Dragonfly caught up with our brand ambassador and all-round brilliant role model, Chemmy, this Mental Health Awareness Week for top tips on how to reduce stress and anxiety.
We all fear or have feared something in our life, right? Whether it’s passing our driving test, a job interview or not quite fitting in to the fabulous dress we bought last month. But it’s hard to believe that 4 times Winter Olympian, most decorated British female skier of all time and Guinness World Record holder, Chemmy Alcott, felt fear, stress or anxiety so acutely that it affected her career.
Chemmy, what were you like as a child? We can’t imagine a quiet book-worm, but we could be wrong?!
“My kids don’t stop, the moment they wake up to the moment they go to sleep and I was exactly the same as a kid. All active, had to be very outdoorsy, didn’t like to be indoors that much. But I’m also quite good in my own company, I can take myself away from the craziness of life and have stillness and meditation. That’s always something that people kind of expect that I’m good at and kind of enjoy, and I do like that.”
At what point did you know you were passionate about skiing?
“I can’t really remember my life without skiing. There are a lot of memories and family moments we’ve made in the mountains, so I knew I wanted to be good at it and to chase my brothers down the slopes.
I did my first race when I was three years old, they say your first memories start between two and four years old. I wasn’t particularly fast, I stopped to give my dad his videoing a kiss on the way down. I can’t remember a time where skiing didn’t make me smile”
Competing can be really tough mentally. Can you pinpoint the most stressful point in your career?
“Definitely when I broke my leg, my compound tibia-fibula fracture in 2010 in Lake Louise. I was at the peak of my career, knew exactly what I had to do to be fast, had really good equipment and I joined the Canadian ski team. Everything was slotting into place and I felt like I finally believed in myself and I had what it took to win.
Then, I had this horrendous crash and I didn’t I didn’t know if I could get back to that level afterwards. That was a really tough time that I had to believe in myself even though I was living with so much pain.”
You’ve talked before about finally becoming aware of a fear of failing. What advise were you given and how did it change your fears?
“For me the fear of failing was associated with other people’s expectations of me and trying to deliver those expectations. When I finally released myself from that pressure and let myself flow, let myself be as good as I could be, then I quickly got on top of it.
It’s not an easy thing to do, but once you know that you have this fear of failure and that you’re worried about the environment around you which should be your support bubble, then you can handle it and deal with it.”
So, since retiring from competitive sport, it’s fair to say that you’ve not slowed down! You’re a successful TV presenter, Mum of 2, run a sports academy and more. Do you still get stressed or anxious?
“I think I still have daily stresses and daily moments where I’m anxious, trying to control everything around me as a parent is really difficult. Though the stresses are not as severe, I don’t put as much pressure on myself as I did when I was an athlete, when I had seconds of a day where I had to perform at my very best ability.
Now it’s a more mellow continuous existence in terms of adrenaline, there are definitely things that I worry about. I say yes to everything and I don’t know how I can manage my time efficiently to do that. But I think that’s important, being stressed shows that I’m still having the belief to push myself out my comfort zone.”
How do you manage and reduce stress and anxiety?
“A lot of it has to do with making CBD a habit on my life, morning and evening. Not only does it help with my pain in my right leg of my inflammation but also it mellows me out. On the other side of that, it makes my focus have much more clarity.
I was always nervous about CBD because I didn’t really understand it and wasn’t sure if I could trust it, particularly when I was still competing. But then I discovered Dragonfly CBD® and I am such a believer! Dragonfly CBD® is backed by science and has the very best quality procedures in place. Every drop has a consistent and CBD within it, plus it is guaranteed to be THC free. And actually being THC free is essential to me but a lot of brands on the market are either not THC free or don’t contain CBD.
“My life has always been busy and I have always tried to be my best self. Dragonfly CBD® helps me lead the active life I want to, without being weighed down by pain. And my quality of sleep is so much better, plus it has really helped me deal with what life can throw at us where juggling a 101 things is pretty normal for us all – kids, parenting, work and life. That’s why I swear by Dragonfly CBD®. It works for me.”
Finally, for this Stress Awareness Week - if you had a few top tips for all the busy Mum’s out there, what would they be?
“The first one is much simpler said than done, but it’s to ask for help. So often people offer to help us, and mothers in particular definitely turn that help down far more often than they should. Because we feel like we should be able to do this and that we were made to be mothers, something nature has said that we can do.
But it is unbelievably challenging, more challenging than being a downhill ski racer. So say yes to help, take moments to yourself, make sure that you get enough sleep and that you have moments where you put yourself first. I know it’s really difficult, and I’m still learning to!”
In her 20-year skiing career, Chemmy competed in four Winter Olympics and eight FIS World Championships. She is seven times Overall Senior British National Champion and the first Briton to win a run in a World Cup race. She holds three Guinness World Records. Chemmy was named Sunday Times Junior Sportswoman of the Year aged 13 and is now lead presenter on Ski Sunday and runs ski-training camps, whilst being an active proponent for girls in sport.
How can Dragonfly CBD help you reduce stress and anxiety?
There’s growing scientific evidence that CBD helps to deal with stress and anxiety.
Studies show that CBD interacts with a number of receptors (link to new blog) in the body but, in terms of stress, CBD seems to specifically target the cardiovascular response to stress (e.g. lowering blood pressure and heart rate) CBD interacts with a number of receptors, but with regards to stress, CBD seems to act significantly to reduce the cardiovascular response to stress (e.g., reducing the increased blood pressure or heart rate). And in blood, CBD influences the survival and death of white blood cells, white blood cell migration and platelet aggregation,which are important in immune function and can be harmed by chronic stress.
Why choose Dragonfly CBD?
Dragonfly CBD is an award-winning UK-based CBD company that creates all of its products from seed to shelf. You can buy Dragonfly CBD online or in leading pharmacists and high-street retailers like Boots, Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Amazon.
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