem Maltsev on Unsplash

If you’ve ever known a “pessimist” (or consider yourself to be one) you may have heard pessimism equated with realism at some point or another. To make sure we’re all on the same page, let’s define each of these terms:

  • Pessimism: an inclination to emphasize adverse aspects, conditions, and possibilities or to expect the worst possible outcome; a lack of hope or confidence in the future.
  • Realism: the attitude or practice of accepting a situation as it is and being prepared to deal with it accordingly; concern for fact or reality and rejection of the impractical and visionary.

Now, you…


Photo by annca on pixabay

“Limiting beliefs.” We often hear this phrase spoken by self-help gurus, life coaches, motivational speakers, and more. But what are they, really?

A limiting belief is anything you believe about yourself, about other people, or about the world which limits you in some way. It could be a belief that you’re not good enough to be loved by others, that you have little control over your life, that you’re destined to be unhappy, or that only really special people are capable of achieving their dreams (and you’re just not one of them!).

When we hold limiting beliefs, we often are…


Photo by Martha Dominguez de Gouveia on Unsplash

I have had food poisoning a handful of times. I have also been hungover many times. This was neither of those things.

I woke up puking my guts out in Copenhagen. True, I had been to a bar crawl the night before, but man, this was something else. I instinctively knew I must have been poisoned with some virus I had never been exposed to in the U.S.

I was sharing a hostel room with 7 other women, and I didn’t want to destroy the bathroom, so I army-crawled out of the room, up the stairs to the 4th floor…


When I compared my journeys on trains and buses during my first trip through Europe in 2016, I enjoyed my bus experience much more. Unfortunately, I only had one precedent for buses and a lot of hot, sweaty and smelly precedents for trains. I had taken a 4-hour ride from Prague to Munich on what I discovered later must have been a luxury, magical unicorn bus, complete with WiFi, air-conditioning, snack service and table seating with enough room to stretch out and take a nap.

Flash-forward to a year-and-a-half later, I found myself choosing how I could most-comfortably travel from…

Kayla Trautwein

I help people create happiness, find clarity & overcome negative thought patterns by transforming their mindsets in 8-weeks. kaylatrautwein.com

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store