About Anna

Are burnout and stress turning up the dial on your pain?

Do you continue to work on your health, investing so much time and money, but feel like you are spinning your wheels with any real progress?

People say to you “have you tried…”? Yes, yes you have. You’ve tried all of the things. You’ve gone to ALL of the places you thought would help your pain, just to leave dissatisfied.

Have you felt like pain is making your life smaller? It feels hard to live the life you really want.

I’m glad you’re here. Believe it or not, you don’t have to choose between being in pain and being fully present in your life. And guess what? I have been around the block with pain and stress too.

My experiences in adulthood taught me that my body was sensitive. I was often getting headaches, looking for ways to reduce muscle pain, and dealing with fatigue. Can you relate?

This fueled my interest in health psychology and the mind-body relationship.

I moved full speed ahead and eventually dove deep into the world of chronic pain. I saw client after client, pushed past my limits, and that came with the price of exhaustion and early signs of burnout.

Fast forward to a few years ago, I landed a job that looked great on paper: amazing benefits, freedom to create programs for patients living with chronic pain, and the opportunity to impact the culture of treating pain among medical professionals.

But it wasn’t what it looked like on paper.

I was experiencing burnout to the max and it showed up everywhere I looked: it impacted my work, my relationships, and my body.

My energy started to get tamped down by the daily stressors of the system I was working in. I started hiding my authentic self by hesitating to share ideas and adopting a passive attitude that just wasn’t me. I was shrinking who I was to maintain the status quo, and I started to forfeit my self-confidence and tenacity.

My brain was foggy. I was experiencing symptoms ranging from difficulty breathing, to headaches, to chronic neck and joint pain.

The impact of stress on my body was undeniable.

When stress and pain reached its peak, I found myself in a familiar place: a medical appointment.

You have a bulging disc.

I heard these words from my primary care doctor as she reviewed my x-rays and an MRI. I was immediately awash in fear and I conjured an image of a “faulty tissue” in my body that would never get better and only get worse with age.

I felt myself jumping to the worst case scenarios.

Just like my patients, I looked to the same medical system for answers only to leave this appointment (and many of the ones that followed) feeling like diagnostic tests and x-rays couldn’t tell my story. Instead, the language my providers used always referred only to my diagnosis, tissues and discs, or movements.

I knew something was missing in this approach. It instilled so much fear in me about my body. Have you felt this way too?

Starting with medical appointments and physical therapy seemed to make sense at the time. I needed to learn about my diagnosis and fix it! But in hindsight, this wasn’t enough. My experience was entering “chronic” territory and I could feel my body becoming more sensitive. No one ever asked me if I was feeling fulfilled, finding meaning in my life, or enjoying my relationships. They didn’t inquire about how and how often I was thinking about my pain, fearing my diagnosis, or avoiding my favorite activities. Luckily, I knew enough about managing chronic pain (hello! Trained pain psychologist here!) to start implementing coping skills on my own.

I’m a do-er. I always have been.

If there was a do-er’s guide to managing stress and pain, I was living it daily. I did everything my doctors told me to do. I did everything I told my patients to do.

Historically, I have always approached challenges with hard work and results have always reliably followed. That didn’t work this time.

As a result, I was losing faith in the system, the approach, and the very expertise I had spent so much time pursuing. It became harder and harder to stand behind the work I was doing. I felt like I was failing my patients, my team, and my own body.

And still, I showed up every day to work in the same system that was failing all of us. Each year that I pressed on, my confidence, creativity, and passion took a hit.

I slowly started to show up as a smaller and smaller version of myself.

The combination of my own pain, my frustrations with the healthcare system, and the burnout from my fast-paced job collided into what became a very critical point in my life.

I grabbed on to the last ember of passion I had for my work, and accepted a new role that expanded what I was learning and teaching. I dove even deeper into learning about pain.

That’s when the concept of neuroplasticity caught my eye.

THIS is what I had been looking for. The idea that pain is generated not from a broken body or tissues, but by a pain processing system in our central nervous system that desperately needs our help. Neuroplasticity centers on the concept that WE are in charge of our brain - not that we are at the mercy of our brain. We can learn how to turn things down and put the important things front and center.

Everything changed when I stumbled upon this truth. I saw both my personal and clinical fear of pain subside.

I immediately started approaching my patients with education and a confidence that there is no need for them to fear their pain either.

Finally, an approach that made sense to me, empowered my clients, and it was REALLY EFFECTIVE.

I spent time really listening to our patients, the language that they were taught and used, and teaching them to try to shift their perspective. Our patients began viewing pain through a new lens and then reshaping what their lives looked like.

In real time, I was watching them form new connections in their brains, and transform everyday experiences into moments that healed them.

As I started to feel better physically, I knew it was time to step away from the systems that boxed me in.

I redirected my ambitions in pursuit of flexibility, freedom, leisure, and the ability to create something different, a better fit.

Although I’m a trained clinical psychologist, I wanted to figure out how to step out of the conventional model in order to help women with chronic pain through the lens of education, neuroplasticity, and personal development. Now, I’ve built an uncommon business as a chronic pain educator and I come to you, ready to share my knowledge, not just with a small group of patients at a hospital, but with women all over the country..

…And that is how my business was born.

I’ve honed the most impactful way for women to view their pain, change their behaviors, and reshape their lives to match what they really want.

As a chronic pain educator and trained pain psychologist, I help women dive deeper than a diagnosis and their symptoms, to connect with themselves at a heart and brain level, so that they can design a more fulfilling life. I believe that there is a way to stop fighting with your body and design a life that is bigger than your pain.

The best parts of my clinical and educational journeys:

Degrees and Certifications:

  • Psy.D. and MA in Clinical Psychology at Roosevelt University in Chicago, IL

  • Board Certification in Biofeedback through the Biofeedback Certification International Alliance

Areas of focus:

  • Mindfulness for stress and chronic pain

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Chronic Pain

  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Chronic Pain

  • Motivational Interviewing

  • Pain neuroscience education

  • Stress management

  • Relaxation techniques

  • Energy management

Educated patients with:

  • Chronic headaches, tension and migraine headaches

  • Fibromyalgia

  • Chronic neck and back pain

  • Chronic stress, depression, and anxiety

  • Longstanding, unexplained pain disorders

  • Myofacial Pain Syndrome

  • Chronic Pain Syndrome and central sensitizationfooter


  • An interdisciplinary pain program modernized and customized to help veterans with persistent and complex chronic pain experiences

  • Pain psychology programs at a VA hospital, bringing together the best non-pharmacological options for veterans experiencing chronic pain

  • Integrated individualized programs for complex chronic pain experiencers