The Platter Exercise: How to Manage Your Stress, and the Stress of Others

At this current moment in time, there is a great deal of tension, stress and uncertainty in the world. Which is why it’s so important that you learn how to manage your stress and the stress of others. So today I’m sharing The Platter Exercise with you.

The Platter Exercise is an easy and important tool to keep handy in your stress management toolbox.

We’re all feeling the stress of the world right now.

And appropriately so, we’re turning to each other for support, counsel and a safe place to lean.

Yet, as much as you want to be there for others, you also want to ensure you’re not taking on other people’s stress, i.e. fears, angst, uncertainty.


There are a variety of tools I share with clients in my coaching practice, but one of my personal favorites is what I call, The Platter Exercise.

Imagine I’m holding out a beautiful ceramic, platter in front of me. (Feel free to design your own.)

As a friend, family member, or stranger in the grocery checkout line shares their thoughts, woes, opinions, fears, i.e. STRESS, I allow all of THAT STRESS to rest on the metaphoric platter I’m holding in front of me.

Go ahead, pile it on,” I think to myself.

I hold that platter for them, knowing it can grow in size to accommodate.

a platter to hold other's stress

Free Yourself from the Stress of Others

After all the stress, angst and uncertainty have been piled atop this metaphoric platter, that is the moment for you and your companion to assess, analyze and advise as necessary.

Or maybe not.

Often just sharing all their stress is enough for your friend, family member or grocery store stranger to relieve themselves of their burdens, at least temporarily.

But here is THE KEY to the entire Platter Exercise and a step that should never be missed!

This is the vital piece that will free you up from taking on the stress of others. 

When the “platter exchange” is complete; when all that STRESS on the platter has been held and examined, the entire contents of the platter go back to the owner.

Let me repeat – Everything on the platter goes back to the owner of the original stress.

That way, You do not take on the stress of others!!!

It’s Up to Them

Then it’s up to them.

Do they want to take all that stress back on?

Perhaps. It’s up to them. But it’s not yours to take on.

Do they want to “let it all go”?

Perhaps. To drop the entire platter? Pick and choose a few items to keep? Let it all fly away into the ethers?

Again, it’s up to them. Not YOU.

None of this is yours to take on.

You have enough of your own stuff to carry.

They can choose to take the stress back on, let it fly away, or whatever, BUT THEIR STRESS IS NOT YOURS TO TAKE ON!

You have enough of your own stress in your life to carry, right?

The Platter Exercise is a kind and loving way to be fully present to others; to hold and hear what they have to say and honor what is theirs (not yours).

It’s a way to send the message that you trust and believe in them so much, that you know they can manage their own stress.

And Now for Your Stress

It’s not healthy to take on the stress of others, right? Because you already have enough of your own to carry?

So I have another wonderful tool to alleviate yourself from your own stress and all the burdens you may carry.

You can download my helpful (and free) tool here –

The Overwhelm Solution: 3 Simple Steps to Move from Overwhelm to Ease

In many ways, it’s like The Platter Exercise, but designed to help manage your own stress, rather than others.

​As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the tools and techniques I’ve shared, as well any of your own that you’ve found successful.

I’d also love to connect over on Instagram. 

Many Blessings!

Ask a Life Coach Any Question – What Would it Be?

Have you ever wondered, if I could ask a Life Coach any question, what would it be?

Well I have wonderful news for you, today is your lucky day!

Because I am a Life Coach and I would love to hear your question.

I am open for business and declare that…

Today is Ask a Life Coach Your Question Day!

Most often, over here on the blog, I work to offer words that I hope you find uplifting, inspiring, and hopefully entertaining!

But today, rather than try an guess what you may need, I’m going to take a more direct approach and ask you directly.

What do you need?

In what areas of your life are you needing support?

Now is your big chance to ask a question that will offer you more clarity, support, balance and direction.















If you could ask me anything… about motherhood, writing a book, balancing life, work, relationships or ____________, or ______________ what would it be?

This is my offer to you.

What is the one question you’d like to ask?

The floor is yours.

Curious what it’s like to work with a Life Coach?

When we work together, I’m your partner in creating radical life-change. I’m just as committed to you living your dream life as you are.

Because I work from a holistic life coaching approach; meaning we examine all aspects of your life ~ physical, mental and emotional health, family and home life, career, financial well-being, life-partnerships and more, to discover areas of strength and weakness and how they all influence each other.

When one or more aspects of your life is “off” it has an impact on the wellness, wholeness and happiness of every area of your life.

As we touch on all aspects of your life and elevate your vibration, everything in your world elevates to match yours.

I approach my work from an intuitive life coaching perspective, utilizing my own advanced intuitive abilities and helping my clients develop their own.

When you’re able to more easily tap into your intuition, decision-making becomes easier and the path forward becomes more clear.

Because of this big picture approach, I often end up serving as a life and business coach for the women I work with.

Whether you’re struggling to find meaning in your career or want to find a way to have a bigger impact on the world, transformational life coaching will help.

Clients repeatedly report a new sense of freedom and possibility due to what they describe as my “uncanny ability to ‘see’ things that have been hidden beneath the surface” and holding them back.

If you’re intrigued and would like to explore my Life Coaching practice, you can schedule a complimentary 45-minute session here – Kasey Mathews Discovery Session 


Embrace Aging and Enjoy Life More

Aging has been on my mind lately. I’ve been thinking a lot about how to embrace aging and fully and truly enjoy life more at every age and stage.

Most often I publish my written pieces here on the blog, yet I was thrilled to have an article called, On Vanity and Vulnerability, in which I explore fears and anxieties around aging, published on

Here is a short excerpt –

“While recently looking into the round makeup mirror on the shelf in my closet, I noticed the emergence of vertical lines on my upper lip.

I don’t think they’re necessarily new, but my attention on them certainly is.

I started researching serums, creams, lotions and everything else I could do to remedy them.

Every time I looked in the mirror, they were the first, and nearly only thing I noticed.

On a recent walk in the woods, rather than seeing the evergreen on the trees and the brightness of the snow, I realized I was thinking about the lines on my upper lip.”

Feeling Vulnerable Sharing Anxiety about Aging

Putting those words out in the world induced feelings of great vulnerability and anxiety, and which, once you read the full article, you’ll understand how ironic that is.

And yet, after the article was published, I heard back from so many women who could relate to my struggles about aging and we’re so open and happy to share their own.

the photo that accompanied the article On Vanity and Vulnerability

It’s Time to Embrace Aging and Enjoy Life More

Once again I was reminded that there is so much comfort in knowing we are not alone.

Each and every day, we’re all a day older. For some of us, we’re farther along the path, and aspects of aging are challenging to contend with.

And yet, what a gift and blessing it is to wake each and every day, wrinkles and all!

You can read the article here – Kasey Mathews

I’ll look forward to hearing your thoughts and feedback.

You may also enjoy this recent post on How to Feel Better About Yourself!

An Alternative Word for Decluttering

It’s that time of year again when folks are starting to talk about decluttering their homes. But I always get stuck on the word “decluttering” and like to use an alternative word instead.

An Alternative Word for Decluttering

Instead, I prefer the term “Creating Space”, not wanting to unintentionally invite clutter in with the decluttering!  You know what I mean?

Years ago, when we first moved to New Hampshire, I was in complete overwhelm and hired a professional organizer to help me navigate my way through the myriad of boxes and belongings.

Uncertain what this process would be like, I assumed we would just start “decluttering” by throwing things away.

But that wasn’t true at all!

Instead, I learned so much from her, most importantly, the fundamental first step to creating an orderly home that I have used ever since!

One of My Favorite Decluttering Making Space Tips

Ready? Here it is:

Like goes with Like

Meaning, all the sports equipment is in one place. Everything photography related lives together. All the holiday decorations in one place. Gardening in another. Art supplies. Books. Office supplies. Pet stuff. And on and on.

Make sense?

Being organized isn’t about getting rid of everything you own or trying to become a different person, it’s about living the way you want to live..but better.” Peter Mellen

an alternative word and way to declutter - like goes with like

How Does it Work?

The idea is to create segmented spaces within the home where similar items “live” together.

And if you know where it “lives”, you’ll know where to find it!

Once that is accomplished, the next step is to go through each area and purge what no longer serves.

I have another favorite tool for this second step that I’ll be sure to share in a future post!

Stop Decluttering, Instead Make Space

In the meantime, if you’re longing to create more space in your life right now, this is a wonderful place to begin.

Start slowly. Pick one group of items at a time. Choose the place that type of item will “live” and move everything related to that space.

Take it step by step and you’ll begin to notice some fantastic progress!

Keep me posted! As always, I’m here for support!

​What about you? Do you have any favorite space-making tips that have worked for you?

Please visit my Facebook Page and join the conversation!

And check out this recent blog post you may enjoy!

The Story I’m Telling Myself Is…

Is there a story you’re telling yourself?

photo of phrase "The Story I'm telling myself is..."

The story I’m telling myself is…

We all do it, right?

We tell ourselves stories in our own heads.

A moment happens, and you fill in the blank and tell yourself the rest of the story.

A story that may be far from the truth, but this filling in the blanks with meaning and interpretation is such a habit, you don’t even know you’re doing it.

She never replied to my text.

He didn’t call back.

I’m the only one who…

They’re all on vacation together and I am…

We fill in the blanks of our lives, with the stories we tell ourselves in our own heads.

But if you become aware of this habit, if you can catch the stories before they build on themselves and start to anchor in as a belief, you begin to free yourself.

Just play with this.

Resist the urge to judge yourself.

And notice how many times these “stories” involve Negative Self-Talk.

Just notice and become aware of the moments when you begin to tell yourself a story…

a story that may be all your own fabrication! 🙏🌸❤️

The story I’m telling myself is…

What stories are you telling yourself?

I’d love to hear!

Want to play over on social, you can find me on , or

Goodbye to the Year

Here we are, saying goodbye to the year.

And looking forward to the year to come.

I encourage you to find moments of quiet that allow for reflection upon the previous year…

… and take the time to set your intentions for the year to come.

Questions to Ask

What will 2022 look like for you?

What intentions do you wish to hold for yourself?

How do you want to feel in the coming year?

I like to choose a word or theme to represent each new year.

Choose a Word of the Year

About a week ago, as I was trying to decorate the house and plan for the holidays, my word for the coming year arrived loud and clear.


That is my word, theme and intention for 2022.

To trust, breathe and know that all is as it should be. To stop fretting, controlling and trying so hard.


I can’t wait to hear what your word, theme and/or intention for the new year will be!

In the meantime, my word for the new year wasn’t the only thing to arrive!

a woman holding a notebook for writing

A brand new 30-Day Writing Challenge arrived as well!!!

You can learn more about the challenge and reserve your spot here -The theme of this writing challenge is about bringing light into the darker, colder months.

30-Day Bring in the Light Winter Writing Challenge

If you wish to invite friends to join along, simply forward copy and paste the above link to share.

If you already know you’re ready to make serious changes in 2022, I have a coaching slot opening up in the new year.

Although my Discovery Sessions are all taken for December, several sessions were just added to the January 2022 calendar.

Grab your complimentary 45-minute session for January today –

Kasey Mathews Discovery Session

​Goodbye to the Year, Hello to all the goodness that is to come!

The Importance of Smiling

I believe the importance of smiling has never been greater than with all that’s happening in the world.

I’m tired of bad news. Everyone in my life feels the same way. What about you?

How about today we take a break from all that with a story?

A Story to Illustrate the Importance of Smiling

As a young teacher at a small, independent day school outside of Boston, I had to deliver a Wednesday morning assembly talk to the entire school.

Once a year, every faculty member was required to do so, and I, like many, dreaded this part of the job requirement.

Given the nature of the school and its curriculum, teachers often talked about morals and virtues; making the right choices even when it was hard to do so.

On the day of my allotted time, I stood up in front of the school after the hymns had been sung and talked about the contagious nature of smiling.

Behind me, I could feel the headmaster shift in his seat when I held up my homemade poster board – a drawing of a young girl with a missing tooth flashing a big smile.

I talked about brain chemistry and smiling and asked the entire school, headmaster included, to smile for ten seconds and see if it changed the way they felt.

One, two, three… by the time I got to five the auditorium was erupting in laughter, and I heard the headmaster clear his throat.

Six-seven-eight-nine-ten, I quickly called out.

“Okay, okay,” I said. “How good does that feel?”

Looking out into a sea of smiling faces – all the grades, all the stuffy, old teachers – I saw they were all smiling.

As I gathered up my papers, I dared to glance back over my shoulder and there was the headmaster, sitting in the same straight back wooden chair he’d been sitting in for 35 years of Wednesday morning assemblies, with quite a smile on his face.

Well, quite a smile for him!

Me, I couldn’t stop.

Nor could the school.

The energy in the school, from the classrooms, hallways, gymnasium and cafeteria, was vibrant and alive and so was I.

a dog smiling

Now it’s Your Turn to Give it a Try

Smile, even if you’re not feeling like doing so, and count to ten.

Then just notice how you feel!

​Our smiles. So simple. So powerful. So contagious. Please put yours to use today!

So, what has YOU smiling lately? Come on, there must be something! Please share!!! We need more smiles in the world right now!!!

Well I’d be so grateful to hear back from you about anything, big or small that’s making you smile these days!

Share as a reply to this email or on my Facebook Page!​

And be sure to check out my recent blog post How to Feel Better About Yourself? in case you missed it!

World Prematurity Day

It’s World Prematurity Day.

As you can imagine, this day in honor of prematurity awareness is near and dear to my heart. With Andie turning 21 this month, it’s especially poignant this year!

Recently I was visiting a dear friend in her new home in Plymouth, Massachusetts. As we drove the rural roads visiting farm stands and cranberry bogs, I shared memories of numerous visits to Plymouth when the kids were little.

With fragile lungs, Andie was at risk from a common cold, so in turn Tucker stayed home from preschool, and I created a “homeschooling” preschool, which included several trips to the reenactment village of Plymouth Plantation.

One particular November day really stands out. The kids were bundled in thick coats, hats and mittens and after stirring soups and helping saw logs at the plantation, we headed to the Mayflower. It was late afternoon and close to dark as we disembarked from the ship.

The kids were tired and it was time to head home, yet a crowd was gathering nearby. So with Andie in my arms and Tuck holding my hand we headed in that direction. A man was hurrying that way, and I asked him what was happening.

“I’m from the March of Dimes” he said, shifting his clipboard to his other hand in order to shake mine. “It’s World Prematurity Day and we’ve lit up Plymouth Rock in the signature purple.”

I stopped right where I was standing.

I squeezed Andie more tightly as chills covered my being from head to toe.

“Are you alright?” he asked.

I could hardly speak, but managed to tell him that the young child in my arms had been born at 25 weeks, weighing just over a pound and a half.

He reached out and squeezed my hand. “Please join us,” he said, and together we walked over to join the crowd gathered around the purple rock.

Preemie Magic.

a mother holding a premature baby in honor of world prematurity day

We experienced more “Preemie Magic” recently when Andie and I were interviewed on the  Mothers and Daughters Podcast.


Mothers and Daughters podcast episode


The timing felt remarkable and so special given her big birthday!

The best part was hearing from the kid’s most wonderful babysitter who arrived in our lives like an angel soon after Andie returned from the hospital.

“I enjoyed this very special podcast this morning, sipping coffee, watching the November sun stream through the kitchen windows. Your story is magnificent and I never tire of hearing it. Yours is the voice of advocacy, instinct, and peace in the midst of chaos. Your story should be required listening for anyone dealing with life coming out not as intended. You’re an incredible story-teller and person, and what a treat to hear your girl and her perspective! I loved hearing Andie’s “grown up” voice (I still see her scrunch her face and say “Tuuckeerrrrrrrr!”) Love and gratitude to you both.”

Please note: This podcast is our story, told from Andie and my perspective and may be triggering for those who have experienced loss. If you’re seeking support in that area, please reach out as I am happy to share resources.

Over 15 million babies are born prematurely each year. The impact on families is significant. If you or someone you know is needing support, please reach out. You are not alone. I’m here to offer support or direct you to resources that can help.

With blessings on World Prematurity Day.

How to Feel Better About Yourself

Ready to feel better about yourself?

It’s simpler than you may imagine!

My Trick for Feeling Better about Myself

As a Transformational Life Coach, it is important to me to walk the talk.

So what does that look like in my day to day life?

I have a daily exercise practice.

I have a daily practice to sit in quiet and make time for my thoughts.

And I look for areas in my life that are not entirely aligned with the message I want to convey to myself and others.

Think about areas in your life that you wish to improve.

Identify those areas, take a step back, and see what tools you could utilize to bring that area in line with the areas that are working well.

What Changes Will Help You Feel Better?

For you, it may be meal time. Or exercise. Or online organization. Or household organization. This is the place, when you really look at it, you mostly look away.

I came to realize that place in my life was my closet.

It was stuffed with way too many dresses, pants, shirts, shoes, bags and scarfs that no longer served me, yet still took up precious closet space.

More importantly, what I realized is that this is a space in which I spend time every day, and the messages I was sending myself were – You’re a mess. You’re sloppy. You’re not important to me.

What We Put Out is Mirrored Back

You see what we put out is mirrored back to us.

So in that case, whether I was conscious of it or not, those were the subtle messages I was receiving each morning as I entered my overstuffed closet.

Yet once that was in my consciousness I felt inspired to get to work.

I implemented one of my favorite exercises that I share in my book, A Mom’s Guide to Creating a Magical Life.

It’s a Feng Shui method of clutter clearing, or as I prefer to say, Space Making!

For 9 days I removed 27 items from my closet.

Marie Kondo’s method for deciding what to keep came in handy, although if you’re familiar with her work, there was no way in hell I was totally emptying out all the contents of my closet!

I touched each object and really asked myself if it brought me joy, or not.

Even if it still had the tags on it. Even if the voice in my head said, “Hey but you spent so much on that,” I decided to let it go.

empty hangers in a newly cleaned out closet to feel better

Since then I’ve brought three bags of clothes to my two favorite consignment shops and built up quite a balance to play with in the future.

And I’m happy to report there is so much space to receive a new items that bring me joy.

Now each day when I walk in my closet I delight at the order, the arrangement of colors and most importantly the message I’m sending to myself: I care about you.

My invitation to you.

Take a step back and look through new eyes.

What area of your life is dragging you down?

Are you ready to give it your attention and make a shift?

What are the messages you’re wishing to offer yourself?

I’d love to hear!

In the meantime, I’m off to clean out all the clutter that has accumulated in my car!

Ready to Feel Better About Yourself and Love Your Life?

If you’re tired of feeling inspired to make big changes only to feel disappointed when it doesn’t happen? I get it.

So do who finally decided they were ready to get the guidance they needed to make true and lasting change.

I would love to gift you a and help you discover how to create the life you’ve longer for.

What are you waiting for?

Overcoming the Challenge of Change

woman with head out care window driving down smooth road after changes

It’s inevitable. As we move through life we encounter change. Yet there is a simple key to overcoming the challenge of change and not becoming resistant and falling victim to the changes.

A Story to Illustrate

Recently I was sitting in traffic in a spot where the roads have been under construction, aka in the midst of change!

A man in a bright orange vest held up a stop sign. I let out a long slow breath. With no other way around, it was going to be a while.

“What a mess,” I thought, watching the dump trucks drive along the shoulder kicking up stones and dirt.

​Then for a brief moment, I saw a glimpse of the road after all these changes were complete.

Traffic was flowing. Relaxed drivers no longer clenched their steering wheels. Everything was moving smoothly.

“What a perfect metaphor for life,” I thought.​

Sometimes life can be so messy.

Especially when we don’t feel equipped to overcome the challenges that arise with change.

When we’re going through times of change and life feels like a construction zone, frustration, anger, and fear can make it hard to imagine smooth roads in the future.

Of course we look for other ways around, but often the only way to the other side is to keep moving forward, one step at a time.

That’s our work.

Living life, encountering change and pushing forward.

The Key to Overcoming the Challenge of Change

One of the best ways you can help yourself during these times is by holding the vision of life on the other side of the struggle.

Just like I did in the midst of that road construction (and when I had a premature baby).

Forward progress is hard work and requires a lot of time, energy and sometimes it creates a big mess.

But as we’ve seen in the past, continuing to strive forward will eventually lead to clear, smooth, open roads.

Until the next season of change and challenge comes along…

and yet, I believe it’s there, in the midst of change and challenge where we find our greatest strengths and learn and grow.


text about overcoming change


If you’re looking for more inspiration, be sure to visit my Instagram page!