The Man In The Dress – A Tale of Courage

“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.” 
~  Washington Irving

 

I’ve lost a lot of confidence with some daily activities while I’ve battled Lyme disease. One of them is driving. Lyme disease caused me vision problems and poor reflexes that until recently made driving safely impossible, but as my health has improved I have been talking about getting behind the wheel again. In the last month or so I’ve driven around the farm getting my confidence up, but I wasn’t feeling ready last week when Ben asked if I could follow him in our second car because he needed to visit a town thirty minutes drive away to have his vehicle serviced. His ride home had fallen through and there was no public transport. If I didn’t drive, he couldn’t go. It made me nauseous from anxiety. What if I couldn’t do it? Still, I agreed.

That first drive was nerve-wracking.  My hands ached from clutching the steering wheel by the time I pulled in behind Ben’s car. But I’d done it! Ben drove us home, and we quietly celebrated the fact that I’d gained a little more of my old life back.

The next day Ben drove us both back in to Lismore, and then left me to bring the second car home.

To be out of the house, on my own… I struggle to explain how liberating it was, even as it took every fibre of my being to stay focused and to not give in to my anxiety.

After we swapped cars so Ben could bring the newly serviced truck home I stopped at a shopping centre and did a few chores on my own. My first unsupervised shopping trip in years. Oh the freedom of being able to decide where to go and how long to take! Of being able to please myself as I looked at clothes or laboured over yoghurt choices. When I finally returned to my vehicle I saw that Ben had left a swimming-pool water sample on the seat that he’d intended to drop off to a local store. I decided that I’d go there myself. Miss Independent. It felt marvellous.

I couldn’t get an easy park out front of the pool shop so I pulled up in the next block. As I got out of the car I saw him coming towards me. An older man, perhaps in his early seventies; thin and stooped, wearing a large faded dress over his shorts and shirt and pulling an old-fashioned wheeled shopping basket behind him. He looked so odd and awkward as he shuffled along. As he got closer I realised that he was crying, but his face was furrowed with determination.

I wondered if wearing a dress was an act of bravery regarding gender identity. It’s been in the news so much lately as Australia goes to a postal-vote plebiscite over marriage equality. Whatever it was, I could see the old man was struggling.

Walking over I asked him if he was okay, handing him a tissue to wipe away his tears. He nodded, without saying anything.

Are you lost, I asked.

No, he said. I am going shopping. I must go shopping. There’s no food left.

Image from www.atablero.com

Then his story tumbled out. The man had lived with depression and social anxiety his whole life. It became so bad that ten years ago he had moved home with his elderly mother and she had taken care of him. He’d barely left the house in that time, and she had done all the grocery shopping and town duties. But his mum had passed away a few months ago. He hadn’t even gone to her funeral, although he’d wanted to. Now the cupboards were bare and he needed to shop. It had taken days to work up the courage.

There’s not a scrap of food left, he said. Nothing. And no-one to go now but me.

In the end, this man had put his mum’s dress on over his clothes, because then it felt like she was with him, keeping him safe. He didn’t care how it looked anymore. He just needed to eat. He just needed to get to the shops. It was the only thing he could think of to do. Her dress was a shield. A talisman. His only hope.

I asked him if he wanted me to go with him. No, he told me, standing straighter. I’ll be right. He wiped his face with a tissue, his hands big and gnarled and old. Then he put the tissue in the pocket of the dress, thanked me and kept walking. His courage and dignity broke me wide open and I cried for him as he continued his halting journey out into town.

As I drove home that afternoon I pondered what had happened.

What does it matter if a man wears a dress or not? What does it matter who a woman loves, or who a person marries? All that matters is kindness, and taking care of each other.

I understood a little of what it had cost him to leave the safety of the familiar and risk going out into the wider world. I hope each trip out into the world becomes easier, for him and for me. Freedom is wonderful, but it is not always easily grasped.

As always, I’m holding you in my prayers and meditations and sending love, Nicole xx

Seeking Help Is Not Failure

Image from news.discovery.com

Image from news.discovery.com

“You are never strong enough that you don’t need help.”
~ César Chávez

 

I had a long chat with a close friend yesterday. She’s been struggling for a while – I’ve heard it in her voice, I’ve seen it in the way her usual happy disposition had given way to a furrowed brow, a tight smile, and an inability to laugh things off the way she once had. I’ve felt it in her energy.

Are you okay? I’d been asking her this year.

Yep, she’d say, shutting down the conversation. Or ‘just a bit tired’ she’d say, before moving us on to talk about something else.

She was doing all the right things – exercising, eating a great diet, getting time out for herself. But at the same time she was spiralling down into a very flat place, where every day was an effort, a place where all the joy had been sucked out of life. Each day was just another day to endure. My friend was shrinking; becoming less visible in her life, and with her friends, and becoming less and less emotionally available to the people who loved her. She didn’t have the creative drive, or the enthusiasm, or the innovative and problem-solving ideas that were a normal part of her disposition. My friend was less like herself each day.

Her life is not so different to many. She has a family member who is in need of extra attention right now. She rarely gets an unbroken night’s sleep, and hasn’t had a decent break for a long time. They have financial pressures, and their household is dealing with changed circumstances. As well as all of life’s usual stress.

Having continuously elevated levels of stress hormones is never good. They rob us of sleep and mood enhancing hormones. They diminish our libido, paint every day grey and leave us as exhausted, miserable shells of ourselves. Our digestion becomes compromised, and our immune systems. It becomes impossible to feel happy, because we lack certain hormones and chemicals that allow us to relax and operate in our usual way.

Some of us can bring ourselves back with meditation, diet, and lifestyle changes. Sometimes a therapist or support services can help. But my friend was doing all of that, and she couldn’t just hand back her family, or walk away from her life. Changing her current circumstances is not an option.

Image from tumblr

Image from tumblr

My friend found herself looking forward to that glass of wine each night. In fact she was beginning to rely on that glass of wine. No, she didn’t have a drinking problem. But she had a sleep problem. An exhaustion problem. A ground-down by life problem. She was chronically over-tired, stressed and wired.

Sound familiar?

Crunch time came when she was at the doctor for something completely different, and the kind physician asked her how my friend was coping.

My friend burst into tears.

The doctor suggested a low-dose anti-depressant. My friend was so reluctant to say yes. But in the end, out of desperation and needing to try SOMETHING to help, she did.

And it HAS helped. Finally my friend has been able to sleep better, to unload some of the tension inside her, and to go from feeling cranky or numb to a place where there is some sunshine again.

We talked about it yesterday.

It was as if my friend had a terrible secret she needed to confess.

I was just grateful she had finally found something that was working, and that could help her cope better with her life right now.

Who would ever want their friend to suffer?

My friend summed it up so well. ‘I needed to do something to make life livable again,’ she said.

As a psychic, people ‘confess’ often to me that they are on medication for stress, or depression, or anxiety. For them it has often been a last resort, after they’d tried everything else and nothing had given them relief. They are all strong people. In that strength they’d often carried on for far too long without seeking help.

Image from pinterest

Image from pinterest

There is too often a shame, or an embarrassment with their ‘confession’. Some kind of stigma about how they may be perceived – because they weren’t ‘strong enough’ or because somehow they are flawed or weak compared to the rest of society.

They often feel that they need to get on and off the medication fast too. What if they become dependent? What if people find out?

Goodness. Why should mental health be different to any other kind of health? Some people take hormones to balance their thyroids, or to regulate ovulation. Some people take insulin to stabilise and regulate their blood sugar. Some people need blood transfusions or anti-virals or immuno-suppressants. No stigma there.

If you are stuck in a place where life isn’t working for you, you deserve to explore all of the options which could lead to a change in how you feel. Talking to someone can help. Changing your diet, exercising and using behaviour-based therapies can help. Changing your life circumstances might do the trick. And for some people, taking medications or supplements to help improve their brain chemistry and hormones works well too.

It’s okay to ask for help. It’s okay to seek solutions. It’s okay that one of those solutions may come in the form of a small pill which helps normalise your body’s functionality until you’re back in a place of being able to cope on your own.

You deserve to be well, to be happy and to be able to function in the world.

If you need to, ask for help.

Everybody needs help sometimes.

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The Perils of 2AM Thinking

Image from Star Medical

Image from Star Medical

“Worrying is carrying tomorrow’s load with today’s strength – carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.” 
~ Corrie ten Boom

 

Have you ever stayed up all night stewing about something?

Or woken up in the middle of the night, beset with worry?

Ah, sweetkins! I’m here to tell you that the thoughts and ideas you have at two o’clock in the morning – especially the ones where you decide radical action – are not among your finest cognitive moments.

Image from The EvoLLution

Image from The EvoLLution

Trust me on this. After a bout of 2am thinking don’t write that letter. Don’t send that email. Don’t stay up for the rest of the night and then madly wreak destruction in your life once morning breaks.

Instead I counsel you to keep a notebook by the bed. Get it all on paper. Or iPad or phone. Perhaps there is a nugget of truth here, embedded in the muck. Perhaps the genesis of something which will, later, become more.

But what you need most right now is rest and a clear head.

There’s a reason why they call it the cold hard light of day. You may need time to re-evaluate your nocturnal genius.

Image from Vgames

Image from Vgames

When you are rested, review those notes from your middle-of-the-night brainstorming session. Is it more storm than brain? Be totally honest about what you see.

Maybe you can let the whole thing go. Maybe it doesn’t even make sense to you anymore. But maybe it really is time to leave the job/relationship/sharehouse/country, or say what you feel. Give it another day, after a good night’s sleep has elapsed. Let yourself be sure. Then draft that email if you must. With some solid restful hours elapsed between you and that 2am place you now have a couple of things working in your favour.

A rational mind and timing.

Sometimes we realise that our 2am thoughts were the result of hormones, too much wine, fatigue, or a serious lack of holidays. No harm done. We festered, but we never popped.

Sometimes we see that nugget of truth, and know it for what it is. Now we have the luxury of planning and strategising. We will find a new job FIRST and then tell the boss what we really think of them before our glorious resignation. We will seek counselling or legal advice and work out the best way for us to exit our relationship in a way that minimises harm to us and others rather than storming out the door with just the shirt on our backs. We make timing work for us!

We will check our facts BEFORE we react to the gossip that kept us up all night, sick with worry or roiled with anger.

We will realise that someone else already invented that thing we dreamed up, AND did a better job, and anyway, why did we want to make that thing in the first place? Oh yeah: alcohol, too little sleep, I hate my job, sugar rush and too many Marvel comics.

Let there always be a decent amount of clear-headed time between 2am and any actions you take or decisions you make.

Most importantly, if you find yourself in a 2am frenzy, or down a deep dark 2am hole, remind yourself that this will pass. That what you need most right now is some sleep. Write down what’s bothering you, and promise yourself that you’ll devote some time to it tomorrow, or the day after, when you’re fresh.

Our most difficult situations require our best thinking, not our most limited.

And nine times out of ten, it will be brighter in the morning.

Image from Quote Frenzy

Image from Quote Frenzy

When you don’t know what you want…

“Even though there are no ways of knowing for sure, there are ways of knowing for pretty sure.” 
~ Lemony Snicket

Yesterday’s post was all about using your imagination to create a day designed around one thing – giving yourself emotional satisfaction and pleasure. I was thrilled with your responses – it’s such a fun game and I really hope you take the time to play it from time to time, on your own or with loved ones.

I also received a trail of sad little messages in my inbox yesterday. They were all similar, but this one sums them up:

Dear Nicole, while I loved the idea of your magical carpet ride I couldn’t think of a single place I wanted to go, or any food that I would eat, or even who I would be with. The more I’ve thought about it, the more I’ve drawn a blank. Is there something wrong with me? I feel like such a failure. Please don’t take this the wrong way. I love your blog, but I don’t think I’m any good at imagination games. All I know how to do is work. I’m just really stuck where I am. 🙁 Could you maybe blog about that?

Oh dear.

Whenever we have that empty feeling, or it seems there is a big wall between us and that place where we know what we want it’s time to pay attention.

Image from tumblr

Image from tumblr

Common reasons for not knowing what we want include:

  1. Being physically, emotionally or mentally exhausted.
  2. Being in Survival Mode – survival mode is where we are functioning on reserve energy; doing the bare minimum to sustain life, pay bills and get through the day. In survival mode we think we cannot afford to waste even a shred of extra energy on anything non-vital.
  3. Being a low priority in our own lives. That’s a self-worth issue, honey!
  4. Having an ingrained belief that we are not worthy of pleasure.
  5. Having an ingrained belief that we can’t have fun until the work is done. Newsflash, people – the work will NEVER be done!
  6. Running on limited resources and worrying that if we don’t make the perfect choice we will waste time, money, effort or satisfaction. We are risk averse. Better to stick with something safe and reliable, even if it’s boring, than risk choosing something that doesn’t deliver, or, even worse, brings criticism from others. (Note – this is also a red flag that you are heading towards Survival Mode!)
  7. Fear that our choices will be judged, criticized or belittled by others. When we live in fear long enough we learn not to be visible or to do anything that may draw attention or criticism. We let others make the decisions for us.
  8. Social and cultural isolation – where our world has shrunk so small that we aren’t even aware of what choices might be available to us.
  9. Believing we don’t deserve pleasure, because of a past action, decision or some other choice we have made on which we judge ourselves negatively.
  10. Fear around taking time for ourselves or spending money on ourselves because we believe that unless we are 100% productive all the time we won’t be loved or lovable.

Sometimes all it takes to break free of this stuckness is to simply acknowledge that we ARE stuck, and to feel around for WHY we cannot connect to dreams any more.

Without hope, without dreams for tomorrow, life becomes colourless and meaningless.

If you’re one of those people who is stuck and don’t know what you want, that’s okay. Don’t be too hard on yourself. What you need is some inspiration.

So_Precious_FKG-590x548

So precious by Georgina Hart

So read books, watch movies, go to travel agents and get some brochures, or browse online. Research and ask others what they’ve enjoyed. Try to make a little room in your life for possibility. Make a little room in your life for self nurture and self care. Reach out and make some new connections. You’ll be amazed at how, once you give your heart and imagination a little room, that the road begins to open up in front of you again.

This technique of ‘exploration through information and connection’ works for fantasy magical carpet days, relationships, holidays, jobs, homes, and other matters close to your heart. Why don’t you try it and see for yourself?

Much, much love to you, ♥ Nicole xoxo

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Eight Ingredients for Better Health

Image from healthycare-tutorials.blogspot.com

To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.  Buddha

Our bodies are the vehicle for our Souls. By honouring and looking after our physical vehicle we are then much better able to access and work with our mental and spiritual gifts.

There are eight practical, proven and simple things that we can do or include in our lives each day in order to help build up energy within our bodies, and to maintain our physical health and vitality.  This is not rocket science – it is fundamental and basic information.  Yes, what I am about to share sounds like what your Nana might have told you (in fact, my Nana told me).  Yes, it works!!!

These ‘miracle’ ingredients for a long and healthy life are:

  1. Water
  2. Sleep
  3. Fresh Air
  4. Clean and Nourishing Food
  5. Movement
  6. Spiritual Health
  7. Love
  8. Self Control

Let’s explore each of these eight vital ingredients in more detail.


1.  Water

Drink plenty of fresh, clean water.

Image by ecowoman.net

Suggestions:  For best results take your water at room temperature to minimise pressure on your internal organs which would otherwise have to heat the water up before using it.  Keep a bottle of water with you at all times, even beside your bed.  Often residual low level fatigue is the result of chronic dehydration.  For even better results, write positive words and affirmations on your water bottle.  If you suffer from dizziness or low blood pressure, add a small pinch of celtic salt to your water bottle.  This will help restore the electrolyte balance within your body and assist with the uptake of water and oxygen by your body’s cells.

2.  Sleep

Get adequate (what your body really needs, not what you let it have!) sleep.

Image by ALAMY

Suggestions:  Most of us need a minimum of eight hours, and sometimes more if we are fighting off an infection, healing, growing or changing.   Did you know that most of the western world’s adult population is sleep deprived?  Since the introduction of the electric light bulb, and then television, adults have been slowly eroding their hours of quiet time and sleep during the evening hours.  Where we once had a few hours of quiet talk, or reading, or other gentle and relaxing activities to wind down before sleep, we now have over-stimulation from television.  We sleep from one to four hours less per night on average than our physical body requires.  The artificial light we are exposed to during the day in offices and shopping centres, and at night in our own homes reduces chemical and hormonal input from our bodies that would ordinarily prepare us for sleep.  We lose our natural sleep rhythms.  This sort of prolonged sleep deprivation, where you get substandard sleep or inadequate sleep takes some months to recover from, and prevents the body from healing, solving problems and spiritual connection during the sleeping hours.

To improve sleep, get some exposure to natural full-spectrum sunlight every day.  (Don’t wear sunglasses as this changes the spectrum of the sun’s rays.) Twenty minutes would be a minimum.  Don’t go to bed immediately after a big meal.  Let the digestion process have around two hours first to get started so that your sleep is not compromised.  If this is hard to do, eat earlier, or make your main meal lunch so that you are only digesting light food at night time.  Keep your bedroom quiet, dark and well ventilated.  Take at least half an hour before sleep to wind down.  Don’t do this in front of the television!  Take a shower, read a book, listen to music, meditate, make love.  You may also want to remove electro-magnetic radiation from the bedroom, or at least get rid of electrical appliances beside, behind or under the bed.  Lavender essential oil aids relaxation and sleep.  In winter keep your feet warm, or have a warm shower just before going to be so that you don’t get into bed cold.

3.  Fresh Air

Oxygen and clean air is vital to our well being on every level.

Image by shutterstock – naldzgraphics.net

Suggestions:  Get out into the fresh air and sunshine each day.  Oxygen is vital for our well being.  Sunshine is important for providing vitamin D. Use good posture to enable you to breathe deeply and to avoid shallow breathing.  Take several slow, deliberate deep breaths a few times a day to recharge and re-oxygenate your blood.  Make sure that your home, office and bedroom are well ventilated, with a good flow of natural air.  Don’t spend all of your time in air-conditioning, and if you do use an air-conditioner keep it well maintained.  Minimise dust and mould in your environment.  Avoid exposure to chemicals, especially within your home.  Don’t exercise on busy roads.

4.  Clean and Nourishing Food

Food is both fuel and medicine for our bodies.  Our bodies are the direct result of the quality of nutrition that we put into them.  Eat regularly to maintain a good supply of fuel to your brain and body.

Image from toptenzlists.com

Suggestions:  Food is best when it is freshly prepared, chemical free, and made with love.  Blessing your food, and eating in a relaxed environment really does make a difference.  Favour a plant-based diet, with the inclusion of good quality fats and proteins. Choose organic meats and free range chickens, and wild caught seafoods.  Grass fed beef has the same essential fatty acid ratio as fish – grain fed beef does not, and is not nearly as good for you.  Make sure you get a good range of fresh vegetables each day – these can also be eaten as juice.  Fruit is better taken as a whole food than as a juice so that you can minimise your concentrated sugar intake.  Eat fruit and vegetables in season.  Out of season food has often had to travel a long way to get to you, and will have lost a lot of its vital energy and goodness.  Nuts and seeds are good, and so are whole grains.  Naturally fermented foods such as yoghurt, keffir and so on are also good for your gut health.  If a food has a prolonged shelf life, it will also have little life force.

Reduce and avoid food that is mass produced, fast food, or high in sugars, salts, stimulants (such as caffeine) fats and flour.  Avoid artificial colours and additives.  Eat when you’re hungry, and pay attention to when and why you eat so that you can identify and manage emotional eating – where we eat for comfort or entertainment rather than because our body needs fuel.  Sharing a meal with a friend or family member is always a good way to reduce stress.  Don’t eat in front of television, and don’t eat when you are upset.  Always calm down before eating.  Different bodies prefer different diet variations – if necessary find a good natural therapist or dietician to help you with your food choices.  Listen to your body – it will soon tell you what it does and doesn’t like.  In times of stress or illness, it may be necessary to take additional supplements of vitamins, minerals and/or herbs.  Seek help if you need it.

5.  Movement

Our bodies were designed to move.  They must be moved, nurtured and stretched on a daily basis.  Movement allows the internal organs to function well, it keeps joints lubricated, circulates blood, oxygen and lymph within our bodies, and helps us to stay supple, strong and mobile.

Image from healthwise-everythinghealth.blogspot.com.au

Suggestion:  Movement helps decrease obesity, depression and a host of other ills.  The longer we go without movement, the more difficult movement becomes.  Find some exercises that you enjoy, and try to become active at work and home.  Learn some basic stretching, and if you want to understand and nourish the physical body on an even higher level, learn yoga, tai chi or qi gong.  Movement was never just about going to a gym, although you might enjoy this.  Movement is also about walking, surfing, lawn bowls, stretching, swimming on a hot day, skiing in winter, dancing anytime, gardening, housework, fencing, playing with children or animals, chasing your lover around the bedroom, building, creating, self expression and pure joy.  It can also be about the discipline of a martial art or practice such as yoga, or about the fun of teamwork playing footie, cricket, tennis doubles, or tug-of-war.  Not so bad after all, is it?

6.  Spiritual Health

Those people who have an active faith, and who practice regular connection with that faith have better physical health and longevity, lower stress levels, faster healing, greater rates of ‘unusual and unexpected’ recoveries and greater levels of personal acceptance and satisfaction.

Painting by Goro Fujita

Suggestion:  Spirituality isn’t about going to church, although for some people that can be an important focus of their faith.  It means taking time to talk with God and your Guides, Angels and Loved Ones who’ve passed over.  It’s about having a connection to the earth and all living things.  Some people do this through listening to music, some people do this through creating art, and some people do this through going for a walk in nature.  How you find your Soul, and talk with your God is up to you.  Spiritual Health is about making time to go within, through prayer, meditation and self reflection.  And doing these things as a normal part of your daily routine.  Take time to learn about your spirituality, to read and share and grow your faith.  Take time to practice your connection.  Use spiritual tools, and give and receive spiritual energy.  Pray for yourself and others on a regular basis.  It is also powerful to meet with like-minded people to share the experience.  This can be through worship, group meditations, sharing healings and readings, attending festivals and workshops, or even just holding hands together before a meal.

7.  Love

Love is fundamental to the human spirit.  We need to learn to give and to receive love, and to do this daily!  Love is the most powerful energy in the Universe.

Image from www.soupornuts.com

Suggestion:  Self love and self care top this list.  This includes treating ourselves well, and surrounding ourselves with energies that uplift and support us.  We all need someone to love.  Family, friends, partners, even animals.  We need to be able to actively demonstrate love through our thoughts, actions and intentions.  It is also important that we open ourselves up to receive love as well.  This is often much harder to do, than to love others.  Become involved in helping others.  Use your spiritual faith to help you find ways to express Love in the World.

8.  Self Control

Self control is a conscious development of our will.  It is the voice of our wise self, and it becomes stronger and easier to identify the more we use it.  Self control allows us to stay true to who we are, and to what we know is good for us.

Image from arabia.msn.com

Suggestions:  Self control requires self trust, and self love.  If we come home from work feeling tired, it is easy to eat junk food and forgo exercise.  Self control is the wise and caring voice within us that urges us to eat something healthy, to take the dog for a walk, or to say ‘no’ to a second helping of dessert.  It is often difficult to exert any self control if we have not worked with this part of us for a long time.  When self control is not exercised, our inner critic – the ego, can make us feel very unhappy and inadequate.  This fuels low self esteem and can make the lack of self control even worse.  Our wise self whispers, “eat a salad and some fish” and we then need to exercise our self control to enable this to happen.  If instead we eat toast with jam, and a bowl of ice-cream, the ego will chastise us.  Your self talk might then sound like this: “Oh, you are so fat and weak.  You might as well eat another bowl of ice-cream.”  And so you do, and end up feeling worse about yourself, and believing that you have no will power.  If your self control is weak, start with small promises that you make and then keep with yourself.  As you fulfil each promise, this will strengthen your self control by building your sense of worth and self confidence.  If you slip back, be kind with yourself and just start again.

Journal Activity: Revisit each of the eight ingredients of good health.  For each ingredient, write down one small step that you could take in the next few days to strengthen that area within your own life.  Make sure the actions you want to take are small, measurable and achievable so that you can continue to strengthen your wellbeing, self belief and self control!

Drinking in Colour – how to do a Healing Walk

Have you ever had a rough day? Silly question.  Of course you have. Like you, I have my occasional difficult patch, that place in my life where emotionally (and sometimes phsyically) I am stretched thin. Sometimes it’s from psychic work, sometimes the dramas of life – it never really matters how I get there, once I am there the only thing to do is nurture.

But what do you do when you feel that terrible gnawing emptiness, exhaustion, or deep emotional pain? When you are so drained that you are out of ideas for how to make yourself feel better…

I recommend a walk.

On this walk I want you to do three things:

  1. Breathe.
  2. Let the rhythm of your steps begin to calm your mind, just like a moving meditation.
  3. Drink in colour.

How do you drink in colour? Let your eyes drift to the things around you. Your soul will guide you towards colours that are soothing, healing, restoring, harmonising. Your chakras and your aura will become more energised. The colours you bring into your awareness will bring gifts to soothe and uplift you.

You’ll arrive home feeling calmer.  You’ll find that eventually, or much sooner, answers and ideas start to flow.

I took that sort of a walk this morning, and snapped some pictures so we could share this experience. If any of the images stand out for you, focus on them for a minute or two and let their energies infuse your consciousness.

Walking and drinking in colour is free. But the rewards are high. Often the best healing tools are right at our doorstep.

If any of these images bring something up for you, or generate certain emotions or thoughts, please feel free to share.

Much love to you ♥ xx

Emotions and their impact on your health

When your mind can know peace, your body can know healing. ~ Nicole Cody

(image by Evgeni Dinev)

Many of my friends are healers. They come from widely different schools and philosophies of healing – general medical practitioners, environmental medicine specialists, acupuncturists, naturopaths, herbalists, body workers, nutritionalists and all manner of other modalities. Over the past twenty years all of them have observed one thing; the number of people suffering long-term chronic illness, digestive issues, stress-related health issues and fatigue has soared.  Not only that, many of the simple treatments that once worked so well for bringing people back into balance no longer are as effective.

Why?

There are many external factors – more exposure to pollutants and chemicals, little exercise, poorer diet, less sunshine.

But even when these things are addressed many people are slow to heal. I, and many of my learned practitioner friends, believe at least part of this is to do with the state of mind we are in.

There have been numerous studies done which show that when a person is relaxed the surface tension of their skin changes.  Their blood pressure lowers, their heart slows, the chemicals responsible for sleep, blood sugar and hormonal balance rise and stabilise. In a place of relaxation people become more creative, more connected, happier, more adept at innovative thinking and problem solving. In a place of relaxation our bodies find it far easier to heal.  It is impossible to think a negative thought when you are in a deeply relaxed state.

What does negative thinking have to do with my health?

Go ahead.  Think of something that really makes you mad.  Or powerless.  Feel the changes take place in your body.  You will feel heavier, there will be a sense of tension in your face and body. You may have a surge of adrenalin or a sudden draining away of energy. Your heart speeds up, you may feel clammy and hot, agitated or ill.  This is not your imagination – this is your body’s autonomic response to your thoughts.  This is a natural reaction to perceived stress within your body. Worry, stress, fear, panic, over-thinking; this is what is stopping you from healing.

Over time, this sort of thinking has a destructive impact on the body.  It exhausts our adrenals.  It puts pressure on our thyroid and other parts of our endocrine system.  Our liver becomes stressed and congested and can’t function as well as it used to as it deals with the flood of naturally occurring chemicals WE have created in our body through the stress response.

In this place of adrenal depletion we can become addicted to caffeine, energy drinks, sugar and carbs to keep us  functioning.

The blood is always in our extremities as we ready ourselves to fight or flee (the stress response once again) so our digestion slows and becomes impaired.  Even if we gain weight we may still be massively malnourished, and our body may struggle to absorb supplements, herbs and better food.

We may resort to anti-depressants or sleeping pills.  We may self-medicate with drugs or alcohol.  Or we may just go through life exhausted, sick and not coping but needing to get up and get on with it each day.

Our sleep becomes affected, and that avenue of healing becomes further reduced.  No matter who we see, or what we try nothing seems to work.  Or it doesn’t work for long.

Sound familiar?

If you are living with stress and anxiety, if there is something or someone in your life, or from your past, that causes you to feel unsafe, inadequate, fearful, anxious, angry,  resentful, or shamed… then it’s going to be an uphill battle to become well and stay well.

Positive emotions impact your health positively.  Negative emotions impact your life negatively.

The longer a negative emotion is the ugly background wallpaper in your life, the more you get accustomed to it, but don’t be fooled.  It will still be affecting you. And not in a good way.

Let me repeat an important point.  It is impossible to experience a negative emotion when you are in a relaxed state.  

What this means for your health is simple.  When you are relaxed, your body can know healing.  When you are relaxed your body can do what it needs to do to put itself back into balance, and to put you back into flow, connection and clarity.

So, by all means find yourself a skilled healer, a physician, or a team to put your body back together.  But remember you also need to do your part.  You need to take care of the housekeeping of your mind.

Do things that relax you.  Practice meditation, yoga or tai chi.  Listen to music.  Go for walks in nature.Take the dog!  Make time for YOU in your life. Do the things that give you peace. Find people, places and activities that nourish, validate and support you.

Let go of what no longer serves you in your life.

And if you need to, seek a counsellor, pyschologist, psychiatrist – someone trained in helping you undo what has bound you up in knots.

I know this to be true:  When your mind can know peace, your body can know healing.

This is a great meditation for relaxing that I recorded a few days ago.

Honour your body, work with your mind, and live from your heart.  Your body has an infinite wisdom, and that wisdom is free to reign when we are in a place of relaxation and ease. Do all you can to find or create that peaceful place within you. Healing can then be a natural flow-on effect of that energy.  Bless ♥ xx