06 Nov We All Have A Story. Here’s Mine.
I’m like many of you. Working extremely hard for years to create a life I was passionate about. Taking extra gigs on evenings and weekends for extra money. Exercising often to stay healthy and project an image I resonated with. Eating healthfully as often as I could because I truly wanted to. Keeping up a social schedule. Watching people around me have everything I wanted while all I seemed to do was work harder and struggle more.
Slowly and invisibly, I became stressed, overwhelmed and sad.
It started as difficulty concentrating and lack of motivation. Exercising which I used to love was a struggle. I was irritable with people. My friends and family stopped inviting me out because I either always said no or when I did force myself, told them how tired I was. My workouts were waning and my diet was suffering. I had headaches and an upset stomach constantly.
It started digging in deeper and taking up more space in my life.
I became unable to sleep at night worrying about everything. What would happen if I lost my job? What if I never found a husband? What if I gained 2lbs after that sushi last night? How could I do better? What could I do different? I was jittery, burned out, completely overwhelmed and caught in a vicious cycle of not sleeping well, waking up tired and feeling physically and mentally drained. When I felt drained, my outlook on life was even worse.
I was not in control of my thoughts, they were in control of me. I was suffering more than I needed to because of stress and self-limiting beliefs that I was not effectively managing. I was telling myself a story that wasn’t really the story.
So I turned what I know about the mind-body connection and my years working as a social worker therapist, and worked on myself. I repeatedly took the small steps and practiced the techniques and over time my headaches disappeared and stomach pain stopped. I get cranky at people far less and people want to be around me again because I don’t have stress radiating out of me, in fact, I have energy and motivation flowing out instead. I am rested, and wake with inspiration, positivity and drive.
Even better than all of my stress symptoms being gone, by changing my mind I’ve changed my biology.
This is where things really get amazing.
I learned techniques for slowing my nervous system response which results less stress hormones flowing through the body. Over time, stress hormones become replaced by feel-good hormones that open areas in your brain that are used for focus, problem-solving, creativity and innovation. Those places in the brain literally cannot be accessed when we are stressed. Not only can we access these areas, we can make them our automatic response. Imagine the next time something stressful happens, your brain automatically reroutes it so you stay calm, deal with the situation, and move on without wavering. This, my friends is what we call mindful leadership.
I’ve repeated this system over and over. With the hardest cases of people in a hospital, in my own private practice and with myself.
The way to the outside can only be through the inside, so GROW was built for you. The professionals, the stay-at-home Moms, the kids at school and the everyday change-makers among us who want to get out from underneath this unhealthy cycle so they can show up for life as their most authentic, most present and most healthy self.
With big love,
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